Sleep anxiety ruining my life. convinced i'll never sleep again.

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It's been nine days now since I started having terrible insomnia. I feel my life has been ripped out from under me and I don't know where to turn. It started with one bad nights sleep nearly two weeks ago and now I'm not sleeping for one second during the night. The doctor has prescribed me citalopram for the horrible anxiety I'm experiencing all night. I also have sleeping tablets and Diazepam in the cupboard but I really don't want to take them. My big fear is ill never sleep again. Every one keeps telling me that I'll eventually fall asleep but after another night of absolutely no sleep I've convinced myself that something has happened to me and I WILL never sleep again. I've never used a forum before but I guess I'm kindling kind of reaching out to anyone who has had a similar problem or thought pattern. I have very thing going for me in life with great kids and a good job but it all seems over now as I'm convinced my total lack of sleep will ruin everything.  Is it possible to never sleep again? Someone please help!

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  • Posted

    Hi Stephen, I also suffer from not been able to sleep.  I have been on and off like this for years.  I also get anxious when it's time for bed which starts me off in getting realy anxious,  I feel so tired because like yourself have had no sleep for days.  I shut my eyes and it's like my brain says open your eyes you ain't sleeping.  I shut my eyes and try to think of nice things like my children and holidays but all I see is people I don't know or silly things.  I went to my doctor in September saying I'm waking up a lot in the night and felt tight feeling in my stomach.  He said that the tablets I had been on for three years was the highest foes he could give me so changed it sertraline.  They started me on 100mg and then after a month uped it to 150mg, as time went on I got worse and worse to the point of a month ago I was at my worst.  Couldn't understand why I was getting worse by the day I wasn't like this when I went to see him in September.  He also a month ago when I worse at my worst said to me I don't think the new tablets are agreeing with you, I said can that happen then, he said not every tablet agrees with everyone.  He prescribed me 5mg of diazepam that I could take up to three times a day when I felt anxious and then put me on  venalfaxine 37.5mg.  I couldn't believe how I felt taking the diazepam that night I felt NORMAL.  And I even went to bed that night not feeling anxious and even slept for the first time in weeks.  After a few days I only took them of a night and I have felt great now for the  last two weeks and don't take any diazepam at all. Only my venlafazine of a morning and I hall felt normal todate.  I have also been seeing a hypnotherapist for the last two weeks to try and get to the bottom of my sleeping fear.   After the first section I felt so calm when I walked out.  It is the worse feeling ever when you think why is this happening to me and that your the only person in the world that this is happening to.  I cannot believe how I'm feeling right now, didn't think I would get through this again.  But I must say I still worry  of a night that I'm not going to sleep but at least I'm getting about six or seven hours of sleep, but I'm still waking up during them hours but don't seem to be panicking and turn over and go back to sleep.  You will get there Stephen and if you need anyone to talk to just drop me a line.  Good luck, if I have pulled through you can to.   Oh speak to your doctor about changing your tablets it might be them that isn't helping and a few days of diazepam .  Regards DebbieDebbie
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    • Posted

      Hey Debbie I'm excpiremcing the same exact thing right now it's freaking me out I try to doze off and not think about anything bit I end up seeing people or Weird situations as in I had one right now where I seen headlights of car ? Weird ? It's freaking me out thinking I have a brain tumor or temporal lobe seizures ? I've been having Anxiety about a brain tumor lately and its killing my Body help please I'm 17 year old male 
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  • Posted

    Hi Stephen,

    Ok, lets get this straight..first things first. Can i be the one to tell you that you "WILL" sleep again, and like Fran said, you will need some good sleep soon, and if you only manage to sleep a little, thats fine for now.

    We need to strip everything back down to the bone and reflect on the reasons your issue has taken forefront. You need to sit and concentrate on all the things that are running through your mind (Forget the sleeping for now, that will come later, and it will be better) Now i know you are probably thinking "Why would i want to sit and think of all the things that keep me awake?" But trust me, i know its a confliction of interest but IT WILL HELP YOU. (Dont do it now but let me know the following first)

    Who have you got with you that you are able to talk with as this also is important, who is there with you all the time?

    JamesBrown outlined a good point in using "relax" tapes, and to use ones that you know off by heart and if you are soothed by reasurrance then the book: The Effortless Sleep Method by Sasha Stephens that David-7719 recommends is a good choice.

    But for now, for me ..do you have someone with you & What do you do for your job, sorry about the questions but its handy to know and its lovely to share

    Chin up Stephen, you will be good soon - let us know on the above, and ill help you.

    Many thank & Talk soon : )

     

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  • Posted

    Hi Stephen . I am passing through the same now. For 5 days I can't sleep good. Same thing as you... I just had 1 bad night sleep, and all the others nights also. Just because Iay in bed already tense, afraid of don't sleep and I don't go to deeply sleep good. I am so frustrated! Is just the anxiety and fear of don't sleep, that makes me unable to sleep. And I have no idea why I dream when I am trying sleep...whatever I don't know what is going on. I wake up so tired... And I don't sleep in the day because I like to sleep in the night! And try fix it...yeah, almost 6 nights in this suffer... I don't take any sleep aid, nothing. How are you feeling now? How you get better? I am so afraid of never sleep again! Because my nights is actually with my eyes closed, worried with this about fall, then I don't see the hours passing, then I open my eyes sundely (many times in the night) then I feel as I didn't sleep nothing yet, then I get so p*ssed off, but I remember my dreams..so how this is possible?? I have been in gym 2 days followed and nothing sleep! Is so frustrating. Sorry to write alot. Is my frustration talking.
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  • Posted

    My wife and I both have sleep problems -- but we are elderly and it is common there.

