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To ask what you do when you can't get to sleep?

(92 Posts)
WillBendTheKnee4Jon Fri 22-Mar-19 01:08:59

She asks while on her smartphone at 1 in the bastard morning

Fuck me I've tried everything I can but just can't drop off. I get maybe 3 hours during the day. It's starting to take its toll. I'm miserable. Dd is going through a very difficult time right now (waiting on a Cahms referral, the school are just now starting the process of getting her formally diagnosed with ADHD and Autism. I've had emergency meetings with the Senco officer and her teachers. Plus I had to get her an emergency appointment when she started crying and hyperventilating in class. Her teacher rang me in a panic) so as you can see I've plenty on my mind.
I was even prescribed a short course of zopiclone which had no effect at all. I'm stuck in a vicious cycle.

hipslikecinderella Fri 22-Mar-19 06:49:19

in my head, not on !

lljkk Fri 22-Mar-19 07:00:15

I have learnt to get by on 2 hrs sleep several days in a row.
I get a lot of exercise, including some aerobic, every day, That helps.
Listening to political podcasts are my sleep lullaby (weird, I know).

My sleep problem isn't anything to do with worrying though. Or bad sleep hygiene, or caffeine. I just don't sleep. So probably no help to you, sorry.

Pinkyponkcustard Fri 22-Mar-19 07:24:55

Read something mundane on Wikipedia.

It really works! It seems to stop the ongoing dialogue and overthinking by giving your brain something to do and in no time you’re sleepy again.

Was up in the middle of the night thinking about my gran and on going care arrangements and what I was going to say to my aunt when I see her angry 15 mins later reading about the history of the diners card and I was back in the land of nod!

TapasForTwo Fri 22-Mar-19 07:34:48

Read my kindle

greenelephantscarf Fri 22-Mar-19 07:36:22

try to listen to gqt gentle and upbeat radio
but most importantly (for me) changing sleep routine helped.
- no caffeine drinks after lunch
- no screens after 10pm
- no food 3 hours before bedtime
- magnesium supplement after dinner
- going for a walk/run late afternoon/early evening.

malificent7 Fri 22-Mar-19 07:40:02

Its full moon...sleep is notoriously worse at full moon. I was the same the other night. Red wine worked for me last night.

k1233 Fri 22-Mar-19 08:27:14

Breathing. Breathe in slowly count one, breathe out slowly count two. In, one. Out, two. That's all you're allowed to think. If you find yourself thinking of something else, don't worry. Straight back to in, one; out, two.

Remove digital clocks from bedroom, don't look at phone if you wake up. Close eyes - in, one; out, two.

SconesandTea Fri 22-Mar-19 08:38:13

Tisserand pillow spray. A wierd technique - close your eyes and focus on the backs of your eye lids. Don't know why but it works every time.

Myimaginarycathasfleas Fri 22-Mar-19 09:19:50

I used to be a terrible sleeper. Now I have the odd bad night but mostly sleep well. My tips go against all the received wisdom but they work for me.

I need to be full, can't sleep if hungry, so if I have any hunger pangs I get up and make toast and tea or hot milk.

It's imperative I'm warm enough. If my feet are cold I put on thermal socks. Before I had an electric blanket (which, by the way, I recommend for making you sleepy) I made a hot water bottle for my back.

Most important, some sort of audio distraction. I listen to podcasts with in ear headphones - The Archers, Home Front, Brexitcast, News Quiz, something I enjoy listening to. I've tried sleep apps but find they irritate rather than relax me.

Try not to catch up on sleep in the afternoon. That was my downfall, I loved an afternoon nap but it ruins you for the nighttime.

Hope you crack it, sleeplessness is miserable.

