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Old 11-16-04, 10:14 AM   #1
damianb
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Anyone have sleep apnea?

Has anyone here ever been diagnosed with sleep apnea, or any other sleep disorder? I've had trouble sleeping my whole life, and always felt tired. Finally decided to see a specialist about it. He ordered a sleep study, at which I only slept 40 minutes. I'm going in today for the followup, and wondered if anyone else had dealt with this and what their experiences were.

For those of you who have the CPAP (Darth Vadder mask thing you where when you sleep), how long did it take till you got used to it? Did you feel more rested once you started using it? Did getting more rest let you exercise more, or did you feel tired even with the mask?

Thanks
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Old 11-16-04, 10:52 AM   #2
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My husband has sleep apnea. He has been using the CPAP since Sept. 2001. Let me tell you, it has made a huge difference! It took about a week or so for him to get used the the mask...mostly just fine-tuning the feel/adjustment of the mask when initially putting it on (is it too tight...now it seems loose, etc.) It quickly became second nature though...just like anything else you wear.

He definately feels more rested...right from the start at the sleep clinic. I can tell you from a spouse's point of view, he sleeps like a baby compared to before the CPAP. (no more tossing & turning every few minutes...no more loud snoring either!) I sleep much better also! He doesn't sleep with out the CPAP at all ...doesn't even want to try...
As far as exercise...can't really answer that for you. My husband doesn't really have an 'exercise' routine...just 'on the job' physical labor stuff. I would be willing to bet as soon as you start getting your needed oxygen while you sleep, your going to notice the difference in your daily exercise routine. Hang in there...don't get stressed out during the initial 'adjustment' period... and you will surely wonder how you ever made it this long with out your CPAP!
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Old 11-17-04, 04:56 PM   #3
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I worked in a Sleep Disorder Lab for about 10 years. Some people get used to the mask in minutes, others take days or weeks. If your MD prescibes C pap for you you'd be crazy not to get used to it. You will feel better after a few good nights sleep and generally "like a new person" after maybe 3 months continuous use. I have heard that quote from many patients over the years. Make sure you get properly fitted for your mask and that it doesn't leak. Even a small leak can greatly reduce the effectiveness. Also, if you do have trouble and "can't get use to it" speak to you're MD about trying a different style mask. There are a several makers. Resperonics masks seem to be tolerated pretty well, but everyone is different. You will have much more energy and will likely loose a bit of weight. It's ironic that some of the most severe apnea patients don't complain about feeling tired, though their spouse will ofter mention that they constantly dooze off sitting, watching tv, etc. They have gone so long without restfull sleep that they don't "feel" like they havent been sleeping well. It's like someone that drinks 6 beers and smoke sdope daily; they have lost their baseline of what's "normal". Anyway, hope this helps and good luck. My email is toddinjax@yahoo.com if you want to ask any ??'s. I'm not a doc but I'll try to help.
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Old 11-17-04, 06:25 PM   #4
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i cant sleep period. Had tonsils removed in 01 still cant get to sleep at night. Tired all the time. Takes 1 hour to get to sleep. Thats is I get in bed by 2 am.

I usually sleep 4-6 hours. Just cant dose off, no matter how tired I am.

Sucks
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Old 11-18-04, 07:10 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by C_heath
i cant sleep period. Had tonsils removed in 01 still cant get to sleep at night. Tired all the time. Takes 1 hour to get to sleep. Thats is I get in bed by 2 am.

I usually sleep 4-6 hours. Just cant dose off, no matter how tired I am.

Sucks
EDIT: c heath it would probably be a good idea to check out sleep labs/doctors in your area as well.

Just cutting out tissue isn't going to help all that much. The actual results of Tonsillectomies and UPPP surgeries are never that great. Less than 20% actually have elimination of symptoms and decreased daytime sleepiness.

I, too, work in a sleep lab and I see all kinds of ppl come in. Had one guy whose heart stopped for about 5seconds several times through out the night. OSA isn't something that is harmless.

