Started November 20, 2021

An ongoing CPAP usage diary?

So, maybe I’ll make this a sticky post. Maybe it won’t prove necessary. Because maybe there won’t be much to say except I put it on each night and it helps me sleep and end of story.

But, I do have a few thoughts so far, so let’s do it.

I have a feature all about CPAP machine set-up (with unboxing) completed already.

So, I got the CPAP on November 18, 2021. And today’s November 20. So, I’ve used it for two nights so far. And, it tells you in the morning—on the little monitor—if the mask fit your face properly and how long you used it for. Both nights I used it for about six hours. Ideally I’d be sleeping a few more hours, but…whatever.

CPAP and morning urination ease

So, I don’t believe it’s my imagination! Normally, in the morning, I have difficulty urinating. And, as the day goes on, urination gets easier. I have an enlarged prostrate gland. So, I’m on Tamsulosin to treat that. I’ve probably been taking Tamsulosin  for going on two years now. I’m not sure. That doesn’t really matter.

What’s interesting as I noticed the past two morning—the first two nights I used the CPAP—well, the first two morning I had no difficulty urinating. This is very unusual for me. And, I’m not much for coincidence. This is something, of course, I’ll be monitoring as time goes on and I have more data—so to speak—to continue.

[By the way, as a tangent, painful urination is called dysuria. But, what’s the term for difficulty urinating? …no pain, per se, but just difficulty urinating…why do I care? I don’t know…polyuria, by the way, is when you pee a lot…there’s an actually abnormally large volume of urine you output]

I did google search a bit of course about CPAP and morning urination and just CPAP and urination period

So, there is a bunch of information out there about…I didn’t see so much about CPAP and morning urination ease…but, there seems to be a bunch about sleep apnea and nocturia (nighttime urination).

Sleep apnea and nocturia

For starters, let’s consider sleep apnea and nocturia. It would appear nocturia is extremely common in those screwed-up by sleep apnea.

And, that just sort of makes sense to me.

Nocturia (nighttime urination) is so prevalent in sleep apnea patients it has become a screening tool as significant as snoring. A research study showed that over 84% of patients with sleep apnea reported frequent nighttime urination while 82% acknowledged snoring. “Oxygen decreases, carbon dioxide increases, the blood become more acidic, the heart rate drops and blood vessels in the lung constrict,” says Umlauf. “The body is alerted that something is very wrong. The sleeper must wake enough to reopen the airway. By this time, the heart is racing and experiences a false signal of fluid overload. The heart excretes a hormone-like protein that tells the body to get rid of sodium and water, resulting in

So, that information is damn interesting. And, it’s particularly interesting—and disturbing!—to see the actual biology of sleep apnea. To think about how the heart rate is increasing and hormone release is changing (among other things)…and, although that’s interesting, it’s not quite what my post started out about…and, that’s okay! Let’s just say I’m okay with tangents. The tangents are relevant.

Why do I pee less with CPAP?

It would appear that there are a bunch of searches for: Why do I pee less with CPAP? And, that relates to the quotation above that explains part of the physiological changes that kick in with the apneas. As a side note, isn’t it interesting that the human body has a hormone that instructs it to get rid of sodium and water? I think that particular hormone is called aldosterone??

Quick overview of sleep apnea caused urinary problems and other problems

Patients with sleep apnea suffer from hypoxia during sleep, resulting in metabolic dysfunction of various organ specific symptoms. Obstructive sleep apnea syndrome results in critical psychological symptoms, which include depression and suicidal tendencies. Sleep apnea syndrome carries significant morbidity and mortality that is frequently ignored by healthcare providers. A high percentage of sleep apnea patients suffer from genitourinary symptoms, such as frequency, nocturia, erectile dysfunction, enuresis, and overactive bladder. Current concepts of sleep apnea, as related to urological health issues, are discussed to facilitate treatment options of sleep apnea syndrome. Current literature is reviewed related to genitourinary symptoms. Source

You know, the more I learn about this sleep apnea stuff the more disturbed I feel.

Snoring less

I’m going to presume that I’m snoring less. I used to snore like a madman. I’m going to presume that the CPAP mask has cut back on that.

Definitely a connection between sleep apnea and peeing problems

So, there’s definitely a connection between sleep apnea and—to put it colloquially—peeing problems. There ain’t no doubt about that! But, I’m interested in something more specific. Does the CPAP somehow make morning urination flow better? I think the search that I should do next should go something like this:

easier to pee in night than morning?

That leads to this interesting bit:

Why is it more difficult to urinate at night?
As we age, the body produces less of the antidiuretic hormone that helps us retain fluid. This results in increased urine production, especially at night. Muscles in the bladder can also become weak over time, making it more difficult to hold urine in the bladder. Source
So, we’ve already seen that the apneas alter hormones telling the body to get rid of sodium and water.
Okay, so this will be continued. I didn’t think I was going to solve the world’s problems here. Just some exploratory stuff to try and understand what’s happening with my body.
November 21, 2021

3rd night with CPAP

So, the CPAP tells you how long you slept for…and, it also tells you if the mask was fitting your face properly. This morning I saw that I slept for about 6.5 hours. That’s pretty good for me! I know I woke-up after being asleep for a couple hours. I was surprised by how early it was. I went back to sleep I think. I don’t think that I made any bathroom urination trips during the night…

Sometimes it can be hard to remember because you’re half/asleep. But, I don’t think so…

CPAP and morning urination cont.

