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Author Topic: Need Insomnia/Sleep Advice/Opinions  (Read 2105 times)
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rittchard
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« on: April 05, 2011, 08:05:02 PM »

I've been pretty spoiled the majority of my life being able to fall asleep generally with no problems.  Sure I'd have a bad night every now and again but usually I'd make up for it the next few nights and there weren't too many repercussions.  I can usually wake up multiple times in the night to use the restroom or whatever and fall right back asleep.  I probably have sleep apnea but that was covered in another thread where my sleep study went awry.  Actually a lot of the panicky feelings I get seemed to have stemmed from after that.

Anyway, the last 2 nights in a row were 2 of the worst nights I've ever had.  Slightly different in that Sunday I couldn't really fall asleep through the night at all but lucikly had a 2-3 hour block around 6am.  Monday night I would fall asleep for a couple of minutes here and there (while reading or playing Dungeon Raid) then wake back up and wouldn't be able to sleep again, rinse and repeat.  I went to a different room, tried sleeping in different positions and directions, just everything failed on me.  Both nights at different times I started to kind of freak out and felt trapped in my room and as mentioned, would get nervous/jittery/panicky.  This morning I felt the same and every once in a while when I think about what might happen tonight I start to panic again.

I realize 2 nights of bad sleep is probably nothing for most people, and usually I'd just ignore it.  But these were just so exceedingly bad, and I am really nervous it's going to continue on if I don't nip it in the bud.  One theory I have is it is related to some lingering congestion from a cold I had last week.  Based on past colds I wouldn't expect this level of congestion to affect my ability to sleep, but I'm wondering if combined with my sleep apnea I'm not able to catch my breath or something and that jolts me awake.  Then the rest of it is all psychological and fear/anxiety based.  When I sit upright and read I tend to doze off (but wake up almost immediately).

So first off I'm wondering if there are any good over the counter sleep drugs people might recommend.  I really hate to go that route as I'd be nervous that it may backfire and make things worse (I took half an Ambien once and it whacked me out but that was under special circumstances) or I may become dependent on them.  I may just take a nighttime cold medication like Nyquil, but again, there's the fear that it could backfire.  When I say backfire I mean there have been times I took Nyquil thinking it would knock me right out (it used to be a surefire thing) but instead it did the opposite.  Like when I'm so overtired I reach a bizarre threshold that goes beyond what the medication should do.  I'm considering doing some treadmill today but there's also the fear that I will overexert myself and push past my limit.

Anyway, as you can tell I'm pretty crazy today and just really nervous about facing another night like the past 2.  It's just so frustrating to be so tired, lay down, close your eyes and feel the tiredness, then suddenly be jolted back up and start panicking. 

So any thoughts/advice/recommendations?
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« Reply #1 on: April 05, 2011, 08:56:25 PM »

My wife does not react well to prescription sleep aids or Nyquil.  But she swears by Simply Sleep, which is essentially Tylenol PM without the pain reliever.
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« Reply #2 on: April 05, 2011, 09:00:15 PM »

How is your heart rate when this happens? Waking up panicked with an elevated heart rate and insomnia can be symptoms of hyperthyroidism, although you would probably also notice elevated heart rate at other times of the day. Still, it wouldn't hurt to get some blood tests.
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« Reply #3 on: April 05, 2011, 09:24:04 PM »

Quote from: rittchard on April 05, 2011, 08:05:02 PM

Anyway, as you can tell I'm pretty crazy today and just really nervous about facing another night like the past 2.  It's just so frustrating to be so tired, lay down, close your eyes and feel the tiredness, then suddenly be jolted back up and start panicking. 

So any thoughts/advice/recommendations?

