collapse
2020 Donation Drive

It's time for our annual Server Donation Drive! We need to raise at least $710 to keep The Cauldron's server online for another year. Please help! Either hit that Paypal button to the right and make a one-time donation in any amount or set up a monthly Bronze, Silver or Gold Donor subscription. You can find more info in this message!

Donations as of 21 September 2020: $539 donated. Only $171 more need! Thank you, donors!


Note: This total is updated manually, usually once a day


* "Unable to verify referring url. Please go back and try again" Problem Logging In?

If you get an "Unable to verify referring url. Please go back and try again" error when you try to log in, you need to be sure you are accessing the board with a url that starts with "https://ecauldron.com".  If it starts with https://www.ecauldron.com" (or "http://www.ecauldron.com") you will get this error because "www.ecauldron.com" is not technically the same website as "ecauldron.com". Moving to the more secure "https" means it is more picky about such things.

Author Topic: Health: Insomnia  (Read 6648 times)

Olivia

  • Journeyman
  • *****
  • Join Date: Nov 2013
  • Posts: 228
  • Total likes: 0
    • View Profile
Insomnia
« on: November 25, 2013, 04:00:57 am »
I have been having a serious case of insomnia lately. I can't remember the last time I had a full nights sleep. It has been a few weeks at least. I've tried everything I can think of. I spritzed some lavender on my bed, I tried chamomile. I even counted sheep one night. Anyone suggestions anyone has would be greatly appreciate.
« Last Edit: May 07, 2019, 02:42:23 pm by RandallS »

Jenett

  • Senior Staff
  • *
  • Join Date: Jun 2011
  • Location: Boston, MA
  • Posts: 3328
  • Country: us
  • Total likes: 838
    • View Profile
    • Seeking: First steps on a path
  • Religion: Initiatory religious witchcraft
  • Preferred Pronouns: she/her
Re: Insomnia
« Reply #1 on: November 25, 2013, 07:13:37 am »
Quote from: Olivia;130597
I have been having a serious case of insomnia lately. I can't remember the last time I had a full nights sleep. It has been a few weeks at least. I've tried everything I can think of. I spritzed some lavender on my bed, I tried chamomile. I even counted sheep one night. Anyone suggestions anyone has would be greatly appreciate.

 
There's a bunch of different things - are you having trouble getting to sleep, or staying asleep? The things that work for one don't always work for the other.

(And if it's trouble staying asleep, is there anything in particular that wakes you up? I'm horrible if something wakes me up in the middle of the night - I have a very hard time falling asleep again.)
Seek Knowledge, Find Wisdom: Research help on esoteric and eclectic topics (consulting and other services)

Seeking: first steps on a Pagan path (advice for seekers and people new to Paganism)

Valentine

  • Sr. Master Member
  • *******
  • Join Date: Jul 2011
  • Posts: 936
  • Country: us
  • Total likes: 79
    • View Profile
  • Religion: get free; get others free; make new life in the aftermath
  • Preferred Pronouns: she/her
Re: Insomnia
« Reply #2 on: November 25, 2013, 04:11:41 pm »
Quote from: Olivia;130597
I have been having a serious case of insomnia lately. I can't remember the last time I had a full nights sleep. It has been a few weeks at least. I've tried everything I can think of. I spritzed some lavender on my bed, I tried chamomile. I even counted sheep one night. Anyone suggestions anyone has would be greatly appreciate.

 
Some people have good luck with valerian, an herb.  It makes me kind of ill.
I've seen people close to me use and array of things--there's a device that runs electric current between yours ears to calm your brain down, there are apps you can get for a smartphone or tablet that use sound pitches to induces the relevant brainwaves with seem effective, there's making sure you have a careful routine and aren't looking at computer and TV screens for an hour or two before trying to sleep.
I do crosswords to try to clear my brain and then shoot for the very brief window before my overactive brain and PTSD come flooding back in to fill the gap.
"Let be be finale of seem." - Wallace Stevens, "The Emperor of Ice-Cream"
"There isn't a way things should be.  There's just what happens, and what we do."
- Terry Pratchett, "A Hat Full of Sky"

Jenett

  • Senior Staff
  • *
  • Join Date: Jun 2011
  • Location: Boston, MA
  • Posts: 3328
  • Country: us
  • Total likes: 838
    • View Profile
    • Seeking: First steps on a path
  • Religion: Initiatory religious witchcraft
  • Preferred Pronouns: she/her
Re: Insomnia
« Reply #3 on: November 25, 2013, 04:39:03 pm »
Quote from: Valentine;130646
Some people have good luck with valerian, an herb.  It makes me kind of ill.

