My worries keep my awake at night.

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slp92
New Member


Date Joined Apr 2009
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 4/20/2009 12:55 AM (GMT -7)   
Hello everyone. I am 17 years old, and I've been scheduled for a sleep study soon. The reason I'm here is because I can't seem to get to sleep.

Basically, because I have obsessive thoughts, anxiety and depression, I often worry about little things like pain in different areas that anybody else would shrug off. For instance, for the longest while I thought my heart was weak and I was going to die of a heart attack. It turned out though, that my heart was and is fine, and I am merely letting the awareness of my heart beating and my anxiety get to me. It doesn't help that I have GERD and I am overweight by about 100 pounds or so.

I have a large body frame, but I still am wanting to lose at least 100 pounds before next year, especially considering I weigh 311 and have a BMI of 42.

But the main problem I have right now is, I can't sleep. I'll have on and off periods every 1-2 weeks where I will get sleep, but still be tired, or not sleep at all, and be miserable. Basically I can't ever keep a consistent sleep schedule going. And the nights I do get sleep, it usually takes more than 3 hours to get to sleep, and when I do, sometimes it's very hard to breath, I worry about my breathing, I worry about my GERD actually being my heart (even though it isn't, it feels like it is) and it keeps me up.

Right now, it's almost 3AM where I live, and I should be in bed asleep. And yet, my worries have once again kept me from getting a restful or even remotely good nights sleep.

And the problem also is, when I do get sleep, it isn't good sleep. I can get 10-15 hours of sleep if I stay up all day from the previous night, or even sleep 10 hours regularly and still feel tired, run down, and very opinionated and agitated.

My parents have noticed that my attitude is always negative, which is part in due to my depression, but also I feel it could be my poor sleep habits. I can remember getting great nights sleep when I was younger, but ever since all of these issues developed, it's so hard to sleep at night, and if I try to pull an all niter to correct my schedule, I feel so bad I wish I was dead.

I'm so worried I might have sleep apnea or some other problem and my sleep study isn't for another week or two. I'm so tired of feeling tired. Any help would be greatly appreciated. :(

Allestaria
Regular Member


Date Joined Mar 2009
Total Posts : 341
   Posted 4/20/2009 1:27 AM (GMT -7)   
Welcome Slp92.

My daughter is close to your age. She is 16 will be 17 this year. She is going through the same thing you are. Though her's started about 3 years ago. She is up a lot usually gets about 2-4 hours sleep a night if that. She worries all the time. Always asking me what this pain is what that pain means etc. She has health anxiety. She takes after me. Poor thing.

Anyway. I'm sorry your dealing with GERD at your age. Weightloss is always a plus and helps in a lot of ways. You mentions you think you might have sleep apnea. Do you snore when you sleep? Load enough to wake you or members of your household? Try the breath right nasel strips they might help you.
Have you tried calming techniques? I use one that works great for me. I focus on my breathing with every breath I inhale I think... Peace.. exhale calm. Now when I think(say) peace its for the length of the breath. So its like peeeaaaacccee... caaaallllmm. While I'm doing that I think of a place that I would normally relax at. Like a hill side with green grass and tree's bright blue sky. Each breath in is "green" in thought for good things and each breath out is black with all the bad thoughts leaving my body with it. If my mind starts to wonder back to the worries. I force it back to what I'm supposed to be doing. I notice my chest raising and taking in the breath refocus my relaxing image and continue. 99% of the time I'll fall asleep. And I sleep better then if I just crash from my hours of being up. I wake up feeling much more relaxed and less cranky. It works great for me. I've been trying to teach this to my daughter but she isn't quite there yet. Almost. It comes down to mind over body per say.
I'm forcing my mind to relax my body. The body will not relax without your mind being at ease.

I'm sure you have school to attend to. But would it be easier for you to sleep while someone is up to keep an eye on you? Would that help you relax and get at least 4-5 hours of decent rest? I have to sleep in the livingroom with the t.v on in order for me to get any type of sleep. You could come home from school get your homework done and crash out. Have your parents keep an eye on you so you can try to get some rest. Maybe that will help until you can get your test done.

Good luck and I hope you get the relief you need from you doctor visit. Keep us posted. And again welcome!

mom2three
Regular Member


Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 97
   Posted 4/20/2009 4:20 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi slp92!

I suffered from terribly insomnia as an adolescent/teenager. I was terrified to go to sleep - thought that my heart would stop, that I would never wake up, etc. (I'm still here, by the way and I keep waking up!). But I would literally read dozens and dozens of children's books until I completely passed out - for some reason, my childhood books calmed me. I personally didn't have support from my parents...but perhaps you could ask them to help tuck you in and check on you periodically? Allestaria had some great suggestions too.