Get those thoughts out of your mind if possible.  That is only compounding the issue.  Do you know any relaxation techniques?  One that I have often usen when having trouble sleeping is called progressive relaxation.
http://www.solveyourproblem.com/sleep-remedies/i_cant_sleep_try_breathing_relaxation.shtml



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« Reply #4 on: April 05, 2011, 09:27:08 PM »

real men pound a couple of bottles of white zinfandel to get to sleep.

or just do like I do and operate off of a couple of hours of sleep.  you won't lose any cohesiveness.
« Last Edit: April 05, 2011, 09:28:50 PM by CeeKay » Logged

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« Reply #5 on: April 05, 2011, 10:39:11 PM »

I had a bad case of Insomnia a few years ago and i used a drug called Nytol,which is quite well known over here ...but i started having a really bad reaction to it,when i took it i started to get very antsy....kinda like needing to get to sleep more,but even more unable to get to sleep at the same time,i never took it again....My Grandma had even worse side effects from it when she took it but she was on all kinds of other drugs at the time so any of them could of had some effect


what i do now is pretty much what Morlac linked,i lie on my back and start taking slow and deep breaths while my eyes are closed,it doesn't send me off to sleep straight away but it certainly relaxes me a lot and then i usually drop off a while later...i don't do the counting though

funny you mention the panic attacks,rittchard....for the past year or two there is a time when i am trying to get to sleep and all of a sudden it feels as though i can't breathe and i need to really catch my breath and sit up for awhile,i have never really given it any thought until i read your post,i wonder if that is a similar thing
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« Reply #6 on: April 05, 2011, 11:04:47 PM »

Don't dwell on it, as Morlac said.  Personally I wouldn't use any medication either, unless all else fails.  As you say, it's only been two nights so I wouldn't worry yet.  Next time you're in bed and can't seem to drop off, just be patient.  Something I find really effective is to let my imagination run wild.  I start imagining some kind of landscape and then just "float around" in it, conjuring up objects and images without putting too much conscious effort into it.  Explore.  Have a look at the things your mind conjures.  Forget about sleeping and take it all in.  This works wonders for me when I can't sleep.

I also have a self-hypnosis technique that I've adapted to bring on sleep.  If you want it I'll PM you.
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« Reply #7 on: April 05, 2011, 11:09:26 PM »

Melatonin...probably spelled wrong. Over the counter sleep aid recommended at health stores.
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« Reply #8 on: April 05, 2011, 11:10:27 PM »

This probably isn't permanent.  Last Nov/Dec, I went through a period of pretty intense emotional/psychological stress that led to insomnia.  Took forever to fall asleep, then woke up throughout the night and couldn't get back to sleep.  Eventually it went away.  Recently, I've been doing a thing where I wake up every hour starting at around 3am, with varying success at falling back asleep.  

Unfortunately, the worst thing you can do is worry about it.  After a while, I figured out that if I woke up, I wasn't going to be able to force myself back asleep, and lying there thinking about it made it worse, so I started just getting up and either reading or going to watch TV for a while.  Basically, you want to give your brain some time to calm back down after whatever it was that woke you up.  Insomnia definitely sucks, but fighting it only seems to make it worse.  Fortunately, 2 nights of it doesn't necessarily indicate a trend.
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« Reply #9 on: April 06, 2011, 12:26:45 AM »

Quote from: Laner on April 05, 2011, 08:56:25 PM

My wife does not react well to prescription sleep aids or Nyquil.  But she swears by Simply Sleep, which is essentially Tylenol PM without the pain reliever.

Tylenol PM is Acetaminophen and Diphenhydramine HCl.  Without the pain reliever, Simply Sleep is the same as Benadryl, which I just bought a bottle of generic at Sam's Club, 400 doses, for less than $4.
« Last Edit: April 06, 2011, 12:30:14 AM by Isgrimnur » Logged

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« Reply #10 on: April 06, 2011, 12:57:39 AM »

Quote from: morlac on April 05, 2011, 09:24:04 PM

Quote from: rittchard on April 05, 2011, 08:05:02 PM

Anyway, as you can tell I'm pretty crazy today and just really nervous about facing another night like the past 2.  It's just so frustrating to be so tired, lay down, close your eyes and feel the tiredness, then suddenly be jolted back up and start panicking. 

