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[Misc] Insomnia



Cheshire Cat

The most curious thing..
Radio 4 Extra can bore you for hours with some very terrible old programmes after midnight
 

Cheshire Cat

The most curious thing..
Just been reading through this thread as been really struggling lately with sleep. Having kids doesn't help but I've always been a light sleeper and gone through spells of sleep issues despite never (i think) feeling particularly stressed in general. It feels more prolonged at the moment though - get off to sleep OK generally but when I wake around 1/2 that's it: racing thoughts, not even really about work or anything - just random thoughts which keep me too alert to get back to sleep. In the past I've tried all the tricks in the book with very little success - just ended up riding it out and it eventually passes. Feels different this time though - considering going to the doctor but because I've tried all the tricks in the past and nothing has worked I feel quite defeatist. Last resort which I've never given in to is sleeping pills I guess, but reluctant to because don't want to become reliant on them!

Christ sleep issues are a bitch. Those lucky lucky fuckers who fall asleep at the drop of a hat and can sleep through anything
Sounds like stress to me, even if you don't feel it.
 

jordanseagull

Well-known member
Feb 11, 2009
4,036
Magnesium Threonate (x2-x4), L-Theanine, Apigenin. Versions that don't contain fillers. All 3 before bed. Completely revolutionised my ability to get to sleep as well as my ability to return to sleep after waking, and crucially all are natural. Not many people seem to know that we humans are almost all Magnesium deficient (and by a significant degree), so it's a winner on that front too. Cannot recommend it highly enough. You'll need to juggle the levels of Magnesium you use, though, unless you're a big fan of extremely vivid dreams.

Stay away from sleeping pills unless an absolute last last last resort.
 


Deleted member 37369

Well-known member
Aug 21, 2018
1,994
Magnesium Threonate (x2-x4), L-Theanine, Apigenin. Versions that don't contain fillers. All 3 before bed. Completely revolutionised my ability to get to sleep as well as my ability to return to sleep after waking, and crucially all are natural. Not many people seem to know that we humans are almost all Magnesium deficient (and by a significant degree), so it's a winner on that front too. Cannot recommend it highly enough. You'll need to juggle the levels of Magnesium you use, though, unless you're a big fan of extremely vivid dreams.

Stay away from sleeping pills unless an absolute last last last resort.
Interesting ... wouldn't mind having a look at these. I posted something similar to @BN41Albion recently when I talked about trying CBD oil - which doesn't seem to be helping (and that's when taking more like the old 'safe' dose compared to the vastly reduced recommended 'safe' dose).

Getting decent quality of supplements is more important than trying to find cheapest - so would be interested in any links to the ones that are helping you, if that's possible (y)
 

Deleted member 37369

Well-known member
Aug 21, 2018
1,994
Just been reading through this thread as been really struggling lately with sleep. Having kids doesn't help but I've always been a light sleeper and gone through spells of sleep issues despite never (i think) feeling particularly stressed in general. It feels more prolonged at the moment though - get off to sleep OK generally but when I wake around 1/2 that's it: racing thoughts, not even really about work or anything - just random thoughts which keep me too alert to get back to sleep. In the past I've tried all the tricks in the book with very little success - just ended up riding it out and it eventually passes. Feels different this time though - considering going to the doctor but because I've tried all the tricks in the past and nothing has worked I feel quite defeatist. Last resort which I've never given in to is sleeping pills I guess, but reluctant to because don't want to become reliant on them!

Christ sleep issues are a bitch. Those lucky lucky fuckers who fall asleep at the drop of a hat and can sleep through anything

As I've mentioned in another post - I am similar to you in that I can usually get to sleep OK but I then wake in the night after a few hours or so and then struggle to get back to sleep with my mind wandering all over the place ... often reliving events that occurred many years ago etc etc.

Someone mention Zopiclone. My GP prescribed it for me but I hated it. It might have helped me get to sleep a bit quicker - but as I said, that's not generally the issue - but when I woke in the night, I still struggled to get back to sleep. I also found that I felt drugged and lethargic the following day - a bit like a bad hangover.

@Cheeky Monkey mentioned Sleepstation CBT. I paid for this a few years ago (cost me £160) - and it is quite brutal as @Cheeky Monkey says. Before I go on to the key learning bits from their methods - it's worth reading this if you're going to consider speaking to your GP about Zopiclone


The brutal bit about Sleepstation's methods is about trying to get your body clock reset into one that will make you want to sleep. Everyone is different, but after my initial online consultation with them, I was told that I shouldn't go to bed until around midnight/1am - certainly no earlier. But then I had to get up at 6am. This kind of routine goes on for a little while and then gently eases until you get to a 'normal' bedtime routine to 'hopefully' get 8 hours sleep.

