unable to sleep and night time eating...a bad combination

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kittycreation
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2011
Total Posts : 36
   Posted 7/5/2011 12:46 PM (GMT -6)   
I have been diagnosed with failed back syndrome (3 failed back surgeries for disks) and arachnoiditis (nerve block gone wrong) and so am now dealing with extreme chronic pain (ranging between 5-9 on the pain scale each day) - mostly neuropathic but sometimes in both legs. I also have random foot swelling, feet, knees turn bright pink at strange times and also tingling in hands. I have been chosen as a candidate for a back neurostimulator but until that surgery comes through I am on alot of meds including gabopentin 3x a day, long acting morphine 2x a day, aleeve for the weird swelling etc..
 
The problem is I sleep very lightly and each time I wake up I eat - mostly carbs and so now I am tired in the day and am also gaining alot of weight. I take clonazap... for anxiety which one would think would help at night with sleep but nope, and so to try to help with the sleep my dr. has decided to give zoplico... a try. It does not work AT ALL. I still wake up or sleep very lightly and eat cookies or crackers or cereal or anything (I am now trying to clear out my house of unhealthy carbs but my body seems to be craving them). I try hard not to nap and go to bed at approx 10-ish each night. I then wake from midnight til around 4:30-ish with the eating....
 
I am holding out hope that I will get the surgery soon and that it will help but until then I dont know what to do. Eating extensively causes eating disorder behaviour to emerge (including purging) and I am working hard to keep that under control. The weight gain isn't helping though...I don't weight myself but I know I have gained alot of weight.
 
Any ideas...I am feeling rather desperate and the pain has kept me from doing a whole lot which isn't good either...
 
I feel like I am dumping, but my close friends and family I feel are getting a bit tired of hearing the same details each day (even though for me they are very new each day).
 
Any realistic suggestions for sleep or not eating or anything from the above?

Screaming Eagle
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Sep 2009
Total Posts : 5005
   Posted 7/5/2011 1:57 PM (GMT -6)   
 
    Hello Kitty!
 
       I'm a bit pressed for time here, but wanted to suggest "Melatonin"....you can buy it over the counter as well.
 
   I will be back a bit later this evening to give you a nice welcome, but I'm willing to bet that many of the members will have already welcomed you by then.
 
     Hang in there! I promise I will reply a little later.
 
        Enjoy!
 
  SE wink
Moderator Chronic Pain Forum

Weekly Quote!

"Snowflakes are one of nature's most fragile things, but just look at what they can do when they stick together"

kittycreation
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2011
Total Posts : 36
   Posted 7/5/2011 4:40 PM (GMT -6)   
Thanks for your response. I will head to the pharmacy in the morning and will do some googling tonight.

Jim1969
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 2042
   Posted 7/5/2011 5:27 PM (GMT -6)   
I suggest stocking up on "rabbit food". Fill the fridge and pantry with lots of fresh fruits and veggies. Keep supplies of the high fat and/or high calories snacks low or non existent.

Cut up broccoli, cauliflower and carrots in finger food sizes and keep in a container in the fridge ready to snack on. For a low fat dip you can take 16 oz of fat free sour cream and mix in 1 package of ranch salad dressing/dip mix. I personally think the Hidden Valley mixes are the best, especially for dips. If you prefer onion flavored dips you can use onion soup mix, or experiment with the various flavors of dry soup mixes.
2 confirmed herniated lumbar discs. Spinal Arthritis. Spinal Stenosis, diabetic peripheral nueropathy.

Screaming Eagle
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Sep 2009
Total Posts : 5005
   Posted 7/6/2011 12:08 AM (GMT -6)   
Morning Kitty!

Well here I am, as promised....ready to"Welcome"you to this wonderful place we call a "Chronic Pain Forum"

I too suffer from the dreaded FSB (Failed Back Syndrome) ...and my right foot swells up all the time as well. I guess its from nerve damage. Boy howdy do we ever know how you feel! shakehead

Are you still working? I do!...and it has me worn out by the time I get home, that I hit the sack as soon as I get home most nights. I find myself cat napping.....and then Im up and down the rest of the night. Every once in a while they let me off for a weekend...and I tend to sleep in almost a whole day...and it sure helps.

I hear you about complaining to your family and friends, about you're pain...and it really is normal, especially if you're pain is not being managed well enough, so that you can enjoy some sort of relief.

