Hi. My name is Kathy and I'm just over a month into using a CPAP machine. Resisted for quite a while, but even with erratic success believe I am feeling some early benefits. After a good night, my energy lasts much longer through the day and other nice experiences. I've even slept till 6 and 7:30; firsts in many, many years. Most nights, however, I am having difficulties after about 4 hours and haven't been able to find sure answers. Posted a question when first joining and received very clear suggestions, which will be followed through if possible -- we are in a very rural area, over a hundred miles from any substantial urban area.
I'd be interested to know if getting used to seemingly too high pressure is just a matter of time, or is it more likely the settings are not correct. Am awakened by squeaks and squawks plus pressure forcing my cheeks way out/my mouth agape/even hyperventilating. Was told that my setting is variable from 12 to 20 and my first month's average was about 16. Was also told that the pressure should change per each breath. I am not finding this last point to be true. Have worked several times to breath steady and deepen my breathing under the high pressure to get a reduction in the pressure. No success after 10 breaths so have simply disconnected and fallen back asleep without the equipment .
So, hello to all and I appreciate both the web site and all the comments I've been reading through. They have helped my sense of "I can do this".
Hi all - I'm a new cpap user. I'm a 73 yr. old woman who spent the last 2 years going to different doctors to try to figure out why I was getting weaker & out of breath more easily. I finally had a sleep study done & have severe apnea. I've been using the dreamstation with an amara view mask for 2 weeks now. Much to my surprise I find the whole thing pretty easy to use & actually fall asleep faster than without it. Yesterday was the 1st time in many months that I could climb the stairs to my 2nd story without gasping for air. Yay!!!! I hope things continue to improve. I didn't do any research on equipment before they delivered my devices - I was disappointed by the technician who was very abrupt & dismissive. I'm mostly finding out how to use & care for things from the internet. I hope I have the right machine, anyway - just wanted to check in and thank all for the advice given here. - Linda
Many folks have figured out that the durable medical equipment techs are not always helpful or even seem to have any degree of expertise. Some may be great but I haven't come across one. Best to do your own reasoning and research and be the captain of your own therapy. If you take charge, then surely someone (you) cares about your progress. It requires reading (like this forum) and some experimentation to find out what works best.
Hello! I recently had a sleep study done after years of not being able to rid myself of a feeling of tiredness/fatigue regardless of how much sleep I got each night. In fact, it seemed that the more sleep I got, the more tired I would feel. Married for 23 years and my wife has spent countless sleepless nights waking me whenever I would stop breathing (can you say "strain on a relationship"?) I have come to call the condition "Slapnea" rather than Apnea due to the fact that she has oftentimes had to physically (I'm being kind here) wake me because just yelling at me wouldn't work. In any event, finally got into sleep DR and had study ordered. They did a split study and had me sleep 2 hrs 16 mins for diagnosis and about 6 hrs under treatment after confirming diagnosis of Obstructive Sleep Apnea. AHI for the diagnosis portion was 105.0 (238 total, 188 apnea, 50 hypopneas) and for the treatment portion it was 23.9 (95 total, 18 apnea, 77 hypopneas). During treatment they started pressure at 5 and got it up to 12. After reviewing these results, my DR has ordered a cpap machine and is starting pressure at 8 and ramping up to 15 to start out. She says it may ultimately end up higher depending on how effective these settings are. I will get my machine at the end of this week. I'm hoping to achieve life changing results after finally getting this process started. I didn't feel any different after using the machine for the sleep study. In fact, I went home the morning after and slept for 5 more hours. Can anyone give me an idea of reasonable expectations as to how long it will take to notice results? TIA for any input/info. Looking forward to being a part of this community.
Therapy doesn't seem to follow a predictable course for anyone. Some feel changes immediately and for others it is a process that takes a varying amount of time. With 23 apnea events during the study, I am pretty sure your situation will be an ongoing process to fine tune your therapy as 23 ain't good. Better than the hundreds of events but still pretty bad. Monitor your blood oxygen while you are evolving therapy as that is the reason for tired (at least in my case). I use a Pulse Oxymeter to ensure my SPO2 is NOT dropping into the low 70s as it did prior to therapy. Get a copy of your study and start researching what all the info means... it will help you get to effective therapy much more quickly! Good luck.
