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[Diagnosis] New to the CPAP thing
#1
Ohmy 
I have been diagnosed with OSA. I am going back tomorrow night for the cpap fitting. I am very very apprehensive. Life is very hard right now. I feel like a zombie and my bed is my enemy. I spend more time staring at myself in the mirror as I stand by my dresser.

Things I have started doing in the last week or so.. Dieting and eating healthy, working out at the gym and drastically reduced my drinking. I now go to bed sober.

Can you help cheer me up and relieve my fear of this upcoming hospital visit?

Thanks and I am glad I found you all.
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#2
G'day broskyf, welcome to the forum.

Most people take some time to adapt to CPAP therapy, but for others it's an instant success. There's no way of knowing until you try. It sounds like you're going in for a titration study. I've never had one myself, but maybe some others will chime in with their experience. As I understand it, you'll be wired up much the same as the sleep study, and the technician will try you with various types of mask and various pressures to see which gives the best results. Most of this happens while you're asleep and you won't even be aware of it. The results will then be the basis of your prescription.

They'll probably start you with a nasal mask that just covers your nose, and maybe a full face mask which covers nose and mouth. Most people seem to prefer the nasal type - I like the full face. The therapy itself can be pretty uneventful - the main thing is to just relax and go with the flow. Just breathe slowly and regularly and the machine will support your breathing and keep your airway open. There's no way the machine can hurt you - the pressure isn't enough to blow up a balloon. But it is enough to open up your airway and get you breathing right. You might experience a feeling which I describe as "drowning in air". It's very common - your lungs need to learn to exhale against the pressure of the air. Alternatively you might feel like you're being deprived of air. That's usually a sign that the pressure isn't high enough yet.

In either case, it can't hurt you. The worst that will happen is a mild feeling of panic and you'll pull the mask off. Again, this is very common - most people pull the mask off in their sleep until they get acclimatised. The best that will happen is that you'll sleep like a baby and wake up feeling better than you have in years.

As I said above, some people get instant results, while for others (most of us) it takes a while (from a few days to a couple of months) to get fully comfortable and get consistently good results. You can't rush it - your body has to learn a new way to breathe, and has to heal itself from the damage done by apnea over the years. Once the results kick in you'll start feeling better. You'll wake up in the morning feeling refreshed and actually able to get out of bed and face the day. Morning headaches will probably disappear, and you start thinking clearer with no brain fog. And if you're like me you'll stop getting up multiple times to go to the toilet.

As the financial gurus say, it's all upside risk. You can't get worse, you'll only get better. The results may not be instant but they will surely come.
DeepBreathing
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#3
First to cheer you up: CPAP is not as bad as it sounds and most people do start to notice some real improvement in how they feel and function within a month or two of starting CPAP. It's true that there's a real learning curve that some people have to get through before they start sleeping well with the mask, but with the help of the people on this board you should be able to work your way through any difficulties that you encounter.

Second there's a lot to learn before you pick up your machine from the so-called DME. My standard advice to newbies is at http://adventures-in-hosehead-land.blogs...-with.html

Best of luck as you begin your own adventures in Hosehead Land
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#4
I agree with Deepbreathing and robysue.

The one thing that is important to remember IMHO is that you use your machine every time you are going to sleep. Not being treat
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#5
I agree with DeepBreathing and robysue.

The one thing that is important to remember IMHO is that you use your machine every time you are going to sleep. Not being treated for OSA can cause damage to your organs and can even cause death. So, diligently use your machine and do whatever you can to stick with it and make it work. We are here to help you through it so ask all the questions you need to.

Much success in your titration study tonight.
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#6
Hi broskyf,
WELCOME! to the forum.!
I agree with what has been said so far.
Best of luck to you at your titration study tonight and I know it's easier said then done, but try to relax.
trish6hundred
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#7
Thanks everyone! I am feeling a little less nervous about this study coming up. I appreciate the wealth of knowledge on this board. I am soo happy I found you all! :-)
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#8
(01-15-2014, 10:05 AM)broskyf Wrote: Thanks everyone! I am feeling a little less nervous about this study coming up. I appreciate the wealth of knowledge on this board. I am soo happy I found you all! :-)

Most sleep study techs really want to help find out what pressure is best for the person they are testing. You won't feel any pain from the sleep study, especially once you are asleep. The tech will guide you with what you need to do to help get the best info possible. My tech told me to sleep on my back so he could get the best info in case I slept on my back at home.

The one thing you want to make sure of when you are getting your machine is that you get a data capable machine and preferably an auto set. We can help you with that after your sleep study unless they plan on giving you a machine right away. I have read where some get their machine after their study. Every sleep study I had, the doc had to sign the script so I didn't get mine right away. Sometimes, they have to order the machine. Let us know if you need help with that.
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#9
Welcome broskyf. Everyone so far has covered everything I would say. When I was diagnosed (in October), my titration was a month later. I spent that month on this forum reading reading reading. WOW did I learn a lot. The thread that I began with was the 'Personal Success Stories'. I read every post (all 30+ pages). I did outside research and googling to learn terminology. The symptoms astonished me. I had so many of them and blamed them on other things. I was actually relieved to know what was really causing them and what I could do about it.

As others have said ... it is a learning curve. Stick with it. It can and will make such a difference for you. There are others here with so much experience and advice. Folks here are very willing to offer experiences and help you through it. It is invaluable what you can learn here and have the support of others who have gone before you in this journey. We all understand!

Good luck! Keep us posted.
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#10
Biggest piece of advice I can give is if you don't understand ask the technician all the questions, the only dumb question is one that goes unasked. Good luck to you and let the machine do it's job, key is relaxed breathing.
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