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JOYELLE22 SparkPoints: (1,085)
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9/15/13 11:02 A

TRACKNFIT - I have developed a pattern of sleeping a few hours in the morning after work, up for the afternoon. Most of my sleep time is between 5-10 pm. A few things that have helped me: Keeping a consistent bedtime routine. No coffee after 3 am. Some deep breathing/mediation before trying to sleep. No TV before trying to sleep. A warm bath or shower is relaxing for me. Eat a light meal before going to bed. Blackout curtains in my bedroom and using a fan for "white noise." If unable to sleep, don't stay in bed worrying about not sleeping. When I can't sleep, I usually get up and read for a while and/or do additional deep breathing and meditation until I am sleepy. Of course, some days are just not good days for sleep no matter what I try. Usually the following day is better.

I am frequently awake during the night on my days off, but I don't really mind. I guess I have gotten used to being nocturnal...

Find a sleep pattern that works for YOU. Other people tell me that I am "weird" for my work and sleep patterns, but if one is ever in need of health care, firefighters, law enforcement or any of those who work nontraditional hours, I would hope we would not be "weird" then. Also, it is certainly better than unemployment! : )

TRACKNFIT SparkPoints: (4,098)
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9/15/13 10:36 A

That makes sense! My Vit D is usually Low as I have an Auto Immune Disease and I do need an extra boost of potassium to ward off cramps. Lately my legs have been cramping whenever I get in bed to relax.

TRACKNFIT SparkPoints: (4,098)
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9/15/13 10:32 A

I've been implementing most of the advice given ( which I am very grateful for) but my insomnia is worse. I've went from sleeping at the wrong time to not sleeping at all. I do extra just to make myself exhausted and I also try to get into bed earlier but I feel really AWAKE but still exhausted.

Sometimes I figure it's a cycle that my body does and eventually it sorts out on it's own.

To JOYELLE22 - which of the tips worked best for you?

Is it possible that the body does a weird thing by going through cycles? I've noticed that I start out with sleeping fairly well, then when something majorly stressful happens my sleep pattern falls off the bandwagon.

I might have to speak to a doctor about this because it's really making life difficult.

Edited by: TRACKNFIT at: 9/15/2013 (10:37)
JOYELLE22 SparkPoints: (1,085)
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9/13/13 10:52 A

Regarding the work "day" - don't forget shift workers! I have spent the last 20 years doing shift work - I used to work all three shifts, but currently work a straight night shift (11pm to 730 am). My sleep patterns are irregular at best. Lots of good tips here - I think I have tried almost all of them.

CAMEOSUN SparkPoints: (86,617)
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9/11/13 12:08 P

Great tips here. I'm checking the potassium link myself. I haven't slept well since child #3 was born...18 yrs. ago. Hope you get some quality sleep though - it really does effect your health, both physical and mental.

LISA_C Posts: 309
9/10/13 5:44 P

I also have sleep issues, but mine is more an issue of staying asleep. I seem to have this problem for about one week a month. I was just researching this issue and found that Magnesium deficiencies can cause insomnia. Here's a good article on it, but there are also many other sources that say the same thing.

I also found other articles that said Calcium, Potassium, and Vitamin D deficiencies can affect your sleep. I plan on supplementing these vitamins and minerals since I am always under my RDA anyway. It can't hurt, it can only help my sleep.

AZULVIOLETA6 SparkPoints: (0)
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9/10/13 12:43 P

I didn't assume told us.

I certainly didn't jump to unemployed...I thought that perhaps you were a stay-at-home mom or recovering from an illness. Clearly there are other things going on here which could be relevant to the situation...just because I asked though, does not mean that you have to give us additional details. I would not expect you to if that makes you uncomfortable or if it feels too personal..

By the way, telling someone that they are rude...particularly when that person is trying to be pretty rude.

In any case, Anarie is right on. I've had times when I could have slept from 4-2, and my body would love to do that, but I had to break that pattern since it was a problem for me. The more you let this happen, the worse it will get.

ROXYCARIN SparkPoints: (95,965)
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9/10/13 12:40 P


ANARIE Posts: 13,200
9/10/13 12:21 P

Actually, the fact that your lifestyle allows you to sleep until afternoon is extremely relevant. It was a good, fair question. I was wondering exactly the same thing. If you have the option of going to sleep at 11:00 OR at 4 am, you clearly don't have a regular work schedule.

