01 August, 2009

I Snore, Therefore I Am

She thought it was funny. But it made her worry a little too. The way I'd just stop breathing while I was lying there asleep next to her. Naturally, I was unaware I was doing it, but was pleased I'd come up with something endearing without having to contrive it. A few years later, when I met up with TLOML, she remarked on it too. The condition is called sleep apnoea.

And it's expanded since then. Not only do I stop breathing periodically when asleep, I snore. TLOML reckons she gets not just the buzz-saw but the adjacent timber yard complete with trucks grinding up and down through the gears as they go in and out. I was determined to do something about it. And that something was to deny it completely and counter-accuse her of providing the odd somnolent symphony of industrial music herself. Not an ideal solution.
So just a couple of months ago, I asked a dental technician if he could make one of those special mouthguards up for me. No, I'd have to see my GP. It was a medical issue. The GP referred me to the Sleep Disorder Clinic at Royal Melbourne Hospital. The honest information I gave on the questionnaire suggested to the specialist there that it wasn't a big problem.
And TLOML had provided reassurance by reminding me that she was a pretty light sleeper anyway and maybe my snoring wasn't really all that bad. Not a deal-breaker, anyway. But she'd still prefer that it stopped, though.
The doctor told me the main cause of sleep apnoea was obesity. Not in my case. For me, it's because I have a funny-shaped palate-throat cavity combination. So next week, I'm taking home a machine to monitor what goes on when I sleep.
The most likely outcome is I'll need to go off to the dentist and fork out a grand for a clear plastic jaw clamp that'll make me look a bit like that big bloke who turned up in a few of the Roger Moore James Bond movies.
If I can be arsed, I'll record and post a little night music for the purpose of verification.

12 comments:

Andrew said...

A friend uses something, a guard or something to help with sleep apnoea. He said he sleeps so much and better and feels wide awake during the day, unlike in the past.

Lad Litter said...

Andrew:
Yes, the guard provides for a better oxygen supply so sleep is more refreshing. I rarely wake up without feeling a bit fuzzy-headed so it might be a win-win situation.

The Blakkat said...

With the amount of bed hopping i've done recent months (all innocent - i just have an assortment of male friends who take me in when i'm homeless), I am painfully aware of and can reassure you on this point - you are not alone, LL. Men snore (and so does one sister-in-law). They snore long and they snore loud. I do hope for TLOYL's sake that this contraption works for you. Let us know how it goes, as I have plently of people to whom I could recommend this therapy.

The Man at the Pub said...

Could be worse. You could look like Roger Moore. At least with that machine strapped to your face you could do some good Star Wars impersonations.

I wish I had sleep apnoea, without the whole stopping breathing thing. That sounds kind of scary. I do snore though. Is that the same thing?

Lad Litter said...

Blakkat:
It's a universal joke against men, isn't it? I'll let you know how I get on. Domestic harmony here we come!

PubMan:
My understanding is that snoring is one of the by-products of sleep apnoea. But you can let go the occasional stream of Zs without having it.

Kath Lockett said...

Love Chunks was a snorer and also looking at sleeping in that contraption but saw better of it and had an operation to remove what I can only describe as those 'fleshy curtains' on the side of his throat.

Made a huge difference. I no longer lie awake, simultaneously hating him and wondering how such a softly-spoken man can do a perfect imitation of enraged elephant stuck in a swamp that caused the curtains of our room to move towards him as he breathed in.

Kath Lockett said...

Love Chunks was a snorer and also looking at sleeping in that contraption but saw better of it and had an operation to remove what I can only describe as those 'fleshy curtains' on the side of his throat.

Made a huge difference. I no longer lie awake, simultaneously hating him and wondering how such a softly-spoken man can do a perfect imitation of enraged elephant stuck in a swamp that caused the curtains of our room to move towards him as he breathed in.

Lad Litter said...

KL:
Okay, so there's a surgical option too? They didn't mention that at the RMH Sleep Disorder Clinic. I had my tonsils out when I was about 2 so there might not be much left in the way of curtains. Glad there was a happy ending in your case.

Robert said...

I think weight and alcohol are the most common factors to snoring. That said, often snoring is a sign of other underlying sleep disorders. While a custom mouthpiece can be created for you, many of the smaller over the counter devices, such as the SnoreMate work on less severe cases of sleep apnoea and snoring.

I've heard that surgery is sometimes recommended but I don't know if I'd ever be willing to go quite that far!

Lad Litter said...

Robert:
Thanks for visiting. The next post will describe how I hardly snored at all while the monitoring equiment was on. But have been the human buzz saw ever since!

Admin said...

I also have the same problem with my sleep. I don't no how to stop snore when we had slept. Could you give me suggestion about this problem? Sometimes, the snore sounds is very disgusting my wife. it is like a song without notation

Stephanie Steph said...

The anti snoring mouthpiece is highly recommended to individuals who REALLY want to stop snoring almost INSTANTLY.anti snoring aidss