Apnea/CPAP?


#101

Thats good to know. I was recently tested for much of the same reasons you were and it turned out I was shutting down 47 times an hour. The problem is my insurance unfortunately. Ive only found one machine distributor that accepts my insurance and they have a major backlog right now. Ive waited over a month and it will likely be another 2-3 weeks before I get my CPAP.


#102

So, went on vacation in September with my family, and both my parents and my brother had Cpaps. I also had a fitbit that was telling me I am routinely awake for more than an hour each night.

Having dealt with a stomach ulcer this summer, my deductible was already spent. Scheduled a test with my doctor and did the sleep study last night.
It was a terribly unfun night covered in sensors, broken up at 2 am by the technician putting on a cpap (nasal pillow) which was a bit leaky. Really odd sensation having air forced into your nose. It took some doing, but I was able to sleep for a while with it on.

I am a very light sleeper, so getting to sleep covered in wires was not fun,

Turns out I was having 45 episodes an hour. Got a prescription and I will be getting fitted soon.


#103

I still need to do it. Please update on how well it works for you, Jon.


#104

Good for you on getting it done. I highly recommend the Mirage FX mask if it is an option. Plenty of folks here with experience, so don’t hesitate to ask questions. Avoid a full face mask if possible. They are more prone to leaking because of the greater contact area.

Hopefully they do a good job of fitting it for you. Regardless, the number one noob mistake is trying to make the mask too tight. Generally speaking, the mask should rest lightly on your face and the air pressure should hold the thinner silicone bits to your face. If you are leaking, the mask may be too tight rather than too loose.


#105

If your apena isn’t severe (not the case for you @JonRowe), you can also do what I do and use a mouth-appliance. It’s this big retainer looking thing that forces my lower jaw forward when I close my mouth. Has dramatically helped with my sleep quality.


#106

I switch between a nasal pillow and a nasal mask every couple of months. Sometimes your skin can get irritated so switching helps (or you just need a change for a bit).

If you like to read before sleeping, I find the nasal pillow is best because many of them take the least amount of space on your face making it easier to read. I put my machine on and start reading and then can just put down my kindle and fall asleep (I guess the nasal pillows are also best for falling asleep with the TV too).


#107

I recently had my test. It was a take-home, and extremely uncomfortable to sleep in. I could barely move without threatening to disconnect this part or that. So I mostly just laid on my side, uncomfortable shifting my head back and forth the couple of inches I could move it, falling fitfully asleep for 30-45m at a time for 6 hours before I gave up.

The downside of all this is that when I’m able to sleep uninhibited, I roll onto my back while unconscious constantly. Like, I I know I choke up and can’t breathe when I’m on my back, so I go to sleep on my side, but invariably, my stupid-ass body will roll over and start to suffocate itself.

So the end result is that my test result showed mild apnea (like 14 episodes/hour average), because I was only on my back (and cranking like 40 episodes/hour) like 15% of the time. The first appointment to get in and talk a CPAP isn’t till February, so so much for my grand plan of knocking it all out when my insurance deductible was covered by my little ER scare earlier this year, too :-/


#108

That sucks man.

I specifically chose to sleep on my back, because I knew my Apnea was the worst when it was like that. And boy, was it.

They scheduled me for a fitting asap. Hopefully before the end of this year… but probably eating into my budget next year too.


#109

I also have trouble on my back. They have devices like this, if you want to try it @ArmandoPenblade. Prevents you from sleeping on your back:
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01MXO81TY


#110

I’ve spent the past few weeks trying to adjust to using my CPAP. My insurance wouldn’t cover any of the in office tests so like Armando, I had to do the at home test and then they just came and did a quick how-to for the machine. They left me with a full face mask since I tend to be a mouth breather when I sleep.

But good god I can’t make it more than a few hours before I wake up and just feel so uncomfortable that I take it off. Thankfully I go back to the sleep specialist on the 21st and hope maybe they can give me a different style mask to try. Reading some of the comments above, I might be putting the mask on too tight, I’ll try adjusting it to be looser and give that a go.


#111

Called today, appointment is scheduled for Tuesday for a fitting.

I guess being “severe” has moved me up the queue


#112

Wearing a CPAP is a major change for anyone as you are altering decades of established sleep habits. I don’t know anyone who has adjusted to one in a few weeks. Generally it will take a few months. On the plus side you can get used to it, it just takes time. Ive been using mine just over 3 months, now and it does get easier on you, the more you use one.

Also I recommend looking into a mask that is less intrusive than a full face mask. I too tried a full face and ended up going with a nasal mask. I use the Airfit N20, its made by the same company as the Mirage mentioned up thread. I tried both and preferred the strap set up on the Airfit. They run a bit lower on the jawline than the Mirage. The mirage straps ran directly under my ears and that bothered me. Also the straps on the N20 attach magnetically instead of with clips and are IMHO easier to adjust. Bottomline, the Airfit N20 is far more comfortable for me. My insurance covers replacement masks every 3 months so I will likely give a nasal pillow set up a go in the near future.


#113

Full face masks are the devil. Avoid at all costs unless you can’t breathe through your nose at all. Trust me, you WILL adjust to breathing through your nose, even if you aren’t used to it. It will take a few weeks, but you will.

Again, I can’t recommend the mirage fx strongly enough.


#114

So you can do sleep tests at home now? I wonder how long it will be before we can perform our own heart surgeries.


#115

That’s a terrible analogy. If the device can record all the same data, why not do it at home in a more familiar and more comfortable environment where it is far easier to sleep and for less cost?


#116

Thanks @rshetts and @Misguided, I’ll look into some different masks. Right now I have the Airfit F20. The straps etc aren’t the part that get to me for the most part. It’s comfortable enough to wear, but after I fall asleep and it works up to full pressure (my unit auto adjusts and ramps up, the pressure to keep things open seems to be 14.5), I wake up and, I guess it feels hard to breathe? Kind of difficult to explain the feeling. I know I can breath, the air is there lol. But just something about the pressure that feels kind of suffocating? Claustrophobic? Hoping a different mask will be able to help with that.


#117

14.5 is a lot of pressure. I don’t think it’s that surprising that is happening and it could be just breathing against that much pressure (insert you will adjust to it message here). Actually, just to be sure, hard to breathe out, or breathe in? If breathing out is the issue, do you happen to know if your machine has a setting that drops the pressure when exhaling and if that is enabled?


#118

You have the full face version of the mask I use, hence the F instead of the N for nasal. If the straps work for you I would recommend trying the Airfit N20. From your description, it sounds like you are using the res med Airsense 10 Autoset machine, which is the same one I have. You might try lowering the maximum air pressure setting to see if that is more comfortable for you. I had a similar situation with mine and lowered my max to 10 ( which is what my testing recommended ) This video will show you how to do that. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ktIo0KF0i8I


#119

The home test was useless. They questioned the results so I had to do another study… so wound up paying for a home test the provider wouldn’t even accept as proof of anything. I guess it did get my PCP to refer me though.

My provider told me that the pressure setting is by prescription. I am locked out of adjusting it; only she can.


#120

Not sure why this response shows it is from @Nesrie, since it looks like it is from @Shellfishguy. Some machines, e.g. Resmed S9, can lower pressure momentarily when exhaling. It is a separate setting from the pressure. But yes, your provider might have to enable that setting for you (at least if your insurance is providing the machine and in particular if they are going to be receiving your sleep data). Changing settings on your machine in that scenario could land you in some trouble. That’s why I asked if it was known whether or not the machine had that setting and whether it was enabled.