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- July 21, 2013 at 7:38 pm #8759
I joined up to learn and share. Been a poor sleeper since childhood. Parents were always amazed that I would never fall asleep at night during long car rides. All my brothers & sisters had to be carried but I would just hop out of the car and walk on my own. I would wake in the middle of the night as a pre-schooler and rock in bed and bang my head against the headboard. Of course, that would wake everyone in the house and my parents then padded my headboard to protect my head and preserve their sleep. Issues with falling asleep & staying asleep throughout adolescence and adulthood. Sleep studies confirmed that I sleep horribly but those are artificial – who can sleep with all those bright lights, strange bed and electrodes stuck to you. Now approaching age 60 and always on a quest for improved sleep….tried all treatments, behavioral, cognitive, herbal and some pharmaceutical. So far the best advice I have is to learn to accept yourself as you are, don't fret, focus or fight your insomnia, “go with the flow”. As I have learned to accept it more, my anxiety about sleep has lessened and I tend to sleep better (but not well). My problem now is middle of the night awakening…..I just stay up awhile, think, meditate or pray and not worry about the next day……then I leave my primary bed and get comfortable in a recliner or the fresh, cool bed in our spare room (glad for that now that kids are gone). Sometimes that works……plus if I am always a little sleep deprived, I tend to fall asleep easier when I go to bed. That's enough. Have a restful sleep all and give yourself some credit. You are more than your sleep.
RichardJuly 23, 2013 at 10:33 pm #14811
Martin Reed★ Admin
It's good to have you here, Richard.
I definitely agree that reducing sleep anxiety is one of the most effective ways you can improve your sleep.
Keep in touch, take a look around and get involved in the forums here – I look forward to reading more of your posts.July 25, 2013 at 7:50 pm #14812
I think this is what I must have – sleep anxiety (masses of it) and I don't know how to conquer it without getting myself into a complete tense mess just thinking about it. Arggggghhh.
I know for a fact that if I could get rid of the anxiety then I would not have a problem. It's mind over matter but the mind is so powerful and it's not something you can just nudge out of your system.
I sleep really well in my own house in my own room – no anxiety at all but the thought of sleeping anywhere else or anything changing in my sleep environment causes tension so great that then the tension 'pain' (felt in my chest – I feel like I'm having some kind of heart attack) prevents me from sleeping.
Does anyone feel like this and have the same issue as me. I also can't sleep during the day no matter how tired I am. The same anxious systems result.July 26, 2013 at 12:20 am #14813
Yes, I know what you mean as this has been my problem for a long time. Whenever I travel I cannot sleep; whenever I am in a strange situation I cannot sleep. But here I am typing which proves that I survived it (although I probably felt a bit miserable at the time). My doctor also told me that when he traveled and was in a strange bed, he had trouble sleeping. His solution and now my solution (don't throw bricks at me please), is to allow yourself to “cheat” during those times. So now when I travel I don't get as anxious about my sleep because I pack a prescription sleep aid that I use if I need it. Just having it is sometimes is enough to alleviate the anxiety. It is a safety net that allows you to release your anxiety about sleep. And guess what, just having it means you might not need it. Doesn't mean you'll have the best sleep of your life but you will do okay. And if because of the situation you are so wired and tense, well then an occasional use of a sleep aid might be warranted. But be judicious…..this isn't an answer for every night. Peace…….July 27, 2013 at 4:26 pm #14814
Thanks for getting back in touch – it's soo frustrating!
What exactly do you mean by a prescription sleep aid – sorry I'm not quite with you.
I'm thinking that I need to try some sort of meditation or deep breathing exercisers on a regular basis. I have heard they work but it's having the motivation to do them.
Thank you so much for getting back to me – do you stress when others are in the room with you. I can stress with a ticking clock in the room, the sound of the neighbour snoring (it's really faint) or if I can hear someone's house alarm going off and I think it won't stop. Anything really that I feel will stop me getting a good night sleep sends my mind into overdrive.July 27, 2013 at 11:21 pm #14815
Everyone is different. Occasionally I use a prescription sleep aid like Ativan (benzodiazapine) or Trazodone (generic form in the United States). Like last night when a neighborhood party started letting off noisy fireworks. But I don't overdo these especially the Ativan as it can become a dependency. I just accept that my sleep behaviors are normal for me and that I need less less sleep. You mentioned meditation. I have been a meditator for over 40 years, I believe it is beneficial to your psyche and well-being whether or not it improves your sleep (some claim that it does). Learn to accept yourself as you are, don't fight yourself and things will improve even if you don't achieve your optimal.July 28, 2013 at 10:08 am #14816
See if I get less sleep I can't accept that it is normal for me – BECAUSE IT ISN'T!
I feel awful with less sleep and I know I can get more but it's just the anxiety that is felt with a change in sleep environment.
I've made a decision I am going to begin with practising deep breathing as I have children and I don't think they will allow me 'quiet time' to meditate when I want to. This will only frustrate me further. Thank you again.July 29, 2013 at 4:14 pm #14817
owl2020✘ Not a client
You are right. Like you I can't accept the limited sleep I get because it is not normal and I feel awful with little sleep. I am also an anxious person. Some people can adjust to it but I can't. I see you are going for CBT Sleep Training. Let us know how you make out. I have used some CBT techniques so that I can usually get to sleep at a set time. The main drawback I have is after 2-3 hours of sleep I wake up and can't get back to sleep. Getting up and doing something, like reading, usually doesn't help. Hope you have better luck.July 30, 2013 at 12:41 pm #14818
Now I think about it I too get anxious easily and have done since I was young. The possibility of failing at an exam was a big no no and general feeling of nervousness is with me often. Perhaps this is the reason that when people like us get sleep issues its because the anxious people within us really get the insomnia going whereas a less anxious person handles it much better. There few days of poor sleep don't turn into a full blown insomnia problem. Hope I'm making sense. Please keep in touch