Well, my few faithful readers, another week gone by and nothing posted – anywhere. Also very few blogs visited. my apologies. I’ve been somewhat out of it this week. For those of you who have followed my posts about the Sleep Study and Results, well, I’ve been sleeping with my CPAP Mask all week, aside from one night when I really had to get some quality rest. 😉
As I mentioned last Sunday, my CPAP arrived. So I’ve been wearing this breathing mask for the past week. And please take note, that picture is not me, it’s just an example illustration of my new mask, lol. Though I admit, my hair is not much longer than his, so it’s a pretty fair representation. Wearing such a mask is not pretty. Luckily, no one has to see me in it!
The mask itself is designed to cover my nose, and is not uncomfortable. In fact, I’ve not had any problems falling asleep with it. It takes me no longer than usual.The air flow is adjusted to be mild during the first 20 minutes, so as to allow breathing as normally as possible. It gets stronger after that, but I’ve never lain awake long enough to experience the change. I also have a humidifier built in to keep it from drying out the trachea and sinuses. The first night I had to adjust it a bit as it had me coughing from too dry air, but since then it’s been okay.
Sound perfect so far? Hmm… well,,, there are a few minor problems. One problem is that it wakes me at least once or twice a night with a headache. I am not prone to headaches, but this gives me one – on the forehead. I am pretty sure it’s from the pressure of the upper band, but I keep it as loose as I can without leaking air. I’m hoping this will eventually go away.
Second problem is that sometimes air leaks out my mouth. This morning I woke with the sound of air rushing in my ears, kind of like in a tunnel, and I realized my mouth was open and air was leaking out the mouth, and my mouth feeling dry as a bone. I already have problems with dry mouth due to some damaged saliva glands, but wow, this morning it was like sandpaper! Ick! I really don’t want to have to go with a full nose and mouth mask, but I may have to.
Third and last problem? Well, the whole idea of this thing is to make me feel more rested, have more energy during the day. Right? It’s not working. In fact, just the opposite. I find myself falling asleep at the keyboard, so to speak, dozing off, feeling drowsy most of the morning, even after my 2 coffees. Afternoons I’m not sleepy, but just tired, though probably no more tired than usual. Point is, it’s not working.
I’m going to call on Monday and tell them all this, see what they say. Maybe a different mask is needed.
There is one other thing that worries me. Though we don’t have frequent power outages, we do occasionally have them, and sometimes during the night. Did you ever wake in the morning to find your digital clock blinking 12:00? So, what happens if the power goes out? I’ll still have airflow from my own breathing, as there is a ventilation element on the end of the mask, but I read this in the instruction manual and it kinda freaked me:
“When the CPAP machine is turned on and functioning properly, new air from the CPAP machine flushes the exhaled air out through the attached mask exhalation port. However, when the CPAP machine is not operating, enough fresh air will not be provided through the mask, and exhaled air may be rebreathed. This warning applies to most models of CPAP systems. Rebreathing of exhaled air for longer than several minutes can, in some circumstances, lead to suffocation.”
Carbon Dioxide… CO2. Not good.
Okay, okay, it’s not likely to happen, and I imagine if the power did go out I’d probably revert to breathing through the mouth, at least i hope so. Meanwhile, I think I may remove it during stormy weather . . .
As a backup, I’ve decided to get an oxymeter. One that has an alarm if oxygen levels go too low. That should prevent any danger – provided I’m not sleeping on my good ear, lol. (I’m rather deaf in my left ear, especially for high frequency sounds like alarm beeps.)
There is another reason I want to get the oxymeter. . .
To check up on the CPAP. I know, but it’s just my intuition speaking. One night last week, I just couldn’t take it and slept without the mask. I slept well, and the next day, felt normal – as in Judee’s normal, which is probably a bit different from the average normal.
So, I’m going to test it out. The oxymeter I am buying can keep a constant record up to 24 hours, and that record can be downloaded onto the PC through USB. So I’m going to record a couple of nights with the CPAP, and then record a night without the CPAP, and see what it shows. I don’t know when I’ll get it, I had to order from Amazon UK. They had the same model in Amazon.FR (France) which is practically next door to Switzerland, but for some reason they refused to ship it.
But get it, I will, eventually, and hope to at least get some reassurance that the CPAP is doing what it needs to do to get me more oxygen at night.
There’s other stuff going on, of course, life is not just about the CPAP, but right now my eyes are getting sleepy, and I’m almost dozing off here as I type, so that’s my signal to sign off.
Y’all have a great week!