They take you through all the sleep hygiene things like dark room, not too hot or cold, no screen time before bed etc etc ... which I'm guessing you've tried. It's worth having a read of this page ...


They do give a useful tip to try and help with the wandering mind ... just focusing on one simple word that doesn't have any real meaning. The word they suggest is 'THE'. So you slowly repeat the word THE in your mind (a bit like counting sheep) ... and this will hopefully rid the mind of the distractions.

Every now and then I have to revisit these things myself. It's not easy ... I'm struggling at the moment. I think it's difficult for those that 'sleep like a baby' whatever ... to understand what it's like to be sleep deprived. The effect on daily life can be pretty horrendous.

I hope some of my long diatribe is helpful ... I would just caution against going down the prescribed meds route if at all possible. Every now and again when I was going through a really bad spell, I'd think sod it and take a Zopiclone ... and then regret it the next day. I took my mostly unused supply back to my chemist as I just didn't want them in the house.

Hope you can find something that works for you ... best of luck.
 
Last edited:


MJsGhost

Remembers
NSC Licker Extraordinaire
Jun 26, 2009
4,364
East
Just been reading through this thread as been really struggling lately with sleep. Having kids doesn't help but I've always been a light sleeper and gone through spells of sleep issues despite never (i think) feeling particularly stressed in general. It feels more prolonged at the moment though - get off to sleep OK generally but when I wake around 1/2 that's it: racing thoughts, not even really about work or anything - just random thoughts which keep me too alert to get back to sleep. In the past I've tried all the tricks in the book with very little success - just ended up riding it out and it eventually passes. Feels different this time though - considering going to the doctor but because I've tried all the tricks in the past and nothing has worked I feel quite defeatist. Last resort which I've never given in to is sleeping pills I guess, but reluctant to because don't want to become reliant on them!

Christ sleep issues are a bitch. Those lucky lucky fuckers who fall asleep at the drop of a hat and can sleep through anything
I feel your pain.

I have 2 kids under 2.5 and a stressful work situation, so once I am inevitably woken up during the night, my mind is racing...
Pills aren't really an option as I need to be able to function when the 2 year-old needs settling because the screaming 3-month old has woken her up...

Abstaining from alcohol helps, but MAN that can be hard.

I know exercise would help me too, but aside from walking the dog, there's no time for anything else and I crave something higher impact (yes I could run with the dog, but I tend to have a baby strapped to me!)

I hope you find what works for you @BN41Albion!
 

tonyt

Active member
Feb 23, 2009
262
I have tried numerous remedies over the years for insomnia.
The two best ones were sleep deprivation so if you normally go to bed at 11, start going an hour later. Then if you normally wake up at 8, set your alarm for an hour earlier. Do this regularly including weekends and holidays and your body will adjust after a while. You do need to persevere with it.
The other thing is Melatonin tablets which aren’t available in the UK but are easily bought on the internet (try biovea).
 

BN41Albion

Well-known member
Oct 1, 2017
6,315
Wow! Overwhelming number of responses. NSC at its finest 😁 thanks to all for a range of advice to consider - and sorry to hear so many suffer/have also suffered, although it is good to know it's so much more common than I always imagine.

Give the over the counter sleeping pills a try first. Not the nytol ones, the ones you can buy at the pharmacy. I get mine in Tesco pharmacy - 50mg.
My mind never switches off and these are the only things that help me. I just take them when I'm exhausted and not every night.
Sleep deprivation really isn't nice. 💤
Thanks for the advice - will have a look into them. Same with me - generally I have a very active mind so obviously doesn't help when it comes to sleeping!
@BN41Albion do you exercise? I’m naturally afflicted by a similar very active mind as yours, but I sleep so much better when that day I’d been for a brisk walk, or to yoga or a bike ride. Another well known factor is zero mobile/pc screen-time before sleep time, if I make the cut off 10pm, then read or watch a movie/recorded progs, I find that makes a big difference.
Yeah I keep myself fit and healthy exercise/diet wise, and have an active job, so not sure if there's much I can change there, but I'm not good at switching off from screen time when getting into bed. Never thought of it as a problem as generally get to sleep OK and then can't get back to sleep in the middle of the night, but I definitely need to manage screen time better and see if it helps!

I posted this in another thread about CBD but it might help someone

Other than the standard advice of dark room, not too much caffeine, good bedroom temp, no screens before bed, the following might be useful.

Deep breathing. Keeping your mouth closed, inhale quietly through your nose while counting to 4. Hold your breath for a count of 7. Exhale slowly through your mouth for a count of 8. Repeat this cycle around 6 times before returning to normal breathing.