So any thoughts/advice/recommendations?

Get those thoughts out of your mind if possible.  That is only compounding the issue.  Do you know any relaxation techniques?  One that I have often usen when having trouble sleeping is called progressive relaxation.
http://www.solveyourproblem.com/sleep-remedies/i_cant_sleep_try_breathing_relaxation.shtml


The second part of that with concentrating on every part of your body and doing the tense release thing is also used to help someone become more susceptible to hypnosis.
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rittchard
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« Reply #11 on: April 06, 2011, 01:01:15 AM »

Quote from: metallicorphan on April 05, 2011, 10:39:11 PM

funny you mention the panic attacks,rittchard....for the past year or two there is a time when i am trying to get to sleep and all of a sudden it feels as though i can't breathe and i need to really catch my breath and sit up for awhile,i have never really given it any thought until i read your post,i wonder if that is a similar thing

That sounds almost exactly like what's happening to me.  It's happened sporadically in the past but the past 2 nights it just kept happening; I'm guessing it's more pronounced because I'm still congested and not as over the cold as I had hoped...

Thanks to everyone for all the suggestions - I do realize in some sense just starting this thread might make things worse because it just puts it in my head even more, and I know a lot of it is simply in my head.  I've read a lot of stuff about it over the years but this is the first time I really felt it hitting myself hard.  The main thing I wanted to see is if there were specific remedies or some super pill I hadn't heard about that everyone agreed on; sounds like that isn't really the case unfortunately.  

I'm just gonna cross my fingers and hope I make some smart choices.  The breathing thing sounds like a good way to calm myself down at least.  If nothing works, I'm sure you'll see this thread grow exponentially tonight/tomorrow!
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« Reply #12 on: April 06, 2011, 01:08:38 AM »

Yeah, personally I would try going the non-drug route first to see if that helps, but to each their own.  As silly and basic as it sounds, when I'm having trouble sleeping (usually because of anxiety and stress), I try to at least do these things and see if they help:
  • Avoid caffeine after lunch
  • Avoid alcohol
  • Try to get some cardio exercise in (at least a couple hours before bed time), even if it is just a 15 minute walk
  • Use relaxation/meditation techniques as mentioned above to reduce anxiety
  • If all else fails, read until I absolutely can't keep my eyes open anymore
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« Reply #13 on: April 06, 2011, 02:27:19 AM »

I occasionally have the same issue. If a shot of whiskey doesn't help meditation and/or switching rooms usually does.  If my anxiety is extreme I take a placebo (a baby aspirin) and that helps (there is a reason, but the story is too long to tap out on a phone).
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« Reply #14 on: April 06, 2011, 08:36:37 AM »

Try sex, with partner or the kitten-killing style.
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« Reply #15 on: April 06, 2011, 02:20:08 PM »

Your everyday life is clearly being impacted.  If the insomnia is primarily due to anxiety/panic, talk to your doctor about a mild anti-anxiety med to take at nighttime.
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« Reply #16 on: April 06, 2011, 03:16:40 PM »

Don't medicate if you don't have too. I had an ex-GF that grew reliant on Tylenol PM and had a hell of a time breaking away from it when we nticed she was using almost every night.  If it continues see your physician
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« Reply #17 on: April 06, 2011, 10:26:13 PM »

Quote from: Soulchilde on April 06, 2011, 03:16:40 PM

Don't medicate if you don't have too. I had an ex-GF that grew reliant on Tylenol PM and had a hell of a time breaking away from it when we nticed she was using almost every night.  If it continues see your physician

Yeah that's what I'm a bit afraid of.  I ended up taking some nighttime cold medicine from Theraflu that helps cough and congestion and some other crap.  It has one of those same ingredients talked about above.  I looked through all the options at the stores and it was amazing how many different variations there were.  Also drank some chamomille tea as suggested in some places.  I was nervous and jittery up til the point I was going to bed and I tried those breathing exercises someone posted but had trouble winding down.  Finally started reading and that helped calm me down a bit, and eventually it just knocked me out.  I slept a good 9 hours and only woke up once in between, so that was very nice.  At least I can think clearly again today and hopefully make more educated decisions about what I choose to take or not.  I'll probably take the cold medicine at least one more night, but we'll see. 
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« Reply #18 on: April 07, 2011, 04:26:57 PM »

