Managing After a Bad Night’s Sleep
I feel so lucky to have received my sleep apnea diagnosis and prescribed my CPAP machine at such a young age. I was in my early teens and already feeling that I couldn’t make it through a 2-hour class in college without nodding off! It did not feel right, and I knew that something had to be done.
An occasional bad night even on CPAP therapy
After I started using my machine, I felt a world of difference. I could stay awake through all my classes, and I was only hindered by fatigue and not complete drowsiness where my eyes were closing by themselves.
However, I still had those nights where I slept terribly as if it was pre-CPAP time. Therefore, I had to figure out a way to manage this and still make it through my day-to-day activities and tasks.
I was never a huge napper growing up
I mean, I’m sure as a little kid I was, but not during middle school or high school. Usually, I just powered through the day and then went to bed early, ready for the next day.
Or somehow, I was okay with just 3 to 4 hours of sleep. Gosh, I feel incredibly old as I type that out because that does not go too smoothly anymore!
But back then, when I was not sleeping well, and I had big things to do during the days, I rediscovered power naps. I had the most success with these naps if I used my CPAP, of course. But, I really started to notice a difference even if I laid down and napped for 15 to 20 minutes. It completely revitalized my energy and helped me continue on with the day.
Adding power naps into my daily routine
I started to incorporate the power naps into my daily schedule. On the very sleepless nights, I had to schedule in 2 or so power naps in order to make it through without dozing off in non-preferred spaces. Sleep is already hard to come by in college and then add the OSA diagnosis.
So, these mini snoozes helped get me through my days during my college years. Even after college and into the real world, I continue with these power naps whenever I feel extremely tired and fatigued throughout the day.
Of course, each power nap is much more successful for me when I use my CPAP. However, I would be lying if I said I use it every time. But I do try to use it each time because that is what works best for me.
Staying active helps me fight fatigue
I also find that when I am stationary throughout the day, it only exacerbates the fatigue and drowsiness. Therefore, I have to find ways to keep moving and stay active during the day. Because once I sit down, all bets are off.
I go straight into tired mode, and it is difficult to regain my energy. This will continue unless I take a nice power nap.
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Do you miss out on certain experiences in life because of your sleep apnea?