T Nation

Sufferers of Sleep Apnea Unite

I couldn’t think of a catchy topic title … so there is that …

I have recently been diagnosed with “severe obstructive sleep apnea”. Without doing the test a second time or taking the results to another doctor for a second opinion, I am evaluating where to go from here.

I am looking for personal experience from people who are treating their sleep apnea with CPAP machines.

  1. Do you use a CPAP machine, and which headset do you use — full mask, nasal, or nasal pillow
  2. Excluding the issues of sleep itself, did you experience any changes with your hormones or libido after beginning CPAP therapy?
  3. Do you have any suggestions for someone with recently diagnosed SOSA?

Resmed airsense 10
Airfit P10 nasal pillow

If you can get away with nasal pillows, then go for those. Not advised for anyone who is a stomach sleeper though. I also like the Airfit p10 because it has an elastic headband, so you can easily put in on and take it off without a bunch of Velcro. Also, get a hose stand. So you are not wrestling with the hose all night.

Also, if you go with nasal pillows, you are going to definitely want to apply a light coat of lanolin oil around your nose, like gasket grease, or you will get blisters and chafing really bad.

No changes with hormones. I have moderate sleep apnea when sleeping on my back, and mild when sleeping on side. I am much less irritable and cranky during the day since starting CPAP. But I haven’t noticed many other benefits.

Make sure to get an auto cpap, and make sure it has a computer system and tracks sleep data that you can download onto an SD card.

How did you go about getting tested? At home test or in lab sleep study?

I had both. The at home test gave me a negative, but my wife told me every day that I would stop breathing in my sleep at night. Apparently the at home tests are worthless, so I went for a full sleep study and they diagnosed me.

The full sleep study sucks. They glue 10-20 wires to your head and body. Then have a video camera pointing at you over the bed. And some guy is monitoring you in another room all night. That made me super anxious. They wouldn’t let me take my regular supplements for sleep either.

There was one point where a wire came off, and the guy ran into my room with night vision goggles on. Scared the shit out of me.

You might have a better clinic near you. There aren’t any well reviewed ones where I live.

Interesting. Glad I asked. I will not go the at home study route then.

Sounds like when I was addicted to Afrin. Worst sleep ever.

Anyways, hope you get it figured out @traveling-man

There are definitely other alternatives to CPAP. I had balloon sinuplasty and some other procedures to address my apnea. I still snore some but definitely not having apnea.

Nasal pillow, all the way. It’s just far less burdensome and much cleaner. +1 on the “grease” idea – I use Aquafor. A lot of people can’t use the pillow – I am blessed with a proper Semitic nose and not one of those useless goyishe ones – so I get plenty of air with the pillow. (In seriousness, they don’t work as often for people with small noses.)

Not sure about hormones, but just being less groggy makes everything better.

Yes, don’t drink booze. I avoid it as best I can, but business sadly requires it – just no way around it. Apnea greatly improves after just a couple of days.

I also travel a lot (including to Wuhan about 3 months before the outbreak — another thread – no, not dead). Invest in a travel CPAP if that is part of your life. And again, a nasal pilllow is far more manageable.

There is also a product called “mouth tape” that is about a 40% solution in a pinch when traveling or if you just can’t take the CPAP.

So far, I can’t agree with the previous “anti-home study” statement. I did a home study. A device that looked like a HUGE watch was shipped to be, with a lead to attach to the chest and a finger cup. My phone was required to stay connected via bluetooth all night.

It measured every time I changed position; the amount of time in each position; the VOLUME of my snoring, and lots of other data I don’t fully understand yet. I can’t speak badly about home testing.

I used isleephst.

I would have to come in multiple nights in a row before I got to the point of exhaustion that I could fall asleep in those conditions.


I use the nasal pillows and I turn and flop all over trying to get my body comfortable and they still work. I tested at both the clinic and at home and home is much more comfortable. I tested at 91 apneas per hour, so I stopped breathing every 30 seconds or so. My oxgyen saturation got below 70% (my paramedic buddy said he would have taken me to the ER).

As far as libido I didn’t notice any changes other than I was able to stay awake long enough to get some. Most of the changes are subtle, like you don’t wake up and want to eat an elephant anymore, or you aren’t getting up and pissing every 20 minutes (apparently your body starts sending wacky signals to get you to get up and recover your O2 levels).

My suggestion would be trying the least obstructive mask they have (I like the pillows) and putting that sucker on and not taking it off until morning. Do that until you are use to it. I don’t snore any longer and my wife loves that. At our draft weekend my friends call me bane, but that’s the worst side effect so far.

Here’s something odd…I have been told many times that i am the absolute worst snorer some people have ever heard. My brother told me i’m the worst in my family and i’ve heard them snore so it must be bad. I asked this brother if it sounded like apnea and he said he didn’t hear me stop breathing or anything.

I rare;y take naps. Like maybe one Sunday afternoon every few weeks, so I don’t seem to be tired and i take like 30 minutes to fall asleep most nights.

I’m sure what my point is just that as a 240lb 47 year-old man that snores like boulders in a tin can i should have it but i guess i don’t?

Basic update on my main journal …