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Anxiety about sleep... insomnia from anxiety.

F

Freckles1968

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 17, 2019
Messages
110
Location
Norwich
I don’t really have a betime routine but do tend to go to bed and get up at the same time every day even on weekends. I’m afraid to say I don’t follow sleep hygiene to the letter as I use my iPad to watch things in bed(no blue light tho) I find the distraction of watching something I enjoy distracts my anxious mind and will (normally, with a sleep aid) allow me to drift off otherwise I get really panicky. I am interested in the approach they will take with Cbt, they know insomnia is my main issue so should be focused around that. I will let you know, but from all I’ve read it starts off with sleep restriction and lessening the amount of time spent in bed. For example if you can’t sleep, don’t stay in your bed, get up and do something relaxing until you feel sleepy, rinse ,repeat. I haven’t had the courage to try this out yet as I’m scared of waking myself up even more and getting even less sleep. I tried listening to bed time stories but didn’t find this helped as much as watching the iPad. I hope you sleep well tonight,take care,
Freckles xx
 
F

Freckles1968

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 17, 2019
Messages
110
Location
Norwich
Hey 8 damien8, hows your sleep going this week? I start my Cbt next week. Will let you know how it goes.
 
L

Libtec

New member
Joined
Sep 29, 2019
Messages
2
Location
London
I struggle to sleep, worry about it. I can fall asleep but wake up 10 mins later.

If this helps.

I use an app called calm and practice my breathing to calm myself down.

Inhale 4 secinds
Hold 4 seconds
Exhale 8 seconds

Listening to audiobooks like the dala lama cat really helps, on earphones quiet and whilst breathing. It’s xombined but set for book to a sleep timer or your miss the chapter. Don’t listen to any thrillers or crime stuff that alerts you.

Take a walk in the day and get out of your bed. I learnt that even if the body doesn’t sleep but you rest then this is beneficial so don’t panic over it.

I’m currently taking a lot of drugs for my illness and conditions.

10mg - 15mg diazepam night time, this is not working very well anymore after a few years and I want to knock it on the head.

Zopiclone 3.75mg combined with diazepam and that combo is a knockout but I feel shit.

Daily oxycodone for chronic pancreatitis which I’ve reduced my dose, this stuff is very addictive and no doctor or the pain management have helped me reduce, it’s a joke in the U.K. system, they say oh keep taking your meds, I’ve reduced this myself.

So why am I telling you this, because the biggest issue is that I’m worried without diazepam ( my comfort blanket ) I just simply wont get any shut eye and that is causing my anxiety to go through the roof
 
F

Freckles1968

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 17, 2019
Messages
110
Location
Norwich
Hi libtec,sorry to hear about your sleep problems. Hope you sleep well tonight😊how long you been on the diazepam for. My doctor won’t prescribe them. Freckles xx
 
B

BatDuck

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 3, 2019
Messages
221
Location
Kent, UK.
I don’t really have a betime routine but do tend to go to bed and get up at the same time every day even on weekends. I’m afraid to say I don’t follow sleep hygiene to the letter as I use my iPad to watch things in bed(no blue light tho) I find the distraction of watching something I enjoy distracts my anxious mind and will (normally, with a sleep aid) allow me to drift off otherwise I get really panicky. I am interested in the approach they will take with Cbt, they know insomnia is my main issue so should be focused around that. I will let you know, but from all I’ve read it starts off with sleep restriction and lessening the amount of time spent in bed. For example if you can’t sleep, don’t stay in your bed, get up and do something relaxing until you feel sleepy, rinse ,repeat. I haven’t had the courage to try this out yet as I’m scared of waking myself up even more and getting even less sleep. I tried listening to bed time stories but didn’t find this helped as much as watching the iPad. I hope you sleep well tonight,take care,
Freckles xx
Hi freckles, I read about the sleep restriction thing trying to find a solution when my insomnia was at its worst (rearing it's ugly head again at the moment). I couldn't imagine forcing myself to get only 2 hours a night and then increasing it. It's bad enough when that's all I naturally get. I've just started my CBT for anxiety as when that's lower my sleep is better (even though part of mine is also directly related to sleep), so I'd be really interested to see how yours specifically for insomnia goes. Have you thought about writing a journal on here about it?

I get why watching something helps you switch off better than just listening to something. It involves more senses so requires more focus. Involving the eyes seems to make something more mentally exhausting, or leads to a decent level of escapism for the most part. I had a better way of putting it but it evades me at the minute, but mental exhaustion seems to be key. It need to be taxing but not stimulating, a hard balance to find.

