Home Care Services: The most often recommended equipment for treating sleep apnea problems is a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine.
If your senior has been diagnosed with sleep apnea, that may need to be hooked up to this machine. You may not be able to get to your loved ones every night, and they may not feel comfortable doing this alone. If they still wish to age in place yet need help getting to bed every night, it is time to consider home care services to help them.
Seniors will have doctors who help them understand when to use this machine and what it will help with. Home care assistance can ensure they are taken care of when you are not there to help. These caregivers take the pressure off of your shoulders and allow you to provide them with help your seniors need to live on their own without burdening you. Often a senior will need an entire team to ensure their health and safety. Doctors will tell the senior when a CPAP machine is needed, but home care assistance may need to help a senior use these machines.
Sleep apnea is a potentially dangerous sleep condition in which breathing stops and begins periodically throughout the night. You may have sleep apnea if you snore loudly and feel fatigued even after a full night’s sleep.
There are three types of sleep apnea a doctor may identify in a senior.
-Obstructive Sleep Apnea- This is a very common type of sleep apnea. It occurs when the throat muscles become too relaxed.
-Central Sleep Apnea- This type of sleep apnea happens when a senior’s brain does not send the proper signals to the breathing muscles.
-Complex Sleep Apnea Syndrome- This means that a senior is suffering from obstructive and central sleep apnea.
How Does a CPAP Machine Work?
The compressor (motor) of a CPAP machine provides a constant stream of pressured air directed into a flexible tube through an air filter. Purified air is delivered via this tube into a mask that is sealed around your nose or mouth. While you sleep, the CPAP machine’s airstream pushes against any obstructions, widening your airways and ensuring that your lungs get enough oxygen. Instead of a senior waking up from the lack of breathing, they get a steady flow of oxygen that helps them sleep through the night. This is beneficial for seniors who want to feel well-rested and wake up refreshed.
Advantages of a CPAP Machine for Seniors
The advantages of CPAP therapy are well-documented. These devices provide your body with an uninterrupted flow of oxygen while you sleep. They accomplish so by preventing the small breathing disruptions associated with sleep apnea.
- Seniors can sleep through the night.
- Lowers risk of heart attack and stroke in the middle of the night.
- Lowers blood pressure.
- Reduces fatigue and daytime sleepiness.
There are many good reasons why a senior with sleep apnea should be using a CPAP machine, however there are some drawbacks too. These are not always the most comfortable machines and may dry out a seniors nose and cause nose bleeds. It may also cause dry skin or a dry mouth which makes a senior uncomfortable and stop using it.