Sleep (or lack of) *Long post* - Jemsite
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post #1 of 31 (permalink) Old 07-30-2006, 11:11 AM Thread Starter
 
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Sleep (or lack of) *Long post*

I don't think I've posted about this here, so I am bored and figured I would... Some stuff is copied directly from a blog, so a few things sound present tense, I'll try and sort that out....

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January 11, 2006
I went through a long period of being an insomniac. From middle school up until I was 20-21 I got very little sleep. On good nights I would fall asleep within 4-5 hours of laying down and get 2-3 hours of sleep. I went through periods of being able to sleep more than that, but that was uncommon. A lot of nights I would get 1 hour or less of sleep. I have gone days or even weeks at a time without any actual sleep. I won't try to deny that it was almost completely stress related. I got over it eventually.

For the past 2-3 years, I've been able to fall asleep within 30 minutes of going to bed. I can easily get 8 hours of uninterrupted sleep. If I let myself, I can sleep for a good 10-15 hours straight. Problem solved, right? Not a chance. It took a long time to notice it, but I eventually realized that I wasn't waking up feeling rested. It didn't matter if I got 4 hours of sleep or 14, I woke up feeling tired. Not just the "I'm not a morning person" kind of tired... but seriously drained. I woke up feeling more tired than before I had gone to sleep, as if I was up all night partying, when I was really in bed. I didn't know what was going on at first, because I was so used to not sleeping at all... the feeling of exhaustion was an everyday thing that I managed to hide pretty well (thanks mostly to the folks with Mt Dew). However, the problem started getting worse. Within the last year, I've not only woken up feeling tired, but the feeling stopped going away. I would feel tired throughout the day. I worked 2nd shift for a while, and would wake up at 8AM to go into work at noon. Even with all that time to wake up, people would still always say "Did you just wake up?" or something like that. I started to feel like s#[email protected] through my entire day and it showed. It got worse. I started waking up with horrible migraines that lasted through the day. It got to be a weekly occurance. Some times the headaches would be so bad that I'd throw up out of sheer pain. I tried whatever I could to fix the problem myself. I changed my diet to be much healthier (cut back to 1 soda or less per day, try to eat a lot more chicken, vegies, fruit). I started exercising daily. I stopped staying up late and made absolutely certain that I got 7-9 hours of sleep a night. Nothing changed, I kept getting worse. On nights when I don't get that many hours of sleep, I would wake up with horrible stomach aches. On the other hand, the more sleep I got in a night, the more tired I seemed to feel in the morning, and the higher chance of a headache. It's really screwed up my life. My attention span has dropped sharply. I've become a far less patient person and get frustrated very easily, which isn't my normal way of being, it takes me a good hour every morning just to figure out where the hell I am and how to function as a normal human... my girlfriend says I wake up a LOT during the night. I mean a LOT. I never recall waking up before my alarm clock. Never.

So it finally got so bad that I was out of things to try myself and started going to the doctor. They tested for every possible thing they could (liver problems, thyroid problems, allergies, etc etc etc). After that all came up normal, it was off to a sleep specialist I went. I had an initial consultation where they asked me a TON of questions about my sleep habits and other parts of my life and did a quick examination. They decided there was definitely something screwy with me and recomended I go in for a sleep study to find out just what the problem is. So early January of this year, I went in.

It took me at least an hour to fall asleep. Normally I am out within 20 minutes of my head hitting the pillow. I woke up around 3AM and was very uncomfortable and could not fall back asleep. I think I did pass back out after 2+ hours. Even though my girlfriend says I wake up a LOT during the night, I still never know I wake up. As far as I know, I sleep straight through the night, every night. So this was a very uncommon sleep for me. I noted that in the post study questionaire, but I am still concerned that they might not get all the needed data.

The day study was a real drag. I did 4 naps and I know I fell asleep for 3 of them. 2 of the 3 were spent with more time being awake than asleep. One of them I slept almost the full time. I woke up more and more tired as the naps went on, so I hope that is a good sign for finding my problem.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but I thought that if you normally display signs of apnea, they will try putting you on a CPAP or some sort of mask midway through the night. That didn't happen with me. That worried me in the morning because I was fearful I would be diagnosed with narcolepsy. I really do not want to be on medication for my entire life as I've seen the side effects... but if it works, it's better than what I'm going through now.

I guess I am coming out of it with an overall feeling of fear and disappointment. I thought I'd end up being a clear cut case of apnea, because I fit the bill on every single symptom aside from being overweight (I'm quite healthy) or a loud snorer (I let some quiet snoring out now and again if anything).

Either way, I go in for my follow up on the 30th. I'm crossing my fingers that they have an answer for me. I'm still hoping it's apnea, but as long as they do find a problem and can come up with a solution...

.................................................. .......................
January 31, 2006
Well, I had my follow-up appointment. Doc said that during the sleep portion of the study, I was pretty okay. I only had trouble when I was on my back (I think it was 40 breath-stoppages/hour), but I was only on my back for a minimal portion of the night. So, as long as I don't normally sleep that way, I'm okay.