Thanks for the info. My O2 saturation levels were in the high 60's during the diagnostic portion of the study and in the high 80's-low 90's during the treatment with cpap. Do they sell Pulse Oxymeters for home use? I should probably monitor that since it was so low and could be the root of the fatigue I have been experiencing. I have a copy of my study results and have been researching all the info on it. I had no idea the negative effects poor sleep could have on a person until starting this process. I'm sure it will take a while to get me straightened out to where I feel normal after a night of sleep! Thanks again!
You can purchase a Pulse Oxymeter from amazon or ebay. Get the kind that has a thing that goes over your finger and records. It costs more than the ones you just have a wrist watch type affair but those may record but any movement of your hand disrupts the accuracy. This is the one I have... takes a bit of figuring out as the instructions are not written by an English speaker but it does work:
Hi. my name is Chris. I'm in California. I was diagnosed with moderate OSA in 2004. Been on CPAP/BIPAP ever since--it was a life changer for me.
My older daughter was diagnosed in 2012. She was a competitive swimmer and used CPAP through college and beyond. We gave her MMA surgery last summer and she just had her follow up sleep study two weeks ago. Got the results Monday and she is "within normal limits-AHI 2.5"!! I'm so happy for her!
Anyway, I'm an insurance broker and work with a bunch of folks who are in a similar situation and I've done a fair amount of research. Hope I can contribute here!
Hello everyone. I’m thefroggydude (TFD). I posted a short while ago without introducing myself here first. Probably not good form so sorry about that. I’m in my late 60s and in good physical condition even though I cannot exercise due to heart rhythm issues that can be induced through either aerobic or anaerobic exercise. I used to be very active as a long distance runner (including 1 marathon in 2002), skier, sailor, swimmer, etc. I have had several immune system disorders as well as the heart condition previously mentioned. I saw my first sleep Dr June , 2018 and have been on CPAP ever since. After an at home sleep study he diagnosed me as having complex apneas including both obstructives and centrals. I worked with his clinic for 2 months after which he referred me to another clinic that did an overnight study. Long and short of it is that I have been determined in my quest to find solutions to my problems. The AHI of my first study was 19 and the 2nd study was 33. I have been 100% compliant for 11 months. A few months back I discovered how to access the clinical menu on my machine and was introduced to the SleepyTime app. I have been experimenting with different masks and have used 3 different CPAP machines (2 ResMed, 1 Respironics). I have managed to get my AHI down to an acceptable level (between 0.80 and 3.5) but I still have days where I struggle to function due to exhaustion. My apneas (mostly centrals now) can come in swarms and this often leads to a poor outcome next day. I believe that my heart condition and centrals could be related but have not yet been told so by either my cardiologist or my sleep specialist. I have read some posts here and find them very interesting and informative. I read posts by people who have similar issues as mine and it’s nice to know that I am not alone in this quest for good sleep health and a more active lifestyle again.
Don’t get discouraged. It takes a while to recover from a life time of untreated sleep apnea. It took me three to four years of fully compliant PAP treatment to largely recover my cognitive function and eliminate my PVCs. But if you are using the machine every time you sleep, and minimizing your residual AHI, you should get there....but consider that you are essentially rebuilding and repairing your brain. Healing it will take time. But using the machine each and every time you sleep is the key.
Thanks for letting me join this group. I belong to two other groups on F.B. it’s been a life saver for me to communicate with others. I started CPAP therapy 23 days ago and have used every night. My AHI varies from 1.1 to 2.4. Last night it was 2.4 with 12 clear airways and no obstructive. Should I be worried? Secondly, I’m not sleeping through the night. Is that common?
Good question about the CA worries. Maybe someone with more experience can weigh in here? I have a similar experience and my sleep doc didn’t seem worried even though I can feel absolutely terrible some days. I had an encouraging comment from CharmingSalmonSeaLion who told me that it took 4 yrs of compliant treatment on CPAP to rectify breathing/heart beat issues. Don’t worry about not sleeping through the night. You are still very early days. I used to get up as much as 8 times a night. I’m now down to 3 after 11 months on CPAP. Small steps I guess.
