CANT SLEEP! This is insane! Need help.

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by Wolverine, Oct 5, 2005.

  1. Wolverine

    Wolverine Member

    Hey guys. As many of you have sleep probs, u can relate im sure. Most of the time ive been not able to sleep well at night since getting sick (About 2000).

    However it's got progressively worse. Last year i was sleeping at about 1-2am which was okish, but had a big break up with the GF in jan this year, and moved down back to my home town here about 2 hours away, back in with my brother and friends.

    Since moving here i was in the lounge room for a while, and that made my sleep real bad and wasnt sleeping till 4am most nites or so. Since then i got my room set up etc, but in the last few months even though my beds good and everything, i STILL cant sleep till about 5-7am most nights. Then i absolutely have to get 8 or so hours or i feel terribly weak and shaky and cant do anything. So even though lately ive been getting into bed at about 12-1am, i end up laying there till 5-6am still no matter how still i try to keep, i just hurt here or there, and have a stupid feeling like i want 2 get up. So annoying!!

    Tried many sleeping pills, most i cant tolerate because they leave me so hung over for most of the next day. Lately i take half a valium on some nights only, because i still get a bit of next day hangover, but sleep better than usual. Tried klonopin years ago and it was terrible for me, i took a tiny bit of one, and almost literally couldnt move, or even breath normally. It was scary. Also have tried ambien - makes me real tired all the next day too.

    Anyway, wondering your opinions, on what drugs etc could be good to try. I have xanax here and havent tried it yet, but will soon. The shorter acting the better, cause my liver clears drugs real slow. (MCS etc)

    Sorry it was long, but thanks for reading! xo
  2. darude

    darude New Member

    I wouldn't suggest the xanax if you have MCS. I was on it when i first got sick and only a tiny bit knocked me out. I was on for three months and when I came off went into major withdrawal! Something we don't need on top of this. Would suggest Lunesta for awhile.
  3. dunnlb

    dunnlb New Member

    My insomnia was caused by anxiety which caused my mind to race. I would think and think for hours, changing from one thing to another. After about 2 weeks on an antidepressant, I was able to relax and sleep.
  4. rileyearl

    rileyearl New Member

    I'm sorry you're so tired. I can relate!

    You might try Melatonin tablets. It won't leave you feeling dragged out. It will help you fall asleep pretty fast. I still woke up in 2 hours, which is my regular sleep pattern, but it made me really sleepy fast. They are available at the healthfood store or online.

    Also, the OTC PM type medications work for me.

    One thing I learned recently from my doctor is that it's not a good idea to use Benedryl. I've read in several self-help books about fm that Benedryl is the way to go, but my doc says the full effect of the drug doesn't happen for eight hours. That will have you sleeping through the day for sure.

    Good Luck!

  5. justlooking

    justlooking New Member

    Hey sorry to hear about all you've been through this year. Are your friends keeping you up?? Living in a household full of people can be very distracting to a healthy person but with being sick, the stress of not feeling like you have the option to get rest when you need it could cause you to not fall asleep.

    I have really bad issues with falling asleep. It is the time my brain decides to pick up on all the stresses of the day, week, month, year. I have all day to think about these things but I don't...instead my brain waits until I want to sleep :( I have to take Xanex to sleep as it calms my brain down and its the only thing that has worked for me. It does have a "hangover" effect initially but you do get past it with time. For me I had a worse "hangover" feeling not sleeping than I did from the Xanex.

    You should try whatever you are comfortable with. But also look at what your triggers for not sleeping are... like roommates or even still thinking about your breakup, your bad day, or stressing about not falling asleep fast enough (you know the ok if I fall asleep now I'll still get 6 hours of sleep and then and hour later still awake saying ok 5 hours sleep and so on and so on)

    I hope you find a solution.. it is such a terrible feeling laying there at night TRYING so hard to fall asleep and nothing happens except frustration, causing more sleep problems. For me Xanex was the answer, but it certainly isn't for everyone and if there are other options people offer try those first!

  6. TheAurynn

    TheAurynn New Member

    I just wanted to say I feel for you and I hope you can get a decent night's sleep soon! I also wanted to ask if you have tried some gentle exercise (whatever you can tolerate)? It generates serotonin which will help with the fibro. It is the only thing that helps me personally with the pain and the insomnia. I don't have CFS though, not sure if that makes a difference with the exercise.

