Sleep Won’t Come

Anyone have this problem? Ever since becoming ill from my mold exposure in 1999 I have dealt with this off and on. Sometimes trouble getting to sleep is mild and sometimes I have been awake for 36 hours straight. My autonomic nervous system has been out of balance from the beginning making it hard to take a nap even during the day because no matter how tired I am, as soon as I lie down my brain kicks in to overdrive and I start planning what I should be doing.

Last night was one of those nights. I usually take a melatonin (Allergy Research Sustained Release) every night around 9:30 so that when my head hits the pillow at 10:00 it doesn’t take long to fall blissfully asleep. On the days when even that doesn’t seem to be enough I had 5HTP the next night. My daughter and I were up and falling asleep in our chairs by 10:30 so we both went to bed. I was tired and taking melatonin or anything else just didn’t cross my mind. I layed down in bed with my brain in overdrive. When I finally realized I wasn’t going to sleep for a while it was too late to take the melatonin if I wanted to get up and be alert this morning. I turned on the television trying to drown out my brain in hopes it would lull me to sleep. That didn’t work. I tried reading and got sleepy but as soon as I put the book down and tried to sleep, my brain started in again. The last time I looked at the clock was around 1:00 a.m. I have no idea when I finally fell asleep.

Of course my sleeping pattern has been off the last two weeks. My daughter and I are up past my normal bedtime watching movies and visiting and then I get up later than I usually do. She is leaving today (we are driving her to the airport). I think between my schedule being so off and my dietary intake being off and just the angst of having to send her off may have contributed to my sleeplessness last night. Tonight I am taking my melatonin and 5HTP at 9:00 p.m. and heading to bed by 9:30/10:00. I am also going to force myself to get up early to hopefully reinstate my sleep cycle.

Actually in my sleeplessness last night or early this morning I actually started composing a poem about sleeplessness titled “Sleep Won’t Come”. Apparently it came sometime during the composition of the poem because I feel asleep and only remember bits of it.

On my pillow my head does lay
Waiting for sweet dreams to take me away

Sleep Won’t Come

etc etc etc – Maybe I will remember more and finish it.


5 responses to “Sleep Won’t Come

  1. Kathy, I too have had problems sleeping since my mold exposure but my symptoms are different. I have tried and tried through researching the Internet to find out what is the cause of my problems in hopes to find something to fix it, but so far have not found help.

    Here are my symptoms. I easily fall quickly asleep, but always right at the 15 minute or sometimes 30 minute mark….research says this is when the body temp drops and relaxes, I wake up with my whole body feeling the sensation of being shocked by electricity followed by sweating and my skin feeling like it is on fire.

    Then I am scrambling to kick the covers off, as I feel like I am so hot I am suffocating and then have to get up and get a drink due to being very thirsty. I then return to bed and if the sheets have cooled am able to lay back down and eventually cool off enough to cover up and then most of the time I can go back to sleep and stay asleep.

    However, on nights when there is a weather change coming in a few days, I will have fibermyalgia body aches all over to add to this situation, that tend to not allow deep sleep to ever come and so I end up having to take Aleve to be able to fall asleep.

    I have found that soaking in Epsom Salts every night right before bedtime helps with the Fibermyalgia symptoms as long as the weather stays steady. I have tried using lavender and valerian essential oils and valerian capsules and to a point this shuts down my mind. Nothing however will stop the electric shocks I get at the 15 or 30 minute mark after falling asleep.

    From what I can discern, the root cause may be nerve damage. Alpha Lineolic Acid was said to help heal this but the grain free caps are too expensive for me to buy right now, so I have not started this treatment yet.

    Anyone else experienced this set of symptoms?

  2. Most nights I would awaken a few hours after falling asleep with my heart pounding and needing to urinate. Come morning I would feel exhausted and have jaw pain and a headache. An astute dentist who specializes in TMJ and sleep issues insisted I get a sleep study. It turns out I had severe sleep apnea. I might also add that I am of normal weight with a thin neck, and do not have a recessed jaw or other characteristics that would allude to obstructive sleep apnea. Years of sleep apnea (I think upper airway resistance syndrome) had led to chronic insomnia as well. If your brain knows you soon will be low on oxygen you will soon have a brain that subconsciously does not want to sleep.

    It took literally years of perserverance and the further diagnosis of chronic mycotoxicosis due to a small amount of toxic mold beneath our kitchen island in order to get the good quality sleep I have now. We had to leave our house, which lessened the airway inflammation and chronic rhinitis (for years I was told I had vasomotor rhinitis). I was able to give up the nasal and bronchial inhalers and now use antiungal nasal sprays after a twice daily nasal lavage in order to keep the nostrils open. I did not meet the diagnostic criteria for fungal sinusitis, but a willing M.D. let me try it even before we knew of the environmental issue. I also take 60 mg. of sudafed at bed time combined with 50mgs. of trazodone to counteract the sudafed as nasal swelling however slight is a hindrance to sleep for me I went to a sleep center that allowed me the freedom to try different masks and cpap machines until I found the right fit.

    Long story ( and this isn’t the half of it!) I know, but you never know who might benefit from what helped. Some raise an eyebrow at the sudafed and trazodone every night, but the deleterious effects of no sleep or poor sleep are much worse than using the drugs for me. I am still trying to outwit the mycotoxins with the itch and burn on the clothing and bedding. It is an expensive nightmare beyond comprehension, but not being able to sleep was closer to hell. I was literally too tired to function many days during the last 10 or more years. If what I have been through can help even one person it would be worth it for me to share this story.

    Thanks for listening!

    • Thank you for posting. I am sensitive/allergic to most medications and sudafed is a big one that makes me sick. I irrigate my sinuses and am on an antifungal. We actually were able to culture it fro my sinuses and I have had tests confirming tricothecene mycotoxins in my urine and tissues.

      You mention the itch and burn on the clothing and bedding. What do you mean by that? When you left your house, did you take your belongings with you? If so, that may be why you are having a problem with your clothes and bedding. Please write back if you see this message.

  3. I tend to have this problem a lot as well. Since I’ve started taking Zoloft things have gotten a little easier – I think I was loosing sleep in part because of my anxiety disorder. Without fail, though, if I have an especially early morning, my brain refuses to sleep until well past midnight. Not sure what’s to be done about that. But I also find that playing around on my phone or surfing facebook just before bed gets my brain all riled up, and that’s no good. The holidays are no help either – sleep schedule is all over the place! Hopefully things settle down for you soon. 🙂

    • Sorry you are having to take Zoloft. I am sleeping better now thank you. I am off the antibiotic and that seems to make a huge difference. I did a little too much yesterday so am feeling a little under the weather today. I am taking it easy. Maybe I will write a new post, maybe I will just sit and read. Either way, it is going to be a quiet and relaxing day for me. Hmm – maybe a pot of hot potato soup for dinner. I have a new immersion blender I have been wanting to test out.

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