Thursday, September 25, 2008

I'll Sleep When I'm Dead!

Wow, I've been a really sucky blogger. Sorry for the long delay--I really have no excuse. I haven't really had anything interesting going on in my life to blog about so maybe that's part of the problem. Work has been busier than usual--working in investments is a little crazy these days--and I haven't had a lot of emotional and psychological energy to spare lately, which conveniently brings me to...

...I took part in an overnight sleep study last night. I've never really had trouble sleeping as an adult; no bouts of insomnia, no restless leg syndrome. But previous "bed mates" have advised me that I snore. So what? I snore--wear some earplugs. However it seems that the snoring may now have morphed into something more sinister. My Honey advised me on my last visit that I was making "strange sounds" in my sleep. It kinda got me thinking a little.

I have noticed that over the last 6 months to a year I haven't felt well rested when I wake up in the morning and in the middle of the afternoon I have an overwhelming urge to curl up under my desk and have a little lie-down. I've always been an "early to bed, early to rise" type but lately that has become more of an "early to fall asleep on the couch while watching TV, late to rise if I don't have an alarm to wake me up" kinda thing.

Recently a close friend enthusiastically shared her adventures in being diagnosed and treated for sleep apnea. She had been having sleep issues like insomnia for a while and had tried numerous things--getting up at the same time every day, sleeping for fewer hour a night, etc.--and finally went for a sleep study only to find out her apnea was so severe, she was having sleep interruptions 57 times per hour. 57 times! No wonder she felt like crap! Now she's using a CPAP machine and it's changed her life. So I asked my doctor to refer me to a sleep clinic. I figure at the very least I'll know one way or the other if I have any serious sleep problems.

So off I go with my jammies and my pillow and I fill out this long questionnaire and then this nice guy named Glen takes a bunch of measurements of my head which was very relaxing and nearly put me to sleep then and there. Then he sticks all these electrode thingees to my head so they can measure my brain waves during sleep which will let them know what stage of sleep I'm in. He attaches a few more to my face which will detect eye movement and whether I'm grinding my teeth. He puts a band around my waist and another around my upper chest to measure my breathing and a couple more electrodes on my lower legs to tell them if I have restless legs (which I don't--at least, not when I'm sleeping). The last thing he attaches is a little pinchy thing on my right index finger which is supposed to read my pulse or something. I hated it--it was uncomfortable and made my finger really sore. It was all I could do to not rip it off and hurl it across the room in my sleep.

I slept pretty well all things considered. It wasn't the most restful sleep I've ever had but I've done worse. They finally let me go to bed at about 10:30pm (way past my normal "school night" bedtime) and woke me up at 5:30am. For the last little while I was asleep I was dreaming about them coming in and waking me up--very weird. Glen said they got lots of good data (whatever that means) so I guess it was a success. My follow up appointment isn't for another month, so I guess I'll find out at that time whether I have any sleep disorders. In the mean time I'll be happy to be back in my own bed. Sans jammies.


psychsarah said...

What a coincidence-I contemplated commenting yesterday that I missed your posts, then got to busy (which I figured happened to you too) and then today, boom, a post!

I hope your sleep study gives you some good info. I know so many people with "the apnea" who experience such a difference once they get the CPAP.

I'm also giggling at the "sans jammies"...much more comfy eh? (Although occassionally chilly without a man furnace to snuggle up to...)

Mindy said...

I think you should have insisted on sleeping naked at the sleep clinic so as to replicate the true to life sleeping conditions of your own four walls...

I'll be interested to know how you make out... hmmm.. I make some weird noises of my own... white coat syndrome?

Rick Henderson said...

Well do let us know how the results turn out!