I'm probably not supposed to say this, but I sure hope you have done you're research on the stimulator's....I think I hear more complaints on it than anything else here, although we do have a few members who praise them. Has you're DR or PM mentioned anything about the "Pain Pumps"?? If I had my choice, I would consider it over the Stimulator.

I can't help you with what to eat, but Jim had some healthy suggestions for you. And again look up the "Melatonin" to help you with you're sleeping problems.

Our head Moderator "Chutz" posted a nice piece called "Chronic Pain 101"....located at the top of our home page. Please do take a peek at it, as there are some pretty good articles and tool for the members to use. Promise me you will look at it..OK?

There is a pain journal there and and excellent "Pain Scale" for you to use as well. Please do a search on the Stimulator's, by clicking on the search button at the upper righthand corner of the home page. There have been lots of discussions on this, so please do look up the information on it. I really don't want to discourage you on this, but more than anything I want you to have all the information you can get, so that you can make a good positive decision on it.

Well I think I have covered most everything I can think of at this time of the morning. Please do visit us often and stay engaged with the members here. They will support you well here, as we have a great group, with lots of experience.

We also have a chat room that you may be interested in...many of the members meet on a nightly basis, and they will warmly welcome you in.

If you have any questions feel free to ask, and someone will pop in to suggest or guide you in a better direction.

Take care, and again,..Welcome!

SE wink
Moderator Chronic Pain Forum

Weekly Quote!

"Snowflakes are one of nature's most fragile things, but just look at what they can do when they stick together"

kittycreation
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2011
Total Posts : 36
   Posted 7/6/2011 7:08 AM (GMT -6)   
Thanks for your replies and I did look at the chronic pain 101 already... :)

I will load up on the rabbit food idea...it is a good one. I dislike water but do find myself drinking tons of it now which is good I guess.

I am a teacher who refused to stop working so I am now very thankful for the time off. I am at a point however where I don't think I can take a whole lot more - my quality of life is shot and as a single mom that makes things unfair for my child.

I will look up more on the stimulators but in Canada where there is little to offer those with chronic pain this seems to be the last option before going to scary things like methadone. My first surgeries were in 05 and the bad nerve block happened last fall - end up with leaking spinal fluid and two failed blood patches. Basic surgery seems unlikely to do any more for me.

Not sure about the swelling - it is in both feet and my hands get really stiff - it could be the arachnoiditis?

Here is something interesting though...I finally gave in and posted here and what happened last night? First night without up and eating in MONTHS (and I did that in all caps on purpose...lol)

I will check out the stimulator info posted here - I know the success rate isn't the highest - my surgeon was good at educating me about the possible issues. I just want to find a way to lower the narcotics as they frighten me and make my memory poor and my vocabulary lower than it should be as well as tired, very emotional etc., etc., etc.

Thank you for the welcome...it was nice to feel "personalized"
I pray and wait for God to do His thing in His time...til then I am waiting with chronic pain...

Screaming Eagle
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Sep 2009
Total Posts : 5005
   Posted 7/6/2011 7:43 AM (GMT -6)   
 
 
         Morning again! wink
 
              .....just wanted to say that I fully understand you're position as a teacher. I myself took a written test here at work a couple of weeks ago, and found myself struggling badly. I never would have noticed this,... working with repetitive type work I normally do.
 
    Also, many of our members are on the "Methadone"....and do quite well with it. It can be a bugger to get on, and horrible to get off of....but once on it, I hear it is a very smooth form of relief. I'm like you, and hate the pain med's, but again if I had another option...I would opt for the pump. However, it too is considered a last resort, to where most all pain med's have failed.
 
    It's quite a mess we are all in, and not one of us wants to be on these med's. We take them, because were in pain....and to the point that we cannot function properly. It really is the lesser of two evils for me. Pain, or Med's....I will take the med's.
 
  As long as you have done you're research on the stimulator and you are comfortable with the Surgeon doing it, then you should be fine. I believe there is a test to see how you will do with it too, so this should help with you're final decision.
 
    Good luck, and take care!
 
  SE wink
Moderator Chronic Pain Forum

Weekly Quote!

"Snowflakes are one of nature's most fragile things, but just look at what they can do when they stick together"

tmjpain
Veteran Member


Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 2024
   Posted 7/6/2011 9:52 AM (GMT -6)   
Hello Kitty, nice to meet you. So sorry for all your pain but glad to have you here with us. Everyone is

so compassionate, so understanding and so caring. We all help each other out to get thru our difficult days

and also share our happy news too.

