The Apollo community is a diverse community who all share a common belief – that the human body is powerful and we have the capacity to heal. We'll highlight powerful stories from Apollo users and their causes through a series of member features.
We had an inspiring conversation with Melissa that we’re excited (and feel compelled) to share. We hope you find it as resonant as we do. Melissa found Apollo with the hopes of improving her sleep and making positive changes that actually stuck. As a neuroscientist of 23 years diagnosed with autoimmune diseases, including Lupus, she offers an interesting perspective about Apollo’s impact.
Q: Could you tell me more about your career as a neuroscientist?
A: I started studying the brain in 1998 at UCLA. From there, I went to grad school in Indiana for a Ph.D. in medical neuroscience. I studied traumatic brain injuries (TBI), spinal cord injuries (SCI), and neurodegenerative diseases. I have written a number of articles for clients who want to understand the importance of sleep, and how it impacts their ability to eat healthy. Through my many articles, I have found that people did not eat healthy when they were trying to stay awake all day, from lack of enough sleep the night before.
Q: Did the work you were doing to link sleep and nutrition resonate with you personally?
A: Absolutely. I was diagnosed with systemic lupus in 2005. With lupus, and many other autoimmune diseases, the immune system is so ramped up against itself that every organ is vulnerable. Lupus patients tend to have a decline in the melatonin production, which was certainly accurate in my case. In fact, roughly 76% of lupus patients have trouble sleeping. Prior to my diagnosis, I always slept like a rock. I even slept through a robbery and the police coming to my house when I was younger!
Since my diagnosis, my sleep has been really poor, and I am constantly looking for things to help. Despite all my efforts, I have been on prescription sleep aids for 16 years. I have really tried everything. I can have a normal day, not overdoing it, and the next day I can hardly get out of bed. My sleep problems are not caused by the things I am doing, it is just because I am not producing enough melatonin. Then I bought an Apollo!
Q: How did you learn about Apollo?
A: I ordered Apollo Neuro in January 2021. Between the time I ordered it and it arrived, a friend with lupus reached out and said, have you heard of this [Apollo]? She shared she had been using it regularly and feeling quite good!
My favorite ways to use Apollo are for sleep and energy — but I just love it for sleep. I always wear it on my wrist. I really like the fact that I can press the two buttons simultaneously to restart the last mode - if I awaken in the middle of the night, then I do not have to get my phone out. I just did it last night! I restart the sleep cycle, and I am immediately back to sleep. This thing has been a lifesaver.
I have been exploring using Apollo for meditation, as well. I am new to meditation, but I like to use this mode for a quick work break to help me calm down and get a true break, rather than just a break where I still think about work and everything I need to do.
Honestly, I was skeptical when I saw the price. But the fact that Apollo was developed by neuroscientists caught my attention. I watched the video about the neuroscience behind it, and I was impressed. I am a Ph.D., but I am on the pre-clinical research side, not the physician side. Yet, I dove into the testimonials, especially the ones about the customer support being helpful, and the 60-day money back guarantee, and I figured it was worth a try.
While I considered the price, I also realized that, if this improves my sleep, that improves how I eat during the day, and I know I eat better throughout the day when I sleep better. So, if it helps improve my sleep even the slightest, and helps me eat healthier, in the long run, that is definitely worth it. And truth be told, Apollo kickstarted all my health habits.
Q: What changed when you started using Apollo?
A: Since ordering Apollo, my relationship with healthy habits has totally changed. They are all things I knew I should be doing before, but I was overly tired, and just couldn't do it. I am now on a Diabetes prevention program plan, and I am eating so much healthier. I am not on any lupus prescription medication for the first time in 16 years, and my lupus specialist is very impressed by the progress I am making. Apollo made me realize how important it is to invest in my health. When I started using Apollo, it made my other health goals - like sleep and nutrition - much more achievable.
I am really excited to share that for the first time in 16 years, since my initial diagnosis, I have not been on a prescription sleep aid. I have been off them for over two months now. From 2006 until a couple months ago, I took a prescription sleep aid every single night, and if I did not it would take 4-6 hours to fall asleep.