If you're not working, that's almost certainly a major cause of your insomnia. Not having a job (either because of unemployment or disability) is one of the most stressful things that can happen to a person. That's true even if you never did work. We need to be occupied. If you don't have a schedule, you become depressed; it's almost inevitable. Depressed people have insomnia. That's almost inevitable, too. You stay up because you've been bored all day and you're waiting for SOMETHING interesting or stimulating to happen.

If you're not working and you can't work, find a way to fake a work schedule. If you make some sort of firm commitment to be somewhere at a specific time in the morning, you'll have a few nights when you really don't get enough sleep, but then your schedule will adjust itself. Look for a serious volunteer job where they NEED you to show up for a specific shift, or take a crappy minimum-wage job, or find an exercise partner, or sign up for a class at your community college or library. (There are free ones if money is an issue.) If you're disabled and housebound, volunteer to watch a neighbor's kids walk to the school bus from your window. Do something-- anything-- to obligate yourself to get up in the morning, and then you'll find it easier to go to sleep at night.

If you're a freelancer working at home, or a student, etc, you'll still do yourself a favor if you set up a firm schedule. There are freelancer online support groups, and there are also office-share groups in some cities. You pay some very small amount to use an office, and people are finding that they get fantastic support because they can discuss problems with people in completely different fields and get viewpoints that someone within the field would never think of.

Of course, if you don't have to keep a schedule and you don't want to try any of these suggestions, there's not necessarily anything wrong with sleeping 4-2. That's ten hours, more sleep than you need. Even if you're not sleeping soundly all that time, you've gotta be getting at least 6-7 hours. I would recommend forcing yourself to get up by noon because that's 8 hours, but it doesn't really matter if you sleep in the day instead the night as long as you sleep. It's only a problem if it feels like one to you.

TRACKNFIT SparkPoints: (4,098)
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9/9/13 10:53 P

I'm not understanding how you sleep until 2PM...don't you miss most of the work day?
Sorry just had to point that out because it's somewhat rude to assume what and how people spend their day.

Despite that, thank you for the advice.

TRACKNFIT SparkPoints: (4,098)
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9/9/13 10:51 P

Thank you everyone! I will do everything you mentioned and also see a sleep specialist.

AZULVIOLETA6 SparkPoints: (0)
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9/8/13 11:22 A

If you were to see a sleep specialist, the first thing that they would tell you is to follow the rules of sleep hygiene. You can google those yourself and give them a try.

A sleep aid might help you too. There are over-the-counter things that you can try yourself. My personal favorite is .5 mg of chewable melatonin and a Benedryl. Most OTC sleeping pills are basically Benedryl.

I'm not understanding how you sleep until 2PM...don't you miss most of the work day?

I get tons of exercise (usually 800-900 calories worth a day) and still have sleep issues, so I'm not sure that more exercise will make a difference...doesn't hurt to try though!

DROPCONE Posts: 1,592
9/8/13 9:50 A

I've been on that sleep schedule and although it was hard for me to turn it around I was SO glad I did it. Being awake during more daylight hours helped me a lot with my activity level, overall mood management, and just getting things done in general. If you don't have a job you have to be at, you can choose what time of day you are sleeping. Even switching it from 2 AM to 10 AM will probably feel better than when you are sleeping now, and may be more achievable in the beginning anyway.

I had to try a LOT of different approaches at different times to find out what worked for me, and some of them I didn't have to do once I got to a pattern I liked. So, here are some things I tried that helped:

-No bright screens or lights 2-3 hours before my target bedtime, and not while I was trying to sleep either. That meant no computer, cell phone, TV, or the special light I use for close-up craft work. Luckily my e-reader wasn't back-lit! I got to eliminate this "tip" later, but it really helped at first.

-Make your bed or bedroom restful to you, and don't do anything but sleep or sex in your bed. Eliminate light from electronics like clocks or TV or computers. Use earplugs or a white noise machine if there is a lot of ambient noise. If you lay down & find you are not sleeping after 20 minutes, get up and do something calm until you feel sleepy again. Tossing & turning won't help.

-Exercise as early in the day as possible, so my blood isn't still pumping when I'm trying to sleep.

-Limit caffeine. I used to be the person who lived on black coffee & tea all day long but could still sleep at the drop of a hat. Now I limit caffeine to 2 8-oz cups upon waking, and that's IT. Any more than that, even if it's in the morning, and I just can't fall asleep at night.

