Wellness Wednesday – Sleep Apnea

Back at the end of February, I had a sleep study meant to confirm my personal suspected diagnosis of obstructive sleep apnea. While previous sleep studies had said there was no apnea, I began to struggle to breathe at night in December, a physical blockage causing sudden stops in the flow of air. I saw an ENT this month who confirmed that there was nothing physically causing obstruction, and that most likely my soft palate was relaxing at night to block the passage to my nose (obstructive sleep apnea). Sleep study results finally came in to confirm this, so I scheduled with a pulmonologist. I saw him yesterday, and he’s sending in the RX for the cpap machine to the insurance for approval and referral to whatever company they use for medical equipment. He says I have roughly 2-4 weeks until the cpap is ready for me. (For a moment, I thought he was going to say 2-4 months, and I was going to cry.)

The big problem with sleep apnea is that I’m waking up a few dozen times in the night. Thankfully I don’t have insomnia anymore, so I basically just go in and out of sleep. I never get any restful sleep, though, and I’ve had many days when I get up at 7 to take my kid to school, fall asleep again at 10am, wake up for lunch, and then taken another nap in the afternoon. It’s awful. I even almost fell asleep while at my massage this month, and after about 8pm, I’m basically operating in half-sleep mode. The memories of any discussion or experiences after dinner feel dreamlike, and I’m never entirely sure what has happened. My REM sleep has been equally disrupted, so I have these vivid bursts of dreaming combined with hyper-realistic mundane snippets of dreams that I then have to determine if they’re real. Like for instance, I recently had to ask Jason if he had a doctor’s appointment scheduled for that day because I had a memory of him telling me he’d made one, but didn’t know if that was real or a dream. (Turned out it was a dream.) Literally the memory was him telling me this while I was making my morning coffee, a snippet of a few seconds time, with nothing before or after to distinguish it from any other morning. This is what the apnea is doing to me.

I can’t exercise. I’m too exhausted most days to even take a five minute walk. I have to plan my time very carefully, because if I have any plan on any given day, I need to make sure that there’s nothing else important scheduled the rest of that day. Makes it hard to get to all my doctor’s appointments, and to get the housework done, and to do any blogging, etc. Not to mention that the lack of restful sleep has made my RA worse, and I can hardly manage the most basic of movements these days…sigh.

Let’s just say that I can’t wait for the cpap to arrive. I hate the idea of sleeping with a machine on my face, but GAH do I ever want that thing yesterday.

About Amanda

Writing. Family. Books. Crochet. Fitness. Fashion. Fun. Not necessarily in that order. Note: agender (she/her).
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4 Responses to Wellness Wednesday – Sleep Apnea

  1. My wife and I both use CPAP machines. And they’ve been a big help. I just got a replacement machine because of a recall, and this one is working much better. Hope you also can find relief for your sleep issues with a CPAP machine.

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  2. I hope the machine helps. It’s horrible when you can’t sleep, and just get told to listen to whale music or have a hot bath before bed or something, like that helps. Good luck.

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