Over the last seven years I have struggled with several illnesses, including psoriatic arthritis and breast cancer. I have also been diagnosed with lupus and fibromyalgia. And to top it all off, I was diagnosed with sleep apnea, which complicates everything because good rest is key to having some sort of normal life — particularly with autoimmune diseases.
Watching my daughter play sports, boating, traveling, the outdoors…these are all things I enjoy. But it all stopped. All I wanted to do was sleep. My apnea mask was such a fight. It was cumbersome and with my apnea mask I could only sleep on my left side, which was difficult as that was the side affected by my breast cancer. I was depressed, didn’t want to go anywhere, didn’t want to spend time with family or friends. I was miserable.
When I switched to the Oral Appliance, things really changed. After the first night I felt great. I didn’t have to nap that day which was unheard of! After the first week, I was able to go prom dress shopping with my daughter. She was beyond thrilled, because the year before I had to stay home and all she could do was send me pictures. This time we went to three different shops together and she tried on several dresses. After we found “the one” we went to eat lunch and I remember her saying, “Mom, this is what we used to do before you got sick and I really missed our time together.”
Here in Florence, we have many restaurants that my husband and I enjoy. We also love walking along the beautiful Tennessee River. I recently took up sewing and am making a rag quilt for my granddaughter. After this one I plan to make a quilt for my son and one for my daughter.
While there are no cures for my autoimmune diseases and psoriatic arthritis, solid, good, uninterrupted sleep is extremely important to function at a normal level and until now, I did not have that. I felt like a shell of my former self. Now with the Oral Appliance, I am back to enjoying and living my life.
Location Guide: McFarland Park in Florence, Alabama park offers serenity and terrain suitable for a lazy marina stroll. The park offers views of the characteristic O’Neal Bridge, spanning majestic limestone cliffs across the Tennessee River.