Now I am watching an advertisement on a CPAP cleaning machine, because the bacteria growth in the CPAP is enough to kill you. And the machine is only $400 US... I feel like I am on a street corner with a gun in my ribs, give me your wallet.
No monitoring, but you better prove you own a machine. The insanity of it all is ridiculous, and downright criminal in my book, we used to call this extortion.
None of this passes my 55yo smell test. None of it. I believe we are on the same page.
Yep, my plan exactly, really prepare for the test. As I stated earlier, I know of no one that has ever passed this sleep test, at least in my industry. And after all of the monies are spent on testing and gear, there are no follow ups. As I stated, most of the drivers I know have no way to even operate the machines they were forced to purchase in their trucks. Still new in their boxes, never opened.
I'm looking into the $100 at home services, I cannot afford a $1000 in house study, and even if I could, I would not comply. I am being forced to do this, so finding the least expensive route is my only option. As far as the machines, most of my buddies have them, still in the box. I have had several fellow truck drivers already tell me I can have theirs.
And that is the kicker, they force us drivers to do all of this, and few if any drivers actually use these devices they were forced to purchase. Most trucks do not have the required inverter to power these units, so they stay in the box and are never used, and there is no medical follow up, they simply ask if you have your machine! Again, tell me this is not a racket?
And that is another thing, sleeping hard in a truck is really not in ones best interest. With the new logging devices we are now required to use, I find myself taking sleeping pills and or NyQuil to force myself to sleep to stay compliant with our new government mandated duty cycle. The government states we need more rest, so we pop pills and or drink lots of NyQuil. You think that is healthy? LOL! I don't, and try not too, but many times I have too. I wake up feeling like the bottom of your shoe, if anything happens I sleep right through it, like a fire or accident, or God forbid someone tries to break into my truck, which is very common in more than a few locations around the country. Trust me, truck stop parking lots are not the safest place to park, but it is all we got.
Meanwhile, I am changing carriers, I own my truck, and will be going to work with a local outfit. They have a run that may just allow me to hit the gym on a daily basis, now that is something I have been trying to do for over a year now. with zero success.
I don't work a 9 to 5 job, so staying healthy out here is darn near impossible, with the new driving regulations and the egg timer on our dash, I can no longer just go to the store or gym, I am held captive in my truck. I cannot even move across the parking lot to a better parking space. Prior to these regulations it was much easier to at least have a choice, now I get whatever I happen to land in. And by that I mean available parking.
And then staying healthy with the food available out here is darn near impossible unless you have a refrigerator in the truck. The food our here is pretty much crap, Mcdonalds and the like, and lack of real restaurants out here like we used to have, restaurants with locals in the back cooking up some really good stuff. That is all gone now, Subway is the healthy choice, unless you can find a grocery store, but that is getting to be more difficult as many businesses ban our trucks from entering their property.
I'm going to retire soon, have to, as this industry is going down the tubes very quickly, too quickly and the stress of the government regulations has MY stress levels through the roof. I have to leave sooner than later, because my body is telling me if I continue in this racket I will be at room temp within a few years, and it won't be from SA, but government regulations.
Many of us older drivers are fleeing the industry, 30 years of safe driving out here, and millions of miles under my belt. Getting to the point it is no longer worth it. Just informed my truck insurance rates are going up yet again. Truck accidents are through the roof, due to the electronic logs and inflexible hours that we can actually work. No more fudging and taking our time, now it is hammer down and to heck with everything and everyone else. Not how I was trained, and you will see it out where you are if you drive the interstate, trucks speeding, cutting off cars, switching lanes, etc... Sad
Thank you for the reply.
That is what really angers me, I am being forced to do this. I have enough issues in my life right now, changing carriers at the moment and I am strapped financially to the point it is getting very very ugly. And now to be hit with this right out of the blue, and again threatened at having my license pulled if I do not comply. The only thing stable in my life right now is the cost of diesel fuel, LOL!
Thank you for the well thought out reply, and yes, having my employment threatened is beyond disturbing, along with the cost of tests and a possible CPAP machine purchase, I have no insurance as I am self employed, Obama took care of that, and was also the one that signed this SA nonsense into law after the congress passed it regarding my industry.
I have already had several friends tell me they will donate their own CPAP machines to me, as they simply played the game to keep working, they have never even taken them out of the box as they feel they do not need them. They were in the same boat as myself, go in for a DOT physical and find out you will be denied making a legitimate living due to your neck circumference, weight or BMI.