 
To comment on a couple of these - for people who use tech in the eveing, I highly recommend an app called f.lux (http://justgetflux.com) which shifts the color profile on your monitor once it gets dark from the brighter/cooler shades of daylight to warmer shades that help trigger sleep. (their website explains further, but it's extremely handy.)

Some people do not do well with valerian - my herbalist, a few years ago, said it doesn't work for about 10% of people, and I'm one. I use Jamaican Dogwood instead, though check it carefully against existing meds (it's got a few weird interactions) and it's not safe in pregnancy.

My insomnia tends to be the "can't fall asleep" kind, though occasionally also the "wake up at 5am and can't get back to sleep" kind (which is about 2.5 hours before I usually get up) - when I am having more issues, I find being extra careful of sleep hygeine (going to bed at a consistent time, using bedtime routines to help me be ready to go to sleep, having a hot bath about 30 minutes before bed to raise my core body temperature and then psych my body into sleepiness with the drop as I cool off, etc.) all help.
Seek Knowledge, Find Wisdom: Research help on esoteric and eclectic topics (consulting and other services)

Seeking: first steps on a Pagan path (advice for seekers and people new to Paganism)

Olivia

  • Journeyman
  • *****
  • Join Date: Nov 2013
  • Posts: 228
  • Total likes: 0
    • View Profile
Re: Insomnia
« Reply #4 on: November 25, 2013, 05:06:07 pm »
Quote from: Jenett;130649
To comment on a couple of these - for people who use tech in the eveing, I highly recommend an app called f.lux (http://justgetflux.com) which shifts the color profile on your monitor once it gets dark from the brighter/cooler shades of daylight to warmer shades that help trigger sleep. (their website explains further, but it's extremely handy.)

Some people do not do well with valerian - my herbalist, a few years ago, said it doesn't work for about 10% of people, and I'm one. I use Jamaican Dogwood instead, though check it carefully against existing meds (it's got a few weird interactions) and it's not safe in pregnancy.

My insomnia tends to be the "can't fall asleep" kind, though occasionally also the "wake up at 5am and can't get back to sleep" kind (which is about 2.5 hours before I usually get up) - when I am having more issues, I find being extra careful of sleep hygeine (going to bed at a consistent time, using bedtime routines to help me be ready to go to sleep, having a hot bath about 30 minutes before bed to raise my core body temperature and then psych my body into sleepiness with the drop as I cool off, etc.) all help.

 
Mine is the can't get to sleep kind too. I'll toss and turn for hours before giving up. I can't use valerian a either it interacts with a medication I take. I'll try some of the electronic stuff though. I think I'll try that app first since it will be easier to obtain. Lol.

beachglass

  • Journeyman
  • *****
  • Join Date: Aug 2013
  • Posts: 239
  • Total likes: 0
    • View Profile
Re: Insomnia
« Reply #5 on: November 25, 2013, 06:21:27 pm »
Quote from: Olivia;130597
I have been having a serious case of insomnia lately. I can't remember the last time I had a full nights sleep. It has been a few weeks at least. I've tried everything I can think of. I spritzed some lavender on my bed, I tried chamomile. I even counted sheep one night. Anyone suggestions anyone has would be greatly appreciate.

 
I used to work the third shift, so I can sympathize! Here are some things that worked for me:

Darkness: This might not be as big an issue if you're not trying to sleep during the day, but if your bedroom is not very dark, it may help to use blackout shades or curtains. Or you can try aluminum foil on the window (ugly but cheap and effective). Also watch out for lights on fans, device chargers, etc. The tiny LED on our air cleaner can light up our whole bedroom. Deploy electrical tape if you really need the device in the bedroom, but on that note...

Devices: Try to keep them out of your sleeping area. I know some people swear by falling asleep to TV but I have always slept better when the bedroom is not also the office/media center/workout room/etc. (No, I did not get much sleep in college...) I also second Jenett's recommendation of f.lux, and I use a similar app on my phone called Lux.

Exercise: Do exercise, but try to keep it early in the day so you've got plenty of time to wind down before going to bed.

