Turn on thread page Beta
    • #1
    • Thread Starter
    #1

    Hey everyone.

    I've been an insomniac since I was 11 and now (6 yrs later) it's still just as bad as it has ever been (if not worse). On a good night I get around 5 and a half hours sleep. I average at around 4 and worse case scenario is about 2 - 3 hours. Although this seems to have had no bearings on my school performance (I generally perform very well) or my cognitive abilities in any way, I'm starting to get desperate. I'm really underweight (always have been) and seem to be losing more weight despite eating a healthy diet - I've even stopped mensturating. I'm thinking sleep deprivation may have had something to do with this.

    I've been to the Dr's before and have tried practically every herbal sleeping tablet on the market to no effect. I DO NOT want to try prescription sleeping drugs unless I absolutely have to.

    Anybody have any ideas on how to improve sleep patterns? I'd really appreciate any advice.

    Thanks
    Offline

    9
    ReputationRep:
    Definatley go back to the doctors and tell them about you stopping menstruating. I'm not an insomniac myself, and seeingas you've tried a lot of things, I would strongly recconmend getting more professional help. Having said this, I don't know whether the sleep deprevation would really cause your menstrual cycle to stop. Are you sure you eat enough? and enough iron etc. You're not dieting at all? or are on/have been on any illegal drugs as this can lead to insomnia also?
    Offline

    10
    ReputationRep:
    I myself have been a chronic insomniac for the past 10 years. Every few months i use sleep deprivation therapy. In it you avoid sleeping for over 24 hours + the hours needed to go to bed at a suitable time (10pm - 2am usually).

    I'm sure you know that the insomnia would be the cause of your wieght loss (Ed Norton had to lose weight to play the insomniac on Fight Club).

    Also if tyou feel that you will not go to sleep within 30-60 minutes of going to bed - do not go. It's very counter productive.
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    Out of interest, why don't you want prescription sedatives? They are extremely effective and the only thing that can counter my insomnia.

    The dependency problems are not insurmountable. For me, they improved my quality of life immensely. Knowing that I could get to sleep like a normal person, within 10-30 minutes of going to bed, instead of dreading every night because I knew it was going to be a multiple hour struggle (sometimes unsuccessful) to get to sleep.

    Insomnia from what I've read/been told is generally a symptom, not a cause in itself, so there is likely to be something else causing it -- most of the time it's depression.

    Go to your GP.
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    Insomnia is evil. I've suffered from it since GCSE's and it's been really bad since June. I have no idea how I'll cope at uni.

    Are you tense before you go to sleep or stressed? I use a technique which I learnt in acupuncture. Listen to some soothing music whilst sitting up straight. Breathe deeply. Imagine that there's a butterfly between your thumb and forefinger.

    Failing that I often listen to music and repeat it over and over. Eventually my brain is so bored I fall asleep.
    Offline

    17
    ReputationRep:
    I used to suffer from insomnia when I was younger, but I realised it was due to a lack of exercise. Now, I workout three to four times a week. Why not try joining a gym?
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    I hate it. I've had it for about two years. Most of the time I manage 4 hours sleep, then after two weeks of deprieved sleep, I'm sleeping for about 14 hours a day for the next week and then it goes round again.

    Exercise may help, but I was training 18 hours a week, and it didn't help at all.

    I've had sleeping pills, but they made me drowsy. I'd suggest you go see the doctors since it is obviously not making you healthy at all!
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    I think if you reached a point where your periods are stopping due to weight loss (this can happen, yes?) you have reached a point where you 'absolutely have to' use prescription drugs.