I have a sort of bedtime routine, just the usual stuff. I go to bed and get up at roughly the same time (whether I've slept it all or not) and don't fully follow sleep hygiene either. It's a bit difficult to in a house we share with my mother. So we have a TV in the bedroom, but I dim this down and my tablet screen when we go into low light mode about an hour before bed. A couple of cups of Camomile tea spread out in the 3 hours before bed has been helping to some extent too.
I would love something to knock me out in the bad times, but I can't have any of the usual stuff due to other meds I am on that have a sedative effect (or supposed to, but I seem to break through it quite a lot). So I have to find other ways to fight mine.

Good luck and I shall keep you in my thoughts :hug:
 
F

Freckles1968

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 17, 2019
Messages
110
Location
Norwich
Hi bat duck, sorry to hear your insomnia is bad again. It really is a terrible thing to suffer with. I have such an intense fear of not being able to sleep as I know how horrific it makes me feel after several weeks of sleep deprivation. I really thought I was having a nervous breakdown in August, wasn’t sleeping, couldn’t eat,couldn’t concentrate,felt suicidal and was ringing the Samaritans everyday. Fortunately these last couple of weeks have been better, though still very medicated sleep.I know i need to go to bed later but I am up at 4.15 am so am to scared to go to bed to late. I’m hoping this is something i can work through with the CBT. I will let you know how it goes. First telephone appointment on Thursday.
I really hope your sleep improves soon batduck, I know how horrible it is,
Love freckles xx
 
8

8damien8

Member
Joined
Mar 21, 2014
Messages
13
Two nights ago I think I may have slept 30 minutes, and then the following night (last night) I was laying there for 3-4 hours unable to sleep.

I'm worried about tonight.

The week prior to that, I slept every night, and even had a few 6.5-7.5 hour nights

Does anyone else ever go back to back nights?
 
F

Freckles1968

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 17, 2019
Messages
110
Location
Norwich
About 6 weeks ago I had a month straight of only sleeping about 2 hrs a night. I got through it, tho it was torture. Try not to worry and ruminate all through the day about it( easier said than done, I know) as that is guaranteed to put you in a state of hyper arousal having a severe impact on your sleep.hope you manage some shut eye tonight. Freckles xx
 
8

8damien8

Member
Joined
Mar 21, 2014
Messages
13
My problem and worry is that some nights I can go the entire night without sleep, and then I'm too anxious to sleep the following night despite being exhausted.

Not sure what to do at this point.
 
I

indigo6

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 30, 2019
Messages
2,525
Location
UK
Ive tricked myself into sleeping when Ive had this by the following
Slept somewhere else, different room, other end of bed, on a sofa.
Slept in day if couldnt at night.
Slept in my clothes with lights on.
As above with tv on low.
Its not a long term thing but it can break the fear cycle long enough to get sleep and to forget the worry of the usual sleep routine.
 
F

Freckles1968

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 17, 2019
Messages
110
Location
Norwich
Would you consider a short course of sleeping meds just to break the cycle?I know it wouldn’t be a long term solution for you but just something to get you over the hump. Your going round in a viscous circle at the moment and all the worrying is making it ten times worse, though it’s very common with people who suffer from insomnia. That’s why we have it in the first place as we worry so much about our sleep or lack of it!
 
F

Freckles1968

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 17, 2019
Messages
110
Location
Norwich
There’s an app I downloaded called bed tyme. You might want to try that. It’s based on sleep restriction. It’s free for the first 2 weeks xx
 
F

Freckles1968

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 17, 2019
Messages
110
Location
Norwich
Also the insomnia coach podcast is a good one to listen to. He has a Cbt-I course you can do as well which looks really good but I can’t afford it at the moment. Xx
 
8

8damien8

Member
Joined
Mar 21, 2014
Messages
13
Also the insomnia coach podcast is a good one to listen to. He has a Cbt-I course you can do as well which looks really good but I can’t afford it at the moment. Xx
I listened to the podcast and it really resonates with what I'm experiencing, so thank you!

I browsed the forum on that site and saw some discussion about a book titled "The Sleep Book".

I have downloaded the audiobook, and I'm going to see if I can gain something from it.

Anyone with anxiety around sleep should look into it.
 
F

Freckles1968

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 17, 2019
Messages
110
Location
Norwich
Yes everything he talks about in the podcast resonates with me. We’re on the same wavelength! Glad you found it useful. Freckles x
 
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