When Henna Pikkujämsä, 36, from Turku, was waiting for her pit in 2015, she was endlessly tired.
Henna fell asleep at least four times during the day, sometimes while reading a book.
Especially in public places, falling asleep was embarrassing.
The nights were restless.
Henna often woke up to drink or go to the bathroom.
He also suffered from restless legs.
- I drove the car as little as possible because I was afraid I would fall asleep at the wheel, Henna reminds Me Women.
Then Henna’s husband told his wife he was snoring at night, decorating hard.
In addition, the man had noticed that Henna often had shortness of breath at night.
What if the child would suffer from oxygen supply to the uterus?
A lot of bows were attached to me.
At her husband’s urging, Henna went to a private doctor’s office in hopes of quick help.
There he underwent a basic check-up and Henna had to answer questions about sleep.
The doctor suspected sleep apnea and made a referral to Turku University Central Hospital.
There he underwent an extensive sleep examination over nocturnal polysomnography.
Henna stayed in the hospital for the night.
- I had a lot of bugs attached to me.
It was pretty exciting and uncomfortable, Henna says.
Henna sleep was measured overnight using an electroencephalogram (EEG) device, an EOG device that monitors eye movements, and an EMG device that monitors muscle tension in the mandibular muscles.
In the morning, the doctor came into the room and told Henna that he had had sixty breath breaks per hour during the night, one per minute.
The diagnosis was severe sleep apnea.
Get used to the device in a week
At least 300,000 Finns suffer from sleep apnea.
Although the disease is common, many sufferers do not know they are ill.
The main symptom of the disease, shortness of breath, occurs only during sleep.
Due to shortness of breath, a person with sleep apnea interrupts sleep and feels tired during the day.
Due to exhaustion and falling asleep, people with sleep apnea are more likely to have car accidents and work bouts.
Sleep apnea is known to cause cardiovascular disease.
It has also been linked to memory problems and depression, among other things.
Also read: 7 signs that can speak of dangerous sleep apnea - often a hidden disease can even cause a heart attack
For henna, all the symptoms of sleep apnea did not appear until pregnancy.
Sleep apnea during pregnancy is quite rare, but women who experience it experience significantly more complications during their pregnancy.
Among other things, weight gain and fluid retention can predispose the expectant mother to sleep apnea.
The air pressure was so loud I thought I was choking.
Immediately after diagnosis, Henna had access to a CPAP device.
It is a face mask that covers the mouth and nose, through which room air is inhaled under overpressure.
This prevents the airways from becoming blocked.
- Diagnosis was a huge relief, as was getting the device.
I knew I was getting help now.
At home, Henna had a week of getting used to it.
At first, the device seemed impossible.
- The air pressure was so loud I thought I was choking.
But I knew it had to be tough for the device to help.
Getting used to it was certainly encouraged by the fact that I knew the device would be helpful to both me and the child.
Weight loss helped
Nowadays, henna sleeps well with the device.
The hose of the device is so long that Henna is able to sleep in the same positions as ever before.
He keeps the device on the bedside table as it needs to stay stable at night.
The water tank of the appliance is filled with henna before each use.
The device does not interfere with Henna's spouse's sleep.
Henna describes the sound it holds as a muffled hiss that she quickly gets used to.
This is what the device looks like:
The seat of the CPAP device is on Henna's bedside table.
In addition to the device, the doctor instructed Henna to drop the weight after the baby was born and life stabilized.
Being overweight increases the risk of sleep apnea.
During her pregnancy, Henna also developed type 2 diabetes, which was diagnosed in 2016. It has remained under control with medication and a low-carbohydrate diet.
- I've got the weight dropped 16 pounds in two years.
It has done good for both of my illnesses.
I get to thank the device for having a healthy baby.
Vigor returned, the night's sleep calmed downHenna's sleep-disrupted breathing has completely disappeared with the weight loss.
As a result, he no longer needs a CPAP device every night.
When traveling, Henna does not take the device with her at all.
- On weekends, I sleep with the device when my husband wakes up with our son in the mornings.
That’s when I get to sleep peacefully without waking up.
Today, henna has almost healed from sleep apnea.
She sleeps well at night and is energetic when awake.
Henna rejoices that she is able to spend time with her two children and her husband again in sports.
- The CPAP device saved my life because it allows me to stay fresh.
I can also thank you for having a healthy child.
The story has been previously published on the Me Naisten website 02/2019.