Help!! - Newly Diagnosed - Suicidal

General Discussion on any topic relating to CPAP and/or Sleep Apnea.
Ashamed to register

Help!! - Newly Diagnosed - Suicidal

Post by Ashamed to register » Thu Jun 29, 2006 5:54 pm

A friend told me this web site is great and from what little I have looked at I agree.

I am 48 years old (male) and have been in talk therapy the last two years and trying various prescription drugs due to extreme anxiety and some depression - basically a nasty nervous breakdown - it has been hell and I called the national suicide hotline twice. I had a sleep study done this week and have been diagnosed with severe obstructive sleep apnea.

The technician told me that when I start cpap therapy the anxiety and depression may go away. She said low blood-oxygen levels and high levels of adrenalin at night can do horrible things with the mind.

Is this true? Anyone else have experience with this?

This could be great news for me. My therapist had me convinced that I would be mentally unstable forever because of some emotional trauma in my childhood.

BTW, after all the psychotherapy and drugs I am just as unstable as ever.

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Post by TerryB » Thu Jun 29, 2006 6:03 pm

One thing you will find here is that everyone experiences this therapy a little differently. Some people are so bummed out during the beginning proccess that they might consider they have become suicidal. Others report so much positive change they can't contain themselves. Can it make positive chemical changes in your body? I believe it can. Will you feel wonderfuuly improved or impossibly frustrated? Who can predict? Nobody! Should you give it a whirl? Absolutely!

Best of luck to you!


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Post by birdiebaby » Thu Jun 29, 2006 6:28 pm

Welcome, and there's no need to be ashamed!

There was a recent thread here about people who had been sent in for a sleep study by their psychiatrists. Here is the link... viewtopic.php?t=6348 I think you'll find some interesting stuff in there

I have only been on therapy for a little over a month, but I am definitely noticing psychological changes. My general mood is improved. I feel less anxiety, etc. I was first diagnosed as clinically depressed as a pre-teen, and I have suffered through depression ever since then. I hate the side effects of the drugs, thus I have only used them twice. I certainly have hope that the CPAP treatment will continue to have an impact on my overall wellbeing -- physiological and psychological. I wish you the best in pursuing your treatment.


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Post by Guest » Thu Jun 29, 2006 6:54 pm

Please hang in there!!! Before being diagnosed - and I too have SEVERE osa - my husband didn't know what to do as I was an emotional wreck - crying, freaking out about small stuff one minute - being normal the next - getting mad at little things - seriously = the gammot and he thought I was losing it - when I actually was - but since being diagnosed and on tx for 3 months - have pretty much stabled out - a little tired but my moods are sure stable - so hang in there and good luck - it's hard when you are around others who don't know what you are going through, that is what is so great about this forum - you know that you are not alone


Post by michaelz » Thu Jun 29, 2006 7:18 pm

I too have been recently diagnosed and have been on treatment for about two weeks. I can already see that this treatment is making a major impact on me. After 10 years I am finally starting to sleep well.

While I have many questions about what's going on physiologically, I can see this has had a major impact on me and I wish I would have considered it earlier. I hope you give it a go as well because this has made a believer out of me.

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Post by johnnygoodman » Thu Jun 29, 2006 9:37 pm


I'd like to echo the "everyone has a different path to getting it working" thought that others have had. We've had people come through cpaptalk that hook it up the first night, get the "CPAP high" from being rested again and go on their way skipping down our digital road. We've had people who have had to go through three CPAPs and ten masks before they get it right for them.

Here's what is important:

1. This is your life. You can make it better if you can get the therapy working for you. There are 5000 odd people on the board who are living breathing proof that if you stick with it, good things happen.

2. It may start out and be hard but it is not impossible. The results will come in time. The people you are speaking with have been where you are - they hang around after they get their CPAP rigs working to help people like yourself. You are where you need to be and we're glad to have you!

3. CPAP is not the answer to all of lifes problems but it can give you a good nights sleep, more energy and a general feeling that "I can do it". I do see a lot of people who after six months on CPAP say things like "wow, I have patience now and it is improving the relationship with my family". That kind of stuff is possible.

I know all of that is a little emotional, but I'm pretty serious about this stuff. We have a lot of people on this board who are the same way.


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Post by unclebob » Thu Jun 29, 2006 9:48 pm

Hi Ashamed to register,

So who is your friend, and what's his/her story?

