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When did you first begin to suspect that you had apnea?
#21
I've snored all my life, but it got significantly worse when I got pregnant with twins at 43 years old. The snoring was so bad that is usually kept my husband awake but he didn't want to keep waking me up while I was pregnant.

I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism, Diabetes and Chronic Fatigue in 2002 and I had never even heard of sleep apnea. I was always tired... like a bone numbing tired. It got a little better with treatment for hypothyroidism and Diabetes, but I still felt tired much of the time.

So, after my sons were born, I expect to feel tired. I mean... there's 2 newborns, right? But they started sleeping through the night at 6 months old and I was still snoring LOUDLY and I was still exhausted after 8 hours of sleep. I went to several doctors - each of them dismissed it as "you have twins". Twins don't cause you to snore like that.Twins don't cause you to be so exhausted when you wake up. So I kept going. I found this board when the boys were about 10 months old. I got a pulse oximeter and started recording the sounds I made at night via Sleep for Android. The results were kind of startling - my AHI on my pulse ox was regularly 8-20. So I fought for a sleep study. Finally, I found a doctor that would give me an at home sleep study. My AHI those two nights was merely 5. My RDI was 36. I really didn't know what those terms meant, but this doctor told me I didn't have sleep apnea.

So I spent time looking for another cause of the snoring and exhaustion. My husband was frustrated because HE couldn't get a good night sleep either. He said that it was MUCH worse than when I was pregnant.

I ruled out allergies and my thyroid and my female hormones. Diabetes was very well controlled. So another doctor said that there was nothing wrong with me, that I should pursue mental health treatment for depression.

I went to see a sleep doctor and he gave me another at home test. This time the AHI was 5 and the RDI was 15. He said I had sleep apnea and needed a cpap. He said to call the sleep institute and have them do a titration study. So I did and they disagreed... said that my sleep apnea was mild and my insurance would not pay for a cpap, so there would be no point in doing the titration study. He explained that they didn't care what the RDI was. I believed them.

So, I went to an Ear Nose and Throat doctor who wanted to burn the soft palate to stop the sleep apnea. I was desperate, so I agreed to it. They ran it by my insurance - who refused to pay for the surgery as it's "experimental". So the ENT got me a cpap - which the insurance paid for just fine.

It was pretty frustrating. But I KNEW that there was something wrong. I'm struggling these days with staying asleep past 7 hours though. I wake up after 7 hours of sleep and I'm not tired when I wake up but usually get that way by the afternoon. I try not to take naps because there is so little time with 2 two year olds running around, but I can't figure out why I can't sleep more than 7 hours a night.

I suspect my mother has sleep apnea because she has always snored and she fell asleep in the middle of a conversation one Thanksgiving. She said that her mother just got diagnosed with it and got a cpap, too, but she doesn't want one, so she's happy. She said she's tired because she's tired and when she snores too loud, my Dad just elbows her and she rolls over and stops snoring.

I'll keep working on her :grin:
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#22
I am 50 now. My older brother sent out a group email about 12 years ago inviting all of us to get CPAP machines. He explained that it had changed his life. Wow. I feel so dumb today as I am now finally taking his advice. Oh-jeez

My wife has been telling me for many years that I stop breathing during the night. That was what has really clued me in to my need. However, with lousy insurance and phobias and embarrassment, I just "soldiered on" and said that I would ignore it. Dont-know

I was clueless. Most of the people on the forum were much more humble than I was and just figured that they would fix their problem. It was not until I just could not function (falling asleep during meetings, unable to enjoy evenings without a nap, going home early from parties, etc.) that I finally got concerned enough that I tried something. Smile

Now, after 9 days of therapy, I am doing much better throughout the day. I have not taken an afternoon or evening nap even one time. I have had a couple of days where I was tired in the afternoon, but I did not fall asleep and I have not laid down. I guess it was not my age... It was apnea!

Sleep-well
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#23
Similar story here, I never snored much but things got to the point where I started having weird stuff happen in the car and I was always dead tired
at the time.
So, having some light experience with sleep studies I got a logging pulse oximeter to tape on my finger at night.
Sure enough I was caving in and the little graph line was bouncing off the bottom of the scale.
Not good, hmm?
Then I got a ZEO and that confirmed that I wasn't getting any sleep at night.
Ah ha.
Didn't have any insurance and knew I could never afford to pay for a full sleep study so I got an old RemStar out of storage
and started using that. No data logging at the time but it was getting my O2 numbers out of the dirt.
After collecting a couple months of O2 data I pleaded my case to my GP for a prescript on an S9 AutoSet.
I just had to bite the bullet and save up the cash for the hardware, but even so it was worth it. I now have 900 days logged on SleepyHead.
Smile
My BP went down to more normal levels and I can stay alert while driving.
I still have bad nights now and then but its never from life threatening O2 desaturations!

I give myself the much sought after "Incredibly Not Bad" award for persistance above and beyond the call of duty.
Being ornery has its good side now & then.

Sleep-well



"With ordinary talent and extraordinary perseverance, all things are attainable." - Thomas Foxwell Buxton

Cool
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#24
I was tired every afternoon, falling asleep in meetings, even in surgery, my eyes were giving me the gyp, and I was starting to have heart problems. I snored so loudly my wife would sleep in the other room, and so alarmingly in the number of chokings per night (and i really chocked, waking up gasping for air, coughing and completely scared for my life), my BP was up, my weight was up, and my GP suggested I get a test, so I wandered over to the sleep lab and asked for a take home test. The results were deeply sobering, if not to say alarming.
They gave me a PRS One 50 and tested a few masks, told me to go home for two weeks and see how I took to it - I slept the first night completely through, nary a snore, nary a problem.
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#25
(Newbie poster here, just jumping in.)

I didn't suspect I had it—other people did.

I always had issues with sleeping. When I was living at home with my parents, they would tell me that I had a very bad problem with snoring and with coughing and noises during the night which they could hear from another room.

My current boyfriend, and previous boyfriends, noticed my sleeping issues too.

Earlier this year, I was working and was falling asleep in meetings at work. I was even falling asleep at my desk. This happened at the job I had before this. It also happened when I was doing my Master's: they had lectures during the evening in a nice dark, warm, underground lecture theatre. I self-medicated with energy drinks.

At my most recent job, my boss took me aside and said "look, you might have sleep apnea" and explained it to me. She has it and has been in CPAP treatment for some time. She then sent me a link to an online test of the Epworth Sleepiness Scale.

The question on there about whether I'd ever fallen asleep while driving scared the hell out of me: I don't want to live in a world where there are potentially hundreds or thousands of undiagnosed, untreated sleep apnea patients driving around unable to stay awake and crashing into people.

I looked into it a bit further, then within a day or so, booked an appointment with my GP and asked them to refer me to a sleep clinic.

If I hadn't had a boss and friend who knew about sleep apnea and who used CPAP, I may not have realised it for myself. It helped put it all into perspective - the lack of focus at work and at university, the constant need for caffeinated beverages to stay awake and focussed.
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