View Full Version : Controlling Anxiety at Night

08-06-11, 06:48 PM
Does anyone have experience with treating anxiety-related insomnia? This is a recurring issue for me it's making having a 9-5 life almost impossible.

Of all the remedies for insomnia (and I have tried them all, short of going to a sleep-study clinic), the only reliable treatment that works for me is Trazedone, which has been a miracle for me. I feel lucky to have found a way to get a solid eight hours of rest on a semi-consistent basis, especially considering that sleepless has been the family curse for several generations.

But once or twice a month I'll have a rough patch and wake up after a couple of hours sleeping with my mind racing. It's nothing in particular I'm worried about -- or could be anything. More than once I've woken up from nightmares about not being able to sleep.

Once I'm awake, I'm up the rest of the night. The next night I'll be so tired that I think I will crash, then it happens again. My Adderall IR helps with anxiety so sometimes I'll take a small dose to quiet the racing thoughts, but it wears off and I wake back up. After a few nights, it snowballs into an entire week, then I spend the weekend recovering and the next week getting back onto a schedule.

I'm thinking about asking my psychiatrist about anxiety mediation to use during these sleepless bouts. My concern is that these meds are usually used on a short-term basis, and my insomnia is only getting worse so I expect to deal with it all my life. If I don't figure this out, I may have to leave the workplace because trying to sleep on its schedule is ruining my life.

08-06-11, 06:56 PM
Ugh. I have similar insomnia problems. I take zopiclone every night, and sometimes even that doesn't work.

I hate to say it, but have you tried benzos? I know it's a whole thing, the uppers and downers, but if it's only a few times a month, it might be worthwhile.

I would talk to your doc. I had a scrip for a while for Ativan, only ten a month, and I rarely used the whole thing, it was only when I really needed it.

But I feel you, I have the same every once in a while terrible week, for me it was the past two weeks most recently. The rollercoaster of trying to recover from your sleep deficit all weekend then get back on schedule to work is hell, I can relate.

08-10-11, 12:55 AM
Not sleeping again...

08-10-11, 01:06 AM
Time for me to go to the liquor cabinet and ge tme a nice bottle of wine or whiskey.

08-10-11, 08:11 AM
I do not function well on this much sleep. Work today should be... interesting.

Place your bets now as to how much time I spend on this forum instead of working today!

08-10-11, 08:57 AM
I'm feeling a lot less free-floating anxiety since switching from Adderall to Dexedrine. I'd ask about it. Some forms of ADHD really need the extra Norepinephrine that the L-amphetamine in Adderall provides, but if you're getting anxious on it you probably don't.

I tried Valerian extract after reading a lot about it here, but only for a couple of days. A lot was going on and I hadn't switched meds yet. I'm not sure if it worked or not. I think it helped and it didn't require an Rx. I have trouble falling asleep but usually no trouble staying asleep, and I think I'll try it again.

The other really helpful thing for my sleep is heat. A heating pad or electric blanket. Only problem is it doesn't shut off after you fall asleep.

I'm really strongly considering getting a new mattress too. I have this great, fancy memory foam one in perfect condition. It's twin size and if I got my own place I'd want a double or queen no question, so I don't want to spend the money. But it is uncomfortable. I got a cheap Ikea mattress topper and it helped a lot, but I want springs, dammit!

What do you do when you can't sleep? Best thing for me is imagining a story, making up plots and images. Keeps the thoughts on one track, and away from worrying about sleep.

My anxiety was getting bad enough that I was seriously considering asking for something to deal with it for the first time ever, and now I'm pretty sure the Adderall and Biphentin I was on before were the root of it. I vaguely miss the extra kick in the morning, but my anxiety tends to be kind of paralysing. I'm actually getting more done and feeling more like myself.

I don't like to add meds if I can subtract.

08-10-11, 09:30 AM
Nothing works for me.

I ( :eek: ) agree with pechemignonne.

I'd add 0.5 mg Klonopin to the Trazadone. It's slow metabolising so should keep you calm and asleep thru' the night. (Unless you are an 'effed up sleep disordered manic depressive like me, then you have no hope :) )

Ativan 1 - 2mg before retiring is also an option.

Zopiclone, Ambien etc. are useless in my experience, but they supposedly work for some people.

08-10-11, 09:33 AM
Dex + Straterra might be an interesting substitute for Adderall.

Strattera will give you the Norepinephrine and also has anxiolytic properties.

Wonder if anyone is on this combo?

Tristan Jay
08-11-11, 09:40 PM
In order to get sleep, I've been using a variety of combinations of the following:

Mint Tea
Alcoholic Beverages (in moderation)
Hypnosis/Relaxation tracks--I have a couple specifically for sleeping; but the speed reading hypnosis track is just as calming, and ends with an option to wake up feeling rested or drift off into a restful sleep. The only time it hasn't worked was last night, but most other nights it helps do the trick.

Louder Than Love
08-19-11, 08:50 PM
It takes an army of downers to get me to sleep. usually around 3-5 mg of xanax, at least 1, usually 2 pain pills.
I know this is a little much..... its also temporary. and situational.

08-19-11, 09:27 PM
It takes an army of downers to get me to sleep. usually around 3-5 mg of xanax, at least 1, usually 2 pain pills.
I know this is a little much..... its also temporary. and situational.
holy crap! You have a hell of a tolerance.

08-19-11, 10:13 PM
Bops abi and LTL over the head w a rubber mallet,haha fixed that problem for ya's:D

08-19-11, 11:21 PM
Its called "sundowning" or "night disturbances" or even "night terrors"

I used to have nighttime anxiety so I know what you feel.... but it went away once I got of my SSRI causing it.

Every hear of the "fear of the dark syndrome?"

I think if you look into the 100's of thousands of years we were humans on the land hunting and what not the night resumbles chaos and danger and uncertainty. You could have been food for a bigger creature at night and you know how our long past can influence our current functioning, like the mythology of religions and the fear of the dark is one of them.

Here is websites that has some stuff about it:,-Symptoms-and-Top-Methods-to-Prevent-Anxiety-at-Night&id=3888187

Also goto and search fora song called "fear of the dark" by "IRON MAIDEN"

its a really good rock song based on this phenomena. :) Love that song.