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Anxiety and insomnia

(9 Posts)
BunnyHopHop Wed 10-Feb-16 16:32:04

Hi, I suppose I'm looking for some reassurance. I've seen lots of old threads regarding sleep anxiety and found them helpful.

To cut a long story short I've suffered with bouts of anxiety and depression in the past. Whilst pregnant with my 1st daughter I suddenly became unable to sleep and it was pretty horrific and I was a mess, felt ready to accept I was mad! I recovered after a few months after taking 20mg Prozac daily. I was advised to stay on it when pregnant with my 2nd daughter which went very well.

I had my 2nd daughter 4 months ago and since having her I've suffered the sleep anxiety again but not quite as bad. This worried me as I was still taking 20mg Prozac daily and my doctor advised me to up the dosage to 40mg but I was still suffering with bad anxiety.

I ended up seeing a psychiatrist who recommended I change the medication to sertraline which I did and have currently been taking 100mg for the past 2 weeks. I thought and hoped I was doing better but my anxiety around sleep and generally is still high and last night I just couldn't sleep due to a buzzing head and pounding heart. I suppose I just want to know there is hope that I won't always struggle with this and feel this way. I have 2 beautiful daughters who need me to be well and I just feel like a freak. My husband is very understanding but it's hard to explain how horrendous it is lying awake at night with thoughts racing and trying to fight the anxiety. It's like torture. I'm worried now I'm resistant to medication, can that happen? I need hope that this won't be me forever. I used to sleep so well and just obsess about it now.

Has anyone ever suffered similar and come out the other side or currently going through the same?

DansonslaCapucine Wed 10-Feb-16 16:43:07

When do you take your Sertraline? I took it for about 11 months for anxiety and took it in the morning. Like you 100g.

I found I slept really well. However, I still had the occasional waking not long after I fell asleep, heart racing, with panicked feeling. Just not every night.

If it's generally working, perhaps an increased dose. Or maybe you just need more time.

Hope it gets better - insomnia is the pits.

BunnyHopHop Wed 10-Feb-16 16:52:09

Hi, thanks for your reply! Yes I take it in the morning. I've also been prescribed some Diazepam and zopliclone but hate taking these and can't believe I'm struggling with this again. I'm also having CBT but finding it hard to commit with 2 young children (my oldest is 3 in April). Feel such a failure and awful for feeling this way. I suppose I just want some hope I will get better again. SSRIS have always helped in the past but I seem to be struggling a bit even with the mess at the minute.

BunnyHopHop Wed 10-Feb-16 16:53:02

'Even with the meds' that should read!

DansonslaCapucine Wed 10-Feb-16 21:33:37

Hopefully the Sertraline will kick in soon.

Thinking back, it may have taken more than two weeks for my anxiety to start to subside.

Thegianttap Tue 16-Feb-16 14:10:30

Hello! Just thought I'd put my two pennies worth. I had terrible postnatal insomnia after DS3 was born six years ago. It started on Christmas Eve 2009. That turned into anxiety about the insomnia and the anxiety made the insomnia worse and so began the vicious circle of catastrophizing, lack of sleep, depression, more catastrophizing, ahhhh. It didn't start to get better until around May 2010 and even then progress came in waves. It would get better, then I'd have a bad night and spiral down, then it'd get even better again. And so on.

But I did get better. It took some zopliclone (although as soon as I stopped I didn't sleep AT ALL and was back to square one), hypnosis, CBT, and lots of positive thinking and realising that nobody dies from lack of sleep because eventually the body just forces the mind to sleep. It did get better. I have the odd night's bad sleep (in fact last night as we are currently blighted by a stomach bug and I have emetophobia to make life that little more easy...NOT). But I know that I will sleep better tonight, or tomorrow night and that in a week's time this current crisis will be over.

I think the most effective treatment out of all the things I tried were CBT and hypnosis. The hypnosis calms me (I still use a hypnosis track on my ipod every now and then to send me off to sleep) and the CBT taught me how to put lack of sleep in perspective.

So hope things get better for you soon. You are not alone. I think a lot of people get postnatal insomnia and anxiety. You convince yourself you won't cope. But you will. Good luck x

Getyercoat Wed 17-Feb-16 18:18:44

Just wanted to chip in and say both sertraline and escitalopram made my insomnia 100x worse, and I woke with full blown panic at 3-4am for weeks and weeks.
Can you try the diazepam and see if it helps?
None of this is your fault. Doctors sometimes omit to tell people that SSRIs can greatly exacerbate insomnia and anxiety and for some those side effects don't diminish.

LisaB141 Fri 19-Feb-16 08:45:53

I too have been prescribed Sertraline 50mg once daily for severe panic attacks/anxiety. I have 2 children aged 12 and 6 and just feel at the moment that I can't look after them properly. My stomach is in knots all the time and I am worrying constantly about everyday things. I feel like I'm going mad and not in control at all. I have to keep getting up out of bed and walking around as the panic is driving me mad and my husband!! Its a relief to know I'm not on my own as sometimes it feels like that. I have also been prescribed Diazepam 2mg for only 3 days, I was scared to take one at first but the reviews I have read have been promising so I'm going to take one now in the hoping it takes the edge of this awful feeling.

BunnyHopHop Mon 20-Jun-16 07:49:21

Hi just read some of these posts, thanks so much for the replies! Things had got a bit better and I was feeling a bit more normal again. Unfortunately had a bad night last night resulting in taking a zopliclone which took ages to get me off to sleep as my silly anxiety was kicking in. I hate this problem and just want to sleep like I used to.

Saw a psychiatrist last week who made me feel like a naughty school girl for not currently being able to take up cbt properly due to childcare. All he seemed to want to do was take me off the meds all together but pretty much made me feel it was all my fault! Needless to say I won't be seeing him again. He also said no one has ever died of lack of sleep which I couldn't believe from a supposedly experienced educated man in this area!

Anyway fingers crossed this current 'blip' won't last.

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