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KOALA_BEAR's Photo KOALA_BEAR SparkPoints: (17,184)
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2/27/11 12:39 A

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My sleep issue is staying asleep, and going back to sleep when I awake during the night like to use the bathroom. I'm good for about 4 to 5 hours then sometime can't sleep again at all, or else it takes a couple hours to go back to sleep.

Since working with my latest doctor on changing some medications, I found that 5 HTP (200mg) at night plus melatonin (50mg) helps. He says the melatonin is short term active so I take the sublingual type under my tongue when I wake up and it helps me go back to sleep sooner. I also will drink some hot tea when I awake if I can't get right back to sleep. I'll wait about 15 or 20 minutes and if I'm getting restless, just get up and reheat some from the tea pot. I watch a little TV - PBS can sometime bore me enough to fall back asleep. I go to bed rather early so I don't have to worry about getting enough hours of sleep.
I also try to walk outside every day for 30 minutes before 1:00pm to stimulate the pineal gland. It sets up a reaction thru our eyes that resets the body's clock so that we are tired and producting the right chemicals to sleep thru the night. That is what the sleep specialist told me and it seems to help.
Another suggestions was to go home after work and spend 10 minutes clearing my mind. You could meditate but I simply lay down in a quiet room with the shade down, and unwind. Then right before bed, I inhale some lavender oil by breathing it in deeply three times in each nostril. Since implementing these changes, my sleep has improved. It isn't perfect but it is bettter quality esepcially the early morning hours after the initial "4 or 5 hr "nap" during the first part of the night.
Finally, I recommend taking Calcium Citrate in powder form (1 tsp) that you mix with hot water, 2 Tbls apple cider vinegar, and a little honey or Splenda. Take nightly or at least every other night. It helps relax the muscles and restores balance. Don't take too much though or you will have very loose bowels. Most of us don't get enough calcium, magnesium, and potassium in balance. The vinegar helps the body absorb the calcium which is harder to digest as we get older - and none of us are getting any younger... You can substitute lemon juice but the vinegar also has some trace minerals that can help.

K.bear


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LOVELIFEBETTER's Photo LOVELIFEBETTER Posts: 211
4/27/10 4:47 A

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My brain hasn't shut down for two days and two nights, I feel rather calm instead of sleepy. This is the strangest episode of insomnia I can remember. And there's no way I can go to sleep during the day tomorrow. I have appts and my daughter's graduation announcements MUST go out today. Then my son is playing his last lacrosse game of the season and it's an hour & a half drive due to being an away game, looks like the game will not get over until 8pm so it'll be late when we get home. The next afternoon, he plays double hockey games back to back then has to referee another hour. And I have to finish editing photos I took today of my daughter for her senior causal picture and get it in asap. My life is crazy right now. I just jumped over to SP's site for a break in addressing announcements. I wonder how long I can go on? emoticon

"Success is not final, failure is not fatal; it is the courage
to continue that counts." Sir Winston Churchill

"Preach the Gospel at all times. When absolutely necessary, use words."
St. Francis of Assisi


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MAMACOW2 Posts: 5
4/9/10 5:29 A

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yup! it's 3:24 am and I'm writing this. ckl ckl
"Night Owl" is not fun when I have to get up in 4.5 hrs and drive 120 miles. :0)

My best, deepest sleep comes in late afternoon, 4-7 pm but I'm rarely allowed to do that. Other than that, I wake-up at night about ever 45 minutes or so. I don't know why. Most times, I can fall back asleep unless it's a panic thing. Then I pray for others until I drift off. About once a week I get a really good 7-8 hrs night sleep which is very new to me, but nice. :-) I sleep soundly from 4-6 am usually or for about an hour after my husband gets out of bed.

It's almost like I can't relax and sleep solidly until he's up and awake...weird.

Anywho, thanks for posting as the tips and insights are encouraging.
Blessings.