If you may need medication regularly to help with sleep/panic, IMO you really should see your physician and get the right drug for the job instead of relying on whatever cold/drowsy-making medicine you happen to have handy.  If you very occasionally have trouble getting to sleep, then maybe a benadryl is an okay solution.  But if it is something you may need with any regularity or even a few days in a row, see your doctor and get the proper stuff.
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« Reply #19 on: April 07, 2011, 06:17:17 PM »

Also, try to avoid playing video games in bed or around the time you want to go to sleep. That kind of mental stimulation can contribute to the problem.
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« Reply #20 on: April 07, 2011, 06:21:12 PM »

Quote from: Freezer-TPF- on April 07, 2011, 04:26:57 PM

If you may need medication regularly to help with sleep/panic, IMO you really should see your physician and get the right drug for the job instead of relying on whatever cold/drowsy-making medicine you happen to have handy.  If you very occasionally have trouble getting to sleep, then maybe a benadryl is an okay solution.  But if it is something you may need with any regularity or even a few days in a row, see your doctor and get the proper stuff.

I think I mentioned in the OP, but this situation is rare for me.  Well, maybe less rare than it was a few years ago, but still pretty rare.  Going 2 nights and becoming more or less unable to think straight is pretty much a first time experience, which was why I might have overrreacted.  The fact is I still have a cold (cough and congestion), I just underestimated the effects, so taking cold medication is not that big a deal to me... yet.  

All that said, now I've got it in my head, so to speak, meaning I'm actually nervous about going to sleep without taking anything.  I hate that feeling.
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« Reply #21 on: April 18, 2011, 09:01:20 PM »

and.... it's back!  Just thought I'd whine some more.  After about a week of normalness, kind of out of the blue the insomnia came back.  It's EVIL.  First night I took Advil PM which whacked me out further.  Last 2 nights I've had to take Ambien, which works really well for me but makes me concerned I'll get dependent on it.  Gonna try to go cold turkey tonight, we'll see.
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« Reply #22 on: April 18, 2011, 09:18:55 PM »

I've been having trouble sleeping lately as well, but I know it's just stress-related.  Sunday nights seem to be the worst, as I lay in bed thinking about the million things I have to do to start the work week.  I wish I could just get my brain to shut off, but it typically takes a long time of laying in bed staring at the ceiling before it does.  I've been extremely hesitant to take anything, as I have a high tendency towards addiction.  Will try some of the relaxation techniques mentioned here and see if they make a difference.

Look at the bright side Rittchard...at least it's not the teeth keeping us awake this time!  smile
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« Reply #23 on: April 18, 2011, 09:25:39 PM »

Sunday night is the one night a week I may have trouble getting to sleep...even if I am physically exhausted sometimes my mind will take over.
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« Reply #24 on: April 18, 2011, 09:37:43 PM »

You could always take some advice from Due Date:

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Peter Highman: I didn't sleep last night. I'm gonna try now.
Lonnie: Well you really should have masturbated, cuz I had a glorious orgasm and I slept like a baby.
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« Reply #25 on: April 18, 2011, 10:40:06 PM »

No caffeine, plenty of exercise, no booze... these things are key for me.
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« Reply #26 on: April 21, 2011, 08:49:39 PM »

Quote from: Gratch on April 18, 2011, 09:18:55 PM

I've been having trouble sleeping lately as well, but I know it's just stress-related.  Sunday nights seem to be the worst, as I lay in bed thinking about the million things I have to do to start the work week.  I wish I could just get my brain to shut off, but it typically takes a long time of laying in bed staring at the ceiling before it does.  I've been extremely hesitant to take anything, as I have a high tendency towards addiction.  Will try some of the relaxation techniques mentioned here and see if they make a difference.

