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Lack of Sleep (Horrible Insomnia)


Zuzushi23

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Hello everyone,

I'm new to this forum. I'm a 21 year old female and I wanted to share my story of my experience with bad sleep issues. So I've been suffering from bad insomnia since the summer of 2017 (late June 2017). So I've been struggling with this for 7 months and a week now and i still struggle with it. I've been doing 1-3 hours worth of sleep or none at all. There were a ton of times where I would do just 1, 2 or 3 hours of sleep a night or it would be sparatic sleep where I would do 2 or 3 hours of sleep and it would take me so long to go back to sleep. It would take me more than 5 or so hours for me to go to sleep or I just wouldn't go back to sleep. there were some days where I just didn't sleep at all. When I don't get enough sleep or no sleep at all, I get mad or depressed for no reason. I would cry and sometimes would feel hopeless that things would get better. I also struggle with vitamin d deficiency and I'm currently on a Vitamin D2 weekly regimen ever since late December 2017 as well as taking magnesium daily and I'm starting to take melatonin a bit daily too. It's been a huge struggle and it can be sometimes hard to stay positive through the journey. I'm currently in art school right now. I go to SCAD(Savannah College of Art and Design) and I'm a junior. I want to know you guys experience with insomnia and how did it begin? How long did you guys have it and how did it take for you to overcome it??

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Hi Zuzushi23 and welcome to the Forums,

     Insomnia is just awful and can damage one's health and well-being and so I am very, very sorry that you have been afflicted with it.  I am 63 years old and have struggled with it on and off since adulthood.  Its just brutal . . . beyond brutal.  

     Have you discussed your insomnia with your doctor?  Sometimes when the cause of insomnia cannot be diagnosed during routine medical tests, other options are available.  I don't know where you live but in my city, a licensed physician can refer one to a sleep clinic  devoted to helping people identify and correct problems with sleep.  I am worried about your health and don't want you to suffer.  

     I was prescribed medication for sleep and use meditation techniques and skills learned from Cognitive Therapy to help me, but even so, I have not found any "perfect" solution.  I avoid caffeine containing foods and beverages and engage in vigorous exercise and that sometimes helps me too.  Please realize that I am not a doctor or medical professional and what works for me might be all wrong for you.  So please do not take my sharing as advice of any kind. The only advice I have is to seek the advice of a licensed doctor.

      Not being able to sleep is such a draining, mind numbing and agonizing situation.  My heart goes out to you.  - epictetus

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i have addressed this with my doctor and she told me about seeing a psychiatrist and/or therapist and I'm now seeing a counselor while I'm in college. My counselor is also a therapist and I'm seeing her bi weekly. I've never had any medical test done of any sort. But yeah, insomnia is a huge struggle and I'm doing what I can to overcome it like i said with taking certain supplements.

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Hi zuz. Welcome to the forum. I am a combat veteran. I suffered for a really long time with insomnia. And still do at times. There are solutions. Unfortunately, different things work differently for everyone. Dont use your bed for anything but sleep. Watch your caffiene intake.  Melintonin is a good natural drug to take. But i would not suggest sleep meds as far as prescriptions.  Meditation was a tool i used a lot. I also preach mindfulness a lot. Insomnia, like depression, is a very formidable foe. I understand the anger and emotional response from not getting sleep. Not getting enough sleep really affects your entire life, as im sure you know. Try to be patient. In time, my real serious problems of sleep seemed to deminish, on that front i consider myself lucky. If you would like more tips on how i conquered it you can always message me. Good luck.

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On 10/02/2018 at 4:51 PM, Zuzushi23 said:
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"Hello everyone...,

 ...I want to know you guys experience with insomnia and how did it begin? How long did you guys have it and how did it take for you to overcome it??"

Hey,

Yeah, insomnia/insufficient/broken sleep is something I know all too well, I've had lots of times when it was under control, so it does get much better than what you are facing now. Its not permanent :D

Been 20 years since I last slept straight through for 8-9 hours, I think its actually an urban myth lol. A good night's sleep for me is go to sleep for 5-6 hours, wake up, bathroom, order a pizza (not really) go back to sleep for another 2 hours. A bad night is taking hours to fall asleep then waking up every hour or so.

I usually have no problem going back to sleep, just broken sleep kills me off. I used to think it was psychological/mind over matter, but the science behind it says if you are waking up frequently, your brain never gets the time it needs to cycle through the various sleep stages down into stage 3 and stage 4, where the real healing/memory consolidation and correct hormonal rebalancing happens. Light sleepers who wake up tend to stay in Stage 1 & 2, with some REM sleep. This explains why people feel depressed/anxious/irritable/stressed after a poor nights sleep. Long term insomnia can cause depression, although many GP's/Psychologists always assume its the other way round - and sometimes it is.

I have a few books on insomnia (maybe I should read them at bedtime) one of them has this really hard-hitting sentence that says something like "the reason you can't sleep/keep waking up is because you would rather be awake". In other words, the mind is too active at night for rest because it believes we have more important things to be doing (worrying about). So the trick is working out what is causing you to not sleep or sleep poorly, mine at the moment is stress caused by pressing financial and physical health concerns along with some depression.

 

You mention this has been going on since last summer, which suggests 2 things:

i/its unusual for you for sleep badly, therefore its probably just a phase and

ii/maybe something happened to trigger it off or maybe you are concerned about something happening in the future. I'm not asking you to share, more like asking you to see if you can reflect and work it out?

In terms of remedies, there's pharamceutical and natural/herbal interventions, plus mindfulness/meditation, CBT, sleep hypnosis mp3's and avoiding screen use before bed - the blue light in TV/laptop/phone disrupts melatonin production, this makes existing sleep issues more severe.

If you google an app for laptops/pcs/tablets called f.lux, this is a screen filter which allows you to choose different lighting intensities. It automatically removes blue light between sunset and sunrise to match the timing of the human circadian rythmn that controls sleep patterns. f.lux probably won't solve your insomnia, its another part of the jigsaw.

I can post up details of the pharma / herbal options along with links to helpful mp3's etc in another post because I'm aware this has turned into a mini-essay.

HTH for now!

 

.

 

 

Edited by Whostolemyfunny
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I know exactly what you are going through. My insomnia started in September of 2017 after I started a new job. It got worse after I took time off from the position. I currently sleep between 4-5 hours with amitriptyline-it sedates me enough to calm my anxiety at night from not sleeping. I am currently in a deep depression because I have not had restorative sleep in a long time. I tried going without meds for a month back in December and January but developed more anxiety and panic attacks. I've been on amitriptyline 10 mg -25 mg for 2 weeks. Even though it calms me at night, I spend my days sedated. My hope is that this medication will start working for me-I think depression can keep people from experiencing restful sleep. I've had a sleep study done back in November and the results were surprising. My results said I was sleeping around 7 hours (with medication) but it felt more like 4 and I was groggy all day. 

I remind myself that even though it feels like I slept little to nothing-I'm probably sleeping some and it's just not restorative. I'm doing everything possible to get better including Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Insomnia. 

My hope is that we both heal and move on with our lives. 

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