Insomnia What To Do

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Anxiety and Insomnia - What to Do If You're Sleeping Less Because You're More Anxious

Author: Trevor Johnson

Anxiety can be caused by lots of things. Worries about money, job security, exams, your personal life, etc can all be a cause of anxiousness. Often this then turns into insomnia: you spend long, sleepless nights worrying. Which fuels your anxiety even further. So what can you do to break out of this cycle? At the very least, if you're worried about homework or unfinished work, contact that way you can cross the problem off your list.

Work on cutting your anxiety levels

OK, this can be easier said than done. Rationally, you know whether your anxiousness is the correct response to your situation but convincing your subconscious mind to cut the level of anxiety can be a bit of a struggle. If you can separate the cause of your problem into two lists - one that you can't control, the other that you can at least influence - then that's a good start. Then pick off one or two of the smaller worries from the list of items you can influence and work on them. The success of getting rid of even a minor problem can be quite exhilerating and there's often a positive knock on effect to bigger issues.

Look for underlying problems

These are often quite subtle and you may not even think they're cause for concern. Chances are that there are some problems that are stuck deep underneath your anxiety. If you can identify these, that's a good step. A close, trusted friend or family member may be able to help with this as well.

Chip away at your insomnia

Some behavioral patterns that we run don't help us to sleep easily. Start with getting into a regular routine for sleep - going to bed at around the same time is an easy place to begin. Don't watch or read anything that taxes your mind too close to going to bed, otherwise your mind will still be working overtime when you actually want it to calm down. Cut down on any alcohol or caffeine intake. Both of these can keep you awake and could be at least part of the cause of your insomnia.

Don't rely on pills

Sure, taking a sleeping tablet every now and then isn't too bad. But don't start to rely on them to the stage that there's not a chance that you could get to sleep without popping a pill.

Chill out

Find a way to relax more. This will help with both your anxiety levels and your insomnia. Listen to calming music, take a nice relaxing walk, anything you can do to help yourself relax more.

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9 Responses to Insomnia What To Do

  1. Tyler Johnson says:

    Triple science or music ?
    So, I’m a student in year 10. For my initial options I chose : geography, triple science, and art , along with that I have mathematics , two English. and RE GCSE’s to work towards, along with a merit in sports ( worth two GCSE’s) . I initially was too nervous about joining music rather than science triple at first but recently I’ve spoke to the head teacher and my parents about changing to music. I’ve played piano (self taught) some Christmas and the best thing I can do is grade four (not amazing but alright I guess) and I’ve realised that music is really a passion of mine, I’ve always wanted it but never had an opportunity properly.

    Because I’m a good student the school are willing to let me have two different choices, either:

    -Continue triple science until the end of this school year (because most of my work is already done) and start music and get it all done next year, they say not having triple will severely limit my future because I’m predicted A* grades the whole way through… But I mean I absolutily can’t stand it, I’ve got 5 pieces of coursework in science going on and have wrote a total of over 50 pages int own words in ridiculously small font, and the work is too labourious for what it is worth, also I don’t want a career in science, nor to take it in college, so surely they won’t be concerned if I’m taking music in college and don’t have triple science right?

    - or I can leave triple science and start music on Monday, in this the staff HAVE to guarantee me at least an A or A* by the time I’ve finished music, which will be pressured on the music department. This is the option I want to go for, because I don’t think I really could complete both courses in the two years, but will it really have that much of an impact on me if I want to take music, geography, art, and psychology in college ( either at KGV or Runshaw in the north west) ?

    Plus I’m worried to let the teachers down and it’s giving me insomnia worrying about it, music is my true passion in life and I’m so devoted and motivated by it, but really I have mo idea which road to go down, they told me I’m likely not to get into college without triple science and I don’t know what to do, I’m feeling so guilty and yet I want to have a good future.

    I know science might sound like a better career route but it’s become something I despise, I enjoy learning the new things about it, and find them interesting but after I know them the interest is gone

    So which path should I take, and if you’re thinking, it’s all down to what I have in mind then please what would you advise?

    I apologise for the length of this question and hope there is sufficient information for an answer to be made, thanks guys this really means one HELL of a lot to me
    The first option of keeping triple means that I can (with hope and luck) try and get both GCSEs , though they probably wouldn’t be as good as possible if rushed into a year each, and I don’t want them to turn round at the start of year 11 and say “it’s too late to start music now” which is what I fear they’ll do. Argg I’m just so stressed and upset about this I an desperate for music but worried about now getting into college :S

    ps the only reason they’re ( unwillingly) allowing this is because I’m predicted A* grades in every subject.