To the original post. ALL sleep labs are NOT created equal!!! I can't even begin to tell you how many times I have seen patients come in from other labs with poor results. Common problems are poor mask fit and too much CPAP pressure. It would be a good idea to see a doctor who is actually certified by the American Board of Sleep Medicine. They will typically have the heads up on the best lab in your area. If you want I can do a search for you and see what labs/doctors come up in your area. I can also help either of you with any questions you might have. edmiston9@hotmail.com
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Old 11-18-04, 10:18 AM   #6
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A few years ago, I was in the same situation, did not seem like I was getting any sleep at all, almost to the point of passing out. My BF at the time could swear that I stopped breathing at night & must have sleep apnea.
Went to a sleep clinic, had the sleep study done. I had to sleep there for 2 nights. Well it turned out that I had a sleep disorder caused by a chemical imbalance (amino acid inbalance). This imbalance meant that I could not achieve REM sleep. My breathing also became so shallow that it seemed like I stopped breathing. They put me on tryptophan (not sure of spelling, it natuarally occurs in milk & turkey) for a year to correct it. The stuff just knocked me right out and within a few weeks I feeling much better & even normal.
Never figured out the cause of it, but now almost 4 years later I am still fine, and I am pretty active now.
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Old 11-18-04, 10:24 AM   #7
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Sleep apnea was a big part of the reason I got my self in shape besides being very unhealthy. I was diagnosed with severe sleep apnea around a year and a half ago. I had to sleep with a cpap and I hated every moment of it even though my girl friend at the time loved it because I stopped snoring like a chainsaw with the cpap on but I always ended up taking it off in my sleep. My sleep study doctor was awesome. He motivated me to lose weight by basically saying I was morbidly obese and it would kill me. One year later and 120 (270 down to 150) pounds less I do not need the cpap anymore well actually I have not used it in around 6 months (too much pressure). I do need to go back and get another study to make sure I am not having anymore events and to thank my Doc for what he has done for me (he is also a biker) but I do not snore anymore and I feel more refreshed in the morning which is awesome the only bad thing to come out of my experience is I am obsessed with exercising and calorie counting which is a topic for a whole other thread

Matt

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Old 11-18-04, 10:48 AM   #8
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Sorry about the delay getting back to you all, things have been hectic at work.

I saw the sleep doctor, and he confirmed the apnea. He said he'd seen worse, but I am experiencing around 40 micro arousals per hour. His records say I slept for around 240 minutes, I think that's a optimistic number. During that sleep, I got no deep sleep and no REM, so that should explain why I'm always tired. I'm sure I get a little more sleep at home, where I can relax, but the study indicate whatever sleep I might get, it ain't high quality.

I go back for a CPAP titration on the 16th of December. I wish they would just tell me to get the thing so I could start getting this rest everyone always raves about, but I understand they need to get the settings right. Its just so frustrating to be so close, but to have to wait a month because of scheduling and appointments. By the time they read the results, which takes two weeks, and I get back into the doctors office, I expect it to be middle of January. Gah!

Thanks for all the good info, I feel somewhat better about the prospects, I just wish I didn't have to wait so long to do something about it.

Until then, I'll keep exercising when I have the energy and, more often, when I don't.
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Old 11-21-04, 04:37 PM   #9
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Some non-medical things to try:

Caffiene can be a great inhibitor of sleep. If you have 5 strong cups of coffee a day your brain will be totally wired until very late in the evening. Same goes for cola and so called 'energy' drinks like red bull, V, etc.

Cut back on caffiene (or cut it out altogether) and it will be easier to attain a relaxed state of mind before bed. If you do decide to reduce caffiene intake take the reduction SLOWLY. If you cut too much caffiene out at once you may get some pretty bad withdrawal symptoms. So cut back little by little.

Things to encourage sleep include watching banal TV shows or reading a book, hot shower or bath, a light dinner (and skip those after dinner desserts and snacks!) followed by a nice, slow evening stroll, a small cup of warm milk instead of tea or coffee, etc.

And make sure the bedroom is well aired before bedtime. Leave the window open while you sleep if you can so you have nice fresh air all night.
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