Sleep Apnea Guide

I have sleep apnea and use this blog to provide unbiased info about sleep apnea to create sleep apnea awareness. If you have sleep apnea, it is important to seek treatment.

Mattel's New Sleep Apnea Barbie?

Ok, this Barbie is not from Mattel, but by a doll costume maker who's husband has sleep apnea. The creator says of the custom Barbie, "I do not mean to make light of it, but rather to amuse those who have to live with it." Take a look at the pictures, I think you will agree.

More pictures

The joy of the sleep clinic

Here's a funny commentary that captures the joy of the sleep clinic, entitled "Sleepless in a Sleep Clinic" (Read). I think it captures the experience well.

My experience was slightly more unpleasant as a result of the sleep technician's office being in the room right next to me and paper thin walls. I was trying to get to sleep but was distracted by every little noise. By about 2 am, I was just about ready to fall asleep. Then I hear shouting from the technician. He was on the phone shouting in a foreign language to someone far away. After what seemed like an hour of his unintelligible one-way conversation my blood was boiling.

Not realizing there was a microphone in front of me for monitoring, I shouted something like "which part of this being a sleep clinic do you not understand?" alongside a few vulgarities. It was immediately silent and I eventually calmed down and fell asleep.

He was very quiet in the morning when he woke me up.

The challenge of keeping the mouth closed while using a CPAP

Keeping my mouth closed when sleeping has always been a challenge. I used my chin strap for the first month I had the CPAP. It was irritating and had to go. I tried putting a sock in my mouth and that didn't work either.

Years later, I only sometimes use the chin strap, because it slips off and is still uncomfortable.

The chin strap I have is the black, 1 inch wide strap that has a hole for the chin. For some reason I have been breathing with my mouth open a lot lately, so I need to try something new.

I've seen some alternative ideas around that I may try. Some home-brewed ideas include using a 2" waterproof adhesive tape or any kind of easy to remove medical or sports adhesive tape and taping the lips with it, being sure to have an easy way to remove it. Others have tried duct tape and found it just a little too adhesive. Go figure.

There is even an anti-snoring tape product out that is similar, except that it tapes around the mouth without sealing the lips. Ya, that'll work.

There seems to be a lot of chin strap products out there. The problem is that each is a little different and everyone has a different head. One version may work for you but not for me. I have enough problems with my nasal mask headgear rubbing against my ear. I don't want a chin strap to rub my ear too.

To get an idea of what is out there, this vendor has a lot of large pictures of different chin strap products. View.

Another vendor provides this 2 minute video that shows some chin strap product options in use. Video

Note that among these samples, nobody is sleeping with cats. Cats and headgear don't play well. 8 cats and headgear play worse.

Another thing I've read is that chin straps are not always needed for long term use. If one has regularly breathed with an open mouth while sleeping, changing to closed mouth breathing is a change of habit. Habit changing does not come easily, but once the habit has been changed, it should stay for a while until a new habit is formed.

Alternatively, one could pursue using a full face mask (FFM) instead of using a nasal mask. Though slightly less attractive when trying to be romantic, the FFM may have the potential for good results if I can find one that fits.

Sleep Apnea - my story

Like many others, I had no clue that I had sleep apnea. In fact, I had never heard of it. I found out by chance.

My spouse could not stand my snoring and had to sleep with earplugs - or even in another room!

I asked my doctor about how to stop the snoring. The doctor asked me a bunch of questions about sleeping hadits and had me do a sleep study. I did the whole sleep study thing and ending up with a diagnosis of severe sleep apnea. Great. Do I get a free t-shirt or something?

That was three years ago. I have been using a CPAP machine every night for treatment. At my level of sleep apnea, the treatment is good, but not great. I plan to research the options and see if there are ways to improve my sleep apnea. Hopefully, this will be useful to others in a similar situation.

I've moved. Visit!!!

Visit my new website about sleep apnea - for more information about sleep apnea!!!!

About this blog

This website aims to create awareness about Sleep Apnea. I'm not a doctor or an expert on Sleep Apnea. If you have questions, please see your doctor.

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