Unfortunately, I'm in the same boat about sleeping. I fall asleep, only to wake up about four hours later. I don't take anything currently to help me sleep, but think that I should. I have tried benadryl a few times and it helps but that is really the only thing I've tried.
My best friend takes trazadone and lunesta, which are both sleep aids and she says she still has trouble sleeping too. But there are a few names, trazadone and lunesta. Have you tried those?
I take Ambien to fall asleep and Klonopin (to stay asleep). I'm on the lowest dosage of both medications and they've worked together wonderfully for over a year. If you've never taken Klonopin before, be aware it can cause drowsiness for an extended time until you adjust. Talk to your doctor.
My doctor put me on trazadone. I dont know if you can take that with those other meds... I have never heard of Pamelor.... I was sleep walking... doctor said I was stressed and it was the only way my body could deal with it.... when I was supposed to be sleeping!
There is an old country remedy that a friend swears by, I tried it and it sort of helped a bit. Get some hop flowers and some lavander flowers (dried are fine) or oil and put them in a cotton bag and put them in a pillow (if using oil just drip onto pillow). Both are supposed to aid deep restful sleep!... I take amitryptyline partly for pain and partly to help me sleep, that kinda worked to start with but am tollerant now so it's not so good.
I think trouble sleeping is one of the more difficult things in dealing with chronic pain, which, of course, makes our pain worse.
I take Ambien, which helps a little, though I can never sleep the whole night through. I talked to the NP at the pain clinic and we're thinking of switching me to something else. Maybe Ambien ER or Lunesta ER (the extended release versions) in the hope I can sleep most of the night.
There are also other meds that help people sleep, things like Trazadone, etc. I don't know much about those.
There are other natural things to help you sleep. Melatonin (I've had some success with that.) I've tried the OTC Advil PM but find the OTC meds leave me feeling really groggy the next day. Eve though most people find it icky, warm milk really does help (it's the L-tryptophan that induces sleep. Also found in turkey. Though the milk has to be warm in order to release the L-tryptophan.)
If you're a person of faith, I've found prayer helps a lot. For me, saying the rosary is a big help, and I usually use rosary beads. I think, for me, it's the repetitiveness as well as feeling that I have God helping me along.)
Meditation/relaxation can help, too. Have you ever tried the method of tightening all the muscles in your whole body? You tighten up everything, and then beginning with your toes, you slowly untighten those muscles, then you go to your calves, knees, thighs, etc. You have to do each muscle group separately. If you untighten one too soon, you start at the beginning again. This exercise can be helpful, especially in conjunction with other methods.
The lavender mentioned by JHuxlet also works wonders. A warm (not too hot) bath with lavender can help a lot. Johnson & Johnson makes a great line of lavender baby products and they're reasonably priced. They have the baby wash (squirt some in the tub for bubbles) and use on a loofah to wash with. They also have a lotion and powder. (You can even sprinkle a little of the powder in the bed for the scent to carry over.
Good luck and try lots of things until you find what works for you. My guess is that everyone on this board has experienced trouble sleeping at one time or another (and some deal with it on a constant basis.)
I have had some trouble sleeping because of the pain. I found I slept best when I was on extended release pain meds such as Morphine and muscle relaxers. I take Klonopin at night to help me stay asleep, but lately I've been waking up like clockwork at 6-7 am, when I used to be able to sleep until 10. I just can't take the pain in the morning. Although I have to be up by 7 to get my kids to school, so it's not so much a problem for me. Sometimes if it wakes me up in the early morning, despite the Klonopin, I take my pain meds and muscle relaxer and go back to sleep.
I have heard really good things about melatonin. I've never tried it, though. I hope you find something that works for you!
I am sorry you are unable to sleep. Unfortunately this usually goes hand in hand with chronic pain.
I take a diazepam when I am unable to sleep. It helps my body and mind relax. I admit I rarely take it. If you don't have to work there is nothing that says you have to sleep 8 hours a night. Catch a nap when you can. However if you nap don't expect to sleep well that night.
