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How can I make my sleep anxiety go away?



New member
Jan 12, 2019
Ever since I was a child, I have been terrified of sleeping by myself or in the dark. I used to climb into my parents bed when I was scared and it got so bad that my mom would lock the doors of their bedroom at night. As I got older, I began to become more exposed to horror films and shows that made my fear at night even worse.
My parents took me to a therapist when they found me pacing in our hallway at three in the morning, but I stopped going after a few sessions and nothing changed. When I started high school, I started to make shapes in the dark and freak myself out by thinking of scary things I had seen. I remember being ashamed that I still slept with a nightlight, something I’m unashamed to say that I still require to actually sleep. Even staying at home by myself was hard for me.
From age 16-26, the anxiety was still there, but not as prominent as it had been before. However, at nearly 40, my anxiety has come back even worse than before. Sometimes at night the only way for me to fall asleep is to sleep with my phone next to me. I cling to it like it will save me. I see things in my doorway that I know are not there and I stay up late at night because I am so terrified of what might happen if I close my eyes. Stress definitely effects it. Also, It has gotten so bad that it has effected my work life and my personal life with my partner. Sleeping with someone next to me helps a lot, but I want to overcome this and stop depending on other things to make me feel safe.

Also, I don’t even know what to call this. Is it sleep anxiety or just anxiety? Or something else? I don’t know. I just want to know what it is and how I can make it go away. I don’t want to spend the rest of my life terrified whenever I am alone.



Well-known member
Aug 1, 2014
Welcome aboard to the MHF Forums.

If you are in Britain, and to me it sounds like, that you do need mental health medical assistance in this, by this I mean you do need to be seen by a pshychartrist and if you explain like you did here, in fact you could print out a copy there is a way to do this, of your post, and when the time comes, to take with you to the appointment - this would be just to save you revised explaining all over again - and the pshychartrist woudl then assess you, and offer medication which I think you do need in this instance, and maybe some sleep anxiety therapy, now, the medication for sleep or to help with anxiety are called Diazapam, and also Lorezapam which are both in the same family or similar family of medicines.

Try having music and or watch calming or easy listing music, that might help in the meantime.

Your not alone, I used to have a slight fear about sleeping in dark, and had light on, or a few lights to help, now, I have completely over this of my fear, and conquered it, though it didn't take me overnight. It took a bit of time.

Do book an appointment with your GP, and if they can't or don't specialise in mental h ealth capacity, they'll refer you to the community mental health team, and they have would have phychartrists in these cmht departments.

I think, it would have to be labelled as sleep anxiety in my books.

Best wishes.


Well-known member
Sep 15, 2018
Aalestrup --Dk
I Think it's called scoto-phobia, fear of Darkness x x I Would find a solution, where you can sleep, with the light on, may-be cover your face, with a sheet, to help you sleep, Light can cause a Poor sleep, To me x x