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(12 Posts)
Bellyrub1980 Mon 18-Aug-14 03:56:34

I doubt this is the first thread on this subject, but I'm at my wits end.

I'm 30 weeks and pretty much everything about this pregnancy has been straightforward. No major symptoms of anything, I've been really lucky and not needed a single day off sick. However! For the past few weeks I've struggled to get any more than a few hours sleep each night and I'm not sure how much longer I can cope for.

I can't blame the insomnia on anything in particular. It only takes something minor to trigger it off... Bit of hip pain perhaps, heart burn, worried about the baby etc.... But usually its nothing in particular, I'm just awake.

The main problem with this is that I'm in a highly stressful job in the NHS, I see a diary of about 12 patients a day. Not poorly or critically ill patients (thank god) but they are very (very!!) demanding and I need to be 'switched on' at all times. Bizarrely, due to the constant waiting list pressures on our service and several staff leaving recently, my work load is steadily increasing rather than winding down. I have 6 weeks to go.

I haven't slept at all tonight and I'm lying here crying knowing that the whole day is going to be hell. Calling in sick just simply isn't an option. My manager won't accept 'feeling tired' as a reason not to work.

I can't even start my mat leave early because my diary is fully booked for the the next month already.

I'm not really sure why I'm posting this. It's just been one long moan, sorry!

Am I the only one??

WaffleWiffle Mon 18-Aug-14 04:03:12

I feel your pain and you are not alone. I'm 36 weeks and haven't slept more than 4 hours a night for the last week.

I can't claim to have the same work stress as you though since I'm already a SAHM, so my way of dealing is to slow life right down. Not helpful to you I know, but I hope it helps to know you are not alone.

duzzlightyearsmum Mon 18-Aug-14 04:07:19

I can't say i've suffered like you have but have had quite a few sleepless nights myself but didn't want to read and run!

Have you tried anything to help you get to sleep? I know medication is a no go but what about those teas? I know whittards to one called dreamtime which always helps me drift off and it's safe to drink. OR even just a hot drink and a bath/massage? anything to help you relax/switch off a bit?!

Hope you get some sleep soon and if you are not up to working then you are entitled to phone in sick! You need to put yourself first for your health and your baby!


CoolCat2014 Mon 18-Aug-14 04:21:09

I'm suffering at the moment (38wks). I sleep from 12-3 then bam, I'm awake. Not so bad for me as I can nap during the day.

Eating something starchy can help me get back to sleep. Minimising screen time whilst awake should help too.

Hope you get better sleep soon!

Bellyrub1980 Mon 18-Aug-14 04:29:27

I used to occasionally take nytol when I wasn't pregnant just to guarantee a good night. Earlier on in my preg (ESP in the first tri) a glass of milk or bowl of cereal was all I needed if I woke in the early hours and was struggling to get back to sleep. I'll check out those teas. It doesn't even seem worth trying to sleep now. I need to be awake in an hour and a half.

If I call in sick (which I agree, in principle I'm entitled to) 12 patients appointments would need to be cancelled. These patients have already waited nearly 14 weeks to be seen. The first few probably won't get contacted meaning they turn up and get turned away. You wouldn't believe the kind of hell there is to pay when you cancel patients, it's one of the major reasons I've not called in sick for years.

Going to need to find a way of staying alert without caffeine!! Any tips?

Bellyrub1980 Mon 18-Aug-14 04:33:41

I agree, staring at my phone probably doesn't help!!! I'll turn it off and try and get an hour in now. I always remember my mum (who suffered with insomnia for years) saying 'lying down and resting is almost as good as sleeping' which kind of makes sense I suppose. I think it's just the worry of how I'll cope the next day which makes me more tired the next day.... If that makes sense.

I guess this is good practice right? Roll on week 36!!!!!!!

CoolCat2014 Mon 18-Aug-14 04:37:09

Lots if cold water with ice if you can to help you stay awake for work!

Rest is better than no sleep for sure. And yes, I'm hoping this is good practice for when baby arrives. I'm so glad I started mat leave at 36 weeks ;)

MamyPoko Mon 18-Aug-14 05:06:19

I had acupuncture when my insomnia was terrible in pregnancy; it helped enormously.

ohthegoats Mon 18-Aug-14 08:51:31

Yes, I try and try to just lie there thinking of nice things instead of getting stressed about not being asleep. It's not 'as good' as being asleep, but it's better than getting stressed about it/getting upset.

Bellyrub1980 Thu 21-Aug-14 04:28:55

I'm really struggling with that technique tonight. Slept perfectly from 8-11 and have been awake ever since. I really struggled yesterday at work, starting to worry that my judgement is effected because I'm just so tired. If I call in sick tomorrow (which I'm now thinking I have no choice... I actually feel unwell and a bit mental/panicky if I'm honest) it will cause absolute havoc at work. I'm not sure what's worse, to go work and risk burning out entirely or call in sick and suffer the consequences of an overbooked diary until I go on mat leave in 5 weeks.

I have a thumping headache, exhausted, stressed, totally miserable.

Can this be effecting my baby in any way? If not, I think I'll just man up and go in. Might broach the subject of going on mat leave earlier than planned with my manager tomorrow.

Frolie Thu 21-Aug-14 04:57:59

I empathise entirely! I've been awake since 3am. It's exhausting isn't it? This is my second pregnancy and due to lots of medical complications I've been on maternity leave since 28 weeks, so at least I can catch up during the day. With my first pregnancy however, I was working full time in a stressful job & used to torture myself with lack of sleep. Some nights if get in such a state about coping the next day at work, that I'd email myself 'to do' lists at 3 in the morning and go over and over all my projects and all I had to achieve before I went on mat leave. In the end I went on mat leAve at 34 weeks instead of 36, because I was just exhausted. It was the best thing I could have done. So, definitely consider bringing it forward. You need to rest as much as possible before the baby's born and try not to worry about the implications for work. Your manager will have to manage smile

I actually tried hypnosis for insomnia with my previous pregnancy but it didn't work. I found eating a banana sometimes helped. Also, try a hot chocolate. I've been in hospital a lot this time round and they bring hot chocolate and custard creams round at 1130 pm and that seems to help settle me for a good few hours!

Pinksun12 Thu 21-Aug-14 05:14:51

I've had insomnia in both previous pregnancies and probably will in this one as well but not too bad at the moment, I just wake up at 3ish and go back to sleep at 5ish until the dc wake me at 6.30ish.
What's helped me was the hypnotherapy course! My insomnia is caused by lots of subconscious worrying and the whole hypnotherapy helped me to get through pregnancy reasonably relaxed. And when I was lying awake, listening to the tracks would usually send me off to sleep and if it didn't I thought at least I was doing something productive. Oh, and sleeping in a room by myself helped and hiding my phone in another room because the light of the phone would totally wake me up.
Hope you managed to get back to sleep OP, even for an hour, I can see with your work situation the insomnia must be stressing you out.

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