I am not looking forward to going to bed

I don’t get it. For some reason my body seems pissed with my brain and has decided to avoid sleep, unless it is convenient for it.

Here’s what I mean:

I feel tired to the point of my chin hitting my chest while trying to read. This is convenient since it’s 10:00 PM. So, I go to bed and feel my cool pillow against my cheek. In minutes I am fast asleep with no worries until my 6 am alarm.

Only my body for some reason decides it really wants to be up around, oh… 2, or 3 am. Without fail these days.

So I wake. I curse. I close my eyes again and try to rummage my pillows to find a hidden cool spot. I then toss and turn for an hour before giving up.

But what now? It’s only 2:30 am. I decide to browse the web for 30 minutes, then close my eyes again for my toss and turn ballet.

As usually I give up after less than an hour. Last night I decided to get up and do a really good job flossing my teeth with this weird braided floss I forgot I had. Then, brain tired, body not, I decided to read a few more chapters.

It was 4:20 when I put my book down, knowing my 6 am alarm was coming quick. And of course I was fast asleep, enjoying a particularly vivid dream when my alarm went off. I got up, my mind feeling hung over; like it was packed with glue.

My body, though, felt great. I went to the gym and then to work, then came home and cooked and read for a bit. Yep, body felt great, but my mind has been feeling tired.

I plopped it here in MPSIMS since it really is mundane, in that there’s no physical or mental issue behind it all.

Anyone else up late at night, unable to sleep, I’ll want to read your post in about 4 hours.

I had a brief period like that, years ago, but it was too long ago to remember how I dealt with it at the time.

All I can suggest is, get up, do something for two hours, go back to bed.

Cut back on the sugar and caffeine after say, 4pm. Yeah, that’s six hours before you go to bed. Believe me, it will make a difference. Rich full bodied beer too. It’s chock full of B vitamins, which is what your average “energy drink” is also chock full of.

Experiment by doing different things during those two hours, and see how it goes. Read. Surf the Web. Get up and watch a movie. Play a game. Sit in silence and just meditate. The last one being kind of a ‘control’ experiment. Just sit, in silence, and allow the thoughts to flow through your head. Don’t hold onto or spend too much time on any of them. Just let them come, and then let them go. Don’t let yourself fall asleep. Work on your breathing.

Waking up like this can be a symptom of depression. Also, some medications, especially antidepressants, can disrupt your sleep cycle and cause you to wake up during the night as well. Have you tried a sleep aid? Even a Benadryl or Unisom (both available in generic) can help with this. Warm milk? Relaxation techniques?

Lately I’ve been playing Solitaire on my phone in bed with the lights out. Most I’ve made was 4 games, I think, before I fell asleep. Doing this, I can just close my eyes and drop the phone while I go off into oblivion. I wonder if this would help when waking in the middle of the night, too?

Do you have an iPod touch or iPhone? Andrew Johnson’s self hypnosis apps puts me out like a rock every time and give me the best sleep ever when I use them. It’s amazing.

I have an iPhone. I’ll admit I don’t shop for apps very often, but I’ll look into these. Sounds interesting.

Artificial light often worsens insomnia, I have heard.

I’ve heard that the worst thing you can do is get a lot of blue light 3 hours before bed. So I now wear some yellow sunglasses.

And while I myself haven’t found one that is comfortable, I also note that some dopers swear by sleeping masks. You may not sleep longer, but the pitch black can help your sleep be more restful.

Another concept is to make sure you get some bright light right when you wake up in the morning.

Both of these have behind them one concept: the melatonin cycle. It is reset by bright light (specifically that in the blue range). And it activates in the dark–the darker the better.

Earplugs help me sleep much better in general (I like AO Safety Sleepsoft), but I always start having that problem when my thyroid meds are out of whack.

I wonder if you’d have any luck with taking a melatonin tablet when you wake up at 2am. It might have you back in dreamland by 2:30, and would just about have worn off by 6.

I heard that too. I used to get in bed and browse the web or play solatair on my iPhone. I now try to read, write or draw instead. I think I ought to limit my computer time as well, say no screen time at all within an hour of bed.

Funny though, I slept well last night. I woke at 5:40 and was asleep again by 6 (got up at 7:15 this morning). Maybe writing helped?

I’m not on any medication and mentally feel better than I have in years.

I’ve tried Advil PM, but it doesn’t work. What happens is I still wake at 2 or 3, then toss and turn with short cat naps until morning (and lots of odd dreams) then wake and feel horrible the next day. I’ve tried it a few times now, because I used to have luck with similar things years ago when traveling.