Food: Conventional wisdom says not to eat late at night, but try not to sleep when completely starving. I would always get home from work, eat a little bowl of oatmeal, and then go to bed. This was just enough so I wouldn't wake up from hunger halfway through sleep. Caffeine doesn't keep me up, but it does many people so you can try avoiding that after lunch if you aren't already. Sugar makes me stick to the ceiling so now that I sleep at night I have to keep dessert small.

Sleep cycle: Try to keep note of when you are naturally sleepy and adjust your schedule to take advantage. Sometimes going to bed a little later can actually be helpful, if that's the time when you're in a sleepy phase. If you find a good time, stick with it as much as you can.

Naps: Nap with caution! When you're very sleepy from shift work or insomnia, naps can creep up on you. But napping too close to bedtime can really mess up your sleep schedule. I also try not to nap in bed, and to set an alarm for a reasonable amount of time.

This might not be as useful if this is a temporary thing for you, but if you find your insomnia is persistent, and especially if you have a late or changeable work schedule, I found the book Sleep Secrets for Shiftworkers & People with Off-beat Schedules very helpful. I was able to check it out of the library here.
"The further we go, and older we grow, the more we know, the less we show."  ~ Robert Smith

Sefiru

  • Senior Staff
  • *
  • Join Date: Nov 2013
  • Location: In the walls
  • Posts: 2054
  • Country: ca
  • Total likes: 492
    • View Profile
Re: Insomnia
« Reply #6 on: November 25, 2013, 06:51:27 pm »
Quote from: Olivia;130597
I have been having a serious case of insomnia lately. I can't remember the last time I had a full nights sleep. It has been a few weeks at least. I've tried everything I can think of. I spritzed some lavender on my bed, I tried chamomile. I even counted sheep one night. Anyone suggestions anyone has would be greatly appreciate.


I don't think this has been mentioned yet - is there any part of your day that's particularly stressful? I know when I have trouble sleeping it's usually because I'm wound up about something. Granted if stress is work/school related, it might be difficult to reduce it. But that might be something to look into.

On the physical side, how is your mattress/pillow? If they're worn out, replacing them might help.

Kuu

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Join Date: Nov 2013
  • Posts: 8
  • Total likes: 0
    • View Profile
Re: Insomnia
« Reply #7 on: November 26, 2013, 05:25:09 pm »
Quote from: Olivia;130597
I have been having a serious case of insomnia lately. I can't remember the last time I had a full nights sleep. It has been a few weeks at least. I've tried everything I can think of. I spritzed some lavender on my bed, I tried chamomile. I even counted sheep one night. Anyone suggestions anyone has would be greatly appreciate.

 
Do you consume caffeine during the day, or alcohol before bedtime? Sometimes I find myself more sensitive to caffeine; a cup of coffee at 8 in the morning can keep me wired all day. When I have a glass of wine before bed, I often struggle falling asleep or staying asleep.

Perhaps you can try reading a dull book or watching something that bores you. That works for me when I'm trying to study.

Sefiru

  • Senior Staff
  • *
  • Join Date: Nov 2013
  • Location: In the walls
  • Posts: 2054
  • Country: ca
  • Total likes: 492
    • View Profile
Re: Insomnia
« Reply #8 on: November 26, 2013, 07:37:43 pm »
Quote from: Kuu;130787

Perhaps you can try reading a dull book or watching something that bores you.


This.
If I need to take a nap during the day for some reason, I put on talk radio.

Liadine (dragonflyeyes)

  • Master Member
  • ******
  • Join Date: Aug 2011
  • Posts: 256
  • Country: ca
  • Total likes: 0
    • View Profile
  • Preferred Pronouns: she/her
Re: Insomnia
« Reply #9 on: November 27, 2013, 06:39:28 am »
Quote from: Olivia;130654
Mine is the can't get to sleep kind too. I'll toss and turn for hours before giving up. I can't use valerian a either it interacts with a medication I take. I'll try some of the electronic stuff though. I think I'll try that app first since it will be easier to obtain. Lol.

 
I've struggled with super-severe can't sleep insomnia since I was a teenager. Eventually I ended up on some sleep medication, but I also found that these helped:

- Bedtime ritual including a bath and essential oil. The ritual helps your brain recognize when it's time to sleep (same time every night), the bath tricks your body into getting sleepier (warmth and then a cooling-off period are sleep signals), and the essential oil is both helpful in-and-of-itself and reinforces the ritual aspect. (I tend to go for resins rather than lavender, but it depends on what you like.)

