Recently we had the opportunity, and great honor, to chat with Dave, a 40-year-old Army veteran who had been experiencing sleep struggles after his separation from the military.
Dave spent the last 10 years of his career in Army Special Operations. He joined the Army after college in the early 2000s and deployed five times in support of named operations as well as countless unnamed ones.
Dave was dealing with a lot of sleep struggles, but like many people, didn’t know which products or tools could help.
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Dave actually got connected with sleepme through a fitness coach at his local gym. The coach he met at the gym also works here at sleepme!
Through their conversations, she asked Dave if he’d like to be part of our company’s philanthropic mission with Sleepme Cares. This includes donating our innovative sleepme systems to veterans looking to improve their health and wellness.
Was he interested in trying it out? The answer was a resounding YES, and the rest, as they say, is history. It’s safe to say that Dave is now a very happy sleepme sleeper!
Read on to learn how the Cube helped Dave to not only improve his sleep but, ultimately, to reclaim his health and vitality!
Read More: Why Do I Sleep Hot at Night?
I Was Scared to Go to Sleep...
40-year-old Army Veteran
I would rate it a 4. That is, I "slept"...closed my eyes, stayed reasonably still in a subconscious state for varying periods of time, but woke up generally feeling tired, sweating, irritable, and had many problems with migraine headaches.
I wasn't sleeping well at all. I'd often wake up sweating to death, having to change clothes in the middle of the night, having trouble getting back to sleep because the mattress was wet with sweat. One night in particular, my fiancé took a video of me sleeping. I was snoring, and then I stopped breathing...for a minute and a half. I had no idea.
All three, and I'll address them collectively. Most people don't "wind-down" when they go to sleep. The lights are still on, they're still using devices with bright blue lights, and that tricks the brain into staying awake longer. I found that once I knew that I was snoring and having episodes of not breathing for periods of time, that I was scared to go to sleep and had severe anxiety about sleeping, especially before the actual sleep study which confirmed obstructive sleep apnea.
I also experienced sleep paralysis, where you wake up, your eyes are open, you are aware of your surroundings, but your body and muscles don't move. You are stuck in the position in which you slept for an indeterminable amount of time before your body "wakes up" along with your mind. I wear a CPAP every night now, which forces air into my nose so that my airways constantly stay open.
I've worked out and exercised for the last three decades, but never experienced any real progress in those goals until I was treated for sleep apnea and started losing weight with "diet" modifications as well.
Full disclosure, I don't "diet" in the traditional sense. I eat prescribed amounts of macronutrients (protein, carbohydrates, fats) daily depending on whether or not I'm working out that day, and in the last six months, I've dropped 30+ pounds as a result. If it fits within my numbers, I eat it. It doesn't matter what it is, within reason. But, if you eat junk, those numbers add up quickly and you'll end up not reaching your goals as quickly as a result.
I haven't tried meditation, but I generally try to stay positive, even when it's hard for me, and breathe when I'm stressed FIRST before saying or doing anything.
Pretty easy! The directions are easy to follow, fortunately I keep distilled water handy with the CPAP because you'll need that as well as some AAA batteries for the remote, but everything is fairly simple!
I would rate it a 10! I fall asleep easier and my temperature is regulated! I'm still experimenting with the 'best' temperature setting. You know, what the CPAP does for my airways, sleep stages, and how I wake up, the Cube sleep system keeps me asleep and not waking up in the middle of the night because I'm either too hot or have to use the bathroom.
I'm definitely able to focus more and have much more mental clarity. I don't find myself struggling for words or having lots of pauses in my speech, and I definitely have more energy. On days that I work out I'm well beyond where I was before using the Cube and on non-workout days I still have lots of energy to do everything else I need to do!
Turning off your brain, dimming lights, and eliminating distractions that keep your brain awake is a start. If you're waking up tired, having headaches, and feel irritable I would definitely recommend a sleep study. And if you're hot at night, whether you have PTSD, or some other condition that affects your sleep, I can't recommend sleepme enough!
Create a safe space. Protect your body and mind. Prioritize a steady sleep schedule. Then, you can continue working on other self-care habits that will only deepen the relationship with your body and mind that PTSD so often works to destroy.