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Doughboy

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Joined: 07/01/2005 13:03:21
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Since I work early, my once normal "bedtime" of 2 or 3 am doesnt cut it, but I still cant manage to get to sleep early even if Im dog tired. I never wanted to take pills or anything for it so ive just been a zombie at work instead. My dad, however, recommended a vitamin (hormone, actually) called melatonin. I took it about 50 mins before bed and I fell asleep without tossing or turning etc etc, woke up at 4am for work with no problems! It doesnt knock you out, or keep you asleep, it just helps you GO to sleep. I highly recommend it for anyone that has trouble falling asleep.

Read up on it a bit here ifyer interested.
http://www.melatonin.com/

Never been one to take any kind of pills (vitamin or otherwise) but for this I make an exception =)


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Chameleon

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I've never used it, but I know a few people who use it and say it works for them. However, it can be habit forming. There is a risk also if you develop a habit with it. That chemical you mentioned, melatonin, is a natural chemical produced in your brain. If you keep taking it, your body will almost shut off its natural production of it. So, if you were to stop taking it, you would have all kinds of problems. It is really only good to use for a very short time. Probably only a week or so to get your body into a sleeping schedule.


Sorry to hear that you have problems getting to sleep. I actually have that myself. I'll go to bed and it will take me anywhere from a half n hour to over an hour to get to sleep. I also wake up a lot during the night. Little noises and stuff wake me up, so that disturbes my sleep. That is probably why my halo goes away in the morning and I grow horns

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Doughboy

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ah I see, thanks! Hopefully wont need it anymore next week, then.


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Chameleon

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Doughboy wrote:
ah I see, thanks! Hopefully wont need it anymore next week, then. 


I'm not saying to not use it, though. If it helps you, then by all means, use it. Just have to be careful with things that help you do daily activities. Stuff like, the opposite of what you are using to stay awake, or to help you study, or those things they have to help you in social situations. What happens is you begin to say to yourself, "I can't do this unless I take that pill!!" That is when it becomes habit forming. I don't want some little pill to run my life. Probably why I stayed away from drugs.

I'm here to help, though!

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Boingo_Babe

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You ought to try Yoga. Do a bit of stretching before bed. If there's too much on my brain I have a hard time sleeping too. Sometimes I just can't shut it off. Excercise and a nice hot shower afterwards does wonders.

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cplmac

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You know it's a refreshing change of pace to hear of someone who has trouble shutting their brain off with all the people out there who have trouble turning their brain on...
Now where's that on switch

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Chameleon

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cplmac wrote:
You know it's a refreshing change of pace to hear of someone who has trouble shutting their brain off with all the people out there who have trouble turning their brain on...
Now where's that on switch 


There's a switch? All these years with mine in the off position. WHY AREN'T I EVER NOTIFIED ABOUT THESE THINGS?!!

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Doughboy

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hahaha. Yeah Ive tried pretty much everything to get to sleep, stretching, hot shower, warm milk, wiggling toes, relaxation tecniques, reading boring crap, etc. I just end up waiting for exhaustion. Today I just started to get horrible, acute migranes... which luckily I like never get. Going to stop taking them for the next week and if the migranes go away, so does the 'tonin. *pre-emptive wave goodbye* *tear*


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Chameleon

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Doughboy wrote:
hahaha. Yeah Ive tried pretty much everything to get to sleep, stretching, hot shower, warm milk, wiggling toes, relaxation tecniques, reading boring crap, etc. I just end up waiting for exhaustion. Today I just started to get horrible, acute migranes... which luckily I like never get. Going to stop taking them for the next week and if the migranes go away, so does the 'tonin. *pre-emptive wave goodbye* *tear* 


You sorta sound like me. My mind just races at the speed of light all the time. When I'm thinking of one thing, my mind is preparing what it is going to start thinking of the next second and so on. Gets really annoying after a while, especially during college when you are taking in vast amounts of imformation in a short period of time. I think I'm aging at a faster rate because of it. I just try and deal with it, though. I can't stand taking pills or whatever, so I just try and concentrate on sleep or whatever it is I need to do. Sometimes it is cool and sometimes it isn't. For some activities, I think it works out well. Take UT for example. I can pay attention to multiple peices of data at one time like my ammo, health, the radar, and where you guys are at the same time. However, I think the negative seems to outweigh the positive. Just try and think positive and not let it get you down. If you are depressed, that will just make it worse for you.