- Getting up for a short period if you've been in bed for an hour with no luck. I like to have another bath in the dark (and sometimes find myself passing out as soon as I climb back into bed), but anything works. Don't go on the computer or read part of a novel, though - a small snack, reading through a few paragraphs of non-fiction, and tidying up all work.

- If you're like me and get into a cycle where the idea of trying to sleep becomes terrifying, try to get out of it. Easier said than done, I know, but trying to re-associate your bed with being a comfy, lovely place can help with the 'I think I won't be able to sleep, therefore I won't be able to' thing.

- The Do-or-Die option: doing a hard reset on your sleep cycle. This can be killer if you still can't sleep after it, but I've found that sometimes it's the only thing that helps. Basically, you stay up all night - don't even try to sleep - and up all day, no naps. Whenever possible, hang out in the sunlight, and during the dark hours keep it as dark as you can stand while you're still awake. If you want to do it on expert mode you can try to avoid caffeine all day as well, though it still works if you can't. When it hits your ideal bedtime, you go through your bedtime ritual and then go to bed.
We owe it to each other to tell stories [Neil Gaiman]
night's a good herd [my religious tumblr]

Lula

  • Apprentice
  • ***
  • Join Date: Jul 2012
  • Posts: 43
  • Total likes: 0
    • View Profile
Re: Insomnia
« Reply #10 on: January 23, 2014, 09:40:59 pm »
Quote from: Jenett;130609
There's a bunch of different things - are you having trouble getting to sleep, or staying asleep? The things that work for one don't always work for the other.

(And if it's trouble staying asleep, is there anything in particular that wakes you up? I'm horrible if something wakes me up in the middle of the night - I have a very hard time falling asleep again.)

 
That is a really good question. Sometimes my insomnia is caused by little more than me sleeping in too late the morning before. The "insomnia" of my teens was usually just caused by staying up late and sleeping in. Of course that makes it hard to sleep early!

Nowadays my insomnia is usually of the can't-fall-asleep type, and is accompanied by anxiety. I began experiencing nighttime panic attacks earlier this year, and unfortunately that ruined a very good streak of loving bedtime I had going before. Getting my panic attacks under control was obviously the first step, but now, I actually do just count slowly when I start to notice triggering thoughts entering my head. I haven't had a panic attack in a couple months, although I do experience feelings of dread at night, which is ironically worse when I'm more tired. And "the fear" makes it almost impossible to sleep. Counting has really saved me. I have to be patient, but at the worst I don't have to count to one hundred more than two or three times before I fall asleep, and at best I hardly make it to seventy. (I have a rule that if I forget what number I'm on, I have to start over! So sometimes getting to a high number takes several resets.)

Sometimes I count by mississippis, sometimes backwards, but it is always slooow.

Of course looking at a bright phone or drinking caffeine or any of those bad sleep habits before bed will make it more difficult to fall asleep.

I also occasionally take melatonin to help fall asleep when I have a weird work schedule, like late one night and early the next morning. I had a panic attack the first time I took melatonin though (probably unrelated!) so sometimes just taking it will give me an adrenaline rush. But when I forget to be scared of it, it actually does make me tired for about thirty minutes. :)

PrincessAstrid

  • Sr. Apprentice
  • ****
  • Join Date: Jan 2014
  • Posts: 70
  • Total likes: 0
    • View Profile
Re: Insomnia
« Reply #11 on: January 25, 2014, 05:29:26 pm »
Quote from: Lula;137572
That is a really good question. Sometimes my insomnia is caused by little more than me sleeping in too late the morning before. The "insomnia" of my teens was usually just caused by staying up late and sleeping in. Of course that makes it hard to sleep early!

Nowadays my insomnia is usually of the can't-fall-asleep type, and is accompanied by anxiety. I began experiencing nighttime panic attacks earlier this year, and unfortunately that ruined a very good streak of loving bedtime I had going before. Getting my panic attacks under control was obviously the first step, but now, I actually do just count slowly when I start to notice triggering thoughts entering my head. I haven't had a panic attack in a couple months, although I do experience feelings of dread at night, which is ironically worse when I'm more tired. And "the fear" makes it almost impossible to sleep. Counting has really saved me. I have to be patient, but at the worst I don't have to count to one hundred more than two or three times before I fall asleep, and at best I hardly make it to seventy. (I have a rule that if I forget what number I'm on, I have to start over! So sometimes getting to a high number takes several resets.)

