What is CPAP?
CPAP refers to “continuous positive airway pressure”, a treatment procedure that utilizes a mild form of air pressure to help those with breathing difficulties. This procedure may be administered to adults to keep their airways open and to babies who are born prematurely.
In the case of premature babies, CPAP is administered through the use of instruments attached to the baby’s nose to provide air pressure and help them breathe properly. Premature babies usually have lungs that aren’t fully developed yet and so need assistance for their breathing.
For adults, CPAP may be prescribed for those with the condition called sleep apnea. Persons suffering from this condition have interrupted sleep because of breathing abnormalities. Usually, patients undergo an observation test or study of their sleeping pattern. This will help in determining the amount of pressure needed by a particular person to undergo CPAP therapy. With the CPAP machine administered during sleep, the collapse or blockage of the person’s airways will be prevented resulting to improved and uninterrupted sleep. CPAP will also help people in reducing their snoring during sleep and may even lower their blood pressure. Overall, sleep quality will be improved which will boost the overall well-being of a person.
Aside from premature babies and sleep apnea, CPAP may also be prescribed by doctors to those with conditions like congestive heart failure, COPD, and other respiratory-related conditions like hypoxia and community acquired pneumonia.
CPAP, as a form of treatment procedure, is the preferred choice for some because it is less invasive than ventilator machines. It is also considered more appropriate especially for babies. But in adults, the general concern for CPAP machines is that many people do not comply with the guidelines set by doctors on machine usage. Many are just not able to use the CPAP machine as directed with some abandoning treatment altogether.