    Also, my rheumy once told me that if I laid in bed for 20 minutes and could not sleep, I should get up and do something else for awhile until I get sleepy again. It actually works, if I try to stay in bed, I just toss and turn all night.

    Anyway, gentle hugs to you, and I'm sending you lots of positive energy.

    Take care,

  7. lurkernomore

    lurkernomore New Member

    Firstly, let me say that I really feel badly for all of us who have trouble sleeping. And so many of us do! For me, the *quest for rest* has been a lifelong problem and I feel as if I have been there and done that with pretty much everything to the extent that I have been ready to just accept that I may never sleep again. But the lack of sleep affects every part of our lives and just makes the pain so much more difficult to cope with, so we keep looking for the answer, don't we?

    To have to search and silently plead for a function so basic as sleep, which comes so naturally to others really just seems to unfair, doesn't it? I know it does to me.

    I have tried prescribed sleep meds, OTC sleep aids and some work for a fair bit, some have not worked at all. Some gave me a couple of hours of sleep, but left me feeling like a zombie for the rest of the day too. Last week, my mother told me of a friend who goes through the same nightmare that we do. She was advised to try the liqid melatonin that one places under the tongue and holds there for 30 to 45 seconds. (I guess it gets absorbed by a subligual gland to speed up the absorption process to make sleep come more quickly.) So off my mom and I went to the health food store and both purchased a bottle of the stuff.

    My problem was that the store owner told us that the liquid had an immediate result. This was disappointing to me, as it actually took a couple of hours before I really got sleepy and longed for bed. I learned, after a couple of nights, to go on and take the liquid a couple of hours before I wanted sleep and when I did feel sleepy, to get into bed and let it do it's job. On nights when I lie down and still have the "racing brain," I have a little ritual where I employ the tactic often used in surgery. Except rather than counting backwards from ten, I count backwards from 100. This keeps my mind off other things and keeps it busy with the numbers, and after awhile, it gets so boring I am ready to drift off to sleep.

    I apologize for the long post. But I really hate that any of us have to deal with this need for sleep and just wanted to offer what has helped for me. I have also found that if I even attempt going to bed before 2 a.m., it is going to result in total frustration. This seems to be when my body is ready for sleep so I have learned to work my life around it and deal with the reality. I am still able to awaken no later than 9 a.m. and get on up and am getting some chores done that I could not think of doing before. I hope you find something very soon which allows you to get some proper sleep and deep, healing rest!
  8. Hi Wolverine...
    Cool name :)
    My name is Shantel. I have tried so many things for sleep as I was bedridden for 2 years a few years ago and slept a max of 3-4 hours/night if I was lucky! I was going insane and watching the clock as every minute ticked away. I understand how you feel and I feel for you! People always told me 2 things.... #1- When your body needs sleep it will give it to you eventually. (That one never made me feel better and actually it kind of T'd me off!)
    And #2- The more you think about not sleeping and obsess about it, the worse your sleep problems become. This is very true and I remember that vicious cycle.
    Here is what got me out of it......
    #1------ Relaxation techniques. Look some up on web. (Breathing, visualization, etc..)
    And if that doesn't do it... #2--------Tizanadine from your doctor. ( A pain management Dr. is better and easier to deal with than a regular physician since they deal with people who have pain constantly and are more open to helping you find what you need.)
    Tizanadine is the only thing that helped me get the good sleep and not make me a mess the next morning. I believe it is also non addictive if I remember correctly. ( I could be wrong about that, so you might want to check.)
    Anyway... It works brilliantly and I have recommended it to others and they too have had wonderful experiences with it.
    Good luck and hopefully you will get some ZZZZZzzzzzzzz's!!!
  9. Pianowoman

    Pianowoman New Member

    I feel for you. Sleeping is so essential to healing. There has to be an answer. Several have gotten help with the ZMA sold here at Pro Health. You can find it in the Store.

    Good Luck.

  10. Rosiebud

    Rosiebud New Member

    most meds had the opposite effect on me.

    I was advised by Tansy to try Zopiclone and started two nights ago - I dont believe it, I sleep and I'm not hung over the next day.

    Dont know what it would be called where you are. This is uk.

    Good luck, I know how awful it is.

  11. elsa

    elsa New Member

    Hey Chris,

    Not sleeping makes our symptoms so much worse. I have some suggestions for you that might help. They definitely make a difference in my quality of life.