You need not be too concerned about whether your machine reports obstructive, clear airway or anything else. As long as the overall AHI is low, which yours is, you should be fine.
Hi! Thought this would be as good a place for me to introduce myself as any since it's something I'm concerned with currently. My name is Bill and I'm 38 years old, fairly slender and healthy and never been diagnosed with anything major up until diagnosed with sleep apnea back in January of this year (2018). After feeling "weird" for the better part of about a year or so and having most of my issues stemming from rough nights of sleep that I've never encountered before, I began researching all of the symptoms I was dealing with, which isn't always a good thing, but helped me figure things out sooner rather than later. I really thought I was going crazy and was dealing with severe anxiety and depression a long with some other symptoms that seem to keep me going back to sleep apnea and that eventually led me to my diagnosis. My primary physician kept wanting me to take some meds for my anxiety or thinking my poor sleeping was because of my acid reflux, but I knew it was something more than that.
My sleep study in January showed I had mild osa, but boy it has seemed major to me. My ahi was 12.6 and 24 in rem and my oxygen levels dropped so low (56% according to my sleep dr, but she said she drops 20% off the number to give a more accurate look at what's going on) that they put me on a cpap rather quickly during the night and I didn't take to it very well. So, they wanted me to come back in the next night to get a better reading on what pressure would best help me. They determined that 13 was what did it for me, but set my dreamstation at min 8 and max 20 with ramp set at 5. I started to tell a difference right off the bat for the most part and although my ahi wasn't getting real low, it was consistently under 5 basically every night the first week. I went back for a check after about 2 months on the machine and she upped my min pressure to 10 to help lower my average ahi which was around 4 and for I've even went in a changed my pressure to see if it would help. It appears my "wheelhouse" is likely 12 since that is what my 90% pressure seems to average over the last month or so. As far as the clear airway apneas, they seem to be the ones lately that are highest and I've noticed on my dreamstation, it gauges periodic breathing and although the average is 1% over the 3 months I've been on it, I've noticed that it's been consistently more the last couple of weeks. Some nights it's still 0 or 1 %, but there's also been some nights of anywhere from 2-7%. It's only been above 4 % maybe 3-4 times over the entire time I've been treating, but was just bothersome to me lately to see that and the clear airway apneas creep up. I'm going to give some results from the last few nights of sleep from Sleepyhead (which by the way isn't always right on with my dreammapper app if someone could try and explain that to me?) and hopefully someone can give me some guidance. Sorry for the extremely long first post, but looking forward to getting more educated on my condition. Thanks!
Here is last night's (May 3) totals from Sleep Head for an example: AHIApnea Hypopnea Index 3.07 Philips Respironics DreamStation Auto CPAPModel 500X110 - J20807664DED6 PAP Mode: APAP (Variable) Min 11.5 Max 20 (cmH2O) Date Sleep Wake Hours 5/3/2018 23:42:33 08:16:33 08:27:39 Periodic Breathing 7.78% Large Leak 0.00% Clear Airway 2.13 Obstructive 0.24 Hypopnea 0.71 RERA 0.00 Flow Limitation 0.12 Vibratory Snore 0.00 Vibratory Snore (VS2) 1.42 Pressure Pulse 3.19 Breathing Not Detected 0.00%
Here is the night before (May 2):
AHIApnea Hypopnea Index 1.40 Philips Respironics DreamStation Auto CPAPModel 500X110 - J20807664DED6 PAP Mode: APAP (Variable) Min 11.5 Max 20 (cmH2O) Date Sleep Wake Hours 5/2/2018 23:52:20 07:47:47 07:52:24 Periodic Breathing 0.80% Large Leak 0.00% Clear Airway 0.25 Obstructive 0.64 Hypopnea 0.51 RERA 0.00 Flow Limitation 0.25 Vibratory Snore 0.00 Vibratory Snore (VS2) 2.29 Pressure Pulse 1.14 Breathing Not Detected 0.00%
And the night before that:
AHIApnea Hypopnea Index 3.37 Philips Respironics DreamStation Auto CPAPModel 500X110 - J20807664DED6 PAP Mode: APAP (Variable) Min 11.5 Max 20 (cmH2O) Date Sleep Wake Hours 5/2/2018 00:29:35 08:30:52 08:01:17 Periodic Breathing 2.40% Large Leak 0.00% Clear Airway 1.99 Obstructive 0.75 Hypopnea 0.62 RERA 0.12 Flow Limitation 0.00 Vibratory Snore 0.00 Vibratory Snore (VS2) 2.49 Pressure Pulse 3.62 Breathing Not Detected 0.00%