Yes, it’s not my imagination, and I’m still thinking about this. It’s definitely easier to urinate in the morning since I started CPAP.

Morning urination difficulties – reading about cancer

There is VERY VERY LITTLE information available online about difficulty urinating in the morning. And…why then does the urine flow get stronger during the day and evening? I was reading about prostate cancer and everything…and, I can’t find many answers. I’ll have to talk to a urologist, I believe to answer these questions.

I’m not self-diagnosing myself with prostate cancer. We all know that Google searches don’t give us a medical degree. I’m just saying that out of curiosity I was reading about prostate cancer to see if a symptom was difficulty urinating in the morning. It wasn’t a symptom. The symptoms, though, do include difficulty urinating generally. The problem with self-diagnosis is that BPH—prostate naturally enlarging as you get older—is also responsible for causing similar symptoms. I’m presently taking Tamsulosin for the BPH, and the Tamsulosin is doing  a pretty good job in making my urination a lot more normal.

November 22, 2021

4th Night with Cpap

So, I’m obviously not going to record a CPAP diary forever…but, since I’m just getting started with it I’m doing this.

Last night I realized something obvious that I should have realized the first night I used it. I realized something that made me say, “Gee, you’re a real idiot!” I realized that I was pulling the mask down too low! For whatever reason, I thought that the mask’s bottom should be at the very bottom of my chin.

This would be the search: how far down do you pull a cpap mask over your chin

Here’s another search while I’m at it: How snug should CPAP mask be? : I’ll get to this one aspect later

Another thing on my mind that I’ll get to later is this one: Does CPAP use make daytime sinusitis congestion worse? : It sort of seems like it..

About face size and CPAP mask pull-down level

So, everyone has a different-sized face, of course…the summary was that I finally figured out the thing was excessively pinching my nose at the top. For whatever reason, my brain automatically had seized the idea that the bottom of the mask must be completely beneath the chin. Thus, my nose was pinched. I’m an idiot, though. That’s the thing…

What’s important…the common-sense fundamental thing is that the mask has a good seal so that it forces the air through your mouth rather than having the air escape through the side or bottom. That’s just common sense.

5th CPAP night – three things on my mind: peeing, stuffy nose, mask fit…

Nov. 23, 2021

So, woke up after my 5th night using the CPAP machine. I guess I’m thinking about 3 CPAP related questions/things/observations this morning. For starters, yes: it is helping me sleep better! THANK YOU GOD!

1. I do believe that I’m urinating better in the morning. Much better. Much stronger flow of urine in the morning. This is most certainly not my imagination.

No start-and-stop. I’m peeing, Jerry! I’m really peeing!

Generally, I’m not much for coincidence. Yes, I understand the whole correlation-is-not-blah-blah-blah…but, still, I generally am not much for coincidence as a foundational sort of disposition of mine.

2. Increased general nose stuffiness. This one’s hard to say. But, it almost feels like since I’ve been using the CPAP my general nose stuffiness/sinusitis crappy condition that causes me so much grief…it almost seems like it’s worse since I started using CPAP. We’re only five days into this, though. Pee better, breathe worse…CPAP!

3. Mask fit: yes, I’m an idiot. Fitting this mask on your face: why does my brain want to make it into some complex thing. The concept is simple. You want a snug fit. And, you don’t want it pulled too low where it’s pinching the hell out of your nose. I mean, this isn’t complicated, man!

CPAP face mask

A shot of the CPAP face mask. The triangular part above, as you can guess, is the part that’s by your nose.

So, like an idiot—for whatever reason—I was proceeding like the bottom of the CPAP mask must extend under my chin and thus I was pinching the bloody hell out of my nose. Why did it take me more than 10 seconds to realize that the CPAP mask bottom should just sort of nestle into that indented space above the chin…

…the thing that matters is simply that the mask fits snug and air isn’t escaping through the sides. Nobody’s checking for mask placement vis a vis the bottom of your chin. I’m an idiot, truly…why do I have a hard time figuring out the most simple things?

6th Night more about stuffy nose –> 7 hours, 41 minutes sleep time!

Last night I actually slept for 7 hours and 41 minutes, and that is absolutely fucking amazing! I never sleep for that long. I’m usually thankful to get 6 hours. And, I think I woke up once and went to the bathroom.  I don’t quite remember, but it’s sort of miraculous, and it’s definitely thanks to the CPAP machine that I got the 7:41.

Do I feel rested today?