I'm here to help!


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Sleepless_playa

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I've always had trouble sleeping even when I was younger. I've also tried everything and nothing works. If I do sleep its doesnt last more than four hours. Sometimes Ill go a couple days without sleep, but most of the time I get 4 hours of sleep. The longest Ive gone without sleep was like 83 hours. Ive gone to the doctor for tests but they say Im fine. Its not so bad once you get used to it. Leaves you a lot of time to do other stuff.
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Doughboy

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Yeah Sleepless, it is nice in giving me time to do other stuff. It has made me realise something, though - what am I going to remember in 5, 10, 20 years? Those extra 2-6 hrs of sleep a night, or a book I read/Movie/Conversation with a friend/etc etc. Something to think about.

It's not a matter of depression or anything, Chameleon. Just makes me tired, especially at the end of the week on saturday morning finishing that 60 hr week. After I get off there and go hang out with friends though Im always full of energy, last one asleep, first one up lol. A blessing and a curse =).


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cplmac

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Paging Dr. Shan, Dr. Shan to the forum please, Dr. Shan to the fourm...

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Chameleon

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cplmac wrote:
Paging Dr. Shan, Dr. Shan to the forum please, Dr. Shan to the fourm... 


She isn't answering her medical pager. Hmmmm, I think you are going to have to deal with me then!! Soooo

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Shantara

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Okay, okay... here I am...seeing 3 billion new posts yesterday was too much, so I skipped the forum. Anyway, here is my two cents, and not my "professional" opinion or anything like that, just my two cents.

I would be curious if having difficulty sleeping was a more recent development, or if it's a struggle you've always had. If you've only had it since starting this job that forces you to change your sleeping schedule, then (depending on how long you've had the job) it may just be a matter of time for your body to adjust to the new hours.

Before continuing, you should know that my bias is to avoid medications when possible. This has not stopped me from recommending medications to clients before, nor has it stopped me from taking them myself when I felt I needed them, but that's my bias, so take what I say as you will. Also, as a disclaimer, despite what the voices in Cpl's head may tell you (and how are you hearing the voices in his head, anyway?) I'm not an actual doctor yet- still a graduate student.

That being said, if difficulty sleeping is a recent development, here are some possibilities to try:

1) visiting your general practitioner- there are a variety of physical causes that can cause you not to sleep well, and even if you are otherwise healthy, getting more information on how melatonin, your diet, etc. might affect you personally is always a good idea.

2) Make sure you get enough physical activity during the day, and that the physical activity isn't right before your scheduled bedtime.

3) Don't do things like reading, watching movies, etc. in your bed- reserve it for sleeping so your brain associates "bed" with sleep.

4) Monitor your caffeine intake and your diet- your body's reaction to caffeine and other things in your diet may change over time. In other words, being able to drink 10 gallons of Mountain Dew may work while you are 16, but not necessarily when you are 23.

5) I know you mentioned you tried some relaxation techniques, but (depending on what you tried), I would say there's a number of good ones out there, and a bunch of books with instructions on how to try them. Progressive relaxation, monitored breathing, and focusing on the present are some of the ones that I've found most useful.

6) If you feel like thoughts are keeping you awake, journaling is often helpful. Try writing a letter to a friend or yourself about whatever is on your mind. Sometimes your mind just needs to talk, and then it can sleep.

7) Adjust your schedule so that you get used to quieting down earlier. If you need to be in bed by 10, keep that in mind and don't schedule "active" activities near that time. Give yourself plenty of time to wind down your day, in whatever way works best for you.

I hope some of that is helpful. Something else to keep in mind is that Cham made an excellent point about the effects of taking melatonin supplements long-term. This doesn't apply to everyone, because if you were to visit a physician, they may determine that your body has difficulty making melatonin, etc., but taking it for long periods of time without a physician's advice could cause your body to decrease its production of melatonin, and you might experience other problems.

In any case, good luck, and happy sleeping.

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Chameleon

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First I just want to say that Shan rocks!! All this for only two cents! I do think she makes very good points. Thanks Shan!!

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