Hi all. I've been diagnosed with Severe Obstructive Sleep Apnea for about a year. I did the in-home test first and after they diagnosed me and got me all set up and I was still really tired. They did a sleep study at the doctor's office and found my pressure should be 15 instead of 12. I also have a TAP device because of how far back my jaw would relax at night and the chin strap wasn't cutting it. I first tried a nasal pillow, but that wasn't enough because the air would just blow out my mouth. I've tried several full face masks, but I have a problem with keeping a good seal. I tend to drool and the saliva breaks the seal. I've played around with humidity and heat and tend to either still drool or get really bad dry-mouth. The other problem I have is that when I'm falling asleep and relaxing the air from the CPAP machine, instead of going down my throat, will rush into my mouth and make my cheeks puff out. It doesn't break the seal, but it's very annoying and makes it hard to get to sleep or get back to sleep if I have to adjust my mask. Has anyone had a similar problem to this and how did you handle it?
Yup. I hate to tell you what I did but I had to take drastic measures. I taped my mouth shut, I insert a boil and bite mouth guard to hold my jaw in place and rigged a mouth strap to my wide chin strap (see profile picture). It really works. I have been doing this for a couple of months and now I can actually nap with the same rig but without the tape. I figure that in a month or two I will get rid of the taping altogether and then work on getting rid of the mouth strap. Small steps.
Good Morning. I'm a woman of 73 who feels really healthy most of the time, yet finds a number of medical conditions operating within. Go figure. The latest is moderate to severe Apnea, diagnosed early this year. Have been using a ResMed AirSense 10 AutoSet with full face mask --- the hint that this has been a problem for a while, maybe --- just over 2 months. Have written a few times about the over-pressure, Chipmunk Cheeks and stomach cramps routine and appreciate all the responses very much. Have a good deal of questions coming from this morning's reading and new experiences this past week, but will open those up in a separate entry. I'm not pleased with the medical industry's support of my stint, while the tech answered my calls, getting clear information and extended learning brought the pulling teeth cliche quickly to mind. Also, my sleep Dr. is actually my cardiologist and am beginning to wonder if suggesting a visit to this specialist might be in order. Thanks again to everyone. You are helping my adjustment and therefore my health a good bit. Maybe it really does take a community to get healthy.
I was diagnosed with sleep apnea in July 2017 after decades without knowing what might be wrong with me. Many doctors ignored my questions about my sleep symptoms. I am compliant with the CPAP machine and feeling SO much better! I am super grateful. I am having my teenaged sons checked for Sleep apnea... Thank you for being here, BB
Hello everyone. I completed my first sleep study on Friday the 20th of May 2018. I was told it could take up to 8 weeks to get my results. The following Tuesday I received a phone call stating my test has been read and they want to see me ASAP. Well, that of course made me very nervous!! Apparently the tech stream lined my test to the MD because it was so bad. My Nurse Practitioner was surprised to see me so fast until she read my results. My AHI was 149..........blew my mind! I have been extremely extremely exhausted for about 7 years now. Doctors saying it’s depression, it’s my diet, it’s this it’s that, but nobody ever had the idea to check how I was sleeping. My exhaustion has affected every aspect of my life and I’m frustrated it took so long for them to figure it out!!! My O2 sat goes down to 74% to boot!! I am optimistic that cpap will help me! I am anxiously waiting for the call from the medical supply company to get my machine!!!!! My pressure will be set 13-20. I tested with the new dream wear full mask and did really well with it, so I’m getting that. My Nurse Practitioner is a hoot, she said, want a girly machine? I thought she was kidding. Nope! I’m getting a white machine with flowers on it! We are going to see how I do for a couple of weeks then do an overnight test if my oxygen levels to see if cpap fixes my hypoxia. Any suggestions for this newbie would be great!
