My machine

My machine

You have been given an NIV machine to help support your breathing. There are several different makes and models, but they all work in the same way and have similar features.

The NIV machine blows air under slight pressure via a tube to your face mask. The machine has a simple design and there are only a few buttons and attachments that you will need to use. The main settings will have been entered by your care team and then locked. This means you cannot accidentally change them.

Although the machine is often called NIV (Non-Invasive Ventilation) this specific type of NIV is BiPAP (Bi-level Positive Airways Pressure). BiPAP refers to the the way the machine works – ‘bi-level’ means it has two stages (breathing in and breathing out) and ‘positive airways pressure’ means air is delivered under slight pressure. Quite often people will talk about their “BiPAP” machine and they are actually referring to their NIV machine.

Watch our short video about using NIV machines to help get you started and read some top tips from NIV users to get the most from your machine.

NIV-site-test-shots-7
My machine - some tips from NIV users like you
Keep an extension cable handy, especially if you are staying away in a hotel. The plug socket may be on the other side of the room!
Submitted by Anne & Graham
Some machines have a 'slow start' button - it may be called "Ramp". The air pressure gradually builds over several minutes. This can be ideal when you first start using the machine, as you get used to it.
Submitted by Dennis & Beryl
Some people prefer to start the airflow before putting on the mask - it's entirely up to you. Set aside a few minutes to experiment with different approaches and see what suits you best.
Submitted by Alison

My machine

Watch this short film on using your machine – it gives you a step-by-step guide to all the
basics about using an NIV machine, so you’ll be up and running and confident in no time.