Month: March 2021
In 2015 (at 30 yo) it was formally discovered that I have mild sleep apnea during a sleep study. My official (AHI) was 11.8 – At that time I was 5’8 and 185 pounds (muscular build). I was put on a Res Med Air Sense CPAP at between 9-20 variable. I used a nasal only mask. For a period of approximately 2-3 years the CPAP worked relatively well. I’d have occasional apneas still, but it helped using a CPAP compared to having nothing.
Before I was on the CPAP, I thought I was crazy.. I would have what I thought were panic attacks waking up from nightmares, high blood pressure, fluctuations in heart-rate and poor cardiovascular endurance during sports and exercise. I’ve also had awful gut issues my entire life where I swell like a pregnant person when I eat and burp a lot. Most of my life I’ve been skinny or muscular and even during those times I now realize the apnea was present as I had the same issues then that I have today. For context, in my entire life I’d say I was overweight at age 24 for a year and between the ages of 30-35 weighing in ranges between 185 – 210 pounds. During the most recent period, I took an anti -depressant and have been off of it for a year now and have lost some weight.
Although the CPAP helped, it didn’t totally make life better for me..
In 2019 I went back to my doctor to have a second sleep study done. I was 34 yo and this time my (AHI) was 12.7, which is still considered mild. At that time I weighed 196 pounds. This time the sleep tech suggested I used a full face mask and I have been using one ever since ( I don’t like it). They gave me a new machine, a Phillips Respironics Dream Station and set my at a fixed rate of 9. Being at a fixed rate has been detrimental to me because I have a narrow nose that gets plugged pretty easily and I have had much more apneas using this machine at the fixed rate of 9. UPDATE: 3/29 – I was able to find a video that showed me how to change the air flow rate and I’ve now put this machine between 10 – 20, so hopefully this helps for now until I move.
I can count on one hand how many times I have not used my CPAP since 2015 and each of those nights was an absolutely miserable experience and that is why I have stayed loyal to the CPAP.
For about a year now I’ve been feeling like this CPAP is not totally helping me. I have leaned out some, now weighing 175 pounds, have eaten a healthy diet and am highly active, yet I still have apneas at night even though I’m wearing the CPAP. My blood pressure and heart rate easily spike, I have the same gut issues I mentioned earlier and I generally feel like garbage..
I’m aware that equipment can wear out over time and there are leaks, etc. – I just feel like I need something more functional in my life, something more reliable. I feel like I can do better.
So I am here today to lean on your wisdom and ask any of you who use Mandibular Advancement Splints (Mouth Guards) or have had surgery for sleep apnea about the pros and the cons.
I am seriously considering going to the mouth guard ASAP and I am open to having surgery if it is necessary. I feel like even when I workout I can’t breathe totally right even though I focus on breathing through the nose.
Also, I am currently in the process of moving out of state, so it’s going to take me some time to get all these things done re: my sleep apnea. Does anyone have any suggestions on things I can try to have less apneas in the meantime? I was thinking of buying nasal dilators to wear for now while I use the CPAP to see if at least it helps open the airway some more. ANY IDEA HELPS!
If someone could walk me through their experiences or point me in the right direction to learn more and get help I’d deeply appreciate it.
*Edit* 3/29 – When I say surgery in the title, I was referring to tonsil/adenoid removal as a possibility, not jaw surgery.
After finding out my new job’s health coverage has a deductible of 2700, it seems like I will be paying out of pocket for the office visits, test and equipment. I’ve seen plenty of advertisements for online consultations and prescriptions with prices that a much lower than what I’ve been quoted from local doctors. Has anyone had any success with these online providers, if so can you recommend one. Or should in just pay for the in office process.
Thanks in advance,
a tired man.
I had MMA surgery and while my numbers improved greatly I still struggle with sleep apnea. I’m going to fix my deviated septum and try cpap again.
But I’m not posting on that right now. I’m asking about zinc and how it affects sleep and more specifically if there’s any info on how it affects people with sleep apnea.
A couple of things. I never dream any more. Or never recall them anyway since ive had sleep apnea. Sleep is just a black hole. I also for years stopped waking up with morning wood and not to mention a plummeted sex drive.
Anyway, on to zinc. I tried zma like a decade ago before I even knew I had sleep apnea, but was struggling with sleep issues and decided to try it. It gave me vivid distruptive dreams that woke me up from sleep several times and decided to cease using it.
Last week I had a big steak late at night before bed and had vivid dreams and woke up three times with a nocturnal erection each time.
Neither of these things have happened in years. I looked up what’s in a steak and saw steak is high in zinc.
A man needs about 11mg of zinc daily and looking at what foods contain zinc, I’m probably getting little to none.
I bought a zinc supplement which each pill is 15 my but splitting it in half. I’m taking it early in the day in hopes that it wouldn’t wake me up, but yet it still is.
I know this is no treatment for sleep apnea but my thought is dreaming and getting nocturnal erections has to be a good thing.
I’ve read about people waking up from zinc but that’s usually a 25 or 50 mg dose. I could split it quarters but then I’d only be getting 3.75 mg. Again I’m very confident I’m not getting my daily requirement from zinc.
So after all this my question is, is there anything I can do about the sleep disruptions? I don’t get these without taking zinc, I usually sleep through but wake up feeling exhausted.
I’ve tried magnesium with the zinc and split their times with no difference.
I don’t if the zinc is somehow making my body more aware of my apneas and waking me up instead of sleeping through them.
Can someone help interpret my sleep test results? I got 2 tests linked in the image above.
Got a negative diagnose for sleep apnea due to AHI but I think I may have UARS (symptoms seem to correlate especially the gasping for air in middle of night thing). I was looking for RDI but looks like the test doesn’t show it, should I request it or just go for a WatchPAT test online?
The 2nd test was more extensive and the sleep technician I talked to mentioned how the EEG (I think that’s what it was called) should be included on the 2nd test but the results weren’t included. He said that he would talk to the sleep test administrators and verify and call me back if something was unusual, but if he didn’t call me back then everything was fine. He didn’t call me back, but maybe I should just see if I can get RDI results?
One bright spot is that I did get these tests free through my company so at least there’s that. But I’m kinda stuck and not sure how to proceed now in terms of getting a diagnose to treat this miserable thing.
I was diagnosed a little over a year ago and hve been using an oral appliance… turns out that it may not be helping my SA at all. Looks like I’m going to be going on a cpap soon. I hear horror stories, but I’m not sure if those are just the outliers.