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Help! Insomnia and mood swings

(18 Posts)
Picoloangel Sat 18-Feb-17 20:11:12


I am almost 52 and almost exactly on the stroke of 50 I stopped sleeping properly. For several years prior to this I had noticed that my sleep pattern was more erratic but attributed this to DD who was born (naturally) when I was almost 46.

After a terrible few months of feeling anxious, sleeping for 3 hours per night maximum and having horrendous mood swings, I finally went on HRT albeit after many visits to my GP.

After a little tinkering my night sweats stopped, my mood was better (not exactly upbeat and euphoric but much improved) and my anxiety improved a bit too. My sleep improved but i have still had to take something every night and have tried to alternate antihistamines/herbal remedies and prescription tabs because if I take anything long enough it stops working. I paid £250 to attend a sleep course and have tried 5HTP to no avail.

I have always suffered periods of insomnia so already avoid caffeine and late night exercise, drink wine only in moderation (1 glass on a Fri and Sat) and exercise regularly etc. In years gone by I would have a couple of bad nights take an antihistamine and all would improve but now it seems a permanent problem.

I have now been on HRT for a year and I am feeling very low and having terrible mood swings again. The thoughtof antidepressants terrifies me (I don't know why) but the thought of not getting any better terrifies me too. I have really screamed at my DD a couple of times lately and have then cried for hours, feeeling like a terrible mother and worrying that I am going to give her mental health issues with my constant mood swings. She's a happy little thing but a worrier.

I just don't know what to do - I am back to not sleeping most of the time and this is leavjng me anxious, depressed and run down. On days when I have, by some miracle, had sufficient sleep I am much better and on more of an even keel.

I have a v stressful job and work longish hours 3 days per week but generally have no other worries. Oh, except I have zero sex drive and constantly feel guilty about this too.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated. I am just desperate to feel happy again and to give my much longed for and happy little girl the childhood I feel she deserves.

Please be kind - no one could make me feel
worse than I already do about not being a great parent at the momentZ

babayjane67 Fri 03-Mar-17 08:36:22

Hi Pico
I don't have any solid advice but Im getting pretty bad meno symptoms& gp has only just agreed to put me on am just starting my journey as it were.
I'm 49 will be 50 in June.
I would go bk to yr gp& ask them to up the dose of yr hrt or try u on another one.
My gp has put me on a low dose for 3 months& said that we can up it if need be.just see how it works. I have to have oestrogen only patches as I had a tvh just over a yr ago so don't need progesterone now.
I know what u mean with the mood swings.they're terrible aren't they?Ive also been very down/depressed.
Talk to yr Dr again& see what they say.
Sorry I can't be more help.
Good luck!

PollyPerky Fri 03-Mar-17 09:05:49

What type of HRT are you on and what dose?

It could be something as simple as going up from a 1mg pill to 2mgs, or changing to a patch or gel instead of pills. Pills lose alot of hormones while being digested, so a 1mg pill won't get as much into your system as the equivalent patch or gel (applied to arms.)

PollyPelargonium52 Thu 25-May-17 09:15:33

I have bought vitamin B3 from Holland & Barrett this week and found that taking 200 mg half hour bedtime helps my broken sleeps no end.

I don't have too many physical symptoms so am not that mad keen to get HRT and I just go slightly warm at times not a hot flush as such. I do get terrible fatigue but put that down to the hayfever season having been low in iron and the broken sleeps.

Zero sex drive but don't care as my part-time man friend isn't into sex! I am not bothered about it would sooner have a hug!

I was feeling depressed too but I found that taking iron with vitamin B12 and folic acid in has restored energy and sanity somewhat although only after a couple of weeks and slowly .....

Every little helps as they say. There is nothing worse than a crap sleep and I have been sleeping appallingly since April and that is too long in my book. I wake up with the daylight at 4 am and can't get back but the last two nights since taking the B3 it has helped amazingly well.

I know on the bottle it says do not take more than 100 mg but research online tells me I can take higher doses quite safely. Apparently the maximum dose considered safe is 500 mg so I am at peace with myself taking 200 mg.

