Author Topic: everyone needs sleep  (Read 2600 times)

Offline blademan

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everyone needs sleep
« on: November 14, 2012, 08:27:58 AM »
This is a topic I have not seen ever brought up in the prepper commnunity. Not saying it hasn't, just that I haven't seen it.
   Sleep Apnea is a condition (for those of you who don't have it or sleep next to someone who does.) In which a person for one or multiple reasons, periodically stops breathing during their sleep. I say periodically but that is a bit misleading. It can be anywhere from 5 to like myself 72 sleep interruptions per minute during sleep. That's more than one breathing interruption per second. Its a big deal.
    The most effective treatment for this is a device called CPAP.
Its a little box that blows air through a hose that connects to one of many different masks that a person wears and forces the person to breath against the pressure and keep their airway open. There are three types of apnea, obstructive, central, and complex, this treats all three along with other methods used with it.
   The CPAP (continuous positive air way pressure) machine is an electrical device and is therefore dependant on electricity.
   So, who here is dealing with this? The prices for the portable batteries are rediculous, sometimes as much as a machine itself which is just a crime. But that being said, there have to be some solutions in this community.
   Additionally, have any cpap sufferers prepped for not having cpap? There are some things my doc has suggested, but I'm curious to see what other people have done in this regard. I'm probably going to ask the question on a listener call day, it makes a good dual expert call question for steven harris and doc bones and nurse amy.
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Offline Shaunypoo

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Re: everyone needs sleep
« Reply #1 on: November 14, 2012, 08:43:58 AM »
I have a friend who suffers from sleap apnea.  His doctor gave him some exercises to strengthen his tongue and throat.  Hopefully that will help.

This may be one of those cases where I would look into the permanent long term solution of surgery.  Not everyone wants to have surgery, I understand that, but if TSHF you will be hard pressed to continue with the CPAP for long.  Since there are multiple surgeries available to help with sleep apnea, a long talk with your doctor may be in order.  I know there are plenty of other non-invasive remedies that may help assuage your symptoms, but why not cure it?
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Offline Mountain State Prepper

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Re: everyone needs sleep
« Reply #2 on: November 14, 2012, 08:54:37 AM »
Blademan....this is something I've thought about.   My father, brother and sister all use CPAP's.   I also probably need one, but can't bring myself to do the sleep study....not to mention I'm too stubborn to probably wear the mask at night anyway.

There are some claims that a mouth peice (such as those used for snoring) will aid in keeping the airway open.   I found this information with a quick search at www.webmd.com.

http://www.webmd.com/sleep-disorders/sleep-apnea/sleep-apnea-self-care

My personal favorite in this article is the following advice....

Quote
"About half of the people with apnea have most of their breathing abnormalities while sleeping on their backs, sleep experts have found. So most doctors encourage people with sleep apnea to try to sleep in other positions.

If you have mild sleep apnea or heavy snoring, lying on your side may help. But how can you get into the habit? Some doctors suggest simply putting two tennis balls into a tube sock and pinning it to your nightshirt in back."
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Offline Roundabouts

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Re: everyone needs sleep
« Reply #3 on: November 14, 2012, 10:36:43 AM »
Could you have a battery bank back up system?  Trying to sleep with a generator running most like not good plus you would have to have tons of fuel to run all night.    Charge the batteries from car generator solar?  Then with and inverter? plug the machine in?  I would think how big a system you would have to build would depend on the watts that the machine needs to operate.  Maybe there might even be a lower wattage machine you could use for back up.  This could end up being a serious problem for you so most defiantly bring it up to the expert panel.   I would have the watts and or amps in your question.  Don't know if that would make a difference but can't hurt. 

Also for people that use a nebulizer at home I would think this would be very good info for as well. 

Not sure about all this stuff yet. 
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Offline blademan

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Re: everyone needs sleep
« Reply #4 on: November 14, 2012, 03:03:08 PM »
Thanks everyone for the great feedback. I have asked my doctor about many of these things. The mouth piece he doesn't think would work for me because its not just my palet and tongue but my throat that closes off. I even asked if a nasopharangeal airway would be a good back up and he said it probably wouldn't help much and that I would need to get a tracheotomy or intubate myself every night without a cpap type option.
     Its not just the power issue because that isn't even a very hard problem. I just need the right batteries and a charger. Some of the batteries last weeks so even a hand crank generator could suffice. I could crank once a week.
   Much harder is if my cpap breaks and I can't get another one.
 This could be a problem tomorrow, as I recently took a lower paying job and no longer have insurance. So that's an issue I would like to see if anyone has dealt with and what they did. Or what people can think up. The doc says there is a short term solution of some bandaid like nose valves that looked interesting but perhaps not the most relable solution.
    Machine hygien is an issue too especially outdoors a dirty machine can make you sick.
 And mountain state, If you think you have it make yourself do the study, it will change your life for the better, you can find a mask for you. I thought the same thing and I took to it like a fish to water, I would freak out to the level of having an anxiety attack if I suddenly didn't have it. Its the single most important thing I have done for my health. Seriously, if you can do it at all, do it. You will be amazed at how it will change your life.
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Offline Roundabouts

