It is way after midnight and I have found this site. I am struggling with a sleep disorder, severe sleep apnea or OSA. Just yesterday, I got my CPAP machine. I am using one with nasal pillows rather than a mask. This is a better choice since I am a restless sleeper who goes from side to side all night. I also am always HOT, sweating a lot. With all this, a mask would never have worked.
It was a long process working up to the CPAP. I spent a great deal of time suffering and had to develop an irregular heart beat before the doctor suggested I get a sleep study done. My nights were wrestling matches for me. I had nightmares of suffocating. Often I awoke, gasping for air. It felt as though someone was choking me to death. When I did sleep, it was only in short spurts...maybe a hour or two. My husband must love me very much to go through nights like this with me. It finally got to the point that I didn't want to go to sleep at all. I got very tired and depression set in. Daytime sleepiness hindered my driving and daily activities. I had to take frequent short naps. Then came the heart papitations...
The sleep study was not difficult. Two nights in a hospital, sleeping in a strange place on what felt like an ironing board, hooked up to lots of little wires...it was tolerable. The second night, I was hooked up to a CPAP and was actually able to sleep for four hours--and I dreamed normally! The second night was used to find the correct level at which my CPAP should be used.
It took a couple of weeks for my doctor to get the results. Then it took a couple more for my insurance to okay the prescription (they were backlogged). I'm not sure if I would have my CPAP even now if I hadn't become a little irritable at the wait and began calling people.
I have vascular dementia, also,so I had to seek help from my husband in this process. Once approved, my husband and I had to drive forty-five miles to the company dispensing the equipment. There we had a two hour class of instruction, which ended up being three hours. The respiratory therapist did a fine job instructing and fitting me with my nasal pillow CPAP.
The first night, last night, my husband helped me get the headgear and nasal pillow set into place. I turned on the machine and temporarily lowered the level. This is a great feature which allows one to get used to the air flow as it gradually builds up to the pressure you need. I slept well the first night, only waking up because of the newness of the headgear and nasal pillow. When I awoke this morning, it took me awhile, but I think I did feel a slight more energy. I had no daytime sleepiness for once!
Tonight was my second night. For whatever reason, I kept being bothered by the headgear. It irritated my face. The air didn't seem to be coming in as well as last night. Possibly I needed to readjust the whole thing. In addition to that, my mind just kept whirring...The CPAP doesn't fix everything... So, I decided to get up for awhile. And I found this site.