I am 53 and not the best sleeper in the winter owing to being borderline Asperger's but it isn't like me to not sleep spring/summer so I knew something was wrong ...

Hope the tip helps.

Anjelika Sat 03-Jun-17 21:42:14

I'm 52 too and also suffer with dreadful moods. I went on HRT but it didn't help (I don't have hot flushes which I understand the HRT really helps with). I've had sleep issues on and off for years and what I use to improve my menopausal sleep problems is Melatonin. It takes about a week of taking it nightly to see an improvement but it really helps. You can get it in various strengths and I buy the 3mg tablets online from Biovea.

PollyPelargonium52 Wed 07-Jun-17 10:45:43

It is always interesting to read other's strategies that have helped them.

I am not sure I would want to keep taking vitamin B3 forever so could always try taking melatonin at some stage. Apparently B3 is linked to increasing likelihood of diabetes so I don't fancy that! Everything has side effects it would seem. sad

PollyPerky Wed 07-Jun-17 12:01:56

It's not actually legal to buy melatonin. I know people buy it online but it's 'banned' for good reasons'

PollyPelargonium52 Wed 07-Jun-17 12:13:20

Yes I have just read up on melatonin a bit online and one of the sideeffects is depression so I wouldn't try it anyway.

Anjelika Wed 07-Jun-17 21:11:09

Personally not sleeping makes me depressed smile

Donttakemeout Wed 07-Jun-17 21:56:05

Mine is constantly broken sleep due to needing the toilet several times a night.
I'm exhausted by peeing!
I hate it!!

PollyPerky Wed 07-Jun-17 22:42:37

If you are peeing a lot, you might have vaginal atrophy (VA). Loss of estrogen affects the bladder too. Read up on it and have a chat with your GP about using vaginal estrogen.

Donttakemeout Wed 07-Jun-17 22:43:46

Thanks @PollyPerky I've never heard of that.
Will have a quick Google

PollyPelargonium52 Thu 08-Jun-17 06:24:45

I am getting on so well with the vitamin B3 I upped it to 300 mg nightly but will reduce it to 200 mg - if I do a quick toilet visit in the night I get back to sleep immediately these days whereas before I would either remain awake the best part of the night after or I would lose at least an hour's sleep. It is such a relief.

tormentil Thu 08-Jun-17 09:26:57

Asphalia is sold as an aid to sleep. I've used it quite a lot and it was helpful. I also found that when I began supplementing with vitamin d, my sleep improved dramatically.

I've also found that after a while, whatever I take, seems to stop working. So now if I only take vitamin d or magnesium if I actually wake in the night.

I frequently use some of the binaural beat meditations that you can find on you tube. Not necessarily a sleep one - look for a selection by 'karmic beats'. You need earphones and what happens is that one tone goes in one ear, another tone goes in the other ear. The brain leaps to 'join' the tones and in so doing, creates another - and in this way, your brain is encouraged to enter into a delta brainwave pattern or a theta brainwave pattern or an alpha brainwave pattern. I now only listen to these after a couple of bad nights and they do help to give me a better sleep.

PollyPelargonium52 Thu 08-Jun-17 10:28:25

I have been taking vitamin d for years it hasn't helped my sleep at all.

I get poor sleeps in the autumn/winter when my cycles of borderline Asperger's start playing up so I sincerely hope the vitamin B3 doesn't stop working!!

PollyPelargonium52 Thu 08-Jun-17 10:29:19

Been on magnesium ages too admittedly I take it for other reasons. Blood pressure and anxiety mainly.

Hotheadwheresthecoldbath Sat 17-Jun-17 01:53:05

Just read about the increased getting up for a wee in the night,had forgotten I was doing that,the oestrogen patches have stopped that.Normally sleeping better but it's hot here tonight.

bltandanicecupoftea Tue 11-Jul-17 19:43:30

Magnesium helped me with interrupted sleep. I was waking several times a night and getting more and more tired as a result. I sleep much better now.

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