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Re: everyone needs sleep
« Reply #5 on: November 14, 2012, 03:27:23 PM »
Can you start getting spare parts or try and find a substitute for the parts?  Or an extra machine?  Or are you just looking for other alternatives to using the machine in an ER or permanently?  Had a friend that could sleep somewhat better if he slept in a zero gravity chair.  Didn't solve the problem but helped get him through for a few nights till he got home. 
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Offline Oil Lady

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Re: everyone needs sleep
« Reply #6 on: November 14, 2012, 04:36:13 PM »
I can only offer a handful of loosely related annecdotes:

1) I have one client in my nursing home where I work who wears a CPAP every night. The nursing home has emergency backup power for up to 3 days.

2) In many states, when a hospital delivers a newborn baby is born who turns out to have severe medical complications which out the kid into NICU where the baby must be on any form of assistive machinery, the child cannot be brought home by the mother unless the mother demonstrates to a social worker that she has an emergency backup generator. I nannied for a family that brought home such a baby after the child had been in NICU for over 40 days, and the parents had to demonstrate the full functionality of their newly installed generator. The number of days required of such a generator situation is something I do not know about. It might vary from one state to the next.

3) Last year in the aftermath of the huge snow storm of October 30, 2011, Connecticut Light & Power wasn't able to get the electricity back on in a lot of those useless Stepford Wife suburbs for 2 whole weeks.
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Offline blademan

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Re: everyone needs sleep
« Reply #7 on: November 14, 2012, 05:53:22 PM »
I wanted to acknowledge and respond to the surgery method.  I talked to my doctor and he said that the surgeries are either for less sever apnea than mine or adress a part of the airway that isn't my only problem. Apnea sounds kinda simple when you look it up on wikipedia as I did, but when you look at the medical lit, its pretty complex. The pillar procedure was one I asked my doc about and he said not to bother because it wouldn't make any difference and would not get me off cpap. I am heavy an loosing weight and that helps. I also plan on getting a digeridoo, which my doc actually stuck his tongue out at, but there are studies in australia he told me where pap was invented that show it could help a little. I think it would be at least interesting and a possible communication method if needed because its used that way now by aboriginees. Its just a concern like how to get insulin for a diabetic and how to keep it good. Its something I have to prep for.
   I don't think there are parts for the machines because they are built ocercomplicated and un user friendly because insurance companies want to monitor their patients usage and compliance. I asked the med supply guy where I got it and we talked about back ups and alternatives. I could theoretically make one and have ideas in my head about how to do so, I just need to prototype some and see how they work. Its kind of a difficult thing to do as you have to do it asleep and I live alone. So I think I need to get a video camera to record my sleep with a proto to see if I'm having any visible symptoms, its not the best way to do it, but if I have no other choice, then its better than nothing.
   I like the gravity chair, its something I have used by sleeping sitting up and with my head in a certain position. Its doable to an extent but not reliable.
    I'm wracking my brain on this and I appreciate all your feedback as this will help not only me but others who read this. I'm going to email Jack to see if he can get doom and bloom to take a shot at it. I will email them directly also because that way they can answer me in a detailed way and I'm not eating up air time for Jack as I can be long winded even though I have apnea.
   So if anyone on here has apnea and have prepped for it, spill the beans and let us know what you did, and what you tried and failed at so we can learn and make suggestions and such.
      Thanks tspers, this has been great.
Man's mind is his basic tool of survival.
Fear is the mind killer.

Two rules for a happy life:
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2. Never stand next to someone who is slinging shit at an armed man.

Offline Dainty

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Re: everyone needs sleep
« Reply #8 on: November 14, 2012, 07:09:23 PM »
I was never officially diagnosed with sleep apnea, but several nights a week did experience multiple bouts of waking up gasping for air - the kind where you inhale such a huge, long, breath it's like your lungs must have doubled in size. There were problems with the logistics of having a sleep study done, so my doctor advised I just try cpap and see if it helps.

Unfortunately, due to a sensitivity I reacted to chemicals emanating from the cpap. My caregiver didn't believe me, so I told her to run the machine full blast in a small room for an hour. She did and upon returning could easily smell the awful stench. I exchanged it for another cpap machine, which was even worse than the first.

The next thing to try was oxygen. Had a big frozen tank of oxygen carted in. Various factors contributed to that no longer being an option.