Look at the bright side Rittchard...at least it's not the teeth keeping us awake this time!  smile

lol good point, thanks!!!

I'm at a weird point now.  I had 3 bad nights, then 2 good nights.  Yesterday I thought I was on track for "normalcy" - I went to see the doctor and talked to him about the insomnia and various other issues, and he prescribed some Ambien.  Just having the Ambien made me feel psychologically more relieved and I thought I was going to be fine.  Everything seemed good last night, I had a pretty good day, the Lakers won, watched some fun TV, the weather cooled down so my room was comfy - I thought I was good to go.  But instead I ended up having trouble sleeping again, I took a half Ambien but that didn't seem to help so an hour later I took the other half before I was finally able to fall asleep.  Feeling mixed today, a bit groggy, every once in a while I get that nervous "panicky" feel like I won't be able to fall asleep again tonight.   

Unlike more "normal" insomnia, I don't have anything specifically stressing me out (at least consciously) that's causing me to lie awake.  I almost wish there was something concrete so I could go about "attacking" it to make myself be able to move on.  It's definitely getting to be a concern, as if I count, it seems like about a third of the nights this month have been "bad" for me.  I'm going to take a look at getting a new bed this weekend (see other thread), but I don't really feel in my gut that that is the answer.  I think what I really need is something exciting/interesting to just take me out of my head and let me obsess over.  Oddly enough the first thing that comes to mind is Diablo 3!  icon_twisted
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« Reply #27 on: April 22, 2011, 05:44:17 AM »

Quote from: rittchard on April 21, 2011, 08:49:39 PM

Oddly enough the first thing that comes to mind is Guild Wars 2!  icon_twisted

Clearly what you meant to say... slywink
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« Reply #28 on: April 22, 2011, 12:42:09 PM »

You need to avoid watching TV and using other electronic devices at least an hour before you try to sleep. Read a book, or an e-ink device during that time to help you relax.
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« Reply #29 on: April 22, 2011, 07:05:49 PM »

Quote from: rickfc on April 22, 2011, 12:42:09 PM

You need to avoid watching TV and using other electronic devices at least an hour before you try to sleep. Read a book, or an e-ink device during that time to help you relax.

I've heard and read about lots and lots of theories and different ways to promote good sleep habits.  The thing is I've never needed any of them before, so I guess what disturbs me the most is not being able to figure out what exactly has changed that is screwing everything up.  I generally follow a pretty set pattern, which includes watching TV til I'm about ready to go to bed.  In the past I'd brush my teeth after and fall alseep in minutes. 

I have a suspicion one of the problems might be as simple (partially) as my stupid pillow, which I recently washed, and ever since then sleeping on it has not been the same.  I keep getting neck aches.  I have a ton of different pillows I've tried, and they all seem to be failing me lol.  Some too puffy, some too soft.  When I try to sleep on my side I notice weird stress/pressure points which I probably shouldn't be feeling.  Going to get a new pillow tomorrow and possibly order a new bed, we'll see.

My growing concern now is developing reliance on Ambien.  I've used it the last 2 nights in a row (that makes 4 of the last 6 nights), and last night it worked great.  Each night I try to "fight it" which just seems to make it worse.  My fear is that I'll become dependent if I just take it regularly.  A friend of mine who is a doctor told me it's not big deal to take it for a month, and I know people who have taken it much longer.  I just don't want to be attached like that.  For whatever reason, I feel like there is some stigma, or like it makes me "weak", which is stupid and irrational in some sense, I know. 

I'm trying to come up with a plan, maybe stop fighting it for a few days, take it enough days until I feel like I'm "caught up" from all the miscellaneous and consecutive bad nights, and maybe at that point trying to wean myself off.  I think part of the problem, like last night, I was probably over-tired (made it worse by doing 40 minutes of treadmill thinking it would wear me out naturally).  I keep over-thinking everything and possibly over-compensating, so I've probably completely thrown off my body's natural biorhythms or whatever you want to call that.
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« Reply #30 on: April 22, 2011, 08:42:47 PM »

You might try one of those contour foam pillows, if you haven't already.  I used to get frequent neck aches, but the contour pillow has pretty much eliminated the problem.

