Sunday, October 12, 2014

Lovely headgear

When I went to see my doctor the other week for my typical complaint of fatigue, she asked about my sleeping habits. She wanted to know how many hours I slept and if I snored and if I needed naps in the day. Stuff I've all mentioned before. I typically will get 3-4 hours of sleep in a row, before I am wakened to go to the bathroom or a child calls for me. (it's a lot less than I originally thought, but when I started to think about it, that's about the truth of it. Maybe not every night, thankfully, but for the most part. Then if you add in that I can't fall asleep at night, am a night owl, but still have to get up at 7am to get the kids off to school...I am one tired mama!) So yes, I have needed naps mid-day before. (I am so pleased that so far, since school started up again, I have been doing okay and not found myself dragging off to the couch or nodding off in the school parking lot at the end of the school day!) As for snoring...I've been told that I snore, but not very often.  To be honest, that doesn't even bother me at all. I figure that if I was snoring, it meant that I was sleeping! So I'm not embarrassed!

My doctor wants to rule out sleep apnea, which is a good thing, I guess. I'm not convinced that I have it. (although I am nervous to find out!) I rather think that my fatigue is linked to autoimmune disease, since I seem to have a few links.

To find out if I do have sleep apnea, which is not the ceasing of breathing like I thought, but rather an obstruction of proper breathing. (typically the tongue falls back into the throat, collapsing the esophagus...I saw a neat little video with a Respiratory Therapist!) I had to wear this funky headgear for two nights. It captured my sleep patterns and body and my REM sleep depth and whatnot. I'm not too sure how, but somehow it was able to record it.

It was lovely to wear. I look amazing!

I'm glad that I was able to do this testing while my Hunny was gone on his hunting trip. I couldn't see this sitting well with bedtime snuggles and such!

When you go to bed, you turn on the recorder and it instructs you to lie flat on your back and look at the ceiling while it initializes itself. After a minute, the polite female voice says that it is set up and you can go to sleep now.  If only falling asleep were that easy for me! I wish! (It is for my husband!) You also have to wear this nose prong. It didn't provide any oxygen or anything, but maybe it measured what I was putting out? I don't know. Things didn't go too bad, I did manage to sleep for about 3 or 4 hours until a beeping noise woke me up and a voice prompted me to "please adjust the headcorder, please adjust the headcorder, please adjust..." argh! I pushed on those forehead prongs (there are three stickies that attach to your skin) until the voice stopped. The first night, it happened at 3:30am, the next night at 4:30am. Slightly frustrating! (another reason I am happy I did this while Hunny was away! He would be a grumpy bear if he was woken up two nights in a row to that!)

The results take a few days, so we will see what happens. I am hoping I don't have sleep apnea (I don't think I do); the face mask you have to wear to help you breathe at night looks so uncomfortable! I move around a lot in my sleep; I can't see that going over very well. But I will tackle that hurdle if I ever come to it.


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