So for several years I just put up with it because there wasn't any other ideas for treating the apnea. But I'm currently seeing a neuromusculoskeletal specialist who's had a lot of success with addressing similar issues. I was impressed when someone I know had their snoring resolved within 3 visits to him, and I knew they had tried every trick in the book before that. I'm a little more complex to treat since the apnea isn't my only problem, but after an initial period of it actually worsening as we messed around with the structural reasons behind it I've experienced a lot of improvement and now rarely wake up desperate for oxygen. I suspect it isn't completely resolved, because I know you can have apnea without fully waking from it, but I plan to stick with this until there's nothing more my doc can do and then reevaluate from there, which is a long ways off. It might be fully resolved by then.

The treatment is a combination of physical therapy and advanced osteopathic manual medicine, administered by a D.O. board-certified in NMM. He's made it the sole focus of his practice to know anatomy and physiology extremely well, so the relationship of such and such an area of the throat collapsing would mean this and this, which are connected to this, and this way over here has a problem, which could be responsible. So lets address that, and see if it fixes the problem." That's all he does, day in, day out. He often sees patients with neck problems, who have not found chiropractics helpful. He told me he often won't even touch their neck at all, but rather work on the an issue in middle of their back and send them home with exercises. They protest "but you didn't even touch my problem area!" He's like, "do your homework, call me in 2 weeks". Two weeks rolls around and they grudgingly admit the problem is solved, and they never need come in again. Because the origin of the issue is often different than the actual site. Specialists like mine make it their life mission to understand how everything in the body relates to everything else so that they can troubleshoot and problem solve to an amazing degree.

I'd suggest looking into obtaining a second opinion from one of those.
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Offline joeinwv

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Re: everyone needs sleep
« Reply #9 on: November 14, 2012, 07:15:31 PM »
That's a good angle Dainty - I think a lot of people could do better finding a good DO and ditching their chiropractor.

Offline Mountain State Prepper

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Re: everyone needs sleep
« Reply #10 on: November 14, 2012, 07:26:34 PM »
It is obvious how much this is weighing on your mind.  I agree w/ Roundabouts.   Get a second and/or third machine as you can afford it, and work on the other items that your doctor advises to help improve your condition.



Here is one for $179.   I'm not sure if it is the kind you need or not.  Depending on your budget it may take awhile to get that extra one, but once you have it, you can gain back a little piece of mind.


http://www.cpap.com/cpap-machine/probasics-zzz-pap-silent-traveler-cpap-machine.html?gclid=CJmuuuOyz7MCFcXb4Aodc2YAWg



And thanks, I will consider your advice.   For me it is my allergies causing the most of my troubles, and thank God for the good meds out there today.   Which is where I'm building redundancy.   Some of my prescriptions, out of pocket, can be as expensive as the medical equipment.  But to have an extra month or two on hand is worth it in my opinion.



I have a friend who is diabetic.   Unfortunately for him, insulin has a shelf life and can't be stored.  I feel fortunate that my health and medical preps are storable.   My dad is also in a similar position, he does the home bound peritoneal dialysis.   His equipment needs to be sterile and powered.  He can be flushed by gravity, but the fluid he has in supply only lasts so long.  After that, what can we do?


While others are out there buying AR-15's and freeze-dried food, some folks have to think more directly to their health needs first.   It is a good idea to call into the show, and write an email as well.   Ask Jack to pass it on to the expert panel.

In the meantime, stay positive.  You are making preparations and trying to solve/mitigate your problem.  You are miles ahead of most folks.

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Offline ib71

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Re: everyone needs sleep
« Reply #11 on: November 14, 2012, 07:29:05 PM »
I am a nurse and also a R.Psgt (sleep technologist). They sell  set ups for battery use for cpaps, lot of truck drivers use them. You would be shocked to know how many truck drivers have severe sleep apnea. Before considering surgery for sleep apnea really think about it. It is usually not a cure. Unfortunately cpap is the best treatment for sleep apnea, mouth pieces do not work well in my experience they usually end up on the pillow after an hour and the peoplethat can keep them in have problems with teeth shifting.

Offline blademan

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Re: everyone needs sleep
« Reply #12 on: November 14, 2012, 08:50:05 PM »
Dainty, ib and mountain,
  Thank you so much for the advice and information.
Ib what you said squares exactly with what I have learned and been told by other experts in the field. My med supply guy told me he had a buddy in the army who made a mask out of a jock strap and a ww2 fighter pilot mask. I don't know what he used for a pap but he that's not a real hard issue. They aren't much more than a high power aquarium pump and a mircocontroller telling it wat to do. I know I am oversimplifying it a bit but its not too far off.
   Problem is that I no longer have insurance and I'm not sure when the repo dude will come knocking on the door. Well I'm going to sit back and let people make more suggestions and bump this a couple time if I need to. I got a couple emails to work on.
     
Man's mind is his basic tool of survival.
Fear is the mind killer.

Two rules for a happy life:
1. Never sling shit at an armed man.
2. Never stand next to someone who is slinging shit at an armed man.