I am Suzane and am also Canadian. I love meeting fellow Canadians. Where do you live? I am in Ottawa,

Ontario. I have been suffering with constant, severe headaches for more than 11 yrs. now. Hubby and I

have worked our butts off trying to find answers, someone to help me, and tried so many medications

and unfortunately nothing has helped me. So I must bare this heavy load and take it one day at a time.

What grade do you teach? Do you think you will be able to return to work in Sept.? I am a registered nurse.

I worked at the Children's Hosp. of Eastern Ont. It was my dream job, I loved my work like no other.

I was proud of what I did. But in 2008 my body shut down and I just could not work in this pain any longer.

Little did I know that I would not be able to return. I have been on disability since then and have recently

received my letter stating I was terminated. I have filed a grievance though, because it is against human

rights to be terminated when you are on disability. Not that i think i can go back to such a demanding job,

but I could keep my dental benefits, which is a lot for me because of all the orthodontic work I have needed

due to my tmj problems.

Well I sure hope you can get something figured out for your pain, whether it is a medication of the

stimulator. So they are doing these in Canada? I have been researching the occipital nerve stimulator

to see if this might be something that could help me but try finding this in Ontario...... not easy.

Well I have carried on a bit much, unusual for me, LOL. Michael be good.

You will make some great friends here. I have been lucky enough to even meet some in person.

HW will become your lifeline. It is for many of us here.

Hope we can chat again soon.

I hope you have a nice day.
Suzane

kittycreation
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2011
Total Posts : 36
   Posted 7/6/2011 8:56 PM (GMT -6)   
Suzane, Thanks for your wonderful Canadian welcome. I am sorry to hear that you can't work anymore...you wrote with an emotion that tells me you were truly in love with what you did. The children I am sure are losing a out because you can't be there with them. That being said, doing your job with severe pain doesn't help anyone, especially you. I hesitate to say to much about my work and exact details for my work for the reason you wrote about - being terminated. I can do my job but I can't do "extra". My daily work takes all the energy I have and then some. But I do have a concern that at some point I will be looked upon as not being able to perform my duties. It is a human rights issue and I hope I don't ever end up in the situation you are dealing with. That is a sad thing to have to deal with, especially as you work(ed) in health care.

I am from the east coast and have an incredible doctor who will be doing my surgery for the stimulator. I am pretty sure he has been part of creating the stimulator for people with parkinsons and Lou Gherigs (spelling?) so I do feel that I am in good hands with him.

I do feel that I will meet folks here who get it and who do not judge...already I have felt support, and real support, not false words. That is encouraging and I think sometimes can help even more than meds can :)
I pray and wait for God to do His thing in His time...til then I am waiting with chronic pain...

momtofourangels
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2010
Total Posts : 2261
   Posted 7/6/2011 11:20 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Kitty Welcome to our family of wonderfully supportive, loving and caring people. I'm sorry that you have to live with chronic pain everyday.

I haven't had surgery on my back, but I sure do feel sorry for those of us that have failed back syndrome. It's so sad to have surgery thinking it will work, but then it doesn't.

I hope the neurostimulator is a success for you. We have heard both success and not so much success. I wish you good luck.

You take care. I hope you're having a low pain night.

hugs
Loretta
Dx: osteoarthritis, bursitis in left hip, Osteoarthrits in right hip, compression fracture in thoracic spine due to falling on frozen ground March 2001 , ddd, spinal stenosis, bone spurs, osteoarthritis in spine, osteoarthritis in both knees
Meds: Fentanyl patch, oxycodone, otc: BenGay, Tylenol Arthritis on occasion

tmjpain
Veteran Member


Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 2024
   Posted 7/7/2011 7:16 PM (GMT 0)   
Hi Kitty, nice to hear back from you. You are right, I did love my job. I miss those kids and even still have

connections with two of my patients. One is now 21 and the other is 16. It didn't take much for me to get

attached to these kids. I worked 25 yrs at this hospital and 7 yrs in Alberta.

So you are in the east coast.. Can i ask where? Hubby and I did a camping trip to the east coast and touched

all the provinces except Nfld. What beautiful country that is. We hope to go again in the future.

I would love to hear more about you getting your stimulator. I sure hope all goes well for you and that it

brings you low pain days.