MAMACOW2 Posts: 5
4/9/10 5:29 A

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whoops! Don't know how multiple entries showed up! Sorry emoticon

Edited by: MAMACOW2 at: 4/10/2010 (12:21)
MAMACOW2 Posts: 5
4/9/10 5:29 A

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yup! it's 3:24 am and I'm writing this. ckl ckl
"Night Owl" is not fun when I have to get up in 4.5 hrs and drive 120 miles. :0)

My best, deepest sleep comes in late afternoon, 4-7 pm but I'm rarely allowed to do that. Other than that, I wake-up at night about ever 45 minutes or so. I don't know why. Most times, I can fall back asleep unless it's a panic thing. Then I pray for others until I drift off. About once a week I get a really good 7-8 hrs night sleep which is very new to me, but nice. :-) I sleep soundly from 4-6 am usually or for about an hour after my husband gets out of bed.

It's almost like I can't relax and sleep solidly until he's up and awake...weird.

Anywho, thanks for posting as the tips and insights are encouraging.
Blessings.

KOI239's Photo KOI239 Posts: 457
4/7/10 2:30 P

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I still work shift work and I'm defiantly getting in the older category. emoticon

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LOSTAGAIN57 Posts: 3
4/7/10 12:21 P

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Hi, I can relate totally. I think my sleep problems started after I did shift-work for 9 years...really screwed up my sleeping patterns...cuz before I had no problem falling asleep...or maybe its just old age...lol

LOSTAGAIN57 Posts: 3
4/7/10 12:19 P

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Hi...I am very new to this site and I too have problems sleeping. I liked what you had to say, cuz I prefer to have a routine, vs taking meds. I understand how your brain can become addicted to the meds, almost talking myself into thinking that if I don't have the meds, then I can't fall asleep. It is really quite self-defeating...anyways I will try your routine before bed method...Thank you for the info....have a great day,

KOI239's Photo KOI239 Posts: 457
11/10/09 12:44 A

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I have a hard time shutting my brain off and some of my medication interfers with sleep.

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KATHYCOOK4's Photo KATHYCOOK4 Posts: 1,004
11/9/09 2:40 A

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I found that some of my problems are due to pain & my reluctance to take anything for it. Of course, sleep apnea is a big problem too. But my C-PAP is great.

I have also started establishing a routine. First I wait until I'm tired. Then I take my shower & go to bed. TV is on (I leave it on all night). Then, if I feel like it, I do a Word Search or something like that. Then I put my C-PAP mask on & watch TV. Before I know it, it's morning.

I also want to say that it's not easy.

Tonight, since I slept all day yesterday, I'm just now getting tired. (It's after 2:30 am here). So, I'm going to go to bed.

Good night.

emoticon

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SCOTT911's Photo SCOTT911 SparkPoints: (0)
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11/9/09 1:04 A

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It sounds as if you have frequent PVC's; premature ventricular contractions. It causes the typical "heart skipping a beat", or fluttering feeling. It is sleep disturbing; I have the same condition myself, and take 100mg Atenolol for it. Worked just fine. However, your same symptoms could be caused by atrial fibrillation. You'll need an EKG done do differenciate between the two, as the treatment modalities are very different; and chosing the wrong one could be dangerous.

Ambien is a very good hypnotic; and does induce some pretty wild dreams/hallucinations. However, it can cause people to sleepwalk, and they'll have no memory of what they did while in the sleep-state. Chloral hydrate is a great old fashioned remedy, but rarely prescribed anymore. It goes under the brand name of NocTec, I believe. Of course diphenhydramine hydrochloride is commonly used as a sleep aid, and found in the "PM" products, or under the brand name Benadryl. It's an antihistimine that has sedative side-effects, and relatively safe.

Good luck to you!

CINDYLOU58 Posts: 4,385
11/8/09 5:05 P

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emoticon HappyTex glad things have worked out for you lately making you happy'. Hope your doctor's appointment goes well too.

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HAPPYTEX Posts: 329
11/8/09 7:54 A

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I usually don't have trouble falling asleep, except lately, when an irregular heartbeat makes sleep difficult at times. I've had it off and on for years, but now it's a little too erratic. (I'm going to a cardiologist next eweek.) Of course, being a 71 year-old man, I get up several times a night. At times I have trouble falling asleep again, so I take a 5gm Ambien. It works great. I think working out at the gym about 4 times a week helps me fall asleep initially.

I take Cymbalta because I had a pretty good bout of depression a couple of years ago. I wonder if that contributes to my vivid dreams. It's like a second life--my sleep life, with really wild dreams. I used to take Trazadone for sleep, which worked great until it started making me very dizzy.

Most of the time I get around seven hours of sleep, which is good. I have no depression now, hence the name--HappyTex.