    Only if your doctor can confirm this is the case of course, and recommends sleepers as a way of improving the condition.
    Offline

    1
    ReputationRep:
    My therapist a while ago gave me a good technique. It's mainly for anxiety but also helps my insomnia. I didn't want any kind of medical intervention (already on 3 other kinds of medication) so was given a breathing exercise. Just lie in bed, controlling your breathing - in through the nose and out through the mouth, for 10-15 minutes. It makes me feel much more relaxed and therefore I can sleep better.
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    I've had severe insomnia for about 6 months, but it's been on and off since pretty much ever. Over my exams I was getting 2-3 hours on a good night, but a month or so ago I went on an orchestra tour to Spain- and weirdly, I was fine when I got back. This was after various (pretty strong) pills, which hadn't really hit the spot (but do give them a go anyway- the latest ones I tried were a tricyclic antidepressant in a low dosage, recommended because they are completely non-addictive and aren't strong enough to actually be an antidepressant, so my mum wouldn't throw a fit). I think it was the being completely worn out every day and not sleeping on the coach for 30+ hours. Maybe find something that would have that effect? I hope you find something that helps, insomnia is not fun.
    • #2
    #2

    I may be just stating the obvious here but reading the same novel over and over again so it bores you to sleep may help, or if you have a dvd in your room try watching the same boring movie over and over again every night. The movie one worked for me.
    Offline

    1
    ReputationRep:
    I've been an insomniac for 4 years and it usually peaks around stressful times, ie exams.

    I sometimes do baisic yoga before I go to sleep. I just do some stretching for about half an hour then some breathing exercises and it relaxes you while also tireing you out a bit.

    I was reluctant to take perscription drugs as I could easily imagine myself becoming addicted to a decent nights sleep but really they work just as well under your pillow. The peace of mind of having the choice to take them is comforting. Ask for the lowest dose if you are still reluctant as this can simply relax you and put you in 'sleeping mode'.

    Best of luck
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    insomnia sucks...when you're awake and your parents are going to work you KNOW there's something wrong! :p:

    seriously now, being underweight/not eating enough will cause insomnia/make your insomnia about 100 times worse if you already have it. you need to address that one soonish, talk to your gp about it? also if you're not sleeping because your body is starving (this is what happens when you're very underweight), eating bread before you sleep seriously helps. no jokes. it was the only way i could get more than 5 hours for months. and while some jackass is gonna come into this thread and tell you how unhealthy this is, your body needs it. or you could try hot drinks, but i'm guessing you've done that cause it's a fairly common 'remedy'. also the relaxation stuff is a good idea, its never worked for me on its own but it does help.
    • #1
    • Thread Starter
    #1

    Thanks for the advice, everyone.

    I'm seeing my GP this week again to sort out an eating/sleeping regime and I'm looking into counselling. I'll certainly try out most of your suggestions and I'll let you know how I get on.


    Thanks again! Here's to a good night's sleep...
    Offline

    9
    ReputationRep:
    i had hypnotherapy for my insomnia a few years ago....she taught me how to train myself to achieve deep relaxation and worked on the negative links i had with the bedroom and sleep..she basically gave me a strategy to cope with my sleeping problam and helped to reprogramme the way i think about sleep

    id recommend it as it helped me and even when i cant sleep and get myself too worked up i can go into 'deep relaxation mode' enjoy it and feel rested after very little sleep becuase youv relaxed your body so much.

    preferably get a hypnotherapist recommended..some gps might scoff on it but its not like hypnotherapy on tv its sort of like they teach you to soothe yourself and create 'anchors' that comfort you and you can connect with relaxing and sleep.

    pm me for more info if you like.
 
 
 
Reply
Submit reply
Turn on thread page Beta
TSR Support Team

We have a brilliant team of more than 60 Support Team members looking after discussions on The Student Room, helping to make it a fun, safe and useful place to hang out.

Updated: August 21, 2007
Poll
Black Friday: Yay or Nay?

The Student Room, Get Revising and Marked by Teachers are trading names of The Student Room Group Ltd.

Register Number: 04666380 (England and Wales), VAT No. 806 8067 22 Registered Office: International House, Queens Road, Brighton, BN1 3XE

Write a reply...
Reply
Hide
Reputation gems: You get these gems as you gain rep from other members for making good contributions and giving helpful advice.