Bluevegas wrote:I never had problems falling asleep and staying asleep before beginning to use the cpap machine. My life would be pretty nice if I didn't have this stupid sleep apnea. :p Now I lay awake for hours... I can't get comfortable on my side, and I'm not used to falling asleep on my back. I've tried melatonin, and I've actually had to use NyQuil for illness the last couple of nights. No help. Sleepy Time tea doesn't help either. My room is a good temperature, it's dark and quiet and I've banished the cat :( to the computer room at night for the time being. I get all cozy in pillows and blankets because I like to feel secure when I sleep. What has worked for people here when you've been learning to use this machine?
A couple of nights I have drifted off only to wake up an hour later, look at the clock and take the mask off. I vaguely remember doing this but I'm not thinking enough to force myself to NOT do it. It is hugely disappointing to realize the next morning that I only had the mask on for a short period of time. I feel like the first time I wake up to my alarm, or even 2 or more hours later, that it is going to feel better than Christmas morning when I was a kid! I will be so ecstatic at just having accomplished that much! How do I get there though?
I think the first step is to spend some quality time with the machine during the day. Watch TV, read books, work at the computer or whatever. With your conscious mind involved you will become better acclimated and so very likely have an easier time of it at night. It would also be good to practice being very relaxed without the CPAP, and then put on the CPAP and practice breathing the same amount of air as when very relaxed. CPAP tends to make us breath more air since inspiration is easier so it is good to learn to compensate for this.
I like to fall asleep listening to classical music or scripture. If I need to use an alarm to wake up I use very flat headphones, if not I use noise isolating ear buds which also keep neighborhood noise from disturbing my sleep.
I also like to sleep with a black beanie stretched over my eyes and actually stuffed into my CPAP straps in front. Room light changes do not bother me and the lack of light in my eyes and on my forehead help me to get to sleep.
Sometimes I do a few minutes on my treadmill just before bed. This makes for a lot of wonderful warm muscles which keep my core warm and help me fall asleep. On the nights that I do not do this I use my "always warm" hands to warm up my backside. I have found over the years that making your backside, stomach, and chest a bit warmer will often result in a very easy track to get to sleep. Those without warm hands I suppose could use the classic warm water bottles or such to get the parts warm without overheating them once sleep is started (I do not think heating pads are a good idea, for that matter in the olden days they used to take a pretty much hot metal pan an warm up parts of he bed before use - same idea I suppose).
May you find good sleep!