On many nights, new CPAP users begin their night with a good effort by using their CPAP. Sometimes, however, compliance is not continued throughout the night. The inability to use CPAP for the entire night is a huge problem. The greater part of REM sleep, the most restful part of sleep, is toward the end of the night between the hours of 4 to 6 am. REM sleep is often referred to as “Dream Sleep” and is essential to getting a restful night’s sleep.

There are five stages of sleep beginning with stage one and ending with stage five. Stage one lasts approximately one to seven minutes at the onset of sleep. It is a transitional stage between wakefulness and sleep. Stage two takes up the largest portion of your Sleep time. While it is a bit deeper than stage one, it is still considered to be a light shallow stage of sleep. Stages three and four are deeper slow wave sleep. Stage three is more of a transitional stage to four somewhere between two and four. REM sleep (Rapid Eye Movement) or Dream Sleep is Stage five Sleep. During this stage, muscles are completely relaxed and slack. The most significant Obstructive Sleep Apnea events occur while on your back and in REM sleep due to the loss of muscle tone. While muscle tone is still present in stage one through four, it has disappeared during stage five and so it no longer helps to keep the airway open.

The first REM appears about 90 minutes after you go to sleep. Then the cycle begins again back to stage two as the night progresses. Stage three and four get shorter and your REM gets longer. At five a.m. your REM is at its peak lasting up to one hour long. By this time of the night, your stage three and four are almost non-existent. A normal sleep pattern has between four and five REM cycles. What sleep apnea does is to disrupt the natural sleep cycle. The deeper the Sleep cycle, the more OSA you’re going to have. When you obstructed and need air, you have to come out of those deeper stages. Once back to stage one to two you can now take a breath. This fragments your Deep sleep and REM by not allowing you any deep sleep, or very little real restful sleep and you will never feel refreshed. An OSA person will get a lot of stage two light sleep and very little Deep (Slow Wave) or REM sleep. So even though you say “how can I not be sleeping well, I sleep nine hours a night and nap during the day!” The answer is you’re getting a lot of sleep but not the quality of sleep that allows you to feel rested.

In conclusion, if you’re taking your CPAP off at three a.m. you’re doing yourself a disservice just before you need it the most. Your apnea will be at its worst and your reparative sleep at its best.
If you are new to CPAP, a great machine to ask Advanced Sleep Therapy about is the ResMed AirSense 10 Elite CPAP Machine. This particular CPAP has the HumidAir Heated Humidifier and utilizes the ClimateLine Air Tubing.

The Dream Team at Advanced Sleep Therapy consists of a team of Respiratory Practitioners, as well as an RN Nurse Clinician who will assist you in starting out with the proper CPAP treatment equipment right in the comfort of your home and then provide ongoing monitoring to your Doctor. Advanced Sleep Therapy located in Arlington Heights has been serving Chicagoland for over fourteen years. Their knowledge and experience in CPAP machines, CPAP humidifiers, CPAP masks, CPAP headgear and all cleaning and CPAP accessories is outstanding, which is what makes them JCAHO Gold Seal Certified providers.

Don’t have insurance? No worries, you can always order online from our sister company http://breatheeasycpap.com. Breathe Easy CPAP is proud to offer a complete line of CPAP machines, CPAP humidifiers, CPAP masks, CPAP headgear and all cleaning and CPAP accessories.