Why am I awake now?

I slept badly last night, and was exhausted all day. I got nothing done, I was so tired. So I went to bed at 8pm. I woke up about 1/2 hr. ago, and can’t fall back asleep. I’m in the living room, because I was making my husband crazy.

I took 2 Benadryl, 10mg melatonin, and .5mg Klonapin, and I’m still wide awake.

Insomnia sucks.

I REALLY want to sleep and not have another unproductive day tomorrow. However, I am thinking of giving it another 30 minutes, and if I don’t fall asleep, getting some stuff done, so that I won’t feel guilty if I’m a slug tomorrow.

I don’t drink under normal circumstances (but I’m not “sober”). I’m seriously considering whether a shot of DH’s scotch will help. That’s what he takes when he can’t sleep, and it works 100% for him.

I’d be VERY careful adding alcohol to the Benadryl or the Klonapin (check label warnings). Piling too many sedating-type chemicals on at the same time can be dangerous.

Are you a chronic insomniac, or is this just an occasional thing?

Sleep specialists say that using alcohol for chronic insomnia is counterproductive. It can help you fall asleep, but then you wake up again after a couple of hours.

If you have chronic insomnia, you should see a doctor and maybe get a referral to a sleep specialist.

Yep. Agreed. Alcohol and drugs don’t always mix well.
I suffer/ live with insomnia. It’s a frustrating disorder. Nothing seems to work 100%.
What works for one may not work for another.
I’m sorry you’re suffering with it.
Cut out all caffeine is the first thing to do.

Might as well play some pinball.

Agreed re the caffeine thing-I struggle too with hideous insomnia so I limit my total caffeine a day and strictly limit after 3 or 4 pm. It helped me to look up caffeine content of various beverages too. Coffee is way more per serving than tea, tea is usually more than pop, etc.

The Mayo Clinic has good online articles about sleep if this happens to you often.

Get some sunshine in the morning to reset your sleep clock. Go to bedtime about the same time. Stop screen time, tv, computers, phone about an hour prior. Try to avoid hefty snacks before bed. Exercise is recommended, I’ve never had the self-discipline to do that, alas.

If you can’t fall after trying for 20 minutes, get up and do something calming (not screen based), reading, music, etc., try again once you feel drowsy. Rinse and repeat.

Free advice from my shrink doctor son: emphasized limiting screen in evening, don’t rely on sleep meds. They really are designed for using for short length of time, 1-2 weeks. Behavioral changes much longer lasting and more successful. Above all, he would agree with poster that alcohol is counter productive, you wake up again in hour or two. Especially don’t combine alcohol with anything thing else! Yikes! Therein lies not waking up at all.

He also gives the advice of, for God’s sake don’t stack up multiple meds on top of each other-more isn’t better and likely to have bad results, like grogginess next day, falling, etc. also, those meds are far harder to get off than on. Ask a pharmacist if that would be helpful re reasons to not do that.

May the force be with you. You are not alone in this frustration.

Thanks for the thoughts, guys, but for the record, I’ve been under treatment by a doctor (actually, a succession of doctors) for insomnia for about 25 years. I take 3 different prescriptions for it, plus melatonin (on doc’s recommendation) and a little caffeine first thing in the AM (doc’s recommendation again).

I’ve had several sleep studies, and my sleep brainwaves are highly unusual, particularly my REM sleep. I don’t have apnea. I tend to physically startle when I start to enter REM sleep, and this wakes me up, sometimes very awake, sometimes just out over REM, and REM is the restorative phase of sleep, when you make the enzyme that keeps you from feeling sleepy after you have slept well.

Caffeine bonds to the same receptors as the enzyme, which is why it wakes you up. My doctor wants me to be wide awake first thing in the morning, so I’m not having problems with “wakeful sleepiness,” which is a weird thing where I can sometimes get shadows in my peripheral vision. Caffeine makes this go away, until my on “awake” enzyme in flowing. I don’t get any the rest of the day. I drink decaf coffee, and 5-calorie, flavored water. Once in a very long while, I might buy caffeine-free Coke.

I take another medication in the morning that helps me stay focused, and not want to nap, without interfering in my ability to go back to sleep at night. Then I take an anti-seizure medicine, because this seems to counter-act the REM startles, and I take a very small dose of an antipsychotic, which wouldn’t have any effect on me if I were actually psychotic, but it lengthens my “day” cycle, because my body is naturally on a 14-hr day/6-hr night, and the medication gets me to a 16-hr day/8-hr night.

Plus, I have Klonopin and Ambien (zolpidem) as PRNs, for nights when the other meds just don’t work (which seems to be the case tonight). Or for nights when I travel to another time zone, or need to get to sleep extra early, because I’m doing something like working at the polls. I have both, because my doctor wants me to alternate which one I take, and only gives me a small amount of each, to avoid dependence. I actually have a couple of months backlogged, but I have weeks where I’ve used a month’s worth in one week, so I fill the prescriptions every month.

FTR, also, I don’t drink at all, but that has more to do with 1) both my parents dying of cancer; and 2) I don’t like to. I was just joking about the Scotch.