Update: Three months on the CPAP

100-pointsI’m writing this as I had a lot of interest (relatively,) in what happened with the whole medical/breathing fiasco and the continued use of the CPAP. We also have nothing up for today as I’m in the middle of eight reviews and really am too self-absorbed today to finish them.

To recap: I was sick from November through March, gained a crapload of weight, was a walking zombie, had all sorts of lung function tests and also a sleep study that said I was stopping breathing for 67 minutes out of an average eight hour sleeping time. I just wasn’t getting better and I was tired all the time.

Today is 107 days since I started using the CPAP/VPAP. I am currently 17 pounds down from when I started tracking (73 days ago,) and 27 pounds from what the doctor’s office claimed (I believe they were wrong). Evidently getting enough sleep means I’m not starving all the time (all I wanted to do for months was eat and sleep).

The doctor’s office told me that dropping extra weight might help since I didn’t have this issue as front and center before I pudged up with some inactive daddy weight, so perhaps since we bloat in 3D might as well try it. Why not.

After about a month of using the CPAP I realized I wasn’t exhausted around 2pm every day. This had come to be a serious issue when I fell asleep at work on the floor and didn’t plan it and someone opened the door on my head. Also unplanned.

At three months in I could take a nap, but it’s not something that I crave with the intensity of 1000 suns.

Four months ago if you’d told me I’d be glad to put on a ventilator at night I’d have thought you’re insane. I go to bed, put it on, watch a little TV, and I’m out relatively quickly.

This is kind of absurd for a lifetime insomniac. I mean, there have been sleepless nights still, but as opposed to four a week we’re probably looking at on average one. Looking at the two week history on the Resmed site I see three nights.

The random leg twitching I’ve fought with my entire life has calmed, although I’m not sure if that’s because I pass out a lot sooner and therefor don’t have time to reach whatever stage of being awake it is that triggers it, or if it’s something else.

They’ve thrown the book of drugs at me for the leg twitching and nothing ever seemed to help. Eh, who knows, might be the CPAP, might be it’s just waiting to come back with a vengeance.

I don’t feel 100%. I’ll point that out. I was expecting with how I felt I was improving to never be tired during the day, but I still am some and could sleep even with a pot of coffee in me, but I’m nowhere near feeling like I’m going to freak out if I don’t get to sleep right this second. I think this might have to do with my diet not providing enough something or other, but that’s another thing I’m trying to figure out.

I realized that a lot of my kids lives I’ve lived somewhat resenting them for preventing me from sleeping, and I don’t particularly want that to ever creep into my mind again.

I’ve managed to score a few 100% on the Resmed air game. That’s considered a perfect night sleep in their breathing book. Doesn’t always feel like it, but usually the effects are felt.

I had two “events” last night which is when it detects an apnea (which I think it detects as five or more seconds of extremely shallow or stopped breathing but don’t quote me on that.) That’s two events over seven and a half hours, or like holding my breath 14-20 seconds. Contrast that to the 67 minutes of breath holding before the CPAP.

There have been about five nights that I’d abandoned the CPAP a few minutes to hours in. I regretted it one of those five nights. Was fine the other four. Five out of the 107 days the thing was extremely uncomfortable and preventing me from sleeping. I was so far asleep or tired I didn’t feel like fixing it those days. Got this down to a science now.

I did change the settings up somewhat from what was prescribed. They had it set to detect when I went to sleep and then crank the air pressure up. Unfortunately the air flow at pre-sleep was like breathing through two tiny straws so I raised the floor to at least be as good as non-hose breathing, and set it on a timer to reach prescription pressure as opposed to waiting for it to detect my breathing was shallow.

Kim says that the sound it makes blends in with the AC or fan we usually have going and the only issue is the air exhaust on my particular model blows straight out at her. There’s been some mild cover rearranging but that’s not really been an issue and I think she appreciates that I’m not stalking around the house at 3am now.

I’ve talked to friends who have slept next to people with CPAPs and evidently they range from slight hiss (what I’ve got,) to full on Darth Vader wheezinator. Your volume may vary.

Anyway, at day 107 I believe it’s been good. I don’t think I’ve reached the full benefits yet however.

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Paul E King

Paul King started with GoodAndEVO in 2011, which merged with Pocketables, and as of 2018 he's evidently the owner. He lives in Nashville, works at a film production company, is married with two kids. Facebook | Twitter | Donate | More posts by Paul | Subscribe to Paul's posts

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4 thoughts on “Update: Three months on the CPAP

  • Avatar of Paul M

    As someone with restricted nasal passages and snoring problems with apnea, I’m following this with interest.

  • Slight amendment to this. As the weather has cooled and the fans/ac shut off, the thing sounds a little like a more nasal Darth Vader than I thought it did.

  • Avatar of Forrest Chang

    Definitely sounds like positive progress. I’m happy for u


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