I'm a huge bedtime routine person. I have the same ritual every night and it helps calm me down and signal to my body that I am going to bed. I noticed a drastic reduction in bedtime anxiety after a few weeks. I put on my nightgown, have a cup of hot herbal tea (no caffeine!) and then read my book in my bedroom. The combination of nightgown, warm tea and a good book makes my mind wind down and I rarely have night-time anxieties. If I do feel a bit anxious, I will continue to read until I literally can't keep my eyes open.

One other thought - be careful about what you eat prior to going to bed. Avoid sugar, caffeine or overeating (easier said than done, I know!). But I have noticed that if I eat too much, especially refined sugar, before bed, my heart rate increases and that can trigger some anxiety for me.

Good luck and I hope that you are able to find some rest!

Hibee
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 6496
   Posted 4/20/2009 5:28 AM (GMT -7)   

Hi slp92

Welcome to the HW forum this is a great place to come and meet people who can relate to what you are going through.  Sorry to hear you are having sleep problems at the moment, I have bad insomnia and find that lack of sleep makes my gad/depression a lot worse.  It is really important to have a sleep routine which you do every night to relax and ease the racing thoughts,   As others have mentioned reading is a good way to help make you feel tired but you must not read in bed as your body gets used to going to bed and then not going stright to sleep,  so I would recommend you have a comfy chair in your room were you could read or listen to music which I find helps me most as not a big fan of reading.  Also if you wake up then get up out of bed and only go back to bed when tired im sure these will be some of the things you will find out when you have your sleep study.

I would maybe go and speak with your doctor and see if they can give you any thing to help you get some sleep until you have your sleep study.  Have you ever had any therapy to help with your anxiety and depression?  CBT is a type of talk therapy which has great results with people who are suffering with anxiety and depression,  I am due to have some soon and I know a lot of members here have had very positive experience with this kind of therapy so might be something you could look into?.  Please do keep posting and tell us how you are getting on you are family now and we all support each other.

Take Care

Ben


stkitt
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 32602
   Posted 4/20/2009 6:46 AM (GMT -7)   
Hello slp92

Welcome to HealingWell and I am so glad you found us. It sure sounds like you have a lot of things going on.

I would guess they are doing the sleep study to see if you have sleep apnea? Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is caused by a blockage of the airway, usually when the soft tissue in the rear of the throat collapses and closes during sleep. Sleep apnea is very common.

Obesity is a contributing factor to obstructive sleep apnea. It is estimated that a 10% weight gain will worsen the apnea index by 30%, and a 10% weight loss will decrease the apnea index by 25%. Therefore, a healthy lifestyle and diet that encourages weight loss will improve obstructive sleep apnea. Unfortunately, most people with obstructive sleep apnea are tired and do not have much energy for exercise. This is a difficult behavioral spiral since the more tired a person is -- the less they exercise -- the more weight they gain -- the worse the obstructive sleep apnea becomes -- and the more tired they become.

I am wondering if you have a therapist for your depression sx? You have a lot going on and I am glad you have reached out here as you will find the members warm and caring.

I am hoping if you can get to the bottom of your sleeping issues you will find the other problems start to improve.

Please know that we are here to support you and that we care. Keep on talking to us and again a warm welcome to the A & P Forum.
Peace,
Kitt

Nanners
Elite Member


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 14995
   Posted 4/20/2009 6:48 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi slp92 and welcome to Healingwell. You probably have noticed already that we have alot of wonderful and supportive people trying to live with this darn condition too. Definetly your lack of sleep could be adding to your anxiety and depression. I get so anxious and weepy when I don't get enough sleep.

I too suffer with GERD. Have you tried raising the head of your bed some. I have been told that will help. I will pray that you are successful in your weight loss. Let us know how the sleep study goes.

Big Hugs,
Gail *Nanners*

slp92
New Member


Date Joined Apr 2009
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 5/7/2009 8:20 PM (GMT -7)   
I'm terribly sorry for the long-time no response. I've been really having a hard time and I appreciate you guys being so welcoming and kind!

I made yet another visit to the ER for an anxiety attack. It's about the 12th time I've done so in the past 3 years. Although, this time I got a medicine to take when I have attacks. It's called Hydroxyzine pamoate and it's basically the same size and shape capsule as a Nexium capsule.

