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 Post subject: obstructed sleep apnea
PostPosted: Thu Apr 07, 2016 6:26 am 
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Do any of you have this? I have been referred for a sleep study to see if I have it. I've never done a sleep study and am nervous. I grind my teeth, move a lot when I sleep, wake up a lot at night, am exhausted during the day, and can't lose weight despite daily exercise. I thought it was stress or thyroid issues, but maybe this is the problem? I'd love to learn more about this from anyone else who has experienced this condition.

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 Post subject: Re: obstructed sleep apnea
PostPosted: Thu Apr 07, 2016 7:05 am 
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Sleep studies are fine. Usually they give you an ambien or similar, hook you up to stuff and then you fall asleep.

The only really annoying part is getting rid of all the adhesive they stick all over you!

I have mild sleep apnea, but I'm not treated for it. I actually need a new study myself.

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 Post subject: Re: obstructed sleep apnea
PostPosted: Thu Apr 07, 2016 10:08 am 
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I'm going to have a sleep study as well because my weight is going in the wrong direction and I'm having tiredness/fatigue.

My biggest concern is I always get up to pee at night.

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 Post subject: Re: obstructed sleep apnea
PostPosted: Thu Apr 07, 2016 12:22 pm 
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I have it. I was diagnosed three years ago and have been using a CPAP ever since. I was fatigued all the time, and I was taking a 2 hour nap every afternoon, plus I had migraines almost every day (from oxygen deprivation, as it turns out).
I was able to do my sleep study at home, which was great, and I definitely wasn't given any drugs (I've never even heard of that - surprising!). My sleep study results were really shocking - my oxygen levels were dropping below 50% for much of the night. Hearing that was really scary, and really motivated me to work on acclimating to the CPAP quickly. Apnea is a big deal; it can dramatically shorten your life and cause all sorts of health problems - I didn't know any of that before I was diagnosed.
Getting used to my CPAP took a few weeks, but now I can't sleep without it. And I wouldn't want to, because I want to live as long as possible. No joke - sometimes I hug it. I'm so thankful there's treatment.
My weight hasn't changed, but I don't care, because that wasn't my goal - I'm fat- and size-positive and believe in the Health At Every Size approach. I'm not constantly fatigued anymore, and I basically never nap, unless I'm really sick.

You can PM me if you want to know anything else. Good luck! I know it's pointless to say, but try not to worry. Sleep studies are weird but they're only one night, and CPAP treatment is very effective.

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 Post subject: Re: obstructed sleep apnea
PostPosted: Thu Apr 07, 2016 3:23 pm 
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i had very severe sleep apnea for a long time and it turned me into a zombie and i basically have no memories of anything before i had surgery to correct it. (see more on that later)

your quality of sleep is super important and once you're treated you realize how bad it was. i literally would get up in the morning, get ready for work, then sit on my couch to put my shoes on and all i would want to do was lay down on the couch and go to sleep. it was an overwhelming feeling of just wanting to give in/give up and lie down.

i had 3 sleep studies over the course of many years. sleep studies really are more of an annoyance than anything else. they arent that bad. they hook a million wires up to you and the worst part for me is they want you to sleep on your back (which is how sleep apnea would be at it's worst) and i basically cant sleep like that. i also have to pee a million times a night and pee more when im anxious so that was the thing i was most worried about. i dont remember it being an issue. like i said i had 3 studies and they were in 3 different settings (hospital, hotel, sleep lab) and it was never an issue. i stopped drinking anything (ESPECIALLY caffeine) early on in the day and i know at least a couple of them i had to get up at least once and someone just has to help you (to the bathroom not in the bathroom) but otherwise it's no biggie.

after my first sleep studies the results came back that i got like 1 minute of REM sleep all night and basically never slept becuase it was so bad. i was given a CPAP and after some trial and error found a mask i liked (aka would tolerate) and felt mildly better. for most people the CPAP is a magic fix. like night and day. my MIL wont go anywhere without hers because it makes that big of a difference.

the thing that really sucks is that sleep apnea causes weight gain because you're not sleeping and your body is not rested and then the weight gain makes the apnea worse and you cant lose the weight because you're exhausted. its a horrible cycle.

my CPAP was never magic for me. there was many different reasons but the main one was my airway was literally miniscule so no matter how much air was being forced through my airway it still collapsed because it was crazy small. seriously my xrays pre and post op are CRAZY. i should dig them up and share them.

