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[Treatment] Central Sleep Apnea and alternative treatments?
I've been in therapy for years for PTSD and anxiety, and I've made little process. I have several issues due to childhood abuse and then abuse in foster-care. My step dad use to choke or smoother me until I passed out and when anything is over my nose and mouth, I get flash backs of my abusive childhood. I don't want to get into too much detail but I have tried exposure therapy and it worked with my other phobia of driving in the car where I'm not the driver. I'm ok to drive with my husband, but the fear of suffocating to death is something I truly fear. Unfortunately the exposure therapy made my fear of smothering worse, I ended up staying up for days, hallucinating, and ended up in a mental hospital. I am medicated for PTSD but the meds can only go so far. Thanks for the advice, I'll look into the different ventilator devices, maybe they have one like the O2 tube. Thanks Julia
05-22-2015, 08:40 AM
(05-21-2015, 11:12 PM)julrez9 Wrote: Unfortunately the exposure therapy made my fear of smothering worse, I ended up staying up for days, hallucinating, and ended up in a mental hospital. I am medicated for PTSD but the meds can only go so far. Thanks for the advice, I'll look into the different ventilator devices, maybe they have one like the O2 tube. Thanks Julia
The Resmed P10 and Respironics Nuance are very close to "no mask".
They just touch the bottom of your nose. You can open your mouth anytime.
Also, when it's adjusted properly the machines let you breathe even easier than normal, so any thought of choking should fade.
05-22-2015, 08:53 AM
(05-20-2015, 07:21 PM)julrez9 Wrote: I can't handle anything covering my mouth and nose, or anything around my neck. It sends me into a major anxiety attack and then I have to be sedated.
Hi Julia, and welcome to the forum. CPAP therapy helped relieve my anxiety so I hope you can find a way to make it work for you. A good cognitive behavioral therapist can help, but it takes courage to make therapy work for you. I hope you can find a way to do that for yourself. It will help you live a longer, happier, and healthier life. My only regret is that I waited until age 56 to do it.
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05-22-2015, 11:49 AM
Julrez9, I know this may also sound like it is out of left field, but a total face mask might (just might) be another option. The reason I bring this up is that a mask like a Philips Respironics FitLife doesn't touch the mouth or nose...it seals on the perimeter of the face everywhere except the chin. There is no frosted or colored material in front of your face, just a clear faceplate...it's kinda like what a fire fighter wears, but without the nose cup inside.
Sending you all the positive vibes I can muster...sounds like you could get some big benefits from CPAP therapy if we can just get past the ugly stuff.
05-22-2015, 12:02 PM
(05-20-2015, 07:21 PM)julrez9 Wrote: I'm also extremely claustrophobic and I can't handle anything covering my mouth and nose, or anything around my neck. It sends me into a major anxiety attack and then I have to be sedated. I can't wear masks, do nasal washes or netty pots, or have anything on my face like a blanket or towel for more than a minute. I opted for medication to help me stay asleep and oxygen therapy with a thin cannulas instead of CPAP.
Seems to me that you should seek some mental health help in managing your anxiety attacks, so that you can become accustomed to things touching your face. Sort of the horse whisperer thing where they get you used to things on you. I couldn't get used to full face masks in the past because of painful sinuses. However, being hospitalized 4 times in the last year involving masks went better every time. The newer stuff is WAY better, IMHO. I did nose pillows last night without problem (first night of therapy).
FWIW, I chose not to get bariatric surgery. A lot of failures are hidden in statistics. Out of the 7 people I know personally who have had it, only two have been successful. The others either had many, many medical complications or regained much of the weight. The death rate is roughly 1 in 200, but they hide that by claiming they died of complications that they already had. In other words, blame the patient rather than the fact that you've starved their organs until the organs failed. Ok.. off soapbox.
05-23-2015, 09:06 AM
I talked the the psychologist for the weight loss center and he said that as long as I'm in therapy dealing with the problems (been working with the same gal for months), he'll ask the doctor to go forward with the surgery. I have diabetes real bad and when I get stressed out, my numbers go off the chart, so they think the surgery will help with that. My oxygen levels are great now. I did a pulse ox over night reading and my oxygen never got under 95. I guess the psychologist said there's several studies that people with PTSD end of having sleep apnea and they are not really sure why that is. As long as I go see my therapist twice a month, the psychologist doesn't see why they wouldn't go along with the surgery. I will try to get on the ventilator, but until then, the nocturnal oxygen therapy will have to due until I work out my fears. Thanks everyone.
05-24-2015, 11:41 PM
hey, nocturnal O2 is probably a great choice for now.
I also think your sleep therapist should help you try a total face mask. Here is a graphic of one. I laughed when I saw it, could not believe this was actually marketed as a mask for claustrophobic apnea patients.
But I hear it actually does help some patients.
I am so sorry to hear the past abuse you have suffered. Keep up the fight, it is worth it.
You are extremely likely to see practical changes in anxiety level with therapy that restores a normal sleep pattern. Calming or treating (same thing) the CSA is the ticket.
As you noted - PTSD, stress, diabetes, and apnea all go merrily hand in hand.
Dedicated to QALity sleep.
You'll note I am listed as an Advisory Member. I am honored to be listed as such. See the fine print - Advisory Members as a group provide advice and suggestions to Apnea Board administrators and staff concerning Apnea Board operation and administrative policies. Membership in the Advisory Member group should not be understood as in any way implying medical expertise or qualification for advising Sleep Apnea patients concerning their treatment.
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