Bob F

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It's no wonder

Post by kteague » Thu Jun 29, 2006 10:55 pm

Sir, any thoughts you have had that you are not proud of came out of a brain not not able to function at its full capacity due at least in part to sleep deprivation, oxygen deprivation, and the influence of medications. I can't begin to know the other parts, but these three alone could mount an horrific assault on anybody's sense of well being. There was a thread getting lots of attention on here last week by someone who had been referred for a sleep study by a psychiatrist...story after story of people who thought they were mentally ill but found out that sleep apnea was at the very least contributing to their state of mind. I'll find it and bump it up to the top for you to read. It's your life, and as much as I want to "talk you into" not following your suicidal thoughts, my words are not that powerful or persuasive, and bottom line, it's your call from wherever you are. But what commrades in any battle do is shoulder their wounded and take them to a place of safety so they can begin the healing process. That's what the folks on this site can do for you. Most of us are battle worn just because sleep apnea robbed many of us of many good years of our health, and ongoing treatment can have struggles along the way. But we have found hope in each other's big and little successes and a sense of not being in this alone. It seems that your note here is evidence that you don't prefer suicide to living. From personal experience, I think it would be wise to write youself a note right now, a contract with yourself, so to speak. It can be short and in your own words, something to the effect of " I, INSERT NAME, accept this note as evidence to myself of my desire to live, no matter what I may be feeling at another time. I will not make any decision to the contrary while taking medication that is known to alter thinking. I will give new treatments a chance to improve my condition. I will reserve such an important decision for such a time as when I am not sleep or oxygen deprived or medicated. Any time I am reading this, I will trust what I said here above my feelings. Signed, INSERT NAME" Put this out in the open wherever you may need to see it. For me it was the bathroom mirror on the medicine cabinet - over thirty years ago. What's funny - odd funny, not humorous funny - is that I thought my life's circumstances were unbearable then, but there've been a lifetime of just as hard of knocks or worse, but never again did I not want to live. Oh, I wrestled with my demons in those early years, but somehow I believed that that part of my life was to be in the past - thank God. I made a one-time decision that feelings come and go, so I would trust my own words of life.

And, Sir, shame will bind you and torture you if you let it have its way. It's a powerfully freeing thing to own your missteps instead of them owning you. I will always be ashamed of my actions at a particular time in my life, but I can't let that regret rob me of enjoying the very life I found worth living. I came one trigger-click of the gun away from beginning the process of killing my sleeping young daughters and myself. Post partum blues? The three psych meds the docs gave me to help me cope with my husband's murder? My regret that our last words were an arguement? Who knows? Sometimes life comes at us hard. But in my clear mind I would never have considered such a thing. Bottom line though, is I did not go through with it. And you, Sir, are still standing. Give yourself a little credit for what you've had the strength not to do. And I'll stop being Momma Bear now.

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Post by josh » Fri Jun 30, 2006 5:44 am

For a long time...5 years, I thought my being constantly tired was a SIDE EFFECT from my depression and anxiety. That's what all the psych's said. And I was naive, and sort of believed them. But then I learned that I too had severe OSA. So I wondered...could it be that my depression and anxiety were a SIDE EFFECT of my constantly being tired?

Well, so far, since I have been on CPAP for a year and a half now...I am happy to report that I have been off ALL medications, and my overall mood has increased greatly. I feel better about myself (not perfect), but better. I am more confident, and I find that I am yawning a lot less during the day. Sleep deprivation is a TERRIBLE thing, and for me, has caused lots of undesirable consequences...including my psych discharge from the Navy.

I encourage you to give therapy for OSA a try.

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Post by DCTom » Fri Jun 30, 2006 6:07 am

I also nearly wrecked - severe anxiety with depression. I sought help from many doctors and tried many meds. Finally one doctor asked me about my sleep. I got a sleep study - found out I had OSA - and discovered most of my problems were due to being sleep deprived. Sleep deprivation definitely causes anxity, depression, ADD, and all sorts of mental/emotional problems. You will find many people on the Boards who got significant relief from this when they got their OSA under control. Give it some time, be patient with it. When you can finally get a good night's sleep, consistently, you will start to feel better. It might even be your miracle cure.
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Keep your hope up...

Post by There » Fri Jun 30, 2006 12:33 pm

I also suffer from depression, and I am just starting to come out of a long round with a severe bout of it (inability to concentrate, months off work, occasional suicidal thoughts, severe listlessness, constant crying, and, ironically - inability to sleep). And this is AFTER I started my CPAP therapy, but that's not to say you should feel worried. I am convinced that, were in NOT for my CPAP, I'd have been worse off, maybe not even around to come back and start posting again.

Lack of quality sleep makes so much difference in your life. Your depression may spawn from it, as others have said, or it may be a more complicated result of multiple factors. But the only way to find out for sure is to muster up the courage and get the treatment.

It's scary, but it's worth it. The sun won't come out *tomorrow*, but when it does come out, you can greet it without grumbling and hiding your head under the pillow!