-Deal with stress constructively, and practice calming your mind. Meditation, prayer, personal journal, making crafts, taking up kickboxing...there are many options!

-Find a sleep aid that works for you. I like melatonin even though it gives me bizarre dreams. Chamomile tea and a relaxing bath can also help.

-If you can, see a doctor. You might have sleep apnea which prevents restful sleep, and can also be dangerous! Also they can prescribe sleep aids which many find helpful.

Hope this helps, best of luck!

Edited by: DROPCONE at: 9/8/2013 (09:59)
EMPRESSAMQ Posts: 5,077
9/7/13 10:08 P

I have sleep issues due mostly to a past career as well, and I guess just garden variety insomnia.

I have no tips lol.

I just let it be.

JCOW84 SparkPoints: (9,041)
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Posts: 301
9/7/13 11:43 A

I have struggled with poor sleep as well; it would take an hour to fall asleep, and then I'd wake up for a couple of hours in the middle of the night...terrible! I joined one of the Spark Teams 4 weeks, sleep better challenges. It has been awesome! I'm going into Week 3, and was already sleeping better by the end of Week 1.

CJGODESS101 SparkPoints: (30,781)
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Posts: 611
9/6/13 9:09 A

Dealing with insomnia take a little bit of time. You have to adjust your body to a normal sleep pattern. I would recommend going to bed about a half hour before you want to fall asleep. Do not watch TV in bed, just lay down, do some deep breathing. If you haven't fallen asleep in an hour get up read a book, then try again. Set your alarm so you don't sleep half the day away. Start by getting up at noon for a few days, then 11:30, then work your way back. SP has some good resources on things you can do to help sleep more soundly.
If you don't see any improvement in a couple week, I would recommend going to your doctor, they can usually refer you to a sleep specialist.

TCANNO SparkPoints: (359,347)
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9/6/13 9:07 A

up to 20 years ago I had a job where I was only getting 4 hours sleep a night. this did not bother me at the time. When I finished it I found that I am lucky to get 4 hours sleep.

Now that I am retired I go to sleep right away, great but no. After an hour I walk up.

A few weeks ago I stopped drinking anything after 8:30 in the evening. This helped me sleep mostly right through until 6:00 when I like to get up.

Give it a try and see what happens

SHERYLDS Posts: 17,483
9/6/13 8:57 A

I am NOT an insomniac (but I used to work in IT and had frequent calls in the middle of the night...then could not get back to sleep...waiting to see if a job finished correctly).
I got into a bedtime ritual that prepared my body for within a few minutes of hitting the pillow ...I am out. I make a cup of chamomile tea (I love celestial seasoning Sleepytime tea) and watch a little the bedroom little to air out the room, take a warm shower, change into comfy pjs, then hit the sack. I think the routine accustomed my body to what to expect. Airing out the bedroom, brings in a little fresh air and lowers the temp.... they say that helps with sleep.
check out WEBMD on sleep disorders....see the slideshow at top of screen

good luck<

Edited by: SHERYLDS at: 9/6/2013 (09:00)
MATTHEW0498 SparkPoints: (32,853)
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9/6/13 8:50 A

I have had sleep issues throughout my adult life. As I near 40, I am not able to deal with it as well as I used to in my 20's and early 30's. Melatonin and velarian root has helped alot, neither are too "drugish" but just help me fall asleep.

KKKAREN Posts: 12,754
9/6/13 8:40 A

Maybe you should try some meditation techniques. Whatever you do, don't lay there stressing about how you're not able to sleep, that will only make matters worse.

TRACKNFIT SparkPoints: (4,098)
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Posts: 71
9/5/13 3:05 P

So this is not the first time I struggle with insomnia, actually this is something I struggle with in cycles because almost everything disrupts my sleep from pain to menstrual cycle to stress.

Right now I am sleeping from 4 am to 2pm. I'm tired all day but when I try to sleep around 11 pm I just toss and turn with my mind thinking about everything under the sun. This happens until 4 am where I finally nod off. However, between 4am and 2pm, I wake up here and there so my sleep isn't restful.

It is not possible for me to stay up 12 hours to reset my sleep, neither is it possible for me to fast 12 hours as I am hypoglycemic. I am considering exercising now and doing alot of tiring activity so when 11 pm comes around, I go to sleep.

Sometimes I notice that if I don't get everything I like to get done in the day, my mind tries to do it all before I go to sleep.

Anyway, does anyone have any tips I can use to fall asleep tonight at 11 pm.

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