Some companies seem to make machines aimed at the gals but I think it is the same machine as the guys get only with the graphics enhancement hehehe
As far as you AHI, others have reported as much but the 74 SPO2 is no bueno. Mine was lower than that and for very long periods. Keep in mind that everyone has different symptoms with sleep apnea. Mine were nodding off at odd times; like riding my motorcycle or using power tools or listening to the Sunday sermon. I never really felt all that groggy/tired otherwise. Sleep apnea can be a silent killer, a claim I make based on my liberal use of google where I am told by most experts that lack of O2 can damage organs; heart and brain, etc. After therapy, no more nodding off and no more low blood oxygen levels. Make sure you monitor your own progress through MyAir software if it is a ResMed machine or 3rd party software such as "Sleepyhead". Good luck!
Hi, I'm Jeff. I'm 50 years old. I was diagnosed about three weeks ago with obstructive sleep apnea. I just started with the CPAP this last Tuesday. I am having a very rough time, almost impossible to sleep with this thing on. any advice would be appreciate. I'm using the full mask. the person who set me up on the machine said that because of my sinus problems that might be best, but my settings are between 5-20, so not a lot of pressure. I had about 15 AHI before treatment started.
hi my name is joe, i just wanted to say hi to all my new friends lol, i was diagnosed with severe sleep apnea two years ago and have been using my cpap machine every night since then. the problem is the mask, i have a full face i have to have it very tight, but now i feel as if i am not getting enough air,when the mask is tight i am getting great readings but my provider says i should losen it but if i do this i leak lots any help would be great.
Hi, new member here. Just diagnosed with sleep apnea after a home sleep study. I have been two weeks now with an airsense 10 and full face mask. I have managed to keep the mask on all night every night and it is becoming easier. Last night I woke up and couldn't tell without touching the mask if it was still on my face! Seeing some improvement in energy, even though I wake up every time the mask leaks a little.
Ten days in, the hose where it attaches to the mask split, leaking very badly. Two AM duct tape fix lasted until I could get a new hose. Hope that is not typical. Thanks for adding me to the list!
Hweb, Mask, mask, mask... everyones favorite subject. Bet the leaks are leaking into your eyes or perhaps making disgusting noise? In any case, what type mask do you have and what pressure is your machine set to? This might give folks a better idea what to suggest as waking with leaks in no bueno! Good luck and keep a roll of duct tape handy at all times... never heard of a hose splitting but they may be in two molded parts/halves and then plastic welded together. Never looked close as I haven't had one die on me yet.
wiredgeorge, using a resmed Airfit F20 full face mask. I mostly have issues when trying to sleep on my side. I bought a CPAP pillow which seems to help a little.
Hi everyone my name is Rachel. I've had issues with sleeping a lot over my 38.5 years, but used to blame stress. It was recently that I realized that no matter how much sleep I got, I still woke up exhausted. I had no energy to workout or even get through a chapter in a book. I started falling asleep at work, and that was enough for me. When I went in for my physical with my primary in March 2018, I asked her if I could get tested. She gave me a quiz to take, and I answered the highest score on almost every question (I've never fallen asleep at a red light). I was up to 2 huge coffees a day (20+ ounces each) to just stay awake. I took a home study and sure enough I have apnea. I just got my setup last week and am having a little bit of an issue getting adjusted. Last night I felt like I was going to suffocate, and had to rip my mask off to catch my breath. The pressure was up to the max of 18 set by my doctor's office. I turned the machine off and on again the 1st time to just be woken the 2nd time by the same thing. Finally I googled how to change the max as I was exhausted and needed sleep for work today. I changed it to 15. I am planning on setting it back to 18 tonight. Is this normal when starting out?? The other nights I wore it, that didn't happen.
Did your doctor set the pressure based on a home study? The most effective way to set pressure is to do a titration study; they know you have OSA and someone fiddles with pressure as you sleep to find out which pressure or machine configuration most effectively keeps your airways open. You didn't mention which mask was issued to you but if your pressure is fairly high (like 18), some masks are not really suited as the exhaust holes are too small for the air volume... ergo, suffocating. The most efficient way to enter therapy is by an in-lab study with a follow up in-law titration study and a doc specializing in sleep medicine.