The only issue with it so far is it makes me terribly sleepy to the point of sleeping well into the day even if I take it at night. And it's not a cure for insomnia which plagues me regardless of my other issues. The feelings in my chest still bother me greatly. The unfortunate reality for me for now is that I have to just ignore it. Even though at times it really does feel like my tinker is going to fail, even though it's not.

I'm going in for a sleep study and my psychiatrist to adjust the meds, increase them, maybe.

I'd just like to say I'm sorry again that I haven't been able to get back to you all and thank you so much for your love and support!

stkitt
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 32602
   Posted 5/8/2009 5:03 AM (GMT -7)   
Hello slp

I am glad to see you are back with us. Hydroxyzine pamoate is Vistaril.

Hydroxyzine belongs to a class of medications called antihistamines. It works by blocking a certain natural substance (histamine) that your body makes during an allergic reaction. Its other effects (e.g., calming, pain relief) may work by affecting other natural substances (e.g., acetylcholine, serotonin) or by acting directly on certain parts of the brain. Please remember I am not a professional.

If you are finding you are to sedated with the medication please do talk with your physician re lowering your dose. If you are taking it to help with sleep take it earlier in the evening so it wears off by morning.



I will be interested to hear the results of your sleep study.



I hope you keep on talking with us as we are here to help you.



Kindly,
Kitt

slp92
New Member


Date Joined Apr 2009
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 5/11/2009 1:04 AM (GMT -7)   
Thanks for the information. I'm gonna ask about a lot of things when my folks get me an appointment scheduled. Most likely this week.

My heart rate seems to be up all the time now. Especially at night, because I get really anxious about having an anxiety attack or something and rushing off the ER early in the morning. My BPM earlier was 99 and now it's mid 80's upper 80's.

In comparison, 3 years ago it was low 80's to exactly 80.

jkfox624
New Member


Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 15
   Posted 5/11/2009 4:44 PM (GMT -7)   
Yeah ive been having the same problem lately and it always seems to happen on sunday nights. I got the lump on the side of my neck that is probably nothing but im positive its lymphoma. I fell asleep on the couch last night for like 10 mins my daughter woke me up and the rest of the night i had that feeling of impending doom like if i let myself fall asleep i was gonna die. Its awful i took some sleeping pills they didnt help. Every sunday night its the same thing and it starts my week off terrible and i can never seem to get back on track.
It seems like ive had all these health problems for months that everyone says is just anxiety, my therapist says if i go on meds they will all disappear but im not so sure. She talked me into trying St John's wort to see if it would help. Its awful its like once i conquer one worry i find something else to dwell on. mad

slp92
New Member


Date Joined Apr 2009
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 5/12/2009 12:53 AM (GMT -7)   
I know exactly how you feel. You feel like you've finally got free space in your mind to stop worrying and then something new pops in and you feel like it never ends. With me, this heart rate usually stays up for awhile. Obviously it's not all the time, but it bothers me enough to keep me up until I absolutely am so tired I forget about my worries and go to bed. It's ruining my life because I can't get up and exercise so I'm putting on more weight and it's just like an endless mental and physical cycle I can't seem to escape from.

slp92
New Member


Date Joined Apr 2009
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 5/20/2009 4:05 PM (GMT -7)   
I'm curious, I took some Vistaril less than 30 minutes between Ativan, is that safe?

I visited an ER yesterday with a panic attack, pretty bad. I ended up calling an EMT over.

I feel very very drowsy right now.

slp92
New Member


Date Joined Apr 2009
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 8/6/2009 6:12 PM (GMT -7)   
I realize it's been a long time since I updated this thread but I do have an update on my situation. I ended up having to go to a hospital for a week to help manage my issues. I admitted myself because I felt it was just at that point where nothing else would help.

I'm better, but I'm still having panic attacks at night. Sometimes brutal ones, that leave me a mess, up until 1 AM with my heart pounding out of my chest. I'm now taking Celexa 40MG, Luvox 100X2 one day, one night, 600MG Seroquel at night, 100X2 Topamax (1 day, 1 night). I'm in the process of getting off the Celexa entirely because it's making it worse and switching back to the Luvox which I believe did help me.

I don't think everything is a loss, some things are indeed improving, and I'm hoping this change of meds will help.

stkitt
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 32602
   Posted 8/7/2009 6:22 AM (GMT -7)   
slp92,

Good Morning. I am glad to hear you made the decision to be admitted to the hospital and that things are looking a bit better. You have a lot of medications and weaning off one and starting another is always a tough time. Do be good to yourself and remember we are here for you.



I wish you peace,

Kitt
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