Sometimes I count by mississippis, sometimes backwards, but it is always slooow.

Of course looking at a bright phone or drinking caffeine or any of those bad sleep habits before bed will make it more difficult to fall asleep.

I also occasionally take melatonin to help fall asleep when I have a weird work schedule, like late one night and early the next morning. I had a panic attack the first time I took melatonin though (probably unrelated!) so sometimes just taking it will give me an adrenaline rush. But when I forget to be scared of it, it actually does make me tired for about thirty minutes. :)

 
I have this problem with anxiety keeping me up, too. Sometimes I get absolutely terrified at night, about a variety of things. Sometimes the OCD kicks in overdrive, which causes more acute anxiety than what I would normally experience.

But I haven't tried counting! I'll definitely think about trying that next time I'm having this problem so thank you for sharing!

Lula

  • Apprentice
  • ***
  • Join Date: Jul 2012
  • Posts: 43
  • Total likes: 0
    • View Profile
Re: Insomnia
« Reply #12 on: January 25, 2014, 10:10:20 pm »
Quote from: PrincessAstrid;137832
I have this problem with anxiety keeping me up, too. Sometimes I get absolutely terrified at night, about a variety of things. Sometimes the OCD kicks in overdrive, which causes more acute anxiety than what I would normally experience.

But I haven't tried counting! I'll definitely think about trying that next time I'm having this problem so thank you for sharing!

 
I hope it helps!

HeartShadow

  • Adept Member
  • ********
  • Join Date: Jun 2011
  • Posts: 2195
  • Total likes: 3
    • View Profile
    • http://www.flamekeeping.org
Re: Insomnia
« Reply #13 on: January 27, 2014, 08:26:27 am »
Quote from: Lula;137572


 
I do the counting thing with a twist - I refuse to go above five, (sometimes on bad nights ten) and I won't pay attention to how many iterations I've done it.

So there's no pressure, no OMG I'm at 50 when will I go to sleep, nothing.  Just counting up to five for a while .. then to four .. and so on until I'm just doing one .. one .. one ... one .. it's sorta-meditative and no pressure.

PrincessAstrid

  • Sr. Apprentice
  • ****
  • Join Date: Jan 2014
  • Posts: 70
  • Total likes: 0
    • View Profile
Re: Insomnia
« Reply #14 on: January 27, 2014, 08:51:01 am »
Quote from: HeartShadow;137954
I do the counting thing with a twist - I refuse to go above five, (sometimes on bad nights ten) and I won't pay attention to how many iterations I've done it.

So there's no pressure, no OMG I'm at 50 when will I go to sleep, nothing.  Just counting up to five for a while .. then to four .. and so on until I'm just doing one .. one .. one ... one .. it's sorta-meditative and no pressure.

 
This is also a really good idea. If counting to a higher number, like Lula suggested, doesn't work for me, then I'll be trying this, too.

So glad I found this thread! Haha.

Tags:
 

Related Topics

  Subject / Started by Replies Last post
12 Replies
4229 Views
Last post August 03, 2016, 12:17:33 pm
by Qumran@OccultRealms

* Who's Online

  • Dot Guests: 41
  • Dot Hidden: 0
  • Dot Users: 2
  • Dot Users Online:

* Please Donate!

The Cauldron's server is expensive and requires monthly payments. Please become a Bronze, Silver or Gold Donor if you can. Donations are needed every month. Without member support, we can't afford the server.

* Shop & Support TC

The links below are affiliate links. When you click on one of these links you will go to the listed shopping site with The Cauldron's affiliate code. Any purchases you make during your visit will earn TC a tiny percentage of your purchase price at no extra cost to you.

* In Memoriam

Chavi (2006)
Elspeth (2010)
Marilyn (2013)

* Cauldron Staff

Host:
Sunflower

Message Board Staff
Board Coordinator:
Darkhawk

Assistant Board Coordinator:
Aster Breo

Senior Staff:
Aisling, Jenett, Sefiru

Staff:
Allaya, Chatelaine, EclecticWheel, HarpingHawke, Kylara, PerditaPickle, rocquelaire

Discord Chat Staff
Chat Coordinator:
Morag

Cauldron Council:
Bob, Catja, Emma-Eldritch, Fausta, Jubes, Kelly, LyricFox, Phouka, Sperran, Star, Steve, Tana

Site Administrator:
Randall