Offline ib71

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Re: everyone needs sleep
« Reply #13 on: November 14, 2012, 10:01:00 PM »
CPAP machines are just blowers the force of the air is measured by cm of water pressure. Now what your prescribed rate is and if some day you need make one you can use a water manometer to adjust the air pressure.

Offline blademan

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Re: everyone needs sleep
« Reply #14 on: November 14, 2012, 10:23:09 PM »
Ib,
  Thanks for realizing that. I have read so many apnea boards with similar questions in which cpap snobs or uninformed people have berated really scared people in need of cpap who for what ever reason couldn't get it and told them it couldn't be done and shouldn't be attempted as they could hurt themselves. This seems unlikely but possible. My supplier and I came to the conclusion you could make a usable device out of aquarium pumps gang valved together to the pressure you needed and use a regular cpap mask with a homemade adapter or even a contractors respirator mask jury rigged because that would give you a seal for pressure.
   I also though of a small barrel bodied desk fan stuck into a coffee can using silicone sealant around the edge of the open end and putting a hole and a post on the closed end for the hose. I don't know if it would get enough pressure though. I would need a filter on the end of the fan, I have seen how dirty fans get. The possibilities are pretty good I think. I'm still taking ideas though. I'm just glad the cpap prescription is life long once written and can be used anywhere or so my doc tells me. And the masks I use and head gear are inexpensive. The machines are ludicrous.
Man's mind is his basic tool of survival.
Fear is the mind killer.

Two rules for a happy life:
1. Never sling shit at an armed man.
2. Never stand next to someone who is slinging shit at an armed man.

Offline ib71

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Re: everyone needs sleep
« Reply #15 on: November 15, 2012, 12:17:52 AM »
Blade man,

Most insurance companies buy cpap machines for their patients. If yours didn't offer your supplier $100 for it. I worked for a major supplier and they only cost them about $150. They might not even bother to pick it up.

Offline blademan

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Re: everyone needs sleep
« Reply #16 on: November 15, 2012, 07:00:18 AM »
My insurance only rents the machine that way they get service and replacements from the company. The buy the humidifier, but rent the pap.  Or so that was the way it was explained to me. But I will take that advice if it comes up. Thanks.
Man's mind is his basic tool of survival.
Fear is the mind killer.

Two rules for a happy life:
1. Never sling shit at an armed man.
2. Never stand next to someone who is slinging shit at an armed man.

Offline Dainty

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Re: everyone needs sleep
« Reply #17 on: November 15, 2012, 02:22:25 PM »
blameman,

Just FYI, the cost of seeing one of these specialists might be less than you think. I know of two that charge $60 and $70 respectively for subsequent one hour visits (the first visit is typically double that, and more lengthy) and I even know of one in Oregon who will treat children for free. I realize you're not a child, but that just goes to show their general willingness to put patient's needs first and make it affordable for people to see them. I wouldn't be surprised if you could strike up a deal or exchange for services. You just need to find one who's really passionate about it, because it's so exciting to them to make a permanent difference in people's lives that they're willing to work with you.
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Offline blademan

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Re: everyone needs sleep
« Reply #18 on: November 15, 2012, 03:53:24 PM »
Dainty,
   Thanks for the info. I will look and see what I find. Mountain showed me a machine that is less than 200$ so I'm going to get at least one of them because they are so small I could carry two in my bob and they should be easy to power. I will look though because if I could at leadst improve it let alone cure it, that would be really cool.
Man's mind is his basic tool of survival.
Fear is the mind killer.

Two rules for a happy life:
1. Never sling shit at an armed man.
2. Never stand next to someone who is slinging shit at an armed man.

Offline blademan

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Re: everyone needs sleep
« Reply #19 on: November 17, 2012, 02:05:42 AM »
Update:
  Ok for all you apnea sufferers and the people who love them, GOOD NEWS. I have been in contact with Steven Harris and also with Doc Bones and Nurse Amy.
  Steve told me that he is doing a show in December on batteries for backing up you car and your house. Included in this show will be dealt with cpap issues such as power,etc. So I am eargly awaiting this show and hope that anyone else with apnea to listen to this show, steve saif it would be very helpful for cpap users. I'm still considering my options and following leads.
Dr. Bones responded as well and said that this was the first time that someone had brought up apnea in a prepping context so he said he was going to do some research and let me know what he could find on the issue. So between the two, I should have some good information for this issue. Harris has already given me a lot of resources on back up cpaps and powering them ina power outage. www.secondwindcpap.com is a very good site he refered me to. Go check it out.
Man's mind is his basic tool of survival.
Fear is the mind killer.

Two rules for a happy life:
1. Never sling shit at an armed man.
2. Never stand next to someone who is slinging shit at an armed man.

