Monday, July 14, 2008

Sleep Disordered, Part 5

It's now been six months since I started using the Resmed "VPAP Adapt SV" breathing machine as a remedy for my problems with complex sleep apnea. Unfortunately, notwithstanding how well the machine has worked for my sleep apnea, I'm every bit as dependent on sleep meds now as I was in January, as none of the attempts I've made to kick them has borne any fruit. (Right now, I'm taking Ambien CR, which I don't really like, in combination with an over-the-counter med -- either generic Unisom or generic "Simply Sleep" [which is really just benadryl, or Tylenol-PM without the Tylenol]. In my opinion, Lunesta is the best med -- most effective, fewest side effects -- on the market, but, not yet having a generic equivalent, it's frickin' expensive!) My sleep doctor wants me to go back soon for another sleep study with the VPAP machine, and he's told me that he'll get me on a longer, more-gradual med-weaning regimen, which he says is the only way to go about shedding my kind of dependency. I'm not terribly enthusiastic/optimistic about either doing another sleep study or my ability to get off the meds finally, but my biggest hope for longevity pretty clearly hinges on my prospects of re-learning to sleep naturally and restfully. I seem to be suffering from quite a bit of chemically induced depression or even bipolarity, not a positive development.