Now Entering Dreamland, Season 2; Episode 2 | What Is Sleep Apnea & Acting Out My Dreams

Now Entering Dreamland is a podcast that centers around dreams, sleep and everything in between. Sit back and relax- you’re now entering Dreamland. 

In this episode I detail the symptoms of and read about sleep apnea*. I also give an update about my vivid dreams. Apparently I am acting out my dreams now. (fun!)

*Resources from Mayo Clinic and WebMD.

Read the article from Mayo Clinic: https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/sleep-apnea/symptoms-causes/syc-20377631

Read the article from WebMD: https://www.webmd.com/sleep-disorders/sleep-apnea/sleep-apnea

Episode Transcript

Are you ready to wake up? You are Now Entering Dreamland.

Hi everyone! Welcome to Now Entering Dreamland: a podcast about dreams, sleep, and everything in between. Welcome back to those of you who have been to Dreamland before, we are happy to have you back. Welcome to those of you joining us in Dreamland for the first time.

It’s a Sunday, which is one of my favorite days of the week because I get to release a new episode of my podcast Now Entering Dreamland.

In this episode, I am going to talk about sleep apnea and also give an update about my vivid dreams and sleepwalking.

I realized the other day that in more than 20 podcast episodes I have never even mentioned sleep apnea. I don’t have sleep apnea, but it made me feel irresponsible that in a podcast about dreams and sleep I haven’t even mentioned it once. Please note: I am not a doctor or medical professional. I read and researched a lot of articles for this episode, particularly from Mayo Clinic and WebMD.

If you are like me, you have probably heard of sleep apnea but may not know anything about it. Here is what I’ve learned.

Sleep apnea is a serious sleep disorder that occurs when a person’s breathing is interrupted during sleep. People with untreated sleep apnea stop breathing during their sleep. This can occur sometimes hundreds of times during one night.

If you have sleep apnea, you may not be getting enough oxygen. You may also not get enough sleep, because your body stops breathing whenever you begin to fall into a deeper sleep.

There are two types of sleep apnea:

Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA): The more common of the two forms of apnea is caused by a blockage of the airway, usually when the soft tissue in the back of the throat collapses during sleep.

Central sleep apnea: Unlike OSA, the airway is not blocked, but the brain fails to signal the muscles to breathe, due to instability in the respiratory control center.

Sleep apnea can affect anyone at any age, even children.

Symptoms: Snoring; Fatigue; Somnolence

If you are like me, you don’t know what somnolence means. So I defined it for you. Somnolence (drowsiness) is a state of the strong desire for sleep or sleeping for unusually long periods. It has distinct meanings and causes.

If you experience these symptoms, it might be time to talk to a medical professional and/ or doctor.

I also wanted to provide an update about my vivid dreams.

In the last episode, I reported that I have been having vivid dreams lately that are causing me or prompting me to sleepwalk.

I did something similar again last night. Because I am me, I immediately woke up and thought: “This would be great content for my podcast.” So I wrote down the dream content in my notebook. That was a good idea, too, because I quickly forgot about a lot of it.

The dream started where I was with my friend Ryan (he was on a previous podcast episode) in a shopping center. The shopping center looked familiar to me- I have had dreams about it before.

In the shopping center, there is a liquor store at the end, a toy store in the middle, and a department store at the other end.

I was walking with Ryan when he turned to me and said “You know where he is.” Awake Stacey has no clue who “he” is, but Dream Stacey seemed to know exactly what Ryan meant.

I walked away from the shopping center, down a hill. On the path from this hill is a cave structure. The cave has two entrances, one higher up than the other. I entered the cave through the higher-up entrance and walked through the cave. No one was in the cave. I exited the cave through the lower entrance/ exit. I was still on the path, just further on the hill.

In this dream, I “woke up” and I guess I thought I was really awake. But in my dream, I was in my childhood bedroom. My mouth hurt me. I went to the bathroom, and I saw my teeth on the left, upper side of my mouth were falling out of my mouth. I clutched my mouth. Then, out of curiosity, I lowered my hand and looked again. Another tooth fell out of my mouth. Then I clutched my mouth again.

That was when I woke up: for real. And my hand was still grabbing at the side of my face/ mouth. I was scared to look at myself. Of course, everything was normal. Except I had a red mark on my face. I must have really been grabbing my face.

So… this is still weird, right? I seem to be acting out parts of my dreams. I just want to know why, after 29 years, my body is doing this.

I also know that nightmares about teeth falling out are really common. I know this because I researched it for this podcast. These dreams symbolize feeling out of control in your life. Which doesn’t make sense to me because I feel in control. I think.

Have you had weird dreams lately? Let me know in the comments.

That’s it for this episode.

As always, I am planning to post new episodes on Sundays. Looking forward to continuing exploring dreams and sleep on this podcast.

You’re now leaving Dreamland. But we’ll see you next time.

Published by staceyacomedy

Stacey Axler is a stand up comedian and improviser based just outside of Washington DC.

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