i had my tonsils and adenoids removed several years ago to try and help (my tonsils were huge and my adenoids were MASSIVE) this also helped a bit. in the end i was really lucky to find a surgeon who is the top of the field in maxofacial surgery and i had major surgery to fix my airway. best thing i ever did in my life. that was almost 6 years ago.

obviously my case is the extreme. ive heard of tons and tons of people afflicted with sleep apnea. it is a very common thing and ive not heard of anyone else needing surgery for it other than when i was specifically researching the surgery.

usually a CPAP, though annoying, is a magic fix for people and their quality of life greatly improves.

good luck! sleep studies are annoying but honestly not a big deal.
my MIL also kept asking me about my thyroid before i was diagnosed with sleep apnea and i had my thyroid tested a million times because i have issues with depression and also weight gain.


also i was never offered any drugs for any of my sleep studies but my last one was at least 6+ years ago so that might be the practice now. i had to fall asleep on my own which is awkward hooked up to machines and having to sleep on my back.

sleep apnea is so bad that now that i have a toddler that literally never sleeps and i havent gotten a decent nights sleep in 3 years because of her i can say it's still not nearly as bad as getting a supposedly full nights sleep with sleep apnea.

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 Post subject: Re: obstructed sleep apnea
PostPosted: Thu Apr 07, 2016 3:30 pm 
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also you mention you move around when you sleep alot. there is something called restless leg syndrome that a sleep study would diagnose because they put sensors all over you.
basically like sleep apnea you keep waking yourself up enough to disrupt your sleep but not enough to be awake awake but instead of because you stop breathing its because your legs are kicking around.


good luck! feel free to ask questions i feel like stupidly knowledgable in this area because of everything i went through

edit: one last thing. the thing that convinced me i probably had sleep apnea rather than stress (which is what i thought it was) was my husband recorded me sleeping and i could hear myself stop breathing. SCARY

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 Post subject: Re: obstructed sleep apnea
PostPosted: Thu Apr 07, 2016 5:07 pm 
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LisaPunk wrote:
edit: one last thing. the thing that convinced me i probably had sleep apnea rather than stress (which is what i thought it was) was my husband recorded me sleeping and i could hear myself stop breathing. SCARY


Same exact thing for me. My then-husband took a video of me napping. That did it.

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 Post subject: Re: obstructed sleep apnea
PostPosted: Thu Apr 07, 2016 5:50 pm 
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Thank you, everyone, for sharing your stories. This is really helpful.

I don't know if I have sleep apnea. But I know something is wrong. After finding a tumor, I had half my thyroid out a year and a half ago, and--unrelated, the doctors say--I have very very strongly all the symptoms of hypothyroidism (dry skin, exhaustion, inability to lose weight, always cold, terrible constipation), but my thyroid levels are normal. I've been told that I must be depressed and I should try Prozac, but I have been depressed and this is not it. I am exhausted. And have been chronically stressed for years because of my job (academia). Recently, one kind endocrinologist recently suggested that I could have sleep apnea. I dismissed it at first, but, after reading more, I'm at least interested in learning more. My teeth grinding is bad. I don't snore. I sleep on my side or stomach. I move around a lot. My partner hasn't observed my stopping breathing, but he knows that my sleep is often restless and that I grind my teeth terribly. I get up to pee sometimes in the middle of the night. I don't want to get out of bed in the morning. I'm not obese, but my inability to lose weight is odd given that I started exercising hard in August (3-4 days/week at boot camp classes, and I'm not jogging again after not for a long while). So I'm going to try the sleep study (not sure what kind yet) and see if this turns up anything.

CPAP masks look uncomfortable, awkward, and unattractive. Makes me nervous.

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 Post subject: Re: obstructed sleep apnea
PostPosted: Thu Apr 07, 2016 11:55 pm 
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My understanding is that around 50% of people with obstructive sleep apnea are considered "normal" weight or lower. While there is a correlation between higher weights and apnea, plenty of people with apnea are not "obese" or even "overweight". Anyone can have apnea.

CPAP masks are unattractive. No way around that. My now-husband and I had only been having "sleepovers" for a few months when I started using my CPAP, and I was so worried he'd be put off. He said, many times, that he loved seeing me with the mask on because it meant I was going to live longer. As for awkward and uncomfortable, they can be, but I got used to mine pretty quickly.

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 Post subject: Re: obstructed sleep apnea
PostPosted: Fri Apr 08, 2016 9:47 am 
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You guys gave me the strength to make my appt with the sleep doc, it will be Monday after next. I thought I could just schedule a sleep study but they have to talk to me first I guess.

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 Post subject: Re: obstructed sleep apnea
PostPosted: Sun Apr 10, 2016 7:56 am 
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I have mild sleep apnea that is currently untreated.