So, I woke up with the stuffy nose and I was searching around about CPAP and nasal congestion and found some info suggesting that…eh, just see this quotation below from this source:

 Nasal Congestion

One of the most common side effects associated with CPAP therapy is congestion or irritation of the nasal passages. This can include the feelings of stuffy nose, runny nose, a burning sensation, or nosebleeds.

Nasal congestion is caused by the flow of dry, pressurized air through the sinuses, and can be particularly common for those with frequent sinus infections.

7th Night –> 8 Hours 8 Minutes sleep time!!!

November 25, 2021 – Thanksgiving

As you can see in the heading, last night I got in 8 hours and 8 minutes of sleep time…and, that is just absolutely fucking unheard of for me! This CPAP … IT WORKS, MAN!

So, I understand I’m getting a little rowdy with all the caps and the f-word and exclamations…but, I mean this truly is amazing…I don’t know the last time that I slept for an eight hour block…well, maybe after back surgery when I was all drugged-out and everything…maybe then…but, besides that…

…when was the last time I slept for eight hours? I woke up once, and it wasn’t even because of the need to urinate…it was because my mouth was very dry…since I was up, I did urinate for good measure…but, my mouth gets very dry from using the CPAP…it’s also responsible, I think, for giving me a couple red bumps on my nose (pimples???)…but, I’m not tripping about that…

I’m rejoicing that I slept for over eight hours!

11th CPAP night

Novemeber 29, 2021

There’s no doubt that this CPAP is improving my sleeping and, in turn, waking life. I think it’s making me break-out a bit on my nose, which is probably odd at my age. But, it all makes sense because the mask is over my nose and there’s the water in the CPAP…so, the moisture and…just add up the pieces and it doesn’t seem too surprising that the nose could get irritated and some inflammatory response…

…I mean, it’s kind of a vanity thing, but at my age, I would prefer to not break-out on my nose…but, hey… I am sleeping better!

This morning something odd happened…the machine indicated that the seal wasn’t good during my sleep. I thought that was strange.

I also think the CPAP mask is a little small. I need to call and maybe get a bigger one.

December 13, 2021

Things are going great with the CPAP usage which may be why I haven’t updated this a whole lot. I think things get updated more when they’re going wrong. You can quote that line if you like.

The only thing was I felt like the medium-sized mask was a bit too snug: especially like on the top part bridge of my nose…so, yesterday my size LARGE mask came in the mail, and I used it last night…and, yes indeed, it was more comfortable.

So, the summary is that I am most certainly sleeping much better now that I’m using CPAP.

And, that shouldn’t be too surprising. The desire to sleep better is why you go through all the effort to get the machine. The promise is that it will cut down on the apneas. It has definitely done that.

Additionally, there’s now at least a 50% chance that I sleep through the night without having to get up and go to pee. That’s a big improvement. It used to be more like a 5% chance…and, I’ll take it!

Looks like I’ll be using this from here on out.

February 7, 2022

So, I got the large mask and ended up using it…I’m still using it actually…but, when I was at my doctor’s appointment, he told me that it was leaking quite a bit. At the same time, he said I was only having 2 or 3 apneas an hour. Before my CPAP, it was around 30 apneas an hour.

As a side note: how intensely crazy is it to think that I was actually STOPPING BREATHING 30 times an hour while asleep. The very thought of that is just terribly disturbing.

So, anyway…I’ve subsequently gotten some more CPAP face masks. I now have 2 that are medium and 2 that are large. They’re two different brands of masks.

And, I’m actually back to using size large for the same reason I originally started using size large. Size medium simply pinched my nose to an uncomfortable extent.

I figure like this: Who really cares if it’s leaking or not…as long as it’s working! And, it is working because they had prior told me that the CPAP doesn’t entirely eliminate all apneas…that it reduces them. And, even with the leakage, as earlier mentioned, the apneas have been dramatically reduced!

Let me add: I feel so much better these days! It’s no longer unusual for me to get 7.5 hours of sleep. And, on a few occassions: 8.5 hours of sleep. I can’t communicate how fucking amazing that is for me! I didn’t think that would ever be the case again.

Sometimes it’s a little weird when I think about how I’ll be strapping this mask to my face for the rest of my life. But, it’s really not a big deal. And, the benefits are spectacular. Thank you God for this CPAP machine!

August 1, 2022

For some reason, the past months my sleep has gotten worse. I don’t know why!

On several occasions, I woke up with the mask off. Like, I took it off during my sleep for some reason. I don’t know why. And, I’m sleeping—on average—about 4 hours and then I’m like fully awake.

I don’t know why.

For a while there, it seemed like my sleeping had really improved a lot with CPAP usage. That no longer seems to be the case.

I don’t know what happened. I don’t know why changed.

But, I hope that I can go back to sometimes getting seven hours of sleep like what it mentions in the previous update.

I think that sleep is one of the main pillars of good health, and I’m not going to give up getting this sorted out.

The CPAP—for whatever reason—does seem like it’s gotten more uncomfortable to use. Again, I don’t know why.

Don’t know what’s going on…

I hope this all kind of sorts itself out.