    This choice is so hard, and I hve to hve it by tomorrow as a definite decision :S

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    • cazzynoms says:

      I reckon you should continue with triple science and take music next year as well. It’s definitely possible – a friend of mine did this (she did the most GCSEs in my year – 16 of them, all Bs and As), and if you truly are passionate about your music then doing that extra bit of work shouldn’t be much of a strain.
      I’m doing my A levels now, and I took triple science at GCSE and am doing A level Psychology also. Triple science is hard, but what if you found Psychology so interesting that you wanted to study it at university? That separate Biology grade could make all the difference and decide which university you end up in, considering it’s an area of study in Psychology. Doing the normal science could result in a lower grade if one of your sciences was weaker than the others. Just think of it this way – yes, you have to put in a lot of work, but in the long run you’re doing yourself a big favour as it’s an extra qualification to put on your CV and leaves you more options if you change your mind in the future.
      Oh, and as for the exams in triple science, Unit 1 is the easiest, Unit 2 is the hardest and Unit 3 is more like the middle ground. Even if you go down to double science you’ll still have to do Units 1 and 2, so the easiest and the hardest. After that, Unit 3 doesn’t seem very hard at all.
      You must be smart if you were given the option to take triple sciences in the first place. Don’t let it worry you – just make sure you revise well for exams and really work hard on all coursework. Manage your time wisely and you’ll do fine, believe me. I was there last year, and it’s really not as scary as it seems.
      Good luck for your GCSEs. :)

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  2. superfreak says:

    All I can think about is food and losing more weight?
    I’ve always been very insecure about my body and weight. So, a couple months ago I decided to start reducing my calories and exercising. (I started at 115 pounds) In a month, I lost 5 pounds. Thrilled, I kept it up. I lost 5 more pounds. Then, I moved to live with Grandma. She sleeps most of the day, and I wasn’t really eating much. In a month, I lost ten pounds. Now, I’m 92 pounds and living with my mom again. My doctor told me to gain about ten pounds, but I CAN’T. If I gain that much, I’ll be fat again (I know that sounds crazy, but I really was chubby at that weight). I know she is worried about me even though I’m only modestly underweight for my height and age. The real problem is, food is all that I can think about. Food and losing weight. I have insomnia and think about it all night, and when I fall asleep I have DREAMS about it. I have fallen behind in school (and I’ve always been a straight A student), and I’ve fallen behind in LIFE. I don’t think about food all the time in an “I’m hungry” sense. I think about calories, meal plans, and losing more weight. I plan out things that I would like to eat. I constantly make desserts for my mom and Grandma. Food is LITERALLY on my mind every single minute of the day and night. I don’t know what to do! I don’t want to tell my mom about this, but I need help. I don’t think I could stop this if I tried. On the one hand, I want my life back, but on the other, I just want to be thin. And if I gain weight, I don’t think I’ll be able to live with myself. Please, I just want to be happy, but I don’t know what to do. Thank you for your suggestions!

    Also, I’m vegan and have always been a healthy eater (whole raw foods, organic/non gmo). So, please no suggestions about switching to a different, healthier diet.
    My family can’t afford a therapist. We are under the poverty line, and ironically all extra money goes into buying healthy food.

    Also, I still felt chubby at 100 pounds. I still feel chubby NOW.

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  3. know it all says:

    what happens at a social security diability hearing??real help only please?
    I am waiting for my social security disability hearing and I am getting more nervous everday. I have mental health isues as well as serious migrains and insomnia. I really need to be on disability..I have a lawyer and documentation of my illnesses…what happens at the hearing and what questions does the judge ask> How can I convince him?

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    • nanaboss says:

      Do you have dr verification records? I’ve been through this and approved. I’m certified nutz. I had my own dr reports and letters from my family regarding my inability to function in normal society and how they had to “cover” for me and what type of situations, such as how I’m often gripped with paralyzing fear and unable to make the simplest decisions. The court sent me to a government shrink who agreed I needed assistance taking care of myself but not to be locked up because of family support. He basically watched for any signs of faking and heard my pathetic stories of abuse, fear and hopelessness. I also had trouble in any social and work scenario because everyone looked at me when I talked and I didn’t know what they wanted me to say and they knew I wasn’t right/normal and it created so much anxiety I had to run and hide. Anyway, if you are full of anxiety and depression and panic attacks and you have it documented, you should be okay. Just a hint, don’t look them in the eye, don’t be afraid to let your problems show, its no time to be proud. I had migraines and insomnia too. Its better now that I’m not working, which is the point. Tell them your brain doesn’t work right. You know it but don’t know what to do about it. Are you feeling hopeless, helpless, scared? Do you get confused? I don’t want to give advice to those who are just trying to get away with a free paycheck, so for anyone else who reads this, please understand I’m only suggesting these things to help someone in great need. Don’t be afraid of being scared. Its part of your illness. Hug/hold onto yourself as if you are holding on for your life…because you are. And should you get a case worker who is a jerk, there is an appeal process. Good luck honey.

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  4. Bryan says:

    How do you treat intractable insomnia as Michael Jackson seemed to have?
    Clearly, Michael was overmedicated and perhaps in mutual exhaustion his “physician” finally administered the propofol on top of everything else.

    My question is – what do real doctors do to treat someone whose insomnia is unresponsive to medications – is this such a rare circumstance that it’s a rehab situation most of the time?

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    • Jenn B says:

      Clearly he had an addiction problem. Once you become that dependent on those types of medications, you need a much larger dose for them to become effective.

      I don’t think this is as rare as people think it is. They would send him for a sleep study, find out what his brain is doing when he is trying to sleep, send him off to rehab as drug withdrawal is dangerous. Who knows if he had any other co-morbidity.

      Propofol is NEVER given to someone just because they cant sleep. That is just insane. As well as off label usage of medication, it is necessary in some aspects of medicine. Certainly not this particular drug!

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  5. nore h says:

    What is the surest way to cure insomnia?
    What is the exact thing that I have to do in order to cure insomnia? I don’t want something to try.

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