1914355 tn?1323636574

No sleep, much stress, no balance.

I have had sleeping problems for as long as i can remember. As a kid i was never able to sleep because i was very imaginative, i would close my eyes to sleep, but something would pop up in my head and eyes open my eyes and just sit awake so i wouldn't see it again. it was usually a clown or a spider. i've got a problem with clowns. just scare the crap out of me. hate 'em. i figured it was just my mind trying to freak me out, but that didn't keep me from sitting in  bed trying to stay awake. i got older and it didn't stop. When i was around 11 the actual nightmares started. From i guess age 11-13 my nightmares were just based in odd places that would change and go to many different locations. i knew it was a nightmare, i was asleep but i knew it was a nightmare, but i couldn't wake up, i tried moving a part of my body to wake up so it would stop, but its like i was stuck or something. the first really bad dream i had was of someone killing my mom, i can remember it so well that it scares me, this woman with long black hair, i couldn't see her face, she just ran at my mom with a knife and stabbed her in the chest multiple times. i had that nightmare around when i was 12 i think, i woke up crying and must have stopped breathing because i was gasping , or hyperventilating, i do that a lot. I just kept having nightmares, not one single dream, all just bad, messed up nightmares. And sometimes i know that it's a nightmare, but i can't move. yet other times it feels so real that i don't realize that it's a nightmare until i wake up. The times when i have nightmares are the rare times that i can sleep, and even then i wake up and can't get back to sleep. Most of the time i start to doze off but something grabs my arm, or leg, or my hair. Nothing is there, but it feels like it. Lack of sleep causes me to be so clumsy, i can't even walk straight, i nearly fell off of the bleachers at school, nearly slipped off the stage during drama, tripped myself walking up the stairs, almost stumbled onto the road because i don't realize were i'm walking. I couldn't stop shaking during class and kept falling asleep for a second and then some kind of murder scene flashed behind my eyes and i opened them again. When i have a nightmare i wake up shaking, crying, screaming, hyperventilating, or all of the above. I wake up before i either die or get hurt, always seems to be people who want to hurt me or are mad at me. Many times it feels like someone is grabbing me, but it's nothing, yet i still can't go to sleep. My mom said i might have a problem with my brain, i told her that i can't sleep very well, she said maybe i should try this Melatonin thing, i think that's what it's called, this thing i can take that'll make me tired so i won't really have a choice but to sleep, that way even if i have nightmares i will still get sleep, and i won't wake up. Haven't tried it yet, i would rather have a nightmare and wake up before the really bad part happens instead of sleeping and having to experience the entire thing. Any opinions on my problem? is there something i can do to stop the flashing of images in my head or to get more sleep or stop the nightmares? Does this happen to anyone else?
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Avatar universal
Hello and hope you are doing well.

Understand your predicament. A lot of studies have been done to highlight the importance of sleep and its rejuvenating capacity. Sleep is required to heal; it causes regeneration of the neurons within the cerebral cortex. Prolonged sleep loss leads to episodes of ‘micro sleep’, where in the person has several seconds of actual sleep in between wakefulness, this leads to a decrease in performance and in turn behavior. The implications as such are many, micro sleep episodes are the commonest cause for accidents.

Your symptoms of seeing things could be due to  sleep disorders “Nightmare” or "Night terror" disorders . Here the person experiences symptoms of bad, frightening dreams which interfere with his sleep schedules. This can be assessed by a sleep questionnaire and therapy is based on the severity of symptoms. You will need to consult your primary care physician, who may then refer you to a sleep specialist if needed.

Hope this helped and do keep us posted.
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1914355 tn?1323636574
the thing is, it's hard to lower my stress level because i have very bad anxiety and i've got many things going on at school, grades, homework, sports, tutoring. Not to mention i've got to get a job and i have social anxiety disorder making it difficult to even go to an interview without having an internal panic attack. I have been trying to calm down but i can never push all the stress and worries away. I'm always thinking about the next time i have to put on a fake smile or study for a test or memorize this or answer that. horror films don't really scare me, i'm not sure if that is the cause but i'll try your suggestion and not watch many of them. i also read a lot before i sleep, that might be a factor. And i'll try writing my thoughts down, that might help. Thanks :)
Helpful - 0
1809109 tn?1331803777
Oh oh pick me!

I get HORRIBLE nightmares and I have found the best way to (almost completely) elevate them is mediation (lower stress), exercise (help make me sleepy), and stay away from anything visually gruesome. It is hard because I'm not naturally terrified of a movie like Twister or Jurassic park and people think it's silly that I can't watch them. But if I do I have nightmares for weeks afterwords.Hell, I got nightmares from I think it was White Noise's trailer (or one of those stupid horror movies). I also have difficulty if I watch something with high intensity right before bed, so I recommend not watching anything other than pretty unicorns and fairies up to 2 hours before bed time, if you watch anything at all. I'm also really bad when it comes to books. Dracula gave me nightmares. And a scene from the The Count of Monte Cristo kept me up all night. Also a video game kept playing in my head a few times. So yeah, nothing too stimulating. Most of my issues come from stress so as long as I deal with it, manage it I'm usually ok.

In addition to not being able to handle visuals I'm also afraid of the dark. Fortunately sleeping in the same room as someone else helps me, but that still comes down to stress management.

Now Melatonin is a natural herbal treatment that helps people relax into sleep. So give it a try, you may find it makes all the difference. Personally I think a nice cup of herbal tea works better, but to each his own.

I have also known people who have benefited from scribbling down thoughts or ideas before bed. The hope is that the ideas and thoughts that keep you awake are removed. It's definitely worth a try.
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