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Idiopathic Insomniac Introduction

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This topic contains 1 reply, has 2 voices, and was last updated by Martin Reed 7 years ago.

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  • Author
  • #8761

    ✘ Not a client

    Hello. I am a Nathan, a Canadian, Idiopathic Insomniac.

    I've had insomnia my whole life; my mother tells me I used to keep her up all night when I was a fetus, right up until I was a toddler. I'd frequently climb out of my crib, flick my light on and wake my parents while I played with my toys.

    As I got to about the age of 8, I'd go to bed at around 7, and would always be awake when my parents went to bed at 10. I didn't care much at that time, and even while falling asleep late, I'd wake up nice and early at 6. Life was pretty good.

    Once middle school rolled along and I was diagnosed with Asperger's Syndrome, which insomnia frequently comes with. This is when I first learned that taking several hours to fall asleep wasn't normal, and the average was closer to 10 minutes. This blew my mind.Regardless, I was still getting enough sleep, and everything was going well.

    Then came high school. The insomnia didn't get worse, but my need for sleep did. I started missing out on school and my marks declined slightly. As a lazy kid, I didn't care about that, but I didn't like the constant tiredness.

    After about a semester, I started missing a lot of school, so I went to my doctor and got prescribed a low dosage of Elavil (amitriptyline). It helped, I missed less school and it was okay.

    Next year, we went to a mid dosage and I started sleeping even better. I never took longer than 3 hours, and so that meant no all nighters.

    Things started to get progressively worse again, however, and yet year I had to rack up the dosage again–up to max dose. As previously, it worked for a year, but then came this year. I have one month until my “final” year of school starts (probably gonna do an extra year). Last semester I had to drop all four of my (barely) passing classes because I was missing too many weeks, often a full unit at once, and I was unable to keep up (this was definitely not the insomnia's fault; the insomnia made it harder, but I never brought my textbooks home, so I never studied when I was awake, thus being a motivation problem partially triggered by the increasingly difficult insomnia).

    So here I am now: I am unable to keep a proper sleep cycle because I require more than 24 hours of awake time in order to sleep, thus ruining any possible daily cycle. If I go to bed at midnight, I'll lie in bed for over 12 hours before finally sleeping mid day. Periodically I stay up for longer than 24 hours, so I can be super tired and fall asleep right at 10 PM, but I've never been able to keep it up for the next day.

    I'm currently in my treatment cure. The Elavil is failing me, so the doctor decided to move me to Paxil. This didn't work at all. It helped with anxiety better than Elavil, but didn't help me sleep at all. During this switch of Elavil to Paxil, the doctor prescribed me 5mg Zopiclone to help me get in a sleeping cycle by the time I was fully switched over. The Zopiclone couldn't even help me fall asleep, so I've stopped taking it.

    My doctor has given me a psychiatrist referral, which I am assuming is to get my anti-psychotics, which, according to numerous articles online, is a terrible idea for just insomnia. I also have a sleep clinic referral, which I am hoping I can use as a chance to talk to a professional about my specifics and get better advise than from my family doctor, who doesn't specialize in such a thing. Lastly, I have just started Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, which I am very hopeful of.

    Hopefully my partaking in this community can help myself, and others to sleep.


    Martin Reed
    ★ Admin

    Welcome to Insomnia Land, Nathan.

    Have you tried addressing your sleep from the viewpoint of 'resetting' your circadian rhythm/internal body clock? It seems from your intro that you are certainly capable of sleep, it's just your sleep clock is way out of whack.

    I look forward to reading more of your posts and getting to know you better. Take care.

    The content of this post is provided for informational and educational purposes only. It is not medical advice and is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease, disorder, or medical condition. It should never replace any advice given to you by your physician or any other licensed healthcare provider. Insomnia Coach LLC offers coaching services only and does not provide therapy, counseling, medical advice, or medical treatment. All content is provided “as is” and without warranties, either express or implied.
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