How To Know If Auto CPAP Is Right For You?
Have you recently been diagnosed or think you might have sleep apnea? If so, you've likely searched around for treatment solutions, and like most people, probably found it overwhelming and perhaps even confusing.
Treatment for obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) often involves multiple components and is tailored to each individual. Once you receive your apnea-hypopnea index (AHI) score and it is determined that you have sleep apnea you may want to start thinking about how you can improve your lifestyle choices. Treating sleep apnea can include implementing lifestyle changes such as losing weight, quitting smoking, exercising, using oral appliances, positive airway pressure (PAP) devices, and in more severe cases, surgery.
The most common form of sleep apnea treatment is Positive Airway Pressure therapy, a system that delivers a flow of compressed air to support the airways during sleep and involves wearing a CPAP mask. This type of treatment helps you breathe through the night without apnea events, those cessations of breathing during sleep, allowing you to wake up refreshed and ready to take on your day.
With so many different types of sleep apnea therapy devices, it's only natural to find yourself wondering which option is best for you. A combination of your condition's severity, any underlying health issues or risk factors, and your personal preference and lifestyle, may help determine which treatment method is best for you.
Most people with sleep apnea use a CPAP (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure) device. Others experience better results using a BiPAP machine (Bilevel Positive Airway Pressure) machine, while others may benefit more from using an APAP (Automatic Positive Airway Pressure) machine.
In this article, we'll examine the Auto CPAP machine (APAP) to help you determine if this is the ideal device for your needs.
What Is an APAP or Auto CPAP Machine?
Automatic Positive Airway Pressure (APAP) machines automatically adjust air pressure to deliver lower pressure to keep your airways open and high pressure when you experience an apnea event, ensuring a smooth adjustment to the varying pressure needs of therapy according to your specific intensity needs.
Auto CPAP machines are one of the most comfortable devices due to their unique ability to automatically adjust with each breath and deliver your ideal pressure throughout the night.
One of the biggest pluses is that you may select to use your Auto CPAP on Continuous mode just as a CPAP machine would function, thus giving you two machine settings in one.
Auto CPAP machines also efficiently adjust your airflow even when you change your sleeping positions and adapt in the event of allergies, nasal or sinus congestion changing the pressure automatically to accommodate your therapy's effectiveness.
The advantage of a device that automatically adjusts air pressure to fit your needs is an increase in comfort level, which in turn enhances treatment compliance.
CPAP vs. APAP
What are the main differences between these two devices, and which one is best for you? We'll explain:
CPAP: Single Pressure Setting
The main difference between these two devices is that the CPAP machine operates using a continuous single pressure setting. Your doctor or sleep specialist determines this personalized CPAP pressure setting during your CPAP titration study, an overnight sleep study that specifies the exact air pressure you need to treat your obstruction. This set air pressure level can be adjusted if required, but these changes are prescribed and need to be changed by your doctor or technicians in the sleep clinic in order for you to receive effective treatment.
APAP: Automatic Range of Pressures
In contrast, an APAP machine automatically adjusts as needed to deliver the minimal pressure required, ideal for people with varying breathing patterns. Your doctor will set a minimum and a maximum air pressure setting range, and the Auto CPAP machine automatically determines the level of air pressure it needs to deliver according to your specific needs. No titration study with a healthcare professional is required, allowing you to begin therapy faster.
Take a look at a thorough review that compares the pros and cons of APAP vs. CPAP devices
Benefits of Auto CPAP
The CPAP industry has developed top technological advances with devices that offer effective and comfortable sleep apnea treatment. CPAP and APAP are both excellent therapy measures to treat your sleep apnea. However, APAP may be more beneficial for those who:
- Continuously switch positions during their sleep.
- Need different pressures during different sleep stages.
- Experience sensitivity to high pressure.
- Have seasonal or situational allergies or nasal congestion.
- Tend to drink alcohol before bedtime.
- Value comfort over cost.
-People who experience negative side effects from CPAP therapy
Top 5 Auto CPAP machines
We've rounded up our top 5 customer favorite Auto CPAP machines, including at-home and portable options to fit both your needs and your lifestyle.
The AirMini™ is the smallest portable CPAP in the market, offering convenient therapy tracking and control with the AirMini™ app, waterless humidification, and three therapy modes for ultimate comfort. It's an ideal device for on-the-go therapy but also functions as an at-home alternative.
ResMed's AutoSet™ offers premium pressure therapy that automatically adjusts levels to fit your changing needs and ensures you're receiving the lowest pressure necessary—engineered to be intuitive and easy-to-use for convenient long-term treatment. Also available specifically for women with a version that includes a dedicated algorithm that responds to female-specific sleep apnea characteristics.
A machine by Philips Respironics that auto-adjusts your CPAP therapy with real-time monitoring, regulating pressure when a breathing disturbance apnea is detected so you can experience immediate results using SmarRamp™ and Opti-Start™ technology for optimal comfort ad seamless acclimation to therapy that enhances treatment compliance.
The DreamStation has an impeccable, minimalistic design paired with user-friendly technology, including a vibrant and elegant color screen with daily progress display, and advanced features such as Bluetooth connectivity, SmartRamp™, and OptiStart™ to increase therapy effectiveness.
The XT Auto CPAP machine is a small, portable, and quiet auto-adjusting travel device with enhanced pressure stability and a clinically proven PVA pressure variation algorithm for an even more comfortable sleep therapy experience. It's the perfect device to take on-the-go for therapy during your travels.
We hope you are now better equipped with knowledge about the differences between CPAP and APAP machines and feel confident choosing the right one for you. Here at Sleeplay, we offer a wide variety of CPAP equipment like machines, masks, accessories, and resources to make your sleep apnea treatment easy, convenient, effective, and comfortable so you can get better sleep.
Written by The Sleeplay Team