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New member....a few questions.
#1
Hi, this is my first post having found this great site while checking out CPAP machines. I'm 55 years old and have had sleep issues the past 10 plus years. My snoring has always been a problem and I was told years ago by my partner that I was possibly stopping breathing. Didn't think too much of it but as the years have passed my sleeping has got worse, due to a combination of insomnia and apnea. A normal night would be falling asleep within minutes of getting in bed, but waking in a hour or so, awake for 2 hours, back to sleep for 1-2 and so on. I decided to get checked and my doctor referred me to the sleep clinic. I've spent 3 nights there over the past few months, first visit was my normal sleep, second with a nose CPAP and lastly with my 'boil and bite' mouth guard. On every occasion I was given a sleeping pill. This past week I went back and reviewed my results with the doctor, who told me that I had moderate apnea but also insomnia. For the apnea I had 59 events per hour for a average of 20 seconds a time while sleeping on my back, and 5 when on my side. Sleeping on my side isn't easy as I have chronic shoulder issues. The mouth guard didn't work that well for the apnea, but I've used it in the past to mainly to help with the snoring.
To help with the insomnia he told me I need to learn and use relaxation techniques, something I have already started on, but don't think will be that easy after so many years of interrupted sleep. For the apnea, the clinic have loaned me a CPAP machine for a month, which has been set at 8. I'm only 3 nights into using it and so far, so good. I have nasal pillows which I've found comfortable. The doctor prescribed me sleeping pills due to the insomnia, so I don't think I'll reap the full benefit of the CPAP until I can get the insomnia under control and be off the pills. All very frustrating but hopefully there is light at the end of the tunnel.
At the end of the trial I'll have to purchase a machine and wondered if anyone had any thoughts on the one I'm using, Phillips REMstar Auto A-Flex.
Thank you for reading my story.
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#2
Welcome!
                                                                                                                                                                                  
Please organize your SleeyHead screenshots like this.
I'm an epidemiologist, not a medical provider. 
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#3
Welcome to the forum Triggersbroom.

And I also bid you a sad welcome to the CPAP&Insomina Club. (I seem to be the honorary president of that club.)

(10-23-2016, 04:24 PM)Triggersbroom Wrote: For the apnea I had 59 events per hour for a average of 20 seconds a time while sleeping on my back, and 5 when on my side. Sleeping on my side isn't easy as I have chronic shoulder issues. The mouth guard didn't work that well for the apnea, but I've used it in the past to mainly to help with the snoring.
Yikes. With the shoulder issues you're much better off getting a CPAP/APAP and sleeping in a position that doesn't create other issues. Once your PAP therapy is optimized you'll be able to sleep on your back and have few or no events.


Quote:To help with the insomnia he told me I need to learn and use relaxation techniques, something I have already started on, but don't think will be that easy after so many years of interrupted sleep.
Yes, getting the insomnia under control is hard. But it is also important because you won't reap the full benefit of CPAP until the insomnia is also under control.

You might want to find a book called, "Sound Sleep, Sound Mind" by Dr. Barry Krakow. It's a well written self-help guide for dealing with insomnia with a lot of suggestions of things to try. It also includes a lot of information about the connections between insomnia and undiagnosed OSA, along with a nice bit of information about CPAP therapy and how it works.

Quote:At the end of the trial I'll have to purchase a machine and wondered if anyone had any thoughts on the one I'm using, Phillips REMstar Auto A-Flex.
Thank you for reading my story.
We need a bit more information since Philips Respironics has called almost all of their machines REMstar for the last 20 years.

Is your machine a PR System One Auto with A-Flex? Or is your machine a PR DreamStation Auto with A-Flex?

The DreamStation is the newest line of PAP machines made by Philips Respironics. They are white and have a lighted LCD on the front of the machine.

The System One is the machine the DreamStation replaced, but there are still quite a few of them on the market. It is dark grey and has a black and white LCD on the top of the blower unit.

Both machines are high quality machines that record full efficacy data. Both machines have SD cards and write the data directly to the SD card. The SleepyHead software that is talked about around here can be used to read the data on both machines and there's lots of information around here to learn how to make sense of all the data that your machine records.

When it's time to purchase a machine of your own, I would suggest going with an APAP. It gives you more flexibility than a CPAP, which is a fixed pressure machine. I'd recommend the DreamStation if you're not pinching pennies. The main competitor for the DreamStation would be the Resmed AirSense 10 AutoSet. The Resmed machines are typically a bit more expensive and don't really have any additional features, but a lot of people swear by them. SleepyHead also can read the Resmed machines data.

If you are pinching pennies, the a PR System One APAP or a Resmed S9 AutoSet would be cheaper to buy out of pocket.
Questions about SleepyHead?
See my Guide to SleepyHead
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#4
Hi Triggersbroom,
WELCOME! to the forum.!
I wish you good luck with your CPAP therapy, and also with getting your insomnia under control.
Hang in there for more responses to your post.
trish6hundred
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#5
Triggersbroom, welcome to the forums. In addition to the good advise of Robysue, you might be interested in looking a your therapy data that the Remstar Auto provides. You can download the free SleepyHead program, adn load it onto a computer, then read the SD card that should be in the slot in the back of your machine. It will show you any breathing irregularities and when they occur during the night, and there is a lot of information there that can help us to answer your questions. The Philips Respirionics Remstar Auto (60 series or Dreamstation) or Resmed S9 or Airsense 10 Autoset are great machines to use, and very effective. There are differences in some features, and for the auto CPAP machines, some differences in the way they respond in auto mode. You can research some of that, but for now, just get comfortable, and learn to look at the data your machine can provide to help you.
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#6
Hi guys, thank you for your replies. Robysue, I'll see about getting that book you suggested, as getting control of the insomnia is really important to me. Night after night of waking for hours is so frustrating and boring, getting in bed had become something I no longer looked forward to. These past few nights, when I've woken (around 4 am), I've been listening to relaxation music. Eventually I doze off for another hour or two, but that could be just the effect of the sleeping pill still working. Tonight I'm going to try without the sleeping pill, and only take one if I can't sleep.
I think the machine I have is a System One Auto with A-Flex. As I just have it for a month on trial from the sleep clinic, I was told not to play with it other than to switch it on and off! Hopefully as you suggested Sleeprider, once I have my own machine I can upload my data for you guys to help me along, which I truly appreciate.
The past few nights have been fairly comfortable, although once I had sore nostrils, and a couple of times my eyes were sore from what I imagine was the air leaking and blowing up my face.
All in all I'm happy with everything so far and reading the success stories on this forum really motivate me to make this work. Thanks again for allowing me to be a member of the CPAP & Insomnia Club!!
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