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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all,

I don't know if this belongs in Mental Health or the general forum -- please move if this is the wrong place...

I've been suffering from insomnia on and off since DD2 was born. It started to get really bad around February, when DD2 was still up every two hours all night long. Once she started sleeping longer stretches, I found I couldn't anymore. It got worse and worse until I was averaging 4 hours a night, broken up. I eventually got a prescription for Ambien, which I've taken VERY sparingly (maybe 15 of them since February), and started seeing a therapist. The therapy is interesting (holographic memory resolution and energy work on top of normal talk therapy), and I think it will do some long-term good, but I am finding that every couple of weeks I have a few TERRIBLE days of sleep. Like, Monday night and last night, I slept probably 3-4 hours.

I am not sure when to consider my sleep truly disordered and seek the help of a sleep specialist. On a bad night, I lie down tired after a soothing bedtime routine and a cup of Yogi Tea's Bedtime Tea, curl up against DH, and feel myself drift into light sleep only to be shaken awake by a pounding heart. It's really disconcerting. I try to get up after this goes on for 30-45 minutes, as I have heard that it's not good to stay in bed if you can't sleep.

Has anyone had this kind of trouble? Can you give me any insight? I already don't ingest any caffeine, just in case someone was going to ask.


Thanks in advance!

-Debi
 

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I have two thoughts. One is, is it possible you might have food allergies? Food allergies can cause rapid heartbeat, and when I've eaten something I'm allergic to before bed, I have the same symptoms (about to fall asleep when I become aware that my heart is pounding). Pregnancy can change our bodies so that we become more (or less, in some cases) disposed to allergic reactions.

The second thought is could you possibly have some depression going on? Depression often masks itself as anxiety, and being jolted awake can be a symptom of anxiety. Its like your mind can't let go because it thinks it needs to be vigilant. You might not be experiencing, or be aware of, any other symptoms of anxiety even though its there.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks, BellinghamCrunchie. I suppose a food allergy is a possibility. I've had lifelong allergies to seafood and an allergy/intolerance to dairy in the past 8 years -- so obviously I eat neither. I guess I could start eliminating other things to see what else might be affecting me.

As for depression/anxiety, I definitely know that is going on. It was a very rough year -- Little Shmoo's entry was traumatic, she was not well as a new baby, and I had to pretty much quit my job and put all of my personal plans on hold indefinitely. On top of that, she slept very erratically (and never long) for many months, messing my sleep cycles up. I know that the whole experience has rattled me -- which is why I am seeing a therapist. I have faith in the effectiveness of that in the long run, but don't know what to do about today, tomorrow, this week, etc.

When I take something to help me sleep, and get a good 7-8 hours, I am a different person -- positive, hopeful, energetic, enthusiastic. When I sleep, like last night, only 3-4 hours, I wake up depressed, tired, pessimistic, and aching. It's so frustrating!

TIA for any ideas -- I'll look at my diet and see what might be bugging me.
 
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