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Please help me sleep

(19 Posts)
NeverHadANickname Wed 06-May-15 14:38:13

I'm really struggling with sleep at the moment so I'm hoping someone can help me. I'm not sure what's relevant and what's not so I'll try and include as much detail as I can.

It started off where I would have a bad nights sleep every few nights, normally I go to bed early and I'm asleep by about 10 ish and get up at 7 but I started waking a lot more than usual in the night and then getting to sleep later. Now I have an ok nights sleep every few nights and rubbish the rest of the time, maybe 3 or 4 hours sleep a night.

I think (but might be wrong) that my sleep is like it is because I'm so restless and fidgety all of the time. My skin feels like it's crawling unless I'm moving. I can lay in bed and try and stay still but all of a sudden have to move my limbs quickly of jump up out of bed or do star jumps to get rid of some restless energy. I feel like this through the day too.

I was on sertraline from November to a few weeks ago. This restlessness started while I was still taking it and at the time I thought it was maybe the tablets so thought when I stopped taking them it'd stop but it hasn't. Not sure if this is relevant.

I have a juice plus shake on a morning for my breakfast. I don't want to get in to the ins and outs of diets if this has nothing to do with it but I thought I'd mention it in case anyone is aware of anything in it that could be causing this.

In a few weeks I do have exams so I know I'll be worried about them but I don't normally react like this and I'm struggling to revise because while I have physical energy I have absolutely no mental energy because I'm so tired.

I think that's everything but any questions let me know and I'll try and answer them, I'm just really hoping that someone can tell me that they've had similar or know what I have or that the doctor will be able to help, I REALLY need my sleep smile

Thanks in advance of any help.

NeverHadANickname Wed 06-May-15 21:15:16

Any ideas or help? This is day 2 of trying nytol.

Clarella Thu 07-May-15 08:36:00

Ah - I had this, and it began on sertaline too though I don't know if it's linked. You could still be withdrawing however in me I worked out it was low ferritin (iron) - I had itchy bones and muscles, sort of tight and wanted to stretch, couldn't lie still, only ok if moving but not even then sometimes.

I literally googled itchy bones and came across the restless leg syndrome website (it's not just legs) and also read the site.

My ferritin was 55 (i think range is usually from about 20-200) so I was borderline, but gp said there was a drug to help the rls but ferritin had to be higher before giving, to rule out this being the cause. I've had some issues getting my thyroid meds right too due to the sertaline, it's been quite a mess.

I found it suddenly easy to sleep when ferritin reached around 80 but it's wavered a little during periods which have been heavy, (I guess) as symptoms can come back, but over all I've gradually improved.

It's s weird symptom to tell the gp but do try to explain it as itching along side difficulty sleeping could possibly indicate low ferritin. I couldn't raise my iron via diet and vitamins, I've had to have prescribed pills.

Clarella Thu 07-May-15 08:37:55

Reading your post again it sounds very like restless leg syndrome, and I'd be pretty certain iron would help, though iirc ssris can also be the cause, from the rls website.

Clarella Thu 07-May-15 08:40:51 - it's not just legs though!

Look at non aneamic iron deficiency too.

Clarella Thu 07-May-15 08:42:50

Avoid caffeine at all, cocodamol might help at night, avoid alcohol and excersise can help though obviously can also be more tiring.

Clarella Thu 07-May-15 08:59:18

Oh - how could I forget?!! Magnesium!

Epsom salts - a bath before bed with a good dose of these, I took magnesium tablets from boots last thing at night, warm milk drinks (though too much milk interferes with iron absorbtion) and I bought a magnesium spray from Holland and barret. Didn't cute but got me through the worst of it. It was always worse in the run up to my period, and that's when I notice it a little now.

Clarella Thu 07-May-15 08:59:56

Cure not cute.

I got all this from the rls association website.

tormentil Thu 07-May-15 09:03:27

Echoing iron - get your levels tested - and magnesium in an epsom salts bath. I've also used magnesium spray - a small amount rubbed on my wrists. A good vitamin b complex will support the iron.

wfrances Thu 07-May-15 09:10:20

watching with interest as i woke up about 20 times last night and im already on a sedative anti/depressant taken at bed time because its suppose to knock you out - fairplay it did the job for 2 weeks but now its worse.

Clarella Thu 07-May-15 09:37:04

Op say your first 4 paragraphs plus the fact you have low mental energy (my cognition was very much affected)

It might be worth, and I'd hope, they do some other blood tests to rule out any thyroid or other issues, but there's several key symptoms you mention, including skin feeling like its crawling? Which should mean that ferritin is checked.

It felt like I had biting ants crawling on my bones and under my skin.

Clarella Thu 07-May-15 09:38:29

Sorry, say these paragraphs and the mental energy bit to gp.

Unfortunately it isn't a quick fix, you may have to try your best in exams but discuss with tutors possible retakes?

NeverHadANickname Thu 07-May-15 11:09:00

Thanks for all the responses. I'll read properly when I finish work.

NeverHadANickname Fri 08-May-15 08:53:14

I thankfully had a slightly better sleep last night, I got to sleep earlier but woke up a lot.

So I need iron tablets, magnesium (is that in Epsom salts?).

By the sounds of it I do need to go to the doctors so they can confirm it, I'd hate to be taking something I don't need and that way if it happens again I know what I need to be doing. The main problem is its hard to get an appointment with my nice understanding doctor but I'll try.

Thanks again.

Clarella Fri 08-May-15 13:35:59

This is absolutely something that needs investigating and diagnosing/ ruling out, and probably prescribed iron. It's not good to take extra iron though the amounts in multi vits are tiny in comparison (eg 14 mg v 400mg, it's taken months on 400 daily to get remotely near a good level) extra vit c could also help.

The magnesium, esp in from of epson salts, may help the tingling etc. It could also be something to do with the sertaline and so slowly be readjusting.

As I said, describe it all to the gp.

PurpleAlert Fri 08-May-15 13:47:46

Definitely magnesium! or if you can get hold of some Sour CHerry supplement (concentrated juice or there is a powder called Cherry Night- I think it has magnesium in it.)

NeverHadANickname Fri 08-May-15 17:59:39

I can't get an appointment with my nice doctor for a few weeks. A bit reluctant to go to see anyone else. I might ask for a telephone appointment then she can authorise the tests.

NeverHadANickname Mon 11-May-15 18:33:47

I saw a doctor today and he'd given me Amitriptyline to help me sleep. I had to ask for blood tests which I'm getting done next Wednesday and he said it's unlikely it'll be a magnesium deficiency, he said its hard to be magnesium deficient unless I have bowel problems or a bad diet or some other stuff like that. I'll just have to wait for the blood tests now I suppose. I know it sounds stupid but I'll be so upset if it comes back with nothing wrong.

Clarella Mon 11-May-15 20:59:35

I wasn't magnesium deficient, at all. It just helped ease the crawling skin and helps me sleep sometimes. Not when at worse. My issue was iron deficiency, not anaemia, that's different. Iron depletion. I do hope they check ferritin. I honestly don't know if the amytriptine will help if it's restless leg syndrome. I'd really want to know they've ruled this out. Hope you get some sleep tonight and exs go well

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