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    Pills may do more damage than good. . She has been using Zolpidem for years but mixed it the other night with Alprazolam, walked in her sleep, had hallucinations, tripped over the furniture and MAY have damaged a bone -- She has nasty bruises.

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    I tried Zolpidem once years ago, sleep walked, fell, nearly killed myself with that, got a REALLY nasty bruise on my forehead, bumped into her, bruising her, strained her neck and woke up in a hospital. . Yuck on pills.

    .

    I can NOT drink milk anymore, but if I could, I would rely on good old hot milk like I used too ! . Lack of milk makes me really skinny.

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  • Posted

    Hello Stephen,

    I've had the same problem in varying degrees for most of my life. I feel such a problem is merely the manifestation of some other psychological condition / event lying deep in our subconscious. The fear of not sleeping is just one way the condition expresses itself. Ideally it would be nice to root out / expose this underlying cause but failing this I agree with many of the suggestions posted below - they may not address the fundamental reasons but they can help in varying degrees. What I do at the moment is go to bed at my usual time of around 11 or 12. I either do the relaxation exercises (letting each part of the body 'go dead' from the head down, whilst breathing deeply and slowly. For a little while it may be difficult because we are allowing all 'the muck' inside us come out, be felt, then eradicated.Do not try to control or suppress any of these feelings or emotions - let them happen as you cover each part of the body. Do not hope or pray this will work - just tell yourself you really don't care if it works or not - you have casully decided to do it anyway. I feel it's important to keep telling yourself that 'tonight I don't really care if I sleep or not' - I'm just here to relax. You cannot control the fear of not sleeping but to some extent you can simply dismiss it, by saying 'I really don't care if I don't sleep anyway'.

    After doing this I will read a book, and will tell myself I'm happy to keep reading for 1-2 hours. If you then begin to feel tired you may then try to sleep 'without trying to sleep' - just let your body take over, all the time 'not caring whether you sleep or not'. You can also say to yourself "I am now going to go into just a drowsy 'half- sleep' - allowing whatever is in your mind just to be the way it happens, thoughts, maybe, 'semi-dreams' etc - all the time telling yourself 'I will be fine with just this tomorrow'.

    There is the possibility now you may drift off to sleep naturally. If I find myself wide await after all of this, and there are about 3-5 more hours left till I get up, it's at this time I take a stilnox (other names for same tablet: Sopiderm, Zolpigen, Ambian etc) which have been one of the few sleeping tablets that has worked for me. Most sleeping tablets make you more sleepy without getting rid of anxiety, the thing which keeps you awake. But this tablet initially at least 'takes away the feeling that I need to sleep'. I have found it similar in effect than valium, but actually better. As noted in other comments, there have been some unusual side effects - such as people getting out of bed and doing things which they have forgotten all about the next day. It is important not to drink alcohol with them.

    In combination with the earlier mind / body exercises, some reading and changes in your belief patterns about the urgency of sleeping that night, the Stilnox / Zolpigen will definitely assist. If you do have side effects with Zolpigen, try valium for a few nights.

    I do not suggest the tablets are a long term solution, but in the short term they may restore your faith in sleep, give you confidence and reduce crippling anxiety whilst you seek professional help.

    There is also the possibility that you will find yourself beginning to sleep long enough through the other methods so that you can gradually reduce / dismiss the medicinal back-up.

    Regards (ps now I am off to bed and hopefully I'll follow my own suggestions)

    Robert

    - and thanks for all those respondents who mentioned the book by 'Sasha Stephens' - I shall definitely get a copy.

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  • Posted

    You are not alone, am only 18 years old and its been 2 months i've been sleeping maybe 4 or 5 sometimes nothing and sometimes even 2 or 3! It scares me, it terrifies me to death! And my anxiety is horrible too! I'm recently on Sertraline one of the newest anti-depressants. And I have notice a difference from day 1. They have helped but I still freak some days more than other and I can even cry when am in bed. I truely know what you're going through. Am drinking Chamomile tea and another relaxant sleeping tea, along with melatonin of 3 mg and even take 2 of those. I have times where my eyes even burn and am yawning so much and I still cant sleep cause I start freaking out and my anxiety goes over the roof and I think i'ma stay like this forever. But I know am not and you won't either. There's tons of help out there, along with the book everyone is mentioning of Sasha Stephens. If you said you were referred to a CBT they will help you extremely well cause their focus is all on making you sleep better without fearing it. Everything takes time. We are both in the same boat. But all I do is hope when I finally see my psychiatrist they refer to a sleep study and a CBT like you. Well hope the best for you ! Hang in there! We can do it! Remember always you're NOT alone!😊
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