Cpap mask

Sleep apnea is becoming a huge problem in the U.S. as more and more people become overweight and chronic illnesses such as diabetes and asthma make the condition more prevalent. An estimated 18 million Americans have been diagnosed with sleep apnea, and it is estimated that another 2% to 4% of the population have an undiagnosed case of the condition. With so many diagnosed and undiagnosed cases of sleep apnea, there is a huge market for sleep related medical equipment.

Sleep apnea is a serious medical condition, and it is not the same thing as simple snoring. Snoring is a symptom of sleep apnea, but there are others that are more serious. People who have sleep apnea actually stop breathing for short periods of time. This actually can occur about 60 times in an hour or an average of once every minute. While sleep apnea has the immediate effect of disrupting sleep and making people tired throughout the day, it is the long-term effects of sleep apnea that are more serious. For example, people with sleep apnea are three times as likely to have heart disease as people without sleep apnea, and those with an undiagnosed form of the condition are four times as likely to experience a stroke.

Treating sleep apnea usually involves using sleep related medical equipment that is used in the home while in bed. One of the most common treatments is using a CPAP machine. CPAP is an acronym that stands for continuous positive airway pressure. The machine helps to increase air pressure in the throat to prevent your airway from collapsing when you breathe in. To use the machine, you wear a CPAP mask, which forces air into your nose and throat. Many people find CPAP masks to be uncomfortable and the machines can be loud, so the treatment may not work for everyone.

Other sleep related medical equipment that may help to treat sleep apnea can include special pillows and mattresses. There also are home sleep tests that can help tell you whether you may have the condition and need to see a doctor.

The key with sleep apnea is to know you have the condition and get it diagnosed by a doctor, which can lead to you getting the appropriate treatment. Untreated sleep apnea tends to do the most damage and puts you at the biggest risk for more serious health issues.