During the nap study, I fell asleep on average in 7 minutes (I almost couldn't believe it, but it's true). That's fairly unhealthy I guess, should be above 10 minutes.

So they decided I'm just too tired, I forgot the disease they labeled me with, but I got some pills for it. They gave me a prescription of Provigil. I got a coupon for a 7-day free trial, and that's all I've picked up for now. I put the actual prescription on hold.

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March 4, 2006
I've already stopped taking them unless I'm desperate (IE - falling asleep through the work day). Taking 1/2 pills did not do enough to make a difference (as I told my doctor, it was the same as caffine, it woke me up, but I did not feel rested or alert). If I take more than 100mg(half dose), I feel jittery and get stomach aches.

I tried talking with the doctor again and said that the Provigil wasn't solving my problem. It was just a poor attempt at treating a symptom. The doctor didn't seem to care. He said the pills were working as intended and if I was still too tired they could prescribe me some heavier stuff (ie - ritalin). Sorry doc, you suck.
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post #2 of 31 (permalink) Old 07-30-2006, 11:11 AM Thread Starter
 
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Re: Sleep (or lack of) *Long post*

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July 25, 2006

Update... long time coming...

Well, next step in trying to get some rest today. Left off with the sleep doctor prescribing me Provigil, which was a waste of my time/money. Today I went to an otolaryngologist (spelling???). Ear/nose/throat guy. Seems like a good doctor so far.

He looked up my nose and got fairly excited. Asked if I ever broke it (I have, middle school I think). He said my septum is really crooked and the turbinates on either side are larger than normal. That's bad, because air is supposed to pass through those guys, it's not. From looking, he said my left side was easily 95% blocked. The right side wasn't good either. So even if it's 50% blocked, that means I'm only getting 30% of the air I should through my nose. When I lay down, blood natrually settles and blocks things further. Breathing through my mouth doesn't help, because it's much less effecient than the nose (well, normally it is). So, thus a clear answer to why I'm so damn tired. Oxygen usually helps.

Beyond that, he said all the glands in my throat feel inflamed. I've been told that my whole life, but no doctor felt a desire to do anything about it. This guy thinks it may mean I have chronic sinuscitis... basically a constant sinus infection, causing junk to drain into my throat and cause the inflamation. Not a huge problem, but not helping my cause either.

So I got some nasal spray for the time being. Should help reduce any swelling in my nose and control the sinusitis. Hopefully will help my sleeping a bit in the short term.

In 3 weeks, I'm going to get a cat-scan on my nose. Doing that to make sure there's nothing else going on in there and to see just how bad things are. Have a follow-up appointment with the doc a week after the scan.

After that, he said it looks like some simple surgery should correct my breathing. Probably help my voice be a little less nasal sounding and improve my sense of smell/taste. Why not?!

To say the least, I'm pumped. He pinpointed a lot of problems I have been having based on looking at my nose, which made me feel good. Especially after the sleep specialist told me I was wrong and blah blah blah.

So I'm hoping doc stays optimistic about the surgery and it happens fast.

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As for the sleep doc, I just got a notice that I'm due for a follow-up with him. Needless to say I won't be showing up. It's late in the game, but I'm going to file a complaint against him and see if I can get reimbursed for some of the bill (my insurance paid for about $6k, I had to pay for $2k, the prescription of Provigil is $50/month WITH insurance, good thing I don't refill it). I've noted from the start that I cannot breathe through my nose when laying down... yet the stupid sleep center just said I have some imaginary disease that there is no test for and called it a day. This pisses me off.
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More to come... I have the appointment for my CT Scan on August 16. Follow-up with the nose doc a week after. In the meantime, summer with HUMID weather and allergies has been hell. I feel more tired than I have in years.
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post #3 of 31 (permalink) Old 07-30-2006, 12:13 PM
 
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Re: Sleep (or lack of) *Long post*

I remember when I was up for 40 hours at work. Dear god I was losing it. Never sure of what was real. I was so relieved when I got home.
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post #4 of 31 (permalink) Old 07-30-2006, 12:28 PM
 
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Re: Sleep (or lack of) *Long post*

Just admit that you can't sleep cuz your stressin out that I'm gonna kick your arse in FF league

Quote:
Originally Posted by jay ratkowski
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After that, he said it looks like some simple surgery should correct my breathing. Probably help my voice be a little less nasal sounding and improve my sense of smell/taste. Why not?!
Seriously though, DO IT! My friend had his nose broken too and was suffering from the same problems / symptoms your describing. He had the surgery as well. Now he can breathe, smell and sleep again My grand mum had the same problem as well (for YEARS) She had the same surgery and she is doing sooo much better now. It's quite a cimple procedure with no down time.

Good luck Jay!

Now...I need to go rest my eyes...........
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post #5 of 31 (permalink) Old 07-30-2006, 01:44 PM
 
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Re: Sleep (or lack of) *Long post*

Quote:
Originally Posted by JJEMMER777
Just admit that you can't sleep cuz your stressin out that I'm gonna kick your arse in FF league



Seriously though, DO IT! My friend had his nose broken too and was suffering from the same problems / symptoms your describing. He had the surgery as well. Now he can breathe, smell and sleep again My grand mum had the same problem as well (for YEARS) She had the same surgery and she is doing sooo much better now. It's quite a cimple procedure with no down time.