The best gift you can give your body is a chance to fight back. Don't let the depression win.


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Post by MadDogz » Fri Jun 30, 2006 1:26 pm

Ashamed to Register:

YOU ARE NOT ALONE!!! I have been down the road you are on. Over the past 15 years or so, I have been on meds for depression/anxiety and sleeping problems. About 10 years ago, the meds I was on stopped working (or so I thought) and I ended up being escorted, by the police and in hand cuffs, from my house to the psych ward, thanks to my roommate. I was not a danger to others, but I was a danger to myself. My meltdown at that time also involved a gun. My meds were changed and I was given medication to help me sleep. Over the ensuing 10 years I had problems and complains off and on, mainly due to severe anxiety, problems sleeping, and just generally feeling tired and uninterested. Earlier this year, my body started to betray me - feeling extremely tired, sore muscles, headaches, jaw aches, sore teeth, sore throat, uninterested in things that I really liked to do, memory problems, etc., etc.

Long story short (or maybe not!) I had a sleep study and was put on CPAP. That was only a month ago. I feel much better and more clear headed. I have been able to stop taking the anxiety medication and feel more relaxed and able to handle things than I have ever felt in my life - and that is after only a month on CPAP!! I honestly feel that if I had had a sleep study all those years ago, many of my problems would have been taken care of and I probably would not have gone off the emotional deep end 15 years ago, or the physical deep end a couple of months ago. I am convinced that had I not started CPAP therapy, I would have had a stroke or a heart attack. I am only 43 - too young for stuff like that to happen.

You are LUCKY (YES-lucky!!) to have someone know enough about sleep disorders to send you for a sleep study. MAKE the CPAP work for you - your life depends on it. If you stick with it you will see results. Of course, everyone is different, and different things work for different people, but one thing is true for all humans - we NEED sleep. Our bodies do many things during sleep that doctors still don't understand. However, it is understood that restorative sleep is essential.

Remember that we are all here to support and help you and that things will get better, but you have to be an active participant in your own health, both mental and physical.


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Post by Datona » Fri Jun 30, 2006 3:11 pm

Don't give up, it get's better. Wait till you see what a little air and sleep will do for you.

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Post by krousseau » Fri Jun 30, 2006 4:25 pm

Do give xPAP therapy a good chance. Keep calling the suicide hotline if you are feeling suicidal. If you have been in talking therapy with the same therapist two years-consider a switch to a more positive therapist,one that says you can improve your outlook and that childhood trauma can be overcome. You may need medication for a period to rebalance the bady chemistry that gets out of whack with depression. Medication, therapy with an optimistic therapist, and XPAP to get more O2 to your brain and less adrenalin flowing in your bloodstream-it could turn out very differently.

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Post by Offerocker » Sat Jul 01, 2006 5:39 pm

Dear 'Ashamed to register'

Please register! That way, people can instant message you; your personal information is never shown, nor requested.

I've attempted to post a reply to you twice, and due to the length, have 'timed out' !!!

In short, I was (finally) diagnosed with Clinical Depression in 1993. It all began slowly around puberty....many years before 1993!!

Fire your therapist, she is wrong, wrong, wrong. You can be treated, and you will find daylight. Yes, I have been suicidal - but I only THINK about it, because I really want to "stop the world, I want to get off", in order to avoid all of the things I somtimes think I can't handle. It is a chemical imbalance, not all of which can be 'corrected'. It is a struggle, and one worth the effort. You do not know this, but there are people who would be devastated without you. I know, I didn't believe it either, but it is true. Concentrate on your good points, the ones who do care for you, the ones you can laugh with, and above all, what you do appreciate in life, in addition to your qualities and talents. Get an acryllic paint set for around 10 bucks, and just sit somewhere nice, and let go - if it's not to your liking, PAINT OVER IT! We need to do that in our lives - forgive ourselves our mistakes. Learn how you can get rid of your frustrations without taking them out on yourself. Learn what helps you relax, and do it more often.

You aren't a very good judge of yourself right now.
It is quite accurate that with CPAP treatment, you WILL feel much better the next day, have more energy, accomplish more, and feel better about yourself. You won't have to work so hard to do a good job; it will be the second-nature that it is naturally.

As for your childhood, we all had them. I have empathy for what yours may have been like. The creeping in of the depression and other influences spoiled what could have been happier times for me. BUT - I LEARNED from the takes a lot of retrospect and understanding of everyone involved.

Please stick around here, join in with us, get your apnea under control, and when you feel like 'someone', you'll find out how much you do have to offer others. You already are someone, but I bet you don't realize it.

We are your friends; you have found an excellent place to be. Welcome!

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