I don't have one but I know two people who do. Noting to be scared about. It's just a mouth piece attached to a hose attached to a machine that helps you breathe at night. One guy's wife said the machine makes almost as much noise as the snoring. lol But I don't know for sure.
I have one (actually on my second). It has helped me immensely because I slept very poorly, waking up every hour or so and not necessarily getting back to sleep quickly. Now I sleep through, for at least 4.5 hours a night (often longer) and am much more alert during the day.
I think the machines vary in noisiness; my first produced a consistent sound level but the current one does vary in intensity according to whether I am breathing in or exhaling.
My headpiece goes over my nose, with a support on my forehead. The air hose would normally go over my head out to the machine. Sometimes it ends up sideways if I toss and turn while asleep. I start out the night on my left side but turn onto my back sometimes.
I have a humidifier in the air line between myself and the machine; I have to fill it with distilled water every few days or I awake with very dry sinuses.
I went on one in early November. The sleep study was sort of weird, but survivable. The worst part is that they put a lot of sensors on your body and head. The head part is like getting an EEG. Each sensor has a wire which goes to a unit that gets plugged in. They take readings while your awake. Then you have to fall asleep and they read you while you sleep. I was tested as severe, which meant I stopped breathing more than one time per minute.
They did mine in one night, which means that they woke me up and put the CPAP mask on me. I had already tried it while awake, so it wouldn't be a shock. It is weird at first, because you have to trust the small mask which fits over your nose. You only can breath in through your nose and then, breathing out your nose. The air comes in continuously as you breath. There are holes which let your breath out. If you open your mouth, the air flows out your mouth which is very unpleasant. I only did this a few times before my body adjusted to breathing out my nose all night.
They say it takes at least a month to get used to it, and it took me at least a month. There's a card reader in the machine which reads how many hours you have been on it, and you have to use it at least four hours per night. I had trouble with this at first, as it inflamed my sinuses, but now I wouldn't want to sleep without it. As a side perk, it has improved my singing voice, opening up my sinuses.
At the time I first got the machine, I was working two jobs and only getting about five and a half hours of sleep at night. I would walk in the halls at school and stop breathing, suddenly gasping for air. This is what you are doing during your sleep, your breathing stopping and depriving you of oxygen. This can cause heart attacks and strokes.
You are young for needing a CPAP, but there are a lot of things that cause this. There are a lot of us on these machines, so be brave. They say that half of the people who get them, soon stop using them. I think this is a big mistake. I've adjusted well to mine. I feel a lot better. It used to be that I would kill to take a nap when I came home from work, but I almost never take a nap during the day or evening. It's really improved my quality of life, so I hope you will give it a good try.
No I don't... my father has one though... he's somewhere between average/severe in terms of his sleep apnea - snores like a bloody monster...
I remember when he got it - it was a bit "hard" to get used to as he tosses about throughout the night (sometimes he wakes up flip-sided (head where the feet should be ) my mom told me once.)
but after some time I guess he got the hang of it.
Anyhow: the CPAP machines only some sort of "remedy" - they don't solve the underlying issue.
With all those things, I much advocate trying to FIND OUT WHY you suffer from sleep apnea... then asses whether there is anything that can be done to really get rid of the issue.
For example (and I'm not implying anything) if you're overweight / obese - that is a know major "cause" for sleep apnea or lets say if you are and are prone to get sleep apnea it can really trigger it.
Or sometimes there's something physical that could be corrected by some surgery.
the cpap machine will be a good thing to achieve an almost immediate relieve - but the machine doesn't solve the problem. and at 21, I'd be keen to find a solution not including the machine for the years to come.
I'm a hose head too. Been on a CPAP for about 8 years. I won't sleep without it ever, because I can tell when I don't have it. I use a full face mask because I couldn't sleep with my mouth closed. I'm at about a 99% compliant, meaning I wear it that many nights. My machine is an auto bi-flex machine. It is less pressure breathing out and more breathing in, plus automatically adjusts the pressure.
I'd it's not comfortable and you've gave it time, the seek out a different mask. I went through two before I found the Fisher & Paykle 432 or forma that I use now. I also use a humidifier which I go through all the water nightly (highest setting). I learned to cover the hose with fleece to keep the air warm and moist. I also use a hose hook to keep the hose above my head so I can roll over.
The cause of obstructive sleep apnea is the nasal airway between the mouth and nose collapses when the muscles relax, causing snoring (the vibrating of those tissues). I joke that the issue is not the snoring, but when it stops.
There is surgery that will remove the soft pallet from the mouth, but you run the risk of aspiration of food into the sinuses.
Central sleep apnea is where the brain fails to tell your diaphragm to breathe.
I also do my rendition of invasion of the body snatchers and sleep hooked up to my self attached reverse vacuum cleaner set at 15 cm. I have had on for 13 years now and even take quick cat naps with it to refresh when I need. It does take a little getting use to it but considering the alternative death, cardiac issues, and the potential for accidents because one suddenly falls asleep while driving, its real easy to use.
Another hose head here.
There are many types of masks some just cover your nose and other cover nose and mouth.
If you breath through your nose at night the nose type may work for you if you breath through your mouth you will need the one that covers nose and mouth.
some that cover the nose and mouth fit on the front of the face some seal under the chin.(if you yawn at night the under the under the chin type may not work.)
if you breath through your mouth with the front of the face type seal you want to fit it with your mouth normally open like you sleep.
Don't let them tell you what you need a fit test is the only way.
at the VA i go to the nurse that gives out the mask is a moron and has no idea what she is doing. plus she does not like guys with beards.
I am a ex firefighter and mine safety man and was trained in fitting respirators and firefighting mask.