Fixing my sleep, Part 4: Results of the overnight sleep study

alexander-possingham-209285-unsplashMy next appointment at MedSleep would reveal the results of my overnight sleep study. In the weeks leading up to the appointment, I was worried that they’d tell me they didn’t find anything specific. I kept imagining the conversation:

MedSleep: “Your sleep wasn’t great, but we didn’t see anything in terms of a physical cause. Have you tried melatonin / warm baths / progressive relaxation?”

Me: “YES! SOOOO MANY TIMES! Arghghgh!’ (flees the building)

Fortunately, what happened was very different… Continue reading

Fixing my sleep, Part 3: The overnight sleep study

I have slept with 25 different electrodes and sensors attached to my body. I have slept while being videotaped by a stranger. I have slept with multiple sensors inside my nose.

An overnight sleep study, also called polysomnography , from the Latin many-sleep-record, does just what its name implies: it records a bunch of sleep stuff: Continue reading

Fixing my sleep, Part 2: First visit to the sleep clinic

It was a simple suggestion from my family doctor. We were looking into why I routinely get up 3 or 4 times a night to pee (my kidney function was fine).

“Why not see our sleep specialist here in town?” he said.

I was staggered. I didn’t know we had a sleep specialist — I would have pursued this years ago. Continue reading

Fixing my sleep, Part 1: The problem

Sleep…it consolidates our memories, cleans up free radicals, fights cancer, and helps us look and feel younger and more energetic. And when sleep goes wrong, it impacts every aspect of our lives: mood, memory, appetiteheart health, and more.

I’ve had insomnia in differing degrees of hideousness ever since I hit perimenopause about 12 years ago. In fact, I’m writing these words at 3:30 AM. Sigh. Continue reading

New year, new goals: Two simple tricks to embed new habits

Happy 2018! It’s New Year’s resolution time! Are you trying to make a healthy change in your life? Maybe you want to meditate or stretch more. Maybe you want to eat better, go to bed earlier, or give up sugar.

So you start trying, but somehow things keep getting in the way. Eventually, you notice you’re doing your new activity so infrequently that you’re not getting any results. Frustration ensues. Continue reading

Another reason to age well: Being able to take of yourself (and others) during emergencies

I live in northern British Columbia, Canada, where wildfires this summer are impacting thousands of people.

So far the flames have spared my community, but we’re hosting thousands of evacuees — some of whom are elderly and unhealthy — who’ve been driven from their homes by fires and smoke.  Continue reading

6 months of total sugar-free-ness!

Whoohoo! Today marks six months since I started my no-added-sweeteners-of-any-kind journey on January 1, 2017. All the details are in this post, but in a nutshell, I’ve been avoiding all added sweeteners, including honey, stevia, maple syrup and more — even in my vitamins, even in my toothpaste.

To mark this milestone, here are some common questions I get:  Continue reading