Imacliche Fri 22-Mar-19 09:22:21

Read a book.
But usually i give up watch family guy and eat chocolate

frankbegbie Fri 22-Mar-19 09:29:55

If I feel I'm going to be awake for a while I turn the radio on.
Low volume, usually some Talk station.
Sometimes it only takes a few minutes other times it can take a couple of hours.
I'm lucky in that I can grab a few minutes in the afternoon which is great as long as you don't sleep for too long.

fishonabicycle Fri 22-Mar-19 09:35:38

Don't look at screens if you can't sleep - they are apparently very stimulating to the brain. Get up, read quietly, have a drink, whatever, then go back and try again when you feel tired

mrsjackrussell Fri 22-Mar-19 09:38:43

A really boring audio book.

MiraculousMarinette Fri 22-Mar-19 09:48:24


Astrid0208 Fri 22-Mar-19 09:52:02

2 nytol and a red wine.

GruciusMalfoy Fri 22-Mar-19 09:54:01

I have to get up, make a warm drink and read a book. If I read on my phone I end up tapping and tapping onto different pages. Before you know it, it's 2.5 hours later and almost time to get up.

FloofyDoof Fri 22-Mar-19 09:57:21

Phenergan is OK. It's an antihistamine, often used for travel sickness, also sometimes prescribed for sleep but you can get it over the counter for travel sickness. Or diazepam (valium) from the GP helps sometimes, if things are very stressful. I don't find zopiclone helps me at all, I have always had trouble with my sleep.

Wynturphelle Fri 22-Mar-19 10:00:46

ASMR videos on youtube. Just listening. Not watching. Works every time.

BlackInk Fri 22-Mar-19 10:11:27

I never ever get out out bed. I know it's not recommended, but for me I would just wake up more if I was wondering around making drinks or watching TV. I never read and I never put a light on. I just lie in bed.

One technique that helps my mind stop racing is to list in my head:
5 things that I can see
4 things I can hear
3 things I can smell
1 thing I can taste

I cycle over and over the sets of things... the light at the door, the clock display, the window, the duvet, my hand... DP breathing, the wind, etc. etc. It really does help to calm my mind.

Babyfoal Fri 22-Mar-19 11:57:14

I do long division sums in my head

loobyloo1234 Fri 22-Mar-19 12:00:07

Try a Mindfulness app OP. They sometimes work for me. Insomnia/lack of sleep is a pain in the arse. Feel your pain

livefornaps Fri 22-Mar-19 12:00:15


Poing Fri 22-Mar-19 12:14:35

Also going through a difficult stage with our DC which is really affecting my sleep. OK during the day but trying to get to sleep at night is awful. My thoughts just keep whirring around my head. I was prescribed zopiclon also, which did not work by itself but in combination with music via ear-bud headphones (dull, continuous youtube relaxation sruff does the job) I get to sleep and stay asleep.

potatosaladnquiche Fri 22-Mar-19 15:15:27

Okay I have recently picked up this small routine to clear my mind of racing thoughts and fall asleep and it pretty much works every time!

When lights are off start with the 4 7 8 breathing method designed to help you sleep - breathe in through your nose for 4 seconds, hold your breath for 7 seconds and breathe out through your mouth for 8 seconds. The tip of your tongue needs to be placed just above your front teeth. Usually do this for a while until I'm yawning or just feeling relaxed.

Then the next thing I picked up from a sleep meditation video. Fix your eyes on something in the room (patch on the wall etc anything you can see in eye view). As you stare you feel your eyes start to get heavier and the urge to close them. The whole time repeating in your head something along the lines of "as I close my eyes the further down I go" (sounds nuts but it's so helpful, it's like it tricks your brain)

Usually when I'm repeating that phrase in my head I'm falling asleep and getting drowsy and mixing the words up and forgetting what I'm even supposed to be repeating in the first place grin
Then the next thing you know my alarm is going off smile

Also having a set bed time every day helps, and having one hour in bed before your bed time doing something non screen related. The earlier in the evening you stop looking at screens the better!
Good luck OP hope you find something that helps

Still18atheart Fri 22-Mar-19 15:17:24

Bbc4 documentaries; watch asmr YouTube videos. If really bad give yo watch something trashy on Netflix and then try again. Reading or make a cup of tea also work

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