    First off, (without any kind of help), my sleep disorder sounds similar to yours. 1: I can't fall asleep before 2-3AM ... sometimes later and , 2. I sleep very lightly. It doesn't take much to wake me up, and if I do wake up .. then that's it .. no going back to sleep for me.

    Without taking steps to fix this problem, I average about 3 hours total sleep a night.

    Some simple things I do to alleviate the problem: 1. Ear plugs! I buy the 32 decimal rating ... (think that is the highest). They come in different sizes and softness. Experiment until you find which is the most comfortable for you. Ear plugs make a hugh difference and they are cheap on the wallet.

    2. I know guys don't think this is cool, but trust me on this one. I use a good size sleep mask. It doesn't take much light to wake me. ( This just didn't happen before fibro.)The blackened mask helps greatly. Again, there are many different kinds and they are not expensive. Find which one is best for you and then use it. LOL

    3. You said you mattress was a good one, but since fibro I found I need extra help. I have a memory foam mattress topper that is fabulous. My husband has back problems and we were worried that making the bed softer would cause him pain. These memory foam toppers are great for his back too. Many sites on the internet sell good quality memory foam toppers at a decent price. It's worth the investment.

    4. This is just me, but I thought I'd make mention of it. I also use a regular shaped memory foam pillow that makes a big difference in my neck and shoulder trigger points. I also use a body pillow. At those times that I am really hurting, it's great to be able to support my arm and leg on that pillow. It worth looking into.

    5. Medication ... Like you, I hate more then anything the feeling of being "drugged and dumb" the day following a sleep med. Too me, sleep rx hangovers are just as bad as the sleep disorder.

    Most medications give me that hangover. As does many of the natural supplements.

    All of us have a sleep disorder.It has become a given with CFS/FM. The majority of us have alpha intrusion .. (very light sleep stage that "intrudes" or takes over the restorative, deep sleep i.e. stages 3 and 4.

    However, some of us have a completely different disorder that can be just as detrimental to our quality of life.

    My sleep study showed very little alpha intrusion.( Small enough .. 15-20% at most.) My disorder is zero REM. REM is important in many, many ways.

    Also, a whole host of medications suppress REM. I don't know if you have had a sleep study, but you have similar reactions to some meds as I do. With that in mind maybe you could try the protocal I follow.

    The sleep rx I take is lunesta. For starters, it does not suppress REM. Lunesta is in a group of sleep medications referred to as "short acting". It's concentration peaks in one hour. ( very good for those of us that can't fall asleep.) It has a short half life of 6 hours. Good for no hangover, but long enough to insure a decent night's sleep.

    It does not build on itself ... you don't have to take it for a period of time to be effective. You don't have to taper off slowly to stop using it.

    Anti-anxiety, antidepressents, xyrem, pain pills like vicoden, benedryl, muscle relaxers, supplements like valerien root and passion flower, gaba and l-theanine, and anti-seizure medications like klonopin and gabatril all:

    1. suppress REM making me more sleepy during the day even if I get 8 hours .. and 2. Either build on themselves causing that "drugged and dumb" feeling or have too long a half life making me still feel sleep during the next day.

    Some people have no problem at all clearing alot of these medications, making them great in treating their sleep disorder.

    Like you, for whatever reason, it takes a while to shake the effects. Flexeril, for example has a long half life. It does it's muscle relaxing job well ... but as a sleep med it sucks ... just takes so long to "get rid of it".

    Lunesta comes in 1mg (I think) and 2,3,&4mg doses. My rx is for 2mgs. Some people taste a metallic taste after taking it. I do about thirty minutes in. It doesn't bother me and I use it as a sign that it's working.

    I break my dose in two ... 1mg is all I need sometimes. This pill tastes horrible when broken. I solved that by wrapping some (really fresh) bread around it and swallow the bread and all whole. No bad taste that way!

    You have to devote at least 7 hours to sleep with this medication. (7 hours total, can't count time it took to fall asleep, etc.) If you "cheat" the sleep time, you'll have that sleep hangover we all hate.

    I am sorry for the length of my response. You may know about all this already, or you may already use the same things I do. If I'm being redundant I apologize. LOL

    I wish you good luck with this. Fixing the sleep disorder componant of CFS/FM is just as important as controlling infections and beefing up the immune system.

    It has made a hugh difference in my life and a big step in putting me in early remission.