I was super scared for my sleep study, so my sleep doctor, who was amazing, took me down to the lab ahead of time so I could see it and meet the technicians who would be working during my study.

The sleep rooms looked like hotel rooms. I basically went in, got electrodes stuck all over me, and then watched 10 million bathroom renovations on HGTV until I got the instructions to start preparing for bed. I did not find it too bad. It was mostly just boring.

Good luck, molasses jane and linanil! I hope you both get some answers and are sleeping better soon.


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 Post subject: Re: obstructed sleep apnea
PostPosted: Tue Apr 12, 2016 1:53 pm 
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I just talked to the referral people. They will have me do the sleep study at home. I have to go to a class, bring home the monitors/equipment, sleep, and then bring it back the next morning. Very curious if this is the problem. Every since my doctor raised this as a possibility, I think I've been sleeping even worse since I've been wondering about it. Sigh.

Linanil, please keep us posted!

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 Post subject: Re: obstructed sleep apnea
PostPosted: Thu Apr 14, 2016 1:10 pm 
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i am intrigued by this idea of sleep study at home. the studies i had no way in hell could be done at home. you litearlly have 80 million electrodes glued to your body. i wonder if the at home ones are more of an initial screening. i imagine it would be a lot cheaper to do than the full test too.

anyways good luck i hope you get some answers and a good treatment plan!!

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 Post subject: Re: obstructed sleep apnea
PostPosted: Mon Apr 18, 2016 4:29 pm 
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So I talked to sleep doctor today. Although they do at home sleep studies, he thought I was more of a candidate for in house. They seem to use it as a diagnostic tool but if they discover you have sleep apnea, then you'd have to do the facility sleep study. Since I'm doing it there, I'll only have to do it once.

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 Post subject: Re: obstructed sleep apnea
PostPosted: Tue Apr 19, 2016 10:12 am 
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linanil wrote:
So I talked to sleep doctor today. Although they do at home sleep studies, he thought I was more of a candidate for in house. They seem to use it as a diagnostic tool but if they discover you have sleep apnea, then you'd have to do the facility sleep study. Since I'm doing it there, I'll only have to do it once.


I'm not thrilled about the home study; it was the only option they gave me. It's a lot of work--I have to go to the hospital, take a class, go home with the equipment. sleep that night with it all on, and then return the equipment the next morning. This is really hard with my job; I'm really frustrated. It sounds like an on site study is a followup if they think I need that.

I'm really interested to hear how your on site study goes!

I'm at the point where I just hope they diagnose me with this because I just want an answer to what the hell is wrong.

Sending you care on your own health journey.

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 Post subject: Re: obstructed sleep apnea
PostPosted: Tue Apr 19, 2016 1:02 pm 
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Let us know what happens. Because the sleep doc won't due the study without authorization from insurance, they scheduled me for the first week of May but I may need to change that. I'm still anxious about having to pee but I'm going to practice stopping drinking earlier in the evening and see if that helps.

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 Post subject: Re: obstructed sleep apnea
PostPosted: Sat Apr 23, 2016 9:07 pm 
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yeah the times ive needed to not get up to pee a bunch of times at night i try to cut myself off from drinking anything like after dinner which is hard because i drink a lot of water.
for sleep studies i think they recommend no caffeine after either noon or maybe even the morning (i forget). i drink a lot of coffee which both keeps you awake and makes you pee so i think i stopped after a morning cup when i had sleep studies.

i mean you totally CAN get up to pee during a sleep study but yeah i know i was totally anxious about that because i am an anxious person and asking someone to help me basically is/was like my worst nightmare. but honestly they are just watching monitors and stuff so it's not a huge deal to ask. i know the couple times i was in the hospital and needed a nurse to assist me to the bathroom i was really anxious about that because nurses are so overworked and busy (and an IV doesnt help since they are just pumping liquid into you). but they just need to unhook a couple things and you just need to be careful of the wires and stuff :-)

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 Post subject: Re: obstructed sleep apnea
PostPosted: Thu Apr 28, 2016 8:23 pm 
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I did my home sleep test last night. It was very weird. I went to the hospital to go through training and pick up the equipment. Last night, I attached a lot of monitors and tubes all over me, all connected to a box that I wore at the center of my chest. Then I dropped it off this morning back at the hospital. My partner and dog thought it was so strange and funny. Part of me hopes that this is the problem, because then I'll finally know what's wrong. And part of me hope this isn't the problem, since the CPAP mask scares me. We'll see.

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