Good luck Jay!

Now...I need to go rest my eyes...........
+1 All the best .

Regards

André



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post #6 of 31 (permalink) Old 07-30-2006, 02:05 PM
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Re: Sleep (or lack of) *Long post*

Good luck man.
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post #7 of 31 (permalink) Old 07-30-2006, 07:30 PM
 
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Re: Sleep (or lack of) *Long post*

Good luck dude!!

Hope all goes well for ya!

~ Katirna
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post #8 of 31 (permalink) Old 07-30-2006, 11:40 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: Sleep (or lack of) *Long post*

Quote:
Originally Posted by JJEMMER777
Just admit that you can't sleep cuz your stressin out that I'm gonna kick your arse in FF league



Seriously though, DO IT! My friend had his nose broken too and was suffering from the same problems / symptoms your describing. He had the surgery as well. Now he can breathe, smell and sleep again My grand mum had the same problem as well (for YEARS) She had the same surgery and she is doing sooo much better now. It's quite a cimple procedure with no down time.

Good luck Jay!

Now...I need to go rest my eyes...........
Ha! I am absolutely dominating in my Fantasy Baseball league, so I'll probably be dead last in Football.

Weird thing... all the time I've had this trouble I've never thought about the nose. Nobody has mentioned it either. I thought adnoids could be an issue, since that's a common problem for a lot of people. That was it. Now all the sudden I'm finding a lot of people who have had this same problem (with the broken nose). And on top of that, all the symptoms that relate match mine exactly. I had a lot of symptoms that matched apnea, but not as many as with this. I guess it's nice to feel confident that I'm on the right track after all this time.
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post #9 of 31 (permalink) Old 07-31-2006, 12:10 AM
 
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Re: Sleep (or lack of) *Long post*

As someone whos still dealing with insomnia I really feel your pain bro, and its good to hear your getting a fix up on things.
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post #10 of 31 (permalink) Old 07-31-2006, 03:48 AM
 
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Re: Sleep (or lack of) *Long post*

That's a serious problem you have there, and I am glad you are getting that sorted. Good luck!
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post #11 of 31 (permalink) Old 09-15-2006, 03:15 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: Sleep (or lack of) *Long post*

Hello all,
I had surgery this morning. Septoplasty and corbolation (spelling?) of turbinates. What it means is they chopped up and straightened out my septum and cut down the size of the turbinates on either side. Vicodin is kicking in, but I think I'll take the full dose next time. Still feeling some of the pain. Was really miserable earlier. I was at the surgery center for about 4 hours, but was only knocked out for about 1 hour or so and the surgery took just over 30 minutes. There's a good amount of bleeding still, but not gushing. Just steady that clots and goes away for a bit but comes back whenever I swallow too hard or move too much. Got a nice chunk of gause taped on the underside of my nose that I've had to change about every 30 minutes so far.

Bleeding should stop almost completely by tomorrow and definitely by Sunday. Planning on going back to work Tuesday or Wednesday. Will probably just make a brief appearance to school Monday/Tuesday to get assignments, maybe just Tuesday and not at all Monday though. We'll see.

Anyway, my throat is killing me from the tube that was stuffed down it (for oxygen). Been downing a ton of water and cranberry juice. Peeing by the gallon.

I've got some splints inside my nose to help the septum heal properly. Can't really feel them, but my nose is a stuffy/bloody mess, so who knows. Those come out in a week. After that, I should start breathing a lot better fairly quickly.

Good thing is, no bruising and my nose only looks *slightly* swollen on the outside. So once I can ditch the bandages, I won't have to worry about looking like I just got beat up. Which by the way, right after I woke up from surgery, it felt like I was punched in the face. By the time I got home it felt more like I was punched in the face by Mike Tyson, my whole face was pretty sore. I think the dry mouth/throat is the worst part of it all. That and the fact that my nose feels like I have the worst cold you could ever imagine (super stuffy).

That's all for now.
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post #12 of 31 (permalink) Old 09-15-2006, 03:24 PM
 
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Re: Sleep (or lack of) *Long post*

Right on Jay! Glad you deceided to go through with it. As I was saying, I know two people that had this procedure done and it worked wonders for both of them.

You should start noticing improvement almost immediatly.

Good luck
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post #13 of 31 (permalink) Old 09-15-2006, 04:11 PM
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Re: Sleep (or lack of) *Long post*

Yeah Jay, let us know how it comes out
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post #14 of 31 (permalink) Old 09-15-2006, 09:05 PM
 
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Re: Sleep (or lack of) *Long post*

Good luck!
At least your recovery time doesn't include "NO GOING ON JEMSITE: DOCTOR'S ORDERS"..
Then you'd just DIE.. haha

~ Katrina
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post #15 of 31 (permalink) Old 09-15-2006, 11:00 PM
 
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Re: Sleep (or lack of) *Long post*

Jay, I sincerely hope this works for you, 40 breath stoppages an hour is scary!

I was wondering if the doc who finally looked "up your nose" is the same doc you went to in January.
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