Take care and talk again soon.
Suzane

tmjpain
Veteran Member


Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 2024
   Posted 7/7/2011 1:21 PM (GMT -6)   
Oh I forgot to touch on the subject of eating overnight. LOL. I am known to do that too.

Ask Michael (SE) where the pie went to that he bought when we visited together. LOL.

Hubby says he won't buy anymore cookies either. I think you can call it emotional eating too.

This week I started a new medication to help with sleeping (and depression) and it has helped.

So hopefully I can stop that bad snacking stuff. But i sure hear you on this subject. I haven't slept

well for years and I am always coming downstairs to change ice packs for my head so I'd sit at the table

since I couldn't sleep because of the pain and find something to snack on. Now I am going to go try a ride

on my bike. lol

have a nice day

NiNi53
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2011
Total Posts : 816
   Posted 7/7/2011 2:11 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Kitty, I am Kathy (aka nini53), I spent years suffering from not being able to sleep.  I swear I know the work for it but of course  I cant remember it now.  Anyway, having tried many different medications like ambien, with that one I woke up in a psyc ward for about a week.  Apparently I had a bad reaction to this.
 
Then came the benzo's xanax, diazapam, and klonzapam, well except for the diazapam(valium) I had no good results with the rest.  They just didnt mesh well with my narcotic meds. 
 
So after many years of insomnia (see I knew the word would come to me), I becan listening to various tapes, I scoffed when my sister first gave me the tapes but a funny thing happened, I was going to sleep better and better than ever before.  I used various tapes, some just for sleeping issues, others were taped books, and just the sound of the voice over and over really helped.
 
I am happy to say I have not had to use anything for years, oh I forgot, I sometimes use over the counter sleep aides.  Its so weird, they work when the big guns didnt, go figure.  At any rate I try not to take them every night, if that happens, its the same with any meds, your body gets used to them and they become well useless.
 
I hope with all the good thoughts everyone has given you, you will find something to help you.  I to was a night time sleeper, I could eat a gallon of ice cream in one night.  Not good, I have to maintain my weight or I know my back will be worse.
 
Hoping you will feel better soon, and just keep trying until you find something that works for you.  Many thoughts and prayers to you.
degenerative disc disease, fibromyalgia, osteoarthritis, neuropathy, lumbar laminectomy july 1998 no help, rechargeable neurostimulator unit low right back w/lead wires to left side and right leg unit not working just sitting there.i am 57 years young in may will turn 58. i have 2 grown daughters, 25 and 29. i have 2 grandchildren, 9 year old grandaughter and 5 yr. old grandson

Monty's Mom
Veteran Member


Date Joined Aug 2010
Total Posts : 664
   Posted 7/7/2011 2:43 PM (GMT -6)   
Kitty,

I suffer from insomnia too. SE is right, melatonin can help some people. I also do relaxation tapes or free downloads on the internet, white nose and repetitive sounds, meditation, and exercise during the day to combat it. That being said, sometimes sleep just eludes me.
As what Jim said, try surrounding yourself with veggies and fruits. I was on antidepressants that caused me to crave carbs constantly, and things I never even liked to eat before.

It is nice to have you here, but I am sorry for the pain and problems that bring you.
Good luck!
Mindy
The worst sin towards our fellow creatures is not to hate them, but to be indifferent to them. That's the essence of inhumanity. George Bernard Shaw
Pelvic adhesive disease, IBS, SI pain, arthritis, kidney stones, depression, 10 pelvic surgeries for pain, ovarian cysts, adhesions, endometriosis, adenomyosis, and possible ovarian remnant syndrome. Unexpectedly growing ovary #3 on right side.

kittycreation
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2011
Total Posts : 36
   Posted 7/7/2011 8:34 PM (GMT -6)   
Thanks for all of the suggestions. It is carbs...killers...so I did buy some fresh berries and carrots today as well as some melatonin. I will start it tonight (in a few minutes actually...lol) and see how it goes. My pharmicist was fantastic and spent 10 minutes making sure nothing interacted with my meds; I was impressed. Some people in health care do get it - one of her first questions was whether or not my pain was really being controlled enough. Very encouraging as often I worry about the opposite being brought up. I am guessing it will take a few days for this to work but you never know... :)
I pray and wait for God to do His thing in His time...til then I am waiting with chronic pain...
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