Offline sdcharger

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Re: everyone needs sleep
« Reply #20 on: November 17, 2012, 12:49:26 PM »
For most people who suffer sleep apnea, it is obstructive in nature.  A large percentage of those people with OSA could lose the symptoms if they were not overweight.  Of course there are a number of people who are just unlucky and suffer structural problems or premature loss of muscle tone and have less ways to mitigate the problems.

What is the power draw for the CPAC machine?  You could build a deep cycle battery system fairly easy that you recharge during power outages with solar panels.

Offline blademan

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Re: everyone needs sleep
« Reply #21 on: November 17, 2012, 09:54:08 PM »
SD,
    Thanks for the input. Your information is not incorrect but highly over flaunted as a solution for sleep apnea. It is a much more complex condition than even most people I know who have it undersatand. I am not claiming to be an expert and freely admit that my information may be naïve or incomplete. I have only been diagnosed for less than a year but "knew" that I had it for at least 2 years and probably had mild apnea for for at least 5 years and possibly as much as ten maybe longer, but that doesn't matter for this conversation.
  The idea that people who have apnea can get "rid" of it by loosing weight and living a healthier lifestyle is unfortunately only correct for a small number of individuals. They are usually the ones whose condition is identified very early while it is still mild. Usually due to being married to a person who knows about apnea and sleeps with them or is in the room while they are sleeping and identify it or just know something is wrong and urges them to get help. The problem is that most and nearly all sufferers don't have this luxury or just don't listen if they do. So they have apnea untreaated for many years and sometimes a decade or more. The nature of apnea causes sever damage to the soft tussue of the airway and even when weight is lost and a healthier lifestyle is implimented, the damage is done and while the symptoms improve, it is usually not enough to be considered free of apnea.  They still have to use cpap if they wish to have a good quality of life. Stopping cpap will usually result in the resuming or worsening of symptoms.
 
    The idea that most people with osa are obese, (I am and am loosing weight and improvig.) Is a misunderstanding that actually most obese people have some degree of apnea obdstructive or other wise. There are about three recognized types.
 1. Obstructive apnea: (OSA) simply put, (too simply once you understand it) your airway relaxes or is structurally deformed or damaged and cause hypopnea ( breathing shallow during sleep and apneaa which is cessation of breathing and causes deoxygenation of blood among other issues not important here and most importantly, sleep and rest and REM interruptions. A subtype of OSA:
Usually the least bothersome and most easily treated, is called positional apnea.
 It is a type of obstructive apnea which usually only occurs when a specific posisition which causes an airway to close or restrict because of the relaxation during sleep. Usually when one lays on one's back. This can often be treated by wearing a t-shirt backwards while sleeping after having sewed a tennis ball or golf ball for heavier sleepers into the pocket. You roll onto it, and it disturbs you and then you roll off it. This is pretty much the best apnea scenario you can have. I wish I could use a tennis ball, I could afford a shitpile of those.
  2.Central apne. Not going to bore or scare you with the details of this one. Suffice it to say, its rare and involves the brain simply forgetting to breathe while sleeping. Good news, still treatable with CPAP. It works but for a different reason. But it works.
 4. Complex apnea. Let leave this to math. 1+2=3. It a person who has both. CPAP still works. I luckilly have only severe type one. There are other complications with 2 and 3 that I won't go into but am glad I do not have.
   
   The thing people don't realize is that many many non obese and otherwise healthy people have sleep apnea. Also the reason that weight loss isn't really a viable solutionis that not only the damage that apnea causes, but sometimes the damage or deformation that causes the apnea is unrelated to obesity. Loosing weight doesn't hurt by any means in most cases, but is usually only of palliative worth insofar as apnea is concerned although reducing weight is almost always a good thing for obese people for many reasons.
   So, that's a crash course on apnea. Again I freely admit that much of my inforation may be incomplete, but having apnea and being a cpap user, I have made and am continuing to make much effort to know about my disorder and how to manage it to my advantage.
   I am NOT picking on you RD. I realize that you are trying to be helpful and contribute to a solution for me and the other people that suffer from apnea. And again, your information isn't ENTIRELY incorrect, just oversimplified. I only went on at such length because it is a much more complex issue than even many sufferers realize and I didn't want to come off like an ass by sumarrily disregarding your comments.
    The deep cycle battery issue is a good idea. I may make that part of my bug in preps. I am looking and have found in concept a bug out solution or a mobile solution in a non bug out situation such as camping or whatever. The cpap I use has a low drain option and I am going to explore wether I could power it off a powerpot (if you don't recognize this look throught the last week worth of tsp show notes for a link.) Or power it off a battery I charge from one or a solar cell or hand crank system.
    I hope I didn't come off as know it all or snobbish here, I am a little passionate about this and helping people who have it or think they may have it as they need the most help and suffer the most from the common somewhat correct misconceptions about apnea. Before I got treatment, I thought I would self treat through diet and excercise and man what a joke that was. Let me explain it like this: try loosing a significant ammount of weight when you sleep an equivalent of between 2 to four hours a night and wake up feeling more tired sometimes than you did when you went to bed, and work 10 hours a day, are 100 lbs overweight, smoke, and have to use slower than average transportation.
 I'm not complaining or crying, I just want to give a perspective of how hard sleep apnea can be to deal with without cpap. Just before and since cpap, I have lost 50 lbs. Rarely nap during the day, have much more energy, am less irritable, think more clearly, and get more done during the day and actually require less continuous periods of sleep since when I sleep, its more efficient, I actually get rested. I also dream more frequently and remember them more often. And this is. Awesome, I no longer wake up with a nosebleed or choking on my stomach fluids that I aspirated because of my acid felux (also gone from something I will start another thread about) and my snoring and apnea causing me to sort of throw up into my throat. That sucks and will scare the hell out of you. I remeber one night I woke up unable litterly unable to breath because my airway had collapsed and I was wondering how I was going to tell the 911 operator how the hell to help me when I couldn't talk and was starting to pass out when I finally got my breath back.
  I also don't wake up with the headache that feels like my head is being crushed by steel cables tightened around it.
    This is why I am looking for and finding answers for this issue, so that I never have to go throught this again and to help other people either stop going through it and not to have to go back to it if time get tough. Thanks again for your input RD, I appreciate it.
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Offline sdcharger

