What is EPAP?
We all know that sleep is important in keeping our bodies functioning well. It is when your brain processes the data you’ve accumulated throughout the day, memories are formed, and your body repairs itself. The importance of sleep is undeniable, but what if you are one of the millions of Australians that suffer from obstructive sleep apnea (OSA)?
What is Obstructive Sleep Apnea?
Obstructive sleep apnea is a condition in which the airway collapses or becomes blocked during sleep, causing snoring and shallow breathing. These blockages cause a person to stop breathing for 10-30 seconds or more, waking them up over and over again throughout the night and preventing you from getting a good amount of restorative oxygen to your muscles and organs. OSA sufferers often don’t feel rested because you are always waking up, or falling asleep throughout the day.
Treatment for OSA depends on the individual, with options including continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP), EPAP, and oral devices, and positional aids.
What is EPAP?
EPAP, or Expiratory Positive Airway Pressure, is a relatively new way of treating those with obstructive sleep apnea. An alternative to the more common CPAP machines, the EPAP is inserted into the nostrils, with the user’s own breath creating the pressure upon exhaling. This differs from the CPAP as it does not add pressure when inhaling.
The Bongo RX is one such sleep therapy device. The device’s small valves open during inhalation, allowing the wearer to inhale normally through the device. As the nostrils are open wider, this helps increase the inhalation capacity. It is easy to use and requires no power supply – making it perfect for travelling.
Other alternative devices for the treatment of obstructive sleep apnea include hushd, and Night Shift.
Hushd is an oral sleep device that is easy to prepare and use and take with you wherever you go. The mouthpiece reduces snoring by re-positioning and securing the jaw as well as preventing the tongue from falling back into the mouth and restricting your airway. Along with the device is the hushd SleepCare app that features instructional videos, sleep hygiene tips, and even has the ability to manage clinic bookings with your local sleep dentist.
NightShift is a clinically-proven POSA – positional obstructive sleep apnea – mask-free treatment. Sensing when you are on your back, the device emits gentle vibrations to encourage you to shift back onto your side, all without waking you up and disturbing your sleep cycle. NightShift is lightweight and can be worn comfortably on the neck or chest to improve sleep architecture and continuity.
Obstructive sleep apnea can be a serious and debilitating condition, but thankfully there are treatment options available, helping patients get back to living more comfortably awake and sleeping better at night. If you’re suffering from obstructive sleep apnea and would like to learn more about the treatment that’s right for you, make an appointment with your general practitioner or sleep specialist today.
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