ASCHMALING Posts: 2
11/4/09 4:35 P

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I also did cognitive sleep therapy. Helpful for the routine thing and for finding your optimal sleep hours. One of the keys is to actually shorten the time you allow yourself to sleep to make your body use that time to actually sleep and gradually increase until your max efficiency (best quality, fewest wakeups, etc.) is reached. The tough part WAS the making the routine and not breaking it at all for 2 weeks regardless of how miserable you felt. Because without the pattern and retraining your body that x time is bed time (conditioning) your brain will be confused about what time is sleeping time.

It was good and likely covered by insurance.

Unfortunately my problem is subconscious. I know it's anxiety, but it's not anxiety I have during waking time but anxiety dreams that keep my brain awake rather than going to sleep - even though I think I'm sleep. (I did a sleep study that concluded this was the problem.) However, after about 4 months of not "sleeping" despite sleeping 8 hours a night I was so out of it and anxious about sleeping that I've have panic attacks before going to bed about falling asleep and getting a good rest. So, it's anti-anxiety meds for me since nothing else seems to derail the waking dream thing. However, the trazadone only works okay for this and an increased dosage actually gives me weird/strange dreams (not anxiety dreams but still not quite restful, either).

Edited by: ASCHMALING at: 11/4/2009 (16:38)
KELLYKK Posts: 103
11/4/09 4:01 P

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MISSYTYGER
Routine sounds wonderful, but was it hard to start. My problem is that I am so tired from not sleeping good the night before that I have no energy at night. How did you start your routine?

MISSYTYGER Posts: 5
11/4/09 1:45 P

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I have the exact same problem. It's almost impossible to shut my brain off after a hectic stressful day (which is almost every day). Couple that with an anxious personality, and I could never seem to fall asleep. I used sleeping pills, herbal pills, herbal teas, at least until recently...

I started a fairly new routine (about 2 months now) that has me asleep within minutes of "going to bed." The whole thing takes about any hour. I start by turning off the TV, computer, lights, and I will only have the apartment lit by candles. I take a hot bath every night for about 10-15 minutes with relaxing music. Then I get ready for bed. While in bed, I write in my journal for about 10-30 minutes, reflecting on anything that happened that day and get any last frustration or thoughts on the day to paper. That way I get it off my mind. Then I read a chapter of fiction to get my mind on something other than my day/life, for about 10-20 minutes. Then I blow out the candles and go to sleep. I have been surprised how effective this routine is.

ASCHMALING Posts: 2
11/2/09 2:59 P

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My problem with shutting my brain down is anxiety, too. I took amitripolene for 1.5 years for anxiety - it also causes browsiness, too, so it's taken at bedtime. Then I switched to trazadone, also for anxiety - not any drowsiness and not as good, but okay.

KELLYKK Posts: 103
11/1/09 4:59 P

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I also have a terrible time shutting down my brain. I think of things and worry. Hard to get to sleep unless I take some kind of sleep aid. It is wonderful if I ever get to sleep 6 hours straight which is rare.

MANDAGRANT's Photo MANDAGRANT Posts: 254
10/21/09 2:31 P

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In this hectic society, that seems to be the reason a lot of us can't sleep. I know that is what keeps me up at night. I am on Zoloft, which I take before bed. It is the only thing that shuts my brain off. It isn't a sleep med, but anti-anxiety. It helps by stopping my perseverating over life's worries. I also fall asleep to the sound of my husband reading to me, something to focus on that is very relaxing. I have also found that music (Enya, waterfalls, etc) help a lot.

What it seems is that I need something for my mind to focus on that isn't a worry or a concern, then I'm able to drift off. I have even started telling stories in my head or imagining scenes from movies. Anything that is non-stressful.

I Need Sleep! - Team Leader

"Smile and let the Sunshine Flow!"

"Practice who you want to become"


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MATTDANE1970 Posts: 4
10/18/09 10:46 P

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I have tried a bunch of different things - from Melatonin to Tylenol PM to Ambien to Herbal Teas (Sleepytime in particular) to try to shut my brain down at the end of the day...but things do not seem to work or work too much. Between family, money, work, etc....the brain just does not want to shut down. I tried a few of them with little results, but a few others really sent me for a loop if I took them too late.
If anyone has any input, I would greatly appreciate it.

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