Sleeping isn’t what it used to be and I’m afraid that I need to have a sleep study redone to see if my CPAP machine needs to be adjusted. I’ve had two sleep studies, both while living in Boston, but repeating the experience isn’t high on my happiness list.
The rules of thumb for having a new sleep study are:
- return of symptoms (snoring, apneas, daytime sleepiness, lack of energy, etc.)
- gain of 30 lbs or more
- loss of 30 lbs or more
Unfortunately I can report that I’ve definitely gained more than 30 lbs since my last study and those symptoms are definitely back. Well, I don’t know that I’m snoring since I sleep with my mask and CPAP machine every night – and there’s no one here to hear me except the kitty and she’s not talking. And I can’t count my apneas because that’s not something you can tell yourself. My machine does have a little computer and collects that information so I’ve requested a computer smart card that will read it and report the results back to the doctor.
I do know that I’m having a lot of trouble waking up in the morning and my energy level is low. I’ve also noticed that I wake up quite a lot at night even with the CPAP, which didn’t used to happen. When I first got the machine and was able to wear the mask all night without ripping it off (which took some time), I woke up every day ready to hit the road and had energy to burn.
The test doesn’t hurt but it’s awkward and disruptive. The sleep technicians spend an hour hooking you up with dozens of wires and leads stuck all over from your scalp, face, chest, back, and legs. Then they tell you to “sleep normally” which is not easy to do when you tangle yourself up in wires when you move.
My last study was skewed because the sleep center forgot to tell me to stop using my CPAP and taking my sleeping meds for 7-10 days before the study. I can get by for a day or two without the CPAP, though my sleep is splintered. But more days and without my meds — I can’t imagine how I’m going to do this. Because I didn’t the last time, though, the results weren’t quite accurate, although the test wasn’t redone.
I have a physical scheduled in 10 days and will tell my doctor then that I think a new study is needed. Yale has a Center for Sleep Medicine with three different sleep clinics but it can sometimes take time to get scheduled for a study even after they decide you need one. It will be even longer if I have to meet with a sleep doctor first. I’m getting sick of the doctors and I haven’t even seen one yet!
Image featured on the CPAPUsers Yahoo Group page. If you have sleep apnea, I definitely recommend joining for support and ideas.