The amount of sleep a person needs is very individualized. I have friends that thrive on 4 or 5 hours of sleep a night. They are not chronic pain patients.
Some suggestions for sleep include:
Go to bed at the same time every night.
Get a little exercise during the day. Getting outdoors can do wonders.
Sleep in a dark room with no distractions, such as TV or music.
Avoid caffeine after noon.
A herbal tea like chamomile sometimes helps.
Sometimes light reading will ease your thoughts.
Bedrooms should be designed around sleeping and not other activities like sewing or a computer room. I hope some of these suggestions will ease you to sleep.
I have come to the conclusion that it doesn't matter if I don't sleep well. I'll rest later or change my schedule. Don't stress over not sleeping. It will usually make it worse.
I've found meds only make it worse for me. I have no trouble getting to sleep, but usually BING awake at about the 4 or 5 hour mark.
Ambien CR (continued release) works great all night long and without the hangover of immediate release Ambien. BUT - I'll be honest, I quit using it due to really weird side effects like nightmares and acting them out whether it was talking, screaming, walking around - whatever. By morning I wouldn't remember a thing. My husband was even worse on ambien and it wasn't until he started seriously hitting and kicking in my sleep that he believed me. My bruises didn't lie.
There are plenty of OTC meds to help you sleep, but most of the ones labled PM contain good old benadryl. That's why so many people feel terribly hungover the next morning. It also won't help you stay asleep through the night.
Melatonin (in the herbal section with the vitamins) is a wonder at helping a person naturally feel sleepy, but it too wears off after only a few short hours. So far, I haven't found any OTC med that helps you sleep through the night. That function appears to still be in the prescription realm.
Bear in mind that most of Rx meds for sleep have been studied only for short-term use. It can be really difficult when you get off these meds to reset your brain and body to its normal sleep patterns. Meds can also mess with REM sleep, and although you "think" you've slept 8 hours or more, your body didn't really get the full benefit of sleep because the REM cycle is destroyed. Over time, you feel more and more tired and worn out but don't suspect the sleep meds because you think you've been sleeping well.
I can usually get back to sleep with meditation and relaxation techniques. Sometimes it only takes minutes; on bad nights it's over an hour or not at all. For now, it works well enough that I don't have to add yet another medication to my list.
I've had the oppersite experiance with sleeping med's. I was put on sleeping med's in oct last year because I've been dealing with pain in my legs at night and also insomnia issues for about 3 years now. I could get to sleep easy but not stay asleep and I even felt like I was traped between being awake and being asleep more and more. I had not had a dream in long time and suspected that I really was not getting in to REM sleep. It's been over 6 months now and while I'm still on sleeping med's I dont take them every night and I'm even starting to having lots of dreams during sleep on the nights I dont take my med's to sleep.
I dont think sleeping meds are really good for long term use, but I do think if you can get a good sleep patern happening again if you can find the right combination things that works for you.
The list Tuckamore made is a very good list.
I dont drink any caffine or energy drinks at all. I also dont smoke and dont drink, etc. When I exersize I have a better night sleep. I also have trouble turning my thoughts off at night and music has helped me alot sleep but even now I've noticing that I dont need my music as much to sleep and that feels good. PTSD cause my sleeping problem before a home invasion I could sleep when ever I wanted and have great dreams and wake up feeling good and ready to deal with life. OCD scratching compulsion interfeared with my sleep before my PTSD but it was the PTSD that really caused the most problems. Then recently pain in my legs made it imposiable. The lack of sleep was proberly causeing alot of my pain and the pain was making it harder to sleep. It's a vicious cycle it's crazy. Doing things that ease the pain before bed or tire your brain can help sleep. I some time play a mahjong as it really make me concentrate in order to make matches I have to focus and focusing makes me tired. Some time I do thing that excite my brain and I cant sleep no matter what I try.
Everyone is different we all have different issues causing pain and different things that make us tired. I you find what helps you soon.
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