1. What symptoms or medical issues did you have that led to the sleep test?
I’ve always been a snorer and I realized that I couldn’t sleep on my back without obstructing. My spouse witnessed that I had obstructions in the early morning. I work long hours and stay up late and I just thought it was time to look at how I can get a better rest. There had to be more to starting my day fresh than reaching for a coffee. I’m 47 years old and I want to take control of my health as well as possible for the next part of my life too.
2. Did your Doctor suggest the sleep test to check for sleep apnea?
No, it was me who asked to be tested.
3. How did you feel about the diagnosis of sleep apnea?
Several years ago I had another diagnosis that is long term and manageable, but it is for a lifetime. I realized then that a diagnosis is better than not having one and getting specialized treatment for anything is better than struggling without a sense of what is happening. So I was actually very happy to have a diagnosis so I could get to the treatment part.
4. Prior to treatment, how did you feel about the idea of wearing a CPAP machine to treat sleep apnea?
I didn't mind. I always thought CPAP was a very private therapy. I always said that the fewer people I invited into my bedroom, the fewer people actually had to know I was on CPAP!:)
5. Describe your experience of the treatment appointment at Provincial Sleep Group.
(The appointment where you got your CPAP machine) It was exactly as described. The information was just right at every step. Not too much - to the point, helpful and unobtrusive.
6. How did you find the follow-up care provided by your sleep clinician?
So far, I’m liking it. It’s similar to the kind of positive experiences I have in other areas where I feel like a customer being taken care of properly without it being too much contact. Very professional.
7. Describe some changes you have noticed since being on CPAP therapy.
I wake up earlier, less desire to sleep in, no more hitting snooze. I drink far less coffee in the day - usually, I drink less than half a cup before I go to work and rarely drink more than one more in the day. I’m also drinking more water to keep hydrated in the day. I definitely notice I’m more energetic, focused and productive - even though I know I was already performing at a pretty hectic pace before!
8. How do you feel now about wearing a CPAP machine for treatment of sleep apnea?
9. What impact has treating your sleep apnea had on your life? Keep in mind lifestyle, physical changes, physiological changes, relationship changes, etc.
Keep in mind lifestyle, physical changes, physiological changes, relationship changes, etc. Best relationship change - my spouse can sleep against me now that I can lay on my back and we can fall asleep better together. Overall, my sleep habits are better and I do feel like I’m making the transition from a night owl to an early riser and I’m ok with that.
10. What impact has treating your sleep apnea had on your spouse or partner?
She doesn’t have to worry about me stopping breathing. Knowing I’m taking care of myself gives her peace of mind that I’m doing one more good thing for us as a family too.
11. What reasons would you give when recommending Provincial Sleep Group to a friend or family member?
The staff are professional and efficient. They’re very open about the test results and explain everything well.
12. What advice do you have for someone who is struggling with the idea of using CPAP?
Just get the test. There are far worse tests with fewer benefits in life. Circle the calendar date three months from the first night and I’ll bet you’ll see a pretty amazing change in your life - and it all happens overnight, literally and figuratively!
13. Please provide any additional information that you feel important to reflect your journey of diagnosis and treatment of sleep apnea.
The two-night sleep test was a little harder than I thought it would be, but it sure made the feeling of starting on therapy seem easy. When I started, I realized how many other people I knew were also on therapy - men, women, couples. When I travel, I can’t believe how many CPAP machines there are when the plane boards now compared to 5 years ago!