I’ve always had sleep problems, but over the past year, they’ve increased to the point that I cannot live my life properly anymore. It’s given me heart problems, sleep terrors, I’m suffering from actual exhaustion symptoms on a daily basis: I feel and act drunk, swaying back and forth, dizzy spells, having to consciously put effort towards focusing over the slightest task, a literally constant tinnitus that sounds like a glass cutter going off inside my ears at all times, spacing out every couple of minutes and having the memory of a gold fish.
On a good night, I get three hours at a time. On my best night, five hours continuous and only waking up once. On a bad night, no sleep at all. Even when I’m awake, my throat closes if I allow it. Mostly, I get what I call “pseudo-sleep”, it’s like a cheap knock-off of real sleep where I wake up every hour on the hour over the course of the night and simply have to make do with the hours I could sleep with. I’ve barely seen any of my friends or loved ones in the past year from being reclusive when at home, shut away in my room because I’m too exhausted to do anything else. My sleep schedule is constantly knocked out of wack, requiring months of effort just to get it to stay in one spot. On the worst times, I’ve gone three days without sleep and end up having near heart attacks at work, but then cannot afford the days off to recover from them. Even when I try, I’m miserable and guilty from my own inability to fix my exhaustion. I’m an extremely anxious person in general, but my lack of sleep has come to a point where I’m admitting defeat. I’m finally admitting to myself that it’s life threatening, but doing so is fiving me a mild anxiety attack. As I write this, I have chest pains and can feel my own heart beat.
It’s literally bringing me to tears at this point.
But neither the combined efforts of myself or my boyfriend are enough to afford any kind of doctor visit just to confirm my symptoms, let alone purchase sleep equipment.
We can barely even afford to pay for physical therapy for a back injury that has kept me from standing for more than a couple minutes without needing to rest. We’ve tried to get government assistance three times, but kept getting rejected over and over because we couldn’t afford regular doctor visits to prove I actually have any problems to the judge (I need more than just a family doctor to prove my myriad problems, but that’s the best we can afford, it took 4 years just to save up the money to get an X-ray to confirm my back problem actually exists).
My question is thus:
How does someone fall asleep when they have extremely, life cripplingly bad sleep apnea, but cannot afford any kind of formal treatment whatsoever?
I should add that we haven’t tried over the counter remedies like tongue and jaw adjusters because we’re afraid to save up the money just to start going through each one, trying to find the one that works because each one that fails to help would be wasted money.
I might not respond right away, I wrote this after waking up a fourth time after 3 hours of sleep and am about to go try to sleep for the rest of what hours I have left.