Dont lie in bed for hours. If not asleep for 20/30 mins, get up walk about/stretch, read a book for a brief period.

Walk 40 min + a day or another form of exercise where your brain is forced to engage differently

Talk through the thoughts running through your head that you mentioned with someone you trust or a therapist.

Longer term - meditation to help manage those thoughts.

Increase Vitamin D levels - low Vit D levels have been linked to low quality/difficulty sleeping.

Accept you might not sleep sometimes and thats ok. A process of letting go may allow many more sleep improved nights.

Hope some of that helps
Thank you - lots of good advice there. I definitely need to try getting up and switching off from trying to get to sleep more - always been reluctant to do that and just laid awake for hours, but it's definitely something to try for my own sanity!
I can’t sleep unless I have something playing in the background - preferably something I’ve heard a thousand times before so that my brain doesn’t tune into it, old episodes of Blackadder or The Simpsons usually.

There’s a great album by Max Ricther called (funnily enough) Sleep, which was made using actual science and has a deliberately hypnotic quality - its 8 hours long and I challenge anyone to get to the end of it;

https://dg.lnk.to/sleep-8hours
I've tried music which didn't really work, but will look into the album you mentioned - thanks for the heads up!
Sounds like stress to me, even if you don't feel it.

Or Anxiety.
Yeah, I do feel maybe I've been in denial on stress/anxiety front. My wife has said it a few times but I've brushed it aside thinking I don't feel stressed/anxious, but kids, hectic job, constant active mind - definitely think the doctors would be a good first step and seeing what he thinks.
Meds are honestly never, ever the answer for sleep issues. You could ask your doc if you can get referred to Sleepstation, an online NHS program run out of the UK’s only dedicated sleep hospital in Newcastle. It sorted me out - in short, following a family trauma earlier this year I just stopped sleeping, my body clock stopped recognising the need for sleep and I didn’t sleep for almost two months. If I hadn’t gone through it I wouldn’t have thought it possible, I couldn’t work, was borderline suicidal, but bizarrely I never once felt tired, never yawned once and the days/nights were bloody long. Mine was admittedly at the extreme end of insomnia, and even if you don’t want to do Sleepstation, there are several online pieces that tell you what it entails (it is pretty brutal) :giggle: ITN Newscaster Tom Bradby had it worse than me, he didn't sleep for almost 5 months I think it was, I was just lucky to get referred relatively quickly. Good luck chap, insomnia is a horrible, ‘invisible’ affliction.
Thanks - if/when I go to the docs I'll ask about that! Sorry to hear re not sleeping for so long - I can't imagine how that must have felt to go through. Glad to hear you've recovered now! And thank you for the good luck!
 


BN41Albion

Well-known member
Oct 1, 2017
6,315
Magnesium Threonate (x2-x4), L-Theanine, Apigenin. Versions that don't contain fillers. All 3 before bed. Completely revolutionised my ability to get to sleep as well as my ability to return to sleep after waking, and crucially all are natural. Not many people seem to know that we humans are almost all Magnesium deficient (and by a significant degree), so it's a winner on that front too. Cannot recommend it highly enough. You'll need to juggle the levels of Magnesium you use, though, unless you're a big fan of extremely vivid dreams.

Stay away from sleeping pills unless an absolute last last last resort.
Thanks - something to look into! Never knew re humas being magnesium deficient. Why would you stay away from pills, out of interest?
As I've mentioned in another post - I am similar to you in that I can usually get to sleep OK but I then wake in the night after a few hours or so and then struggle to get back to sleep with my mind wandering all over the place ... often reliving events that occurred many years ago etc etc.

Someone mention Zopiclone. My GP prescribed it for me but I hated it. It might have helped me get to sleep a bit quicker - but as I said, that's not generally the issue - but when I woke in the night, I still struggled to get back to sleep. I also found that I felt drugged and lethargic the following day - a bit like a bad hangover.

@Cheeky Monkey mentioned Sleepstation CBT. I paid for this a few years ago (cost me £160) - and it is quite brutal as @Cheeky Monkey says. Before I go on to the key learning bits from their methods - it's worth reading this if you're going to consider speaking to your GP about Zopiclone


The brutal bit about Sleepstation's methods is about trying to get your body clock reset into one that will make you want to sleep. Everyone is different, but after my initial online consultation with them, I was told that I shouldn't go to bed until around midnight/1am - certainly no earlier. But then I had to get up at 6am. This kind of routine goes on for a little while and then gently eases until you get to a 'normal' bedtime routine to 'hopefully' get 8 hours sleep.

They take you through all the sleep hygiene things like dark room, not too hot or cold, no screen time before bed etc etc ... which I'm guessing you've tried. It's worth having a read of this page ...