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Re: everyone needs sleep
« Reply #22 on: November 18, 2012, 01:55:51 AM »
Hey blademan, sorry to be overly simple in my response - I don't feel picked on at all btw lol.  I find your detailed information helpful as I'm sure others will also.  I had symptoms of sleep apnea and they went away when I stopped drinking and lost weight so that is my perspective - I consider myself lucky!  I will tell you that about 80% people suffering from SA have obstructive sleep apnea and about 70% of those people are overweight.  Sorry but my mind wraps itself around statistics.  Losing weight may or may not help those people with their SA but it will help them be healthy overall regardless.

My brother and father-in-law both use a CPAP so I can sympathize with the issues you are dealing with.  My brother is NOT overweight at all.  He is a very active and fit 40 yo.  My father-in-law is like me and he is moderately obese.  He has lost weight and his snoring and symptoms have improved some.  I realize this is all anecdotal.  While I'm not suffering from SA right now it could rear its ugly head later on for me, what with all the risk factors I have.  Of course so could high blood pressure, or diabetes, etc.  So I'm working hard on my fitness and weight to be healthy again.  Frankly I have come to the conclusion that the number one survival prep is being as fit as one is personally able.

I'm pleased to hear about your progress and I celebrate your health improvements as the effects of sleep apnea can be terrible and debilitating.  I'm willing to bet a bunch of people on the forum don't even know much about SA so this thread is a good topic.

It seems to me the easiest way to power your CPAP at night is going to be some sort of battery back up.  If you need any help coming up with a power system idea, I'd be happy to brainstorm with you.


Offline blademan

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Re: everyone needs sleep
« Reply #23 on: November 18, 2012, 07:41:08 AM »
Sd,
   Hey man, if you haven't, and can afford to do it, get a sleep study done. I know it seems like a pain and you think the apnea symptoms are gone. I had several "spells" during which I felt normal and then it alwyas came back and got worse.  The symptoms weren't really going away, I was getting used to them and not noticing as much.
   And I don't tell every person I meet to go get a sleep study either, just the ones who say things like what you have said or stuff like what I went through.
 Yeah, I'm going to have a solution for the battery back very soon,  so once I get it ready, I am going to either describe it, or post pics here so other people can benefit from this too.
    So again, this has been great. I appreciate all the feedback, and will keep this topic current so others can see and learn fron it.
Man's mind is his basic tool of survival.
Fear is the mind killer.

Two rules for a happy life:
1. Never sling shit at an armed man.
2. Never stand next to someone who is slinging shit at an armed man.

Offline Dainty

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Re: everyone needs sleep
« Reply #24 on: November 22, 2012, 08:43:57 AM »
Of course there are a number of people who are just unlucky and suffer structural problems or premature loss of muscle tone and have less ways to mitigate the problems.

I'd wager this could be resolved with the proper knowledge/treatment/exercises.

Excepting cases of a rare wasting disease, as far as I know loss of muscle tone really only has one cause: lack of use. If the way you're performing normal functions that would otherwise keep a muscle toned is altered so that the muscles surrounding it are continuously compensating and the muscle in question is continuously slacking off, then that would result in loss of tone over time.

The person I know who had their snoring resolved, my NMM specialist advised they take singing lessons. He was able to pinpoint precisely which muscles in the throat were lacking tone, and what type of exercises were required to return them to normal. If this person took singing lessons, they'd have to relearn how to express their vocal chords properly, which would correct the problem. Their normal talking voice was not utilizing their vocal chords properly, so over the decades the muscle tone in some areas decreased until it became problematic.

