Saturday, April 12, 2008

The No Sleep Sleep Study

I am quite certain the person who thought up the brilliant idea of "sleep study" wasn't too keen on sleep. I had nothing to do last night, after all it was a beautiful Friday night, still 75 degrees when the sun was going down, so why not check into a sleep center just to see what all the fuss is about. So that's what I did.

I arrived about 5 minutes late, mostly due to the fact that I had to turn around 10 minutes into my trip to go home and get my own pillows. Anyone who has ever stayed in a hospital before knows the pillows suck. They are literally 50 thread count cases over a rubber piece of foam. Nothing says sweet dreams like a hot, flat, sweaty pillow! I quite enjoyed my detour as I forgot how nice it is to drive around town at that hour in that weather.

Upon my arrival I was standing in line to get checked in to my "hotel" room. There was one guest ahead of me. He didn't bring his own pillows. Sucker! I was lead back to my room after signing consents for all sorts of things, like the center can't sell my sleeping video online etc. See there in my room, the night vision camera to the left of the TV:

I got a quick Sleep Center tour, which included the two community bathrooms, a break room (incase you get tired of sleeping) and the command center where they watched my every move. My single room was tiny. Just a full size bed and some random equipment.

The first thing I noticed was this sign posted by the door.

I wonder how many people get reprimanded for sleep walking the halls naked.

I was left alone in my room with a questionnaire about my sleep habits. Unfortunately for me, I'm not sure how loud I snore (on a scale of 1-5, yes, seriously!) or if my neighbors ever complained to my husband about it. I should have asked the tech to fill in that part the next morning. Just as I was settling into one of my favorite TV shows, I was interrupted to go get rigged up. (darn you for not having tivo!)

The first thing the tech says to me when we get to the orientation room is, "You don't look 32. I checked your chart and it says you're 32!" I asked her to humor me and tell me how old she thought I was. She said 18. Paul's a lucky man, don't you think?

In the following few minutes I was swabbed with goo, wiped with alcohol prep pads and taped up beyond recognition. The finished product was something out of a terribly bad Sci-Fi movie. There were straps and leads and tape and sensors on just about every inch of my face as well as my body. I was wrapped up all snug as a bug in a cobweb. See for yourself!

In the end I think I did manage about 5 hours of sleep. The good news is, although I was prepped with an oxygen canula, my o2 sats did not fall dangerously low, so they never turned on the oxygen. This is very exciting as I might be able to travel without toting an oxygen compressor, in addition to my two other compressors I need on a daily basis.

So if you're looking for a good time on a Friday night, stop by your local sleep center. They are sure to give you an exciting night you'll be blogging about for years to come!


The Mantha Family said...

Wow - that looks like a blast! :-) I take it they didn't have room service ... Glad you at least got some sleep.

MamaLlama said...

What timing, I read the Sunday paper today and there was an article about your sleep study place. Hope you get a good report.

Chipmunk Chatter said...

Adam had to that once too and he got about as much sleep as you did. I don't know how they expect you to sleep with all that stuff!

ACC 12 said...

Stumbled across your page when searching Google for a sleep study chart... That is hilariously accurate and well-told. In the case of narcolepsy (my case) - you get a bonus couple of hours the next morning where you keep the equipment rigged up and all of those leads glued to your head. They ask you to stay awake an hour - then to lay back down.... 3 consecutive times I did this. I opted to disconnect mine from the unit and to walk (looking like Medusa) over to the BK in the UNC-CH Hospital. With narcolepsy I was a bit blessed in that I had NO problem at all sleeping in the cold sterile clinic that matches your description... ;) Anyway - thanks for the entertaining story. And you do look like you are 18.