BiPAP vs. CPAP Machines
One of the most common user questions we receive is, "What is the difference between BiPap and CPAP machines?" The answer to this question is surprisingly simple.
CPAP stands for continuous positive airway pressure; as the name implies, the pressure is continuous and constant. The constant air pressure in a CPAP machine helps keep airways open so that you may breathe without obstruction in your sleep. While very effective, some users complain that the machine makes exhaling uncomfortable. This is where BiPap machines are useful.
BiPap machines, or Bilevel CPAP machines, are designed to relive the pressure when the user exhales. As the name implies, there are two levels of pressure: "inspiratory positive airway pressure," (IPAP) and "expiratory positive airway pressure." (EPAP) Inspiration is simply another word for inhalation.
Who Should Use BiPap Machines?
Anyone who can safely use a CPAP machine - almost anyone who knows the required level of pressure - can also use a BiPap machine. People who require a very high pressure setting to prevent snoring and apnea will benefit most from a BiPap machine. With a standard CPAP machine, exhalation may be difficult or uncomfortable for some people. A BiPap machine will adjust automatically, providing the needed high pressure for inhalation, and lowering the pressure automatically when one exhales.
Even at low pressure settings, many people prefer BiPap machines simply because they are more comfortable and less disruptive to sleep. Some users have stated that they prefer using nasal masks with CPAP machines, and full face masks with BiPap machines.