I frequently have trouble getting to sleep so I can sympathize.
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« Reply #31 on: April 22, 2011, 10:35:43 PM »

Quote from: Freezer-TPF- on April 22, 2011, 08:42:47 PM

You might try one of those contour foam pillows, if you haven't already.  I used to get frequent neck aches, but the contour pillow has pretty much eliminated the problem.

I frequently have trouble getting to sleep so I can sympathize.

Thanks for the thought... unfortunately I've tried a couple different version of the contour foam.  As you said they are good for the neck once I fell asleep but I had a lot of trouble falling asleep on them.  Once my head molded into the piece it would start to feel too hot and I'd get kind of sweaty/uncomfortable.  Speaking of which my body does seem to generate an awful lot of heat even with few blankets.  Last night I had the room cooled down really nicely, but even with a single sheet covering me eventually I felt overheated.  Hopefully the new bed (supposed to have heat absorbent material) will help to address that problem.
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« Reply #32 on: April 22, 2011, 10:44:27 PM »

Quote from: rittchard on April 22, 2011, 07:05:49 PM

Quote from: rickfc on April 22, 2011, 12:42:09 PM

You need to avoid watching TV and using other electronic devices at least an hour before you try to sleep. Read a book, or an e-ink device during that time to help you relax.

I've heard and read about lots and lots of theories and different ways to promote good sleep habits.  The thing is I've never needed any of them before, so I guess what disturbs me the most is not being able to figure out what exactly has changed that is screwing everything up.  I generally follow a pretty set pattern, which includes watching TV til I'm about ready to go to bed.  In the past I'd brush my teeth after and fall alseep in minutes. 

I have a suspicion one of the problems might be as simple (partially) as my stupid pillow, which I recently washed, and ever since then sleeping on it has not been the same.  I keep getting neck aches.  I have a ton of different pillows I've tried, and they all seem to be failing me lol.  Some too puffy, some too soft.  When I try to sleep on my side I notice weird stress/pressure points which I probably shouldn't be feeling.  Going to get a new pillow tomorrow and possibly order a new bed, we'll see.

My growing concern now is developing reliance on Ambien.  I've used it the last 2 nights in a row (that makes 4 of the last 6 nights), and last night it worked great.  Each night I try to "fight it" which just seems to make it worse.  My fear is that I'll become dependent if I just take it regularly.  A friend of mine who is a doctor told me it's not big deal to take it for a month, and I know people who have taken it much longer.  I just don't want to be attached like that.  For whatever reason, I feel like there is some stigma, or like it makes me "weak", which is stupid and irrational in some sense, I know. 

I'm trying to come up with a plan, maybe stop fighting it for a few days, take it enough days until I feel like I'm "caught up" from all the miscellaneous and consecutive bad nights, and maybe at that point trying to wean myself off.  I think part of the problem, like last night, I was probably over-tired (made it worse by doing 40 minutes of treadmill thinking it would wear me out naturally).  I keep over-thinking everything and possibly over-compensating, so I've probably completely thrown off my body's natural biorhythms or whatever you want to call that.

My wife very recently went through a bout of insomnia, and was on Ambien for a few weeks. She had not changed her habits, started a new diet/medicine, or done anything that would otherwise affect her sleep patterns. It just happened.

After being on Ambien for a short time, she did not want to become dependent on it, and got off of it cold turkey. She had a few shitty nights, but started a new ritual (reading her Kindle for 30 min to 1 hour before she goes to sleep), and was able to get over it on her own.

