You’ve got all the signs of sleep apnea, from loud snoring to feeling unrested during the day despite getting enough hours of sleep. Now your doctor has diagnosed you with this fairly common health issue, and they are recommending treatment in the form of positive airway pressure (PAP) to help you.
There are options, including continuous PAP (CPAP) and bilevel PAP (BiPAP) machines. But what do they do, and what are the key differences between them? Here’s a guide to CPAP and BiPAP to help you choose the right one with help from your healthcare provider based on your needs and preferences.
What Is CPAP?
First off, CPAP functions much like the name suggests. Healthline explains that the machine supplies a “steady flow of oxygen into your nose and mouth as you sleep,” which helps keep your airways open.
While using a CPAP machine, you’ll have an airtight mask over your nose/mouth that receives pressurized air (generated by a compressor) through a tube. While there are several models of CPAP machines, they all share common features such as a headgear frame and adjustable straps to adjust the fit.