Post # 1
I’m wondering if there are any bees on here living with chronic insomnia?
I’ve had primary insomnia for about three years now. The past year’s been really good for me but it does flare up every now and then. And I can’t say I enjoy the costs involved in it (medication, doctors, etc) nor the effect on my social life and relationships. Most people are pretty understanding about it, although there are a few who’s solution is ‘just stop stressing about it and you’ll be fine’ or ‘have you tried [insert well-meaning but non-helpful thing here]’.
So, anyone else? How has it impacted your life? When did it first start affecting you, and how do you manage it on a day-to-day basis?
Post # 2
This was my struggle most of my adult life. Looking back, I can see quite clearly that it was excessive anxiety at the core. And, probably more than a few hormonal upheavals. Never underestimate the crazy crap our hormones can do.
Even Ambien didn’t work for me.
I’m not entirely sure what actually happened, other than aging. I was always a bit envious of dh because he was one of those who could fall asleep instantaneously.
At last, I’m the one conking out. Early. Ridiculously early. And I sleep hard.
The thing that did help me back in the day was primarily melatonin. A lot of times people give up too quickly on melatonin when the problem is that they just aren’t taking enough.
Valerian and kava kava have been helpful at different times.
I just started taking CBD oil. I would not be surprised to discover that CBD can help with insomnia.
Post # 3
I find melatonin to be helpful. Ambien worked too well; I won’t take it now because it’s too habit-forming, plus it has weird side effects. I know of at least one person who died as a result of it.
Post # 4
sassy411 : Wow, I’m really glad to hear things have changed for the better for you! I agree about anxiety, it manifests itself in so many strange ways that aren’t really spoken about on a large scale (which makes me believe that there’s not as much understanding around it as people would like to think).
Ambien was awful for me. It didn’t work for me either but also brought on depression! I’ve heard horror stories about its effects. Midazolam was much better and gentler.
Melatonin’s great but, sadly, it’s prescription only in the U.K. and depending on which area you’re in it can be hard to get it prescribed. Which is a shame because it’s non-habit forming and natural.
Ive been thinking about going the CBD route but there’s a lot of rubbish flooding the market. Any brand recommendations?
Post # 5
sunburn : I was shocked that my doctor so readily prescribed habit-forming medication, but I guess it was a desperate situation for me at that point. If I may ask, how did the person you know die of it? I’m sorry to hear that, by the way ☹️
Post # 6
- Wedding: January 2021 - City, State
I used to have really bad insomnia and tried everything, the only thing that helped (for me) were herbal sleeping tablets from Holland and barret. They taste absolutely disgusting but work amazingly well.
it took about 6 months of using them and sleeping every night to get rid of the insomnia after having it for 5/6 years straight.
Post # 7
This may be one of those well meaning but non helpful solutions….my insomnia was due to stress. After becoming very ill with pneumonia I then quit my job and made a few lifestyle changes. I took a less stressful position and went on anti anxiety meds. I also got a dog. now I am exercising daily and I don’t go to bed stressing about the next day or just generally scared, I fall asleep knowing my dog will wake me up, knowing this in itself lets me sleep. My night terrors have also stopped.
Post # 8
almostmrsbee : This was an older man. He left the house under the influence in the middle of the night, walked along the road and into a lake. Ambien is a sedative hypnotic and people have done things on the drug that they have no memory of.
Post # 9
I am brand new to CBD myself. I am loving the lotion. I have horrible neuropathic itching, and it really calms it.
The biggest thing to be aware of is that sellers will frequently try to sell you hemp oil, telling you “it’s the same thing”. No, it’s not. CBD comes from a different type of hemp (industrial), and undergoes a complex extraction process.
There is a book on Kindle, I think it was $2.99, that explains what to look for. It’s called How to Buy CBD Oil, by Jason Keely. I’m going to be looking at it today.
I have heard that about melatonin, that it’s only by script in the UK. I don’t understand that. They let people buy alcohol, right?
Post # 10
Post # 11
almostmrsbee : I suffer with pregnancy insomnia so not quite the same, but there is very little I can do to help it. I know it is hormonal and it will pass once baby is here.
There is a sleep clinic at Papworth Hospital I think, which can do a much more detailed assessment on you to understand the route cause of your insomnia. I am not sure where in the UK you are based but it would be worth asking your GP for this as it is an on going issue for you. There maybe another such centre closer to you. I think the first step they get you to do is to keep a sleep diary to see if there are any patterns to your good / bad nights. Hormones for women can play a huge part and you might find that there are some connections to your cycle.
Along this you should keep a food diary in case of any triggers there. What is your bedtime routine? Again this is very important in terms of training your body to sleep.
Of course this could not be helpful at all, but worth a shot no?
Post # 12
sassy411 : It is due to concerns about safety of the product and the effect it can have on other conditions and interactions with other drugs including the contraceptive pill. By having it on prescription only patients can be better monitored on it.
It is always worth asking a GP if they will prescribe (not least because it will be cheaper than getting it privately and potentially free if you have free prescriptions) but do listen to their advice as to why it might not be suitable for you.
Post # 13
- Wedding: May 2016 - Sussex, UK
I’ve suffered from primary insomnia since I was 19, I’m now 34. There have been periods of time during these 15 years where it hasn’t been too bad but I went through a VERY bad patch 6 years ago where I was prescribed sleep meds Zolpidem (Ambien) then Zopiclone for the first time and they caused horrible anxiety, my GP didn’t believe it was the meds causing this even though I’ve never had anxiety but she moved me onto tamazepam which didn’t help me sleep at all. After 6 weeks my GP was told by a senior GP that she had to take me off the meds so they basically said stop everything and take 2 weeks off work as you’ll experience rebound insomnia. I didn’t sleep for 3 nights at all then each night got a little better. My D.H, then boyfriend, said he didn’t recognise me on those sleep meds. I know some people take Ambien for years so maybe it’s my body chemistry?
My brother brought me back some melatonin from the states. I told my GP about it and she responded like I was snorting coke. They used to sell it here but there was money to be made by having it prescription-only.
A six week CBT course on the NHS didn’t help, neither did hypnotherapy so I saw a thrapist for about three months and my sleep improved a lot. Mainly because I have lost the fear of not sleeping. I know I can get through the next day even if I’ll be very tired. I used to lie in bed getting worked up when it was 3 or 4 or 5 but I stay pretty calm now. D.H could sleep standing up.
My mum and sister suffer as well and my sister went to The Sleep School in London. I’m going to try it next year as it really helped her and went against the usual advice of “get up if you aren’t asleep after 30 mins” etc.
I genuinely feel it is a cruel condition to suffer from and I wish everyone could experience a week of little to no sleep just to know what it feels like and they might be more understanding.