    Take care,


    P.S. Just about all sleep medication's action will be enhanced/perpetuated when also taking antidepressents, muscle relaxers, anti-seizure or anxiety medication. keep it in mind if you take any of these, as you might do better with a smaller dose of sleep meds..

  12. elsa

    elsa New Member

    Bump .....

  13. deelite127

    deelite127 New Member

    it's an antidepressant but i take it for sleep & i have no hang-over effects in the morning.

  14. tansy

    tansy New Member

    developed into profound chronic sleep deprivation, this made matters a lot worse for me. Alternatives helped a bit; the dose of trazedone required to have any effect at all left me unable to function during the day.

    I have gone back onto ZMA since I am having PT atm and felt this would help with muscle repair overnight, it seems to have made my zopliclone more effective.

    I too have a skewed circadian cycle, even with the zopiclone I still have to go with that for the time being.

    Zopliclone and lunesta are short acting. My liver function seems to have improved recently, even though I have been taking zopiclone for some time now, so it's clearly not stressing my liver. Once the effects of zopiclone have worn off there's no hang over, and so far no signs of developing tolerance.

    Hope you find something that works that you can tolerate soon.

    love, Tansy
  15. lisadot

    lisadot New Member

    Hi Wolverine,
    Sorry to read you aren't sleeping. It's the pits. Been there and done that. Even though most nights I sleep through, I still never feel rested. I was put on Trazadone about a year ago. It does help a lot. I had to increase the dose s-l-o-w-ly, otherwise I was wiped out in the morning, plus it tended to make me "gassy" shall we say?

    Could also be you are depressed? I wouldn't be suprised.Fibro is draining, never mind breaking up with someone. It's all hard.

    I'm not real sure about the halflife of the drug. You'll have to look that one up.

  16. DoveL

    DoveL Member

    I would suggest xanax too! I am so allergic to meds, it is crazy! I had HORRIBLE MCS for about 1 year, and I was still able to tolerate the xanax. I attribute sleeping better, to feeling much better these days. Everyone's body is different. I hear kolonopin is very good also, although I have not tried it. Try a small dose of xanax to start. I take .5mg at night, 1 hour before bed. 3 years later, it still works great for me, and I do not have to 'up the does' either. Good luck. I totally understand where you are coming from. Not sleeping STINKS! Some advice from my experience, once I got some good steady sleep every night for about a month, things really turned around for me. That and eating a good, health diet. Hang in there!! Hugs Dove
  17. slowdreamer

    slowdreamer New Member

    Hi Wolverine, seems like you have hit on a big topic.I read your biog and relate very much to your symptomse.g. Cfs and Mcs.Also I live in Gods country amonst the gum trees and kangaroos.
    What works for me sometimes.
    Zinc, Mag, Calcium
    Valerian Drops
    About 5mg of Sinequan for about 3 weeks to set the sleep cycle a bit and calm down the gut allergies.
    Avoiding hard to digest meal or any allergens at night.
    Trying to get as much first class protein in my diet.All the things that are wrong, hormones enzymes immune system are largely made of protein..I am using vinegar, lemon juice and Betaine HCL to help digest the protein.
    Good Luck with it all
  18. elsa

    elsa New Member

    Where'd you go? ... Lots of answers to your post....
  19. romie

    romie New Member

    we all go through the sleep thing.....and it makes the pain worse when you do not sleep well....the DR will give you something if they are informed about Fibyo .......but I should no say this but I still go through it at times even with the meds..and I have found myself going for more pain pills or the mus. relaxers.......not a good thing but sometimes we have to sleep
  20. dancingstar

    dancingstar New Member


    So many different solutions to the same problem. We all get different results from the same things. I won't go near antidepressants cause they'll likely kill me at this point and surely cause me to be seriously depressed not to mention causing me to sleep all day long; so that's out.

    I found Lunestra to be both ineffective and physically addictive even though it is said not to be; so after 30 days, I elected to not refill that prescription.

    The only thing that pretty well guarantees me a good night's sleep is a relatively hard workout around 6:00 in the evening, not too early, not so late as to overamp my system and keep me up all night.

    Some of the other stuff builds up in my system too quickly and easily and makes me feel drugged, just about the last thing I need, but a good workout is almost guaranteed to knock me out by bedtime...sometimes even sooner. :)

    Hope something mentioned by someone here works for you soon. I know how miserable it is to not get any sleep when we need it so badly!

    Sweet dreams,

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