And I know I have an issue, it is my Thyroid, and the reason for my sudden weight gain. I have had ultrasounds and biopsies, it is a real issue, as I said prior, but does not affect my sleep. What is criminal to me is that I am being held hostage in regards to my work.
The federal government also mandated that I have a device in my truck, an ELD (Electronic Logging Device), it is a clock, it starts when I wake up, and then it is a race towards the end of the day not to surpass the time it allots me to work. Same thing, I cannot function under this gun. And then I get hit with this SA nonsense?
There is much more to this story and my frustrations, and stress. 30 years out here, ad they are killing the entire industry with regulations.
And as I stated earlier, I know there are real cases of SA, and it is great that there is a treatment, but don't shove it down my throat and then threaten my livelihood to feed an industry that in my opinion is selling snake oil.
I'm a truck driver, and quite honestly, I have never heard of anyone passing one of these SA tests. Truck drivers are the backbone of the SA industry, trust me on that. The test is designed to fail, unless you have a real history with very troubled sleeping I would dismiss the results and seek further medical attention as to what may be causing you to lose sleep. My first guess would be to have a complete and through Thyroid examination, and that is my issue, my thyroid, and it is not affecting my ability to sleep... But just the other day I was magically diagnosed with SA by a doctor by just looking at me. Sounds like voodoo to me, or as we used to say, snake oil.
Funny thing though, hyper and hypo thyroidism do match the SA symptoms almost to the letter. Just saying.
I went for my DOT physical the other day, and the doctor magically confirmed that I have SA. I checked out fine on everything, BP, sugar, vision etc... Pretty basic physical, nothing complicated, very very basic, like if you are breathing you will pass, and yes I could touch my toes.
What has changed in the past two years since my last DOT physical... My weight is up due to a thyroid issue that I am under care for, and I told the doctor this. She ignored that fact, stated my neck was 18 inches... My neck has been 18 inches since I was in High School... This is the criteria... My Neck circumference, BMI (Body Mass Index), weight, along with age, over 42...
She looks at me with a straight face and tells me I have sleep apnea, and will be required to have a sleep study and more than likely purchase a CPAP machine if I wish to continue to drive, or in my case, WORK. She was kind enough to give the information on where I can have my study completed and which medical supply outfit to purchase my "approved" CPAP machine from. How kind of her.
Now you folks tell me with a straight face that this SA syndrome or disease, which I am not buying, is not a racket? I sleep like a log, have for years unless I have been drinking. I normally work 18 hours a day and have lived on 5 to 6 hours of sleep for years. I have been driving safely for 30 years, I have a $1000 mattress in the truck, AC, fans, stereo and some very nice Calvin Klein down pillows. My truck is so comfortable, I prefer sleeping in it compared to my own bed at the house.
I am not buying any of this nonsense I was just fed. How can you look at a 55 yo man and diagnose him without doing a test? And then tell him, if he does not take the test from their approved sleep study clinics, only two by the way in the Detroit area, that I will have my Commercial Driver License suspended and will not be allowed to work.
I have medical issues, with my THYROID, not my ability to sleep. And I find it rather striking that the SA issues are darn near identical to my Thyroid symptoms. I wonder if some of you folks have underlying conditions that you are not being tested for? Not saying that there is not real SA cases out there, I am not that ignorant, but when you see what I just went through, one has to seriously consider that this new medical industry is nothing more than snake oil, a multi BILLION DOLLAR a year industry, that even Forbes Magazine described as a "Racket". I believe it is.
On a side note, I have yet to meet a driver that has ever passed a sleep study test, the test itself is designed for the patient to fail. Do some research on the subject before you judge me. And follow the money.
And here is another thing, my blood pressure test... They used one of those $50 units that you can purchase on Amazon, I know the unit because I own one. I just pulled it out of the box to check... That unit is junk, it always reads high, and I told the nurse that and she agreed. I told her to use a real BP cuff and a stethoscope. I magically went from 160 over 90 to 134 over 78. Blood pressure is where they get us truck drivers too, just saying. Tell me again how any of this does not qualify as a racket? The clinic was Concentra, and I have 90 days to shell out untold hundreds, if not thousands of dollars to continue to work and support my family. I am self employed by the way, I cannot afford insurance, just as most truck drivers, even those employed as drivers. Time to get out of this insanely over regulated industry before the stress kills me.