Four years ago, when Nydia Glander was 72 and traveling in Spain with Don, her husband of 52 years, a health scare convinced her to visit her doctor upon their return to Holden Beach, North Carolina.
A stress test led to a sleep test, which showed Nydia had sleep apnea with over 400 apneas (breathing cessation/ gasping for air episodes) in a 5-hour period – not a restful night! These episodes may not awaken the person, but they do prevent deep REM sleep that’s so vital.
Like Nydia, most of the estimated 20 million Americans with sleep apnea don’t know they have it. They may be in bed for 8 hours each night, but are puzzled by chronic fatigue and other health issues brought on by lack of sleep. Snoring is the most visible (audible!) symptom.
“My snoring was so bad, it drove Don to sleep in another room,” say Nydia, a Cuban native. The couple who met in high school in Indiana and married while in college, lived in several states due to Don’s work. Nydia used her native Spanish to work as a translator for a big pharmaceutical maker, and since retiring, works as a translator for her County Health Dept., translating materials for Hispanic residents in the Myrtle Beach area.
“My mother was a snorer and I’m sure she had sleep apnea, though it wasn’t a named malady yet,” she says. “I’m sure many of my relatives have it, and the few who were tested and tried using CPAP gave up too soon. So when I was diagnosed, I promised Don and myself that I would succeed and beat this fatigue. It’s tricky getting used to the mask, and I had to convert from a stomach sleeper to a back sleeper,” Nydia smiles. “But I put my mind to it.”
There are numerous benefits to getting that all-important deep sleep again, says Nydia. “I’m dreaming again. I missed that. I have the energy of a 40 or 50 year-old -- Don wishes I didn’t! I can keep up with my two grandchildren. We travel. I’m active in our church, collect food and clothes for the needy, and volunteered for Habitat for Humanity. I love my weekly classes in pilates, yoga and Zumba, and we’re active volunteers with the local turtle patrol.”
CPAP hasn’t slowed Nydia down. “I haven’t missed a night in the four years since I got my device. Even when we travel in the U.S. or overseas, I take my CPAP with me. I’m probably National Sleep Therapy’s best representative in all of North Carolina. Whenever the topic of a bad night’s sleep comes up, I sing the praises of my CPAP and National Sleep.”
“It’s gone so well, I’m back to being a stomach sleeper. But best of all, Don has moved back into our bedroom,” Nydia winks.
By Stanley Hurwitz / firstname.lastname@example.org
National Sleep Therapy sponsors a free ‘CPAP Talk Live!’ virtual support session on the first Wednesday of each month from 7 – 8 pm (ET). It is open to all, including CPAP users, people who have sleep issues, health care professionals, and anyone else interested in the topic. For more information: 888.867.8840, email@example.com or cpaptalklive.com Company website: www.nstherapy.com. Also see: https://www.facebook.com/nstherapy.
Photo Note: Nydia loves her dogs: “The little dog is Mia....because our brains were ‘missing in action’ when we bought her in Miami. She sleeps in her dog bed and takes turns in our bed also. Ellie does not care where she sleeps as long as she is near her masters. When I started using the face mask, Mia used to bark at me every night!” That’s husband Don holding Ellie.