They do give a useful tip to try and help with the wandering mind ... just focusing on one simple word that doesn't have any real meaning. The word they suggest is 'THE'. So you slowly repeat the word THE in your mind (a bit like counting sheep) ... and this will hopefully rid the mind of the distractions.

Every now and then I have to revisit these things myself. It's not easy ... I'm struggling at the moment. I think it's difficult for those that 'sleep like a baby' whatever ... to understand what it's like to be sleep deprived. The effect on daily life can be pretty horrendous.

I hope some of my long diatribe is helpful ... I would just caution against going down the prescribed meds route if at all possible. Every now and again when I was going through a really bad spell, I'd think sod it and take a Zopiclone ... and then regret it the next day. I took my mostly unused supply back to my chemist as I just didn't want them in the house.

Hope you can find something that works for you ... best of luck.
Loads of good advice there thank you! Yeah it sounds like we're very similar in that it's getting back to a sleep state that's the issue rather initially getting to sleep. Very interesting re staying up later and waking up early! Will certainly try your technique re trying to help with wondering mind - the amount of random stuff I'll suddenly be wide awake thinking about is crazy! 😫
I feel your pain.

I have 2 kids under 2.5 and a stressful work situation, so once I am inevitably woken up during the night, my mind is racing...
Pills aren't really an option as I need to be able to function when the 2 year-old needs settling because the screaming 3-month old has woken her up...

Abstaining from alcohol helps, but MAN that can be hard.

I know exercise would help me too, but aside from walking the dog, there's no time for anything else and I crave something higher impact (yes I could run with the dog, but I tend to have a baby strapped to me!)

I hope you find what works for you @BN41Albion!
Thanks, @MJsGhost. Ive never been a great sleeper and had lots of spells of poor sleep, but kids has definitely made it much worse! Years of disrupted sleep and not knowing when you go to bed when you're going to be woken up (often sooner rather than later!) takes its toll!
I have tried numerous remedies over the years for insomnia.
The two best ones were sleep deprivation so if you normally go to bed at 11, start going an hour later. Then if you normally wake up at 8, set your alarm for an hour earlier. Do this regularly including weekends and holidays and your body will adjust after a while. You do need to persevere with it.
The other thing is Melatonin tablets which aren’t available in the UK but are easily bought on the internet (try biovea).
Interesting you have the same advice as @heavysoul ! What's the reasoning around going to bed later/waking up earlier? Ha - I wish my normal wake up was 8, or even 6 or 7 for that matter 🤣🤣
 

Eeyore

Lord Donkey of Queen's Park
NSC Licker Extraordinaire
Apr 5, 2014
23,146
Had my worst episode of recent times last night. I went to bed with a slightly nauseous feeling in my stomach. It kept me awake all night. That and frequent visits to the sick bucket. I've slept today, but being perpetually tired is not helping. Having no appetite either
 


Weststander

Well-known member
NSC Licker Extraordinaire
Aug 25, 2011
62,633
Withdean area
Had my worst episode of recent times last night. I went to bed with a slightly nauseous feeling in my stomach. It kept me awake all night. That and frequent visits to the sick bucket. I've slept today, but being perpetually tired is not helping. Having no appetite either

Genuinely, hope you feel better soon.

Was this plaguing your thoughts?

IMG_0918.png
 

tonyt

Active member
Feb 23, 2009
262
Thanks - something to look into! Never knew re humas being magnesium deficient. Why would you stay away from pills, out of interest?

Loads of good advice there thank you! Yeah it sounds like we're very similar in that it's getting back to a sleep state that's the issue rather initially getting to sleep. Very interesting re staying up later and waking up early! Will certainly try your technique re trying to help with wondering mind - the amount of random stuff I'll suddenly be wide awake thinking about is crazy! 😫

Thanks, @MJsGhost. Ive never been a great sleeper and had lots of spells of poor sleep, but kids has definitely made it much worse! Years of disrupted sleep and not knowing when you go to bed when you're going to be woken up (often sooner rather than later!) takes its toll!

Interesting you have the same advice as @heavysoul ! What's the reasoning around going to bed later/waking up earlier? Ha - I wish my normal wake up was 8, or even 6 or 7 for that matter 🤣🤣
I ended up going to a private sleep centre in London. They explained that by reducing the hours of sleep that you normally have your body and mind will adjust naturally and you will eventually go to sleep normally. My problem was getting to sleep in the first place though and not waking up early or during the night.
Good luck with it!
The melatonin certainly helped as well - airline pilots with unusual sleep patterns use it commonly I’m told. It is a natural hormone produced by the body at night time.
 

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