I have/had major structural problems in my throat, including lymph nodes that were chronically backed up (we're talking years of them constantly remaining huge - after an ultrasound of the area I was referred to a surgeon but decided against it) and Eustachian tubes that didn't drain properly, causing fluid to remain behind my eardrums. There were also times my airways only remained open if my head was in a certain position. The moment I tilted it upwards my airways would close off, but tucking my chin to my chest would immediately open them again. During these times a sip of water could take a full 30 seconds to go down. My doctor explained to me that the deep cervical fascia around my voicebox and esophagus was really tight, and things were being tugged in weird directions.

After several months of treatment that included addressing this issue and feeling slight changes happening in that area, I encountered an unexpected breakthrough. I had been attempting to get myself to eat more slowly, chew better, enjoy it more, and all that good stuff, when in the state of relaxation and focus on what I was doing I casually swallowed in a manner that was totally different from what I was accustomed to. I felt food sliding down the front of my throat and for half a second my brain screamed at me YOU'RE GOING TO CHOKE but then it was done, and my next thought was wait a minute, that felt more like the way things should be.

It turned out that my motion of swallowing was very skewed. This animation shows how normal swallowing is supposed to function. As a bolus of food is passing through the pharynx, it rests a moment on top of the closed epiglottis and into a little niche there before passing onto the esophagus. As near as can be figured out, my swallowing skipped this step entirely. After three swallows of soft food it literally became irritated and felt raw for days, because that area of my throat was so unaccustomed to anything solid touching it whatsoever.

I had a choking incident when I was little that brought me very close to death. I suspect my incorrect swallowing can be dated to the aftermath of that incident. Somewhere, subconsciously, my brain decided that in order to eat without risk of choking I had to tense up all the muscles at the front of my throat and gulp quickly while keeping the muscles locked, so that the one particular area was not touched. This theory is strengthened by my experience of fighting through a week of my brain inexplicitely screaming at me the danger of impending choking even though the proper swallowing movement instinctively felt more natural to me and I knew good and well that I'd be okay.

So what happens when you take a decade or two of incorrect swallowing? Some muscles lose tone, others get too tight, and it's a slow decline into chaos. Again, just like with that person's snoring and their incorrect speaking. Take a few decades of talking wrong, and some things will be flabby while others are too tight.

One other quick example: I know a little girl who, as a toddler, had an extremely severe deep infection in the heel of her foot. Though it has long since healed, to this day, 4 years later, she does not put that heel down when she walks, but rather keeps it high and places her weight on the rest of the foot. Walking this way will inevitably cause her structural problems, if it hasn't already.

In my case, after a few weeks of correct swallowing as much as my throat could handle the lymph nodes in my throat shrunk by about 2/3rds from the size they'd constantly been at for years, one ear drained completely for the first time in about 7 years and a month or two later the other one partially drained. It was dramatic and a bit painful, and the sensation of relief was immense. I still can't tilt my head backwards without airways restricting, but it doesn't cut my air off completely and I haven't had to bring my chin to my chest in order to breathe either.

Based on my experience, anecdotal reports, and talking with my specialist, I have a really hard time believing that structural problems are just luck of the draw. Are they difficult to treat in a manner that actually heals them? Definitely. But I don't think they come about without reason.
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Offline RitaRose1945

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Re: everyone needs sleep
« Reply #25 on: November 22, 2012, 09:51:52 AM »
Problem is that I no longer have insurance and I'm not sure when the repo dude will come knocking on the door. Well I'm going to sit back and let people make more suggestions and bump this a couple time if I need to. I got a couple emails to work on.

I know we're talking power failures, not when money gets tight (and you may have already done this) but see if your power company will put kind of a medical alert tag on your meter.  Ours does them for medically sensitive people that would be heavily impacted if the power were to be shut off, like in your case.  It does nothing for grid failures, but it can buy you more than the usual amount of time to catch up before your power gets shut off when the money just isn't there.  Call them and see what they require - it may just be a note from your doctor.

Offline cbowseriii

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Re: everyone needs sleep
« Reply #26 on: November 22, 2012, 10:50:34 AM »
I had sleep apnea, I found that when I lost weight it went away thank God!  I know there are people out there who have other medical reasons for it. 
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Offline blademan

