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13 weeks pregnant and completely sleep deprived

(16 Posts)
purplesinclair Wed 13-Aug-14 15:14:04

Hello everyone, I am new here.

I am 13 weeks pregnant with my first baby.

In the past week I have been unable to sleep for more than 3 to 4 hours a night and that is broken sleep. When I am not asleep and lying in my bed wishing that the little sheep would stop jumping over my head I start to feel very anxious and my heart feels like it is going to come bouncing out of my chest.

I am a Social Worker working with adults in a stressful role but there isn't anything at work that is causing me any anxiety.

I am now at the point where I am so sleep deprived I am finding it hard to function at work, day to day tasks and I felt like I was going to fall asleep at the wheel of my car. VERY SCARY!

I spoke to my midwife and she suggested I contact my GP. The GP has signed me off work for a week as obviously he cannot prescribed sleeping medication. I have found that as of today my anxiety levels are through the roof even during the day and I am now feeling very tearful.

Just wondered if anyone else is or has experienced anything like this?

Will be lovely to hear from you all.

Claire x

Emmie10 Wed 13-Aug-14 15:21:19

I couldn't sleep well until fairly recently. I am now 16 weeks. I would take ages to get to sleep, wake after a couple of hours, lie awake for a couple of hours then doze until it was time to get up. I think it's fairly common in early pregnancy. Are you feeling anxious about not sleeping and the knock on effect the next day?

purplesinclair Wed 13-Aug-14 15:44:55

Hi Emmie

Yes that is exactly what is happening to me. sad

I am really hoping that the anxiety is a knock on effect of the sleep deprivation.

Hopefully a week off work will help me to get some sleeping equilibrium. hmm

WaffleWiffle Wed 13-Aug-14 15:45:25

Hi Claire

Feeling utterly exhausted and tearful are absolutely normal symptoms of pregnancy, especially in the first 14 or so weeks.

Could the anxiety be as a result of being very tired and tearful or is it more? Prenatal depression is a thing so speak to your GP about how you are feeling.

I'm currently 35 weeks pregnant with my fourth child and am so massive and wee so frequently that I don't sleep more than 2 hours at a time and often get less than 4-5 hours sleep in 24 hours. I'm not at work though so that helps. Slow down the pace of your life while signed off, it will help you cope better with less sleep.

WaffleWiffle Wed 13-Aug-14 15:47:37

Crossed post, you hadn't replied when I started writing.

You will probably get far less sleep when you have a newborn. So I sometimes think sleep issues in pregnancy is just Mother Natures way of getting us ready to be Mums.

squizita Wed 13-Aug-14 16:08:44

I found sleep improved in the middle of pregnancy, gets uncomfortable at the end BUT without the crushing exhaustion. Actually early pregnancy I reckon I could've slept loads and would still feel crap/drained.

purplesinclair Wed 13-Aug-14 17:02:41

I love my sleep and in normal circumstances I could sleep the whole day away.

Hopefully a week off will give me some time to get some naps in and hopefully stop me from waking up worrying about work stuff.

LittlePink Wed 13-Aug-14 17:19:50

I just recently went through a phase of insomnia too. I could get to sleep alright but it was staying asleep and I was waking up in the early hours and staying awake for what seemed like 2-3 hrs in the night. I have a 2 yr old toddler so the days were killing me running around after her. It went on for many weeks and now at 19 weeks I would say for the past 4 weeks im back on track. Im still exhausted in the day but not due to sleep deprivation, just due to the pregnancy, a different kind of tiredness, more like a really bad physical fatigue/lethargy rather than the relentless pain of sleep deprivation where your head just cant focus and you feel sick and like you're going die if you don't sleep soon!

MintSource Wed 13-Aug-14 18:18:31

I was surprised that insomnia was not really mentioned in my pregnancy book. It was mad in first trimester.

The hardest thing was laying there trying to get back to sleep. It's like your body is 'on' all the time and so doesn't shut down for sleep properly.

I found that getting up for a glass of milk or banana helped.

Branleuse Wed 13-Aug-14 18:25:33

you might find a piriton helps. Thats safe for pregnancy and it causes drowsiness.

Chamomile tea is very calming. More effective than a lot of people realise

butternut22 Wed 13-Aug-14 18:45:40

I am also a Social worker with adults. I have been feeling the same. I was signed off for 4 weeks in my first trimester (I am now 17 weeks). I found it really hard to focus at work and I didn't feel safe to practice (I spent a lot of time crying in the toilets). I am back at work now though am feeling a little better. In my last pregnancy I was signed off from work before mat leave because I was struggling with anxiety.

I hope you feel better soon xxxx

EssexGirlLottie Thu 14-Aug-14 09:52:06

I suffered from terrible insomnia through most of my pg. I found some natal hypnosis tracks on my iPhone were sometimes good at getting me back to sleep in the middle of the night...with the added bonus that they are supposed to be good for labour (although I can't comment on that as I've not reached that point yet!).

purplesinclair Fri 15-Aug-14 10:06:56

Thanks for all of your replied. I don't feel so alone with it all now.

I stayed in bed all day yesterday hoping that I would fall asleep at some point, I think I drifted in and out for a bit but no substantial sleep.

Last night felt like the worst night ever, we watched a movie last night and when I did fall asleep my dreams were about the movie trying to solve the mystery. I then managed to get a full hour from about 8am and I then had one of my cases going on in a dream.

The anxiety is still high and I am trying to put a brave face on it because as much as my boyfriend loves me, he and his whole family struggle with the whole concept of 'mental health issues'.

I think I will make an appointment to see my GP next week as butternut said above I do not feel safe to practice in my job due to the sleep deprivation and anxiety.

Booksnchocs13 Fri 15-Aug-14 12:14:33

There are a couple of things that work for me when insomnia and anxiety hit:
- Grabbing a little nap during the day, even if it's just ten mins.
- Forcing myself to go out for a walk at some point in the day.
- Having a lo- or no-tech couple of days: phone, ipad, computer, ps3,!
- relaxation cds like the hypnobirth one
- nice food, but not too much.
- A flippin' good cry then a laugh (yes, mad person alert!)
Hope it all gets better for you soon; you must feel so worn out - especially with the work you do.

Rufus200 Fri 15-Aug-14 22:20:08

Have you tried 5-htp? It should be completely safe in pregnancy as it is just a nutritional supplement. Tryptophan is an amino acid and is a precursor for serotonin. Or you could try foods that are rich in tryptophan.

I suffered from severe insomnia in the past. A year of not sleeping more then a few hrs each night! I did have to have a week of sleeping tablets to reset my body clock and saw a specialist. I now take 5-htp a hour before bed each night and most nights sleep normally.

Sleep Clinic Advice
Only use your bedroom for sleep, no reading or watching tv
If you are not falling asleep within 30 mins, get up and do an activity that causes you to feel sleepy in another room, e.g. reading boring book.
No mental stimulation for last hour before bed (no computer etc)
Start a routine each night to help you relax and your body know it is bed time. Bath and dinner needs to be at least a few hours before bedtime.
Make sure bedroom is ambient temperature for sleep.
If partner is waking you up or you are worried about waking them, one of you may need to move to spare room (if you have one)
Regular gentle exercise in morning or early afternoon (not evening)
Empty bladder before going to bed

Rufus200 Fri 15-Aug-14 23:34:27

Also my GP was great and got me the help I needed. I was having very severe symptoms of sleep deprivation and was hallucinating at night while I was trying to go to sleep or back to sleep, which was extremely frightening. Please do get help if you are showing symptoms of sleep deprivation.

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