Sometimes things like insomnia come out of nowhere for no rhyme or reason. When they do, you shouldn't so much worry as to why they came up, but how to get over them.
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rittchard
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« Reply #33 on: April 25, 2011, 07:13:16 PM »

Quote from: rickfc on April 22, 2011, 10:44:27 PM


My wife very recently went through a bout of insomnia, and was on Ambien for a few weeks. She had not changed her habits, started a new diet/medicine, or done anything that would otherwise affect her sleep patterns. It just happened.

After being on Ambien for a short time, she did not want to become dependent on it, and got off of it cold turkey. She had a few shitty nights, but started a new ritual (reading her Kindle for 30 min to 1 hour before she goes to sleep), and was able to get over it on her own.

Sometimes things like insomnia come out of nowhere for no rhyme or reason. When they do, you shouldn't so much worry as to why they came up, but how to get over them.

Hey rick, that's very interesting and good to hear, at least gives me some hope for the future.  Sounds very much like what I am in the middle of going through, particularly the having it show up with no rhyme or reason.  I can certainly try to pick out certain small changes and events that started it, but the fact is in the past none of them would have affected me on this level.  Presently I am trying to figure out how and when to get myself off the Ambien (been on it consecutively 5 nights now).  I tried to not take one last night, but started getting antsy after an hour of tossing and turning.  It seemed like everything was going well but suddenly I was just awake.  Hate that.  I took the pill, started reading a bit and fell asleep in minutes, upright while reading - which of course warped my back/neck some more.

One of the most frustrating things is there's this obsessive part of me that idly starts thinking about it during the day.  I don't consciously try to think about it, it just pops into my head.  "Should I take a pill tonight?"  "When?"  "What if I don't take one and I'm up all night again?"  - I hate all the second guessing of myself, it's just not like me.  I guess my fear is if I go with the "cold turkey" approach for a few nights in a row, that I'll recreate the whole problem again.  Meaning I'll be so over-tired and jittery/nervous from not sleeping well a couple nights that I'll just go right back to taking it just to ensure I can make it through the next day "normally."  I have noticed one of the things that keeps me from sleeping is kind of an "over-tired" mode where I cross some threshold where my mind/body just suddenly refuses to relax.  Doesn't make sense to me because you'd think at some point I'd just pass out from exhaustion.  What sometimes happens with me as well, is I might end up passing out for a few minutes while watching TV or even in front of the computer, and just that short nap refreshes me enough to wake me up all again.

Anyway, I'm curious if your wife while taking the Ambien did sleep well and more or less "caught up" on sleep before she tried to go cold turkey?  Did she try to stop taking it during this time or just make it part of her routine for that period until she decided to go cold turkey?  Thanks!
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rickfc
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« Reply #34 on: April 25, 2011, 08:17:04 PM »

Quote from: rittchard on April 25, 2011, 07:13:16 PM

Quote from: rickfc on April 22, 2011, 10:44:27 PM


My wife very recently went through a bout of insomnia, and was on Ambien for a few weeks. She had not changed her habits, started a new diet/medicine, or done anything that would otherwise affect her sleep patterns. It just happened.

After being on Ambien for a short time, she did not want to become dependent on it, and got off of it cold turkey. She had a few shitty nights, but started a new ritual (reading her Kindle for 30 min to 1 hour before she goes to sleep), and was able to get over it on her own.

Sometimes things like insomnia come out of nowhere for no rhyme or reason. When they do, you shouldn't so much worry as to why they came up, but how to get over them.

Hey rick, that's very interesting and good to hear, at least gives me some hope for the future.  Sounds very much like what I am in the middle of going through, particularly the having it show up with no rhyme or reason.  I can certainly try to pick out certain small changes and events that started it, but the fact is in the past none of them would have affected me on this level.  Presently I am trying to figure out how and when to get myself off the Ambien (been on it consecutively 5 nights now).  I tried to not take one last night, but started getting antsy after an hour of tossing and turning.  It seemed like everything was going well but suddenly I was just awake.  Hate that.  I took the pill, started reading a bit and fell asleep in minutes, upright while reading - which of course warped my back/neck some more.