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Re: everyone needs sleep
« Reply #27 on: November 23, 2012, 02:18:41 AM »
cbowserri,
   I am not trying to poopoo your success or triumph over sleep apnea, I hope you did and wish you well. If you were not cleared by at least one polysomnography, then I would get one. Apnea is a insidious disorder that attacks when you can't tell its attacking and can be hard to detect, I have neen able to determine to the point I am satisfied with the conclusion that I have had some degree of apnea for about a decade, maybe longer. There were periods during that time that I felt fine and that I was sleeping well when I wasn't doing ephedrine to stay awake for work, life, etc. That in itself was a symptom that I wasn't getting the sleep I needed. But there would also be periods that I could tell I wasn't sleeping well and not feeling rested.
   For example, when I finally got my sleep study (the polysomnography I mentioned above), I wasn't feeling particularly tired and hadn't had a memorable apnea incident ( by which I mean one so bad it woke me up to the point that I remembered it, see my above post about some of the ass backwards scary crap this disorder has done to me) in almost a year. I had lost weight and trained myself to sleep in the most favorable position for my apnea. But I was still napping almost daily, and irritable and using energy drinks to get through the day. But I knew that something was still wrong and I needed help. So even if you think you have beat it, get checked man, it could save your life. A short example, and I don't want to scare you and this is probably not the usual scenario, but it does demonstrate why I say the things I say.
   A friend of mine had a friend who had diagnosed apnea and was using a cpap. He went out with his girlfriend and they decided they would go to her place and he would spend the night.
 He didn't have is cpap with him, but he went anyway. She woke up next to a dead man.
  He suffered a ruptured aneurysm and that is a comon complication from apnea. It does require one to first have an aneurysm to rupture, but the point is valid. I also don't know what other things he was doing to contribute to it such as heavy drinking or drugs or "heavy physical exertion" wink wink, but the coroner said he probably wouldn't have ruptured it if he had been using his cpap. This is something I have carried in my mind and that's why I either have my cpap with me or I don't lay down. So if you haven't, go make sure you are clear. Basically, if you have an AHI (apnea hypopnea index) over 10 an hour, you probably need some treatment of some sort. Not trying to harp, but I have learned a lot of stuff about it, and that makes me nervous when someone thinks they had it but it "got better". Wish you well man.
   Rita, thanks for the advice, that's the second time I have seen you give really good advice.
  I think however, here in OK, that may not even work for me in general, and in my situation rifht now, I don't have to worry about electricity as long as I pay my rent and there's not an outage, I have power at home.  My sister had an at home oxygen concentrator and was in arrears to the electric company. They were goint to shut off her power even though she told them she was on oxygen and showed them proof of it and financial hardship. They told her thay they would turn her off and she would need like a huge freakin deposit to resume servie upfront with not installments for the deposit. They told her she would be fine because she could get bottled O2 and didn't require power. She could have paid it out over time but since she had already done that once that year, they wouldn't do it again. They were that upset over $200.
  I'm not a looter or a person with their hand out demanding someone with a gun go take money from others and give it to me. But this was ridiculous. Usory is usory and onerous is onerous and this was both. Her bill got paid, power stayed on, but I lost a little faith in human reason and compassion as I made the wire transfer.
   Anyway Rita, thanks for giving me that info, it may come in handy sometime. 

Dainty,
   Thanks again for the information and thoughts on this issue. I have natural structural abnormalities in my upper airway and throat. I was born with a tongue that required correction so I could talk right. My mouth is too small for all my teeth and dental work is a pain when the back teeth have to be worked on. I know I sound like a chrochety old peroson who is falling apart, but I'm not, I just got a few issues. I'm not even on any medicine right now. My doc want to squirt steroids up my nose everyday, and I may do it at some point but I would rather not be on meds if I can avoid it. My AHIs are averaging less than two per hour per night, an I feel really great.  Hopefully there is a surgery for this that is more effective than what there is now, but for now cpap is the best option for me but I will look into the modalities you suggest, I don't think it could hurt. The worst that could happen is that I ended up using cpap even though I no longer need it.
Man's mind is his basic tool of survival.
Fear is the mind killer.

Two rules for a happy life:
1. Never sling shit at an armed man.
2. Never stand next to someone who is slinging shit at an armed man.

Offline Cedar

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Re: everyone needs sleep
« Reply #28 on: November 23, 2012, 12:04:57 PM »
I know a few people on CPAPs.. ALL of them have sinus issues where they didn't before their CPAP. I just noted this when I would find out someone used one and how they have to keep going back to the doctor for long term chronic sinus infections. Then I started noting that no one I knew without a CPAP had chronic sinus infections. Two to the point of having surgery for the sinus infections. This is not for the breathing issue that they got the CPAP for, this is for the actual infection.

Is anyone else noting this trend? Is it from the lines getting contaminated and not cleaned enough? Something in the tank? No issues?

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Offline lettuceman

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Re: everyone needs sleep
« Reply #29 on: November 23, 2012, 01:45:59 PM »
I have used a CPAP for 11 years.  I do not use a humidifier, just the plain machine, hose and nasal mask with a chin strap.  I have never had a sinus infection during this time.

I just got out of the hospital from a six day stay.  Every new respiratory tech asked if I used a humidifier and was surprised to find I never have.  Perhaps the people you refer to use a humidifier.