It’s unsettling when you’re diagnosed with sleep apnea. From that moment, things change drastically. It means adapting your sleeping routine, monitoring your sleep pattern and finding the best possible treatment that’s right for you, whether it’s surgery to remove tissue in your airway, introducing a dental appliance or, the most popular, using a continuous positive airway pressure device (better known as CPAP).
CPAP, which uses a mask that fits over your nose and/or mouth and gently blows air into your airway to keep it open while you sleep, is the most prescribed sleep apnea treatment in the world. It also happens to be the most convenient. It appeals to a wide range of patients.
Sure, it’s a great apparatus to help you deal with health problems related to sleep apnea, but it also means adjusting to a new reality that affects your day-to-day…for the rest of your life. It’s not easy hooking up (and getting used to while you sleep!) to an air machine that makes you look like a sci-fi robot night after night. It’s enough to put off anyone from moving forward with the treatment, despite all the good it brings.
Before you renounce the mask for good, here’s what you should know about CPAP during your first weeks of treatment:
1. Boost your energy levels, on a daily basis
CPAP is designed to help you sleep soundly and avoid pauses in breathing that can disturb you while sleeping. A quality deep sleep provides many health benefits that stick with you throughout the day. It also boosts your energy levels from one day to the next.
2. Gradually reduce your health risks
With CPAP treatment, you can gradually reduce health risks associated with poor quality sleep, including obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular diseases.
3. Short adjustment period
It doesn’t take long to get used to a CPAP machine. The adjustment period can last, on average, anywhere from a few days to a few weeks. The quicker it’s integrated to your routine, the quicker you start reducing health risks associated to sleep apnea.
4. Reduce health risks associated with sleep apnea
CPAP is designed to reduce risks that are associated with sleep apnea, including behavioral effects (moodiness, belligerence, decrease in attentiveness and energy) and liver function impairment, among others.
5. Wellbeing and quality of life
With CPAP treatment, you’re at your best the moment you wake up. You’re more alert and your memory, attention span, general mood and quality of life improve with time.