One of the most frustrating things is there's this obsessive part of me that idly starts thinking about it during the day.  I don't consciously try to think about it, it just pops into my head.  "Should I take a pill tonight?"  "When?"  "What if I don't take one and I'm up all night again?"  - I hate all the second guessing of myself, it's just not like me.  I guess my fear is if I go with the "cold turkey" approach for a few nights in a row, that I'll recreate the whole problem again.  Meaning I'll be so over-tired and jittery/nervous from not sleeping well a couple nights that I'll just go right back to taking it just to ensure I can make it through the next day "normally."  I have noticed one of the things that keeps me from sleeping is kind of an "over-tired" mode where I cross some threshold where my mind/body just suddenly refuses to relax.  Doesn't make sense to me because you'd think at some point I'd just pass out from exhaustion.  What sometimes happens with me as well, is I might end up passing out for a few minutes while watching TV or even in front of the computer, and just that short nap refreshes me enough to wake me up all again.

Anyway, I'm curious if your wife while taking the Ambien did sleep well and more or less "caught up" on sleep before she tried to go cold turkey?  Did she try to stop taking it during this time or just make it part of her routine for that period until she decided to go cold turkey?  Thanks!

She just went cold turkey without "catching up" or anything like that. She would behave erratically if she would stay up beyond the point she should have gone to sleep while on Ambien, such as having conversations she could not recall the next morning, etc. It was getting a little weird for her, so one day, she just stopped.

She had tried to stop taking it a time or two before that, but after finding random things she posted on Facebook and people referencing conversations of which she had no recollection, she got a little scared.
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kathode
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« Reply #35 on: April 26, 2011, 12:00:25 AM »

I had insomnia issues off and on for years, and now take 3mg of melatonin almost every night about an hour before bed.  It's helped me out a ton.  It's not a drug - it already occurs in your system.  Taking extra at nights can help out your natural rhythms, particularly good for those of us who work indoors and don't get much sun.  I barely notice any effect other than I don't have trouble going to sleep, and I tend to have better memories of dreams when I take it vs. when I don't.  Also it's super cheap and you can get it at just about any drug or grocery store.
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rittchard
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« Reply #36 on: June 28, 2011, 03:35:09 AM »

Sadly I am revisiting this thread to whine some more.  After my bout with horrible hemorrhoids last month, the one good thing that seemed to come out of it was I got myself off the Ambien.  I had about 2 good weeks and I thought it was pretty much over.  But unfortunately just when I believed I had moved on, it popped back up - seems like it's called "rebound insomnia" on the net.  And this new rebound case seems worse than before.  I'm experiencing more side effects now, jitters, anxiety, nervousness, mild headaches, nausea - even though I'm only taking half dosage.  I don't know if it's because of a more prolonged exposure or what (it's been around 2 weeks straight I think).  I desperately want to quit cold turkey but the last few nights I tried going without the medication I just couldn't relax my mind at all, and I was more or less freaking out. 

Contacted my doctor last night about changing medication but sadly he is out in Italy, so I have to wait it out another week before hearing back from him.

I'm thinking about kathode's melatonin solution, though I am kind of leery and paranoid about everything.  Gonna try to read up on it a little.
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Covenant
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« Reply #37 on: June 28, 2011, 12:07:39 PM »

I don't know about you, but the side effects of Ambien (lots of which it sounds like you are experiencing) sound worse than just being tired.  I get insomnia from time to time and I just let myself stay up.  I'm tired as hell the next day, but that generally results in me sleeping fine that next night.  If it doesn't, well... I just suffer.  I think three nights is the worst it has ever been.
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kratz
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« Reply #38 on: June 28, 2011, 12:49:11 PM »

Nothing else is going to have the potentially scary side effects that Ambien has...
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morlac
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« Reply #39 on: June 28, 2011, 01:38:37 PM »

Find a joint and smoke it about 30 mins before bed time.  I am being serious.  Little to no side effect and should shut down your bran hopefully.  Of course it's not legal unless you live in California.
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