30 answers

I NEED SOME SLEEP...who Can Help Me? :)

I am living over in Misawa, Japan. I almost 8 mos pregnant and my sleep cycle has totally flipped. I can't seem to get any shut eye until about 5am when my body just conks out. Then I only sleep for a couple of hours. When I think of my sleep deprivation, I become overwhelmed. The doctor says chamomile, which calms me down, but no sleepy weepy :) My mind just races, playing out all these scenarios in my head of how life will be in the future. I think I'm losing it...help! :)

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

I am so thankful to Mamasource and to my friend Ellen W. for referring me to this website so that I could connect with other moms. I felt so bad when my husband would look at me at five o clock am and I am wide awake. "E., why aren't you asleep, it's 5 am?" Of course, I didn't understand why. I just thought I was weird or something. When all the moms on Mamasource confirmed that I wasn't finally losing it, I breathed a sigh of relief. Sometimes I still feel bad that I can't sleep some nights. It's amazing how much stuff you can think about in one night...lol! I TRULY appreciate ALL your prayers and advice! I ask you to continue to pray for me as I embark on the journey to motherhood!!!

Love y'all,
E.:)

Featured Answers

Try doing yoga to some soothing music. You don't have to follow a routine, just do whatever stretching you like until you become relaxed.

Hun I was the same way! I would sleep for alittle bit but wake up by 5am... It just last stage of pregnancy I think. Try a warm bath with gerbers bedtime wash.

Hi E.,

One of the things I read is that calcium helps you to sleep better. So a glass of milk(warm if you like it) before bed. I used this as a excuse to have Ice cream before bed. If you take a calcium supplement (which I do) take it before bed. Since I had trouble sleeping I told me husband let me sleep when I fell asleep somewhere othere than the bed ( the couch while watching tv). Good luck

H.

More Answers

E.,

I would suggest going to the vitamin section of the BS and picking up some Selenium and some Melatonin. they are both naturally occurring chemicals in the body that help you relax,(Selenium), and feel sleepy (melatonin) and stop your mind racing, from Anxiety or any other stressors, I was taking Melatonin to help me sleep for I couldn't stop my mind from racing and being active, so i could rest.
Just take them about an hour before you go to bed..it will help you relax, feel sleepy and stay asleep too!

plus, its non habit forming too! Because, They are naturally occurring chemicals in your body..:)

Good luck!

Lady Rhia

1 mom found this helpful

I just had my second daughter last month and had the same problem. I was restless most of my third trimester and found myself up to a minimum of 1 am before I could finally settle down for the night. I didnt try any medicine or other remedies except to just stay active in the early evening to wear your body down enough to want to go to sleep. I also had such random thoughts crossing my mind that would keep me up late at night so if it wasnt my body twitching it was my mind constantly wandering. Some nights I would get so upset at myself because I knew I needed the sleep to keep me afloat for the next day and manage my toddler with energy to not throw her off schedule either. All I can say is that after a month or so, the feeling started to subside. Hopefully yours will to but my best recommendation is to keep yourself busy towards the late afternoon and into early evening time to give your body enough time to wind down. Also, do your best to limit your stress load! I had a lot of stress going on and I think that subconsciously my mind was in such deep thought around the clock and that may have been the underlying reason why I had such an issue getting to sleep at night.
I'm sure things will work out for you before you deliver. You NEED your sleep before you big day because it'll be a good month or so until you can get even 4 hours of sleep at a time thru the night.
Best of luck to you,
A.

1 mom found this helpful

Morning,
My name is J. and Im also here in Japan for another year! As to your sleep, this is your first baby and I did the same thing. Have you ever herd of "Nesting" ya know where you clean everything all the time, cuz you want it to be perfect when your little one gets here? Well it like that but your trying to sleep. Only , advise here, your body is getting you ready for being up every two hours when your wonderful little one gets here! So when you feel tired take advantage and sleep then. Also bring a BOOK and a glass of milk, to bed with you and when its time for the lights to go out just keep telling your self everything is going to be ok and now its time for "mommy" to rest rub your belly and sing your self a song in your head over and over till you nod off! Hope this works!!! HEY CONGRATS your going to love being a mom! Also One last thing, try a hot bath and some candels, pamper your self a little, maybe if the old man is home you can even get a foot rub! LOL LOL! Then the BOOK, MILK, and Hum, Sing what ever you want!
Let me know if it works out!
Yeahhhhh your having a baby!
J. in Japan Land

1 mom found this helpful

The same thing happened to me when I was pregnant with our first child. This is what worked for me: a warm glass of Ovaltine with milk; once I was in bed, I took deep breaths (in through my nose, out through my mouth), and I said my prayers. Hope this helps :o)

1 mom found this helpful

Sounds like anxiety of the impending birth and life with a new baby. Maybe try to do meditation or read a book before sleeping, that always made me tired and think of other things. Maybe put some soft music like a harp paying when you go to bed and try to concentrate on the sound of the music while taking deep breaths or at least as deep as you can since that baby is pushing up on your diaphragm making it a little hard to take really deep breaths. I hope it helps.
Is your husband at home or is he deployed? If he's home hopefully he will take on a lot of baby duty so you can get some rest. It's important to take care of yourself because if you don't you won't be able to take care of your family.

1 mom found this helpful

Hi E.. You poor girl. I know what a great Christian you are. Why don't you say some prayers for yourself. I'll add some in too. Just remember, it is okay to worry and fret about the future, but also remember He will take care of you and your little one no matter what may come. :)

Trust the Lord your God with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will direct your path. - Proverbs 3:5-6

E. W.

1 mom found this helpful

I have a good friend, not pregnant, who lives with the same problem. The one thing that really helps her is reading. She chooses a good story, not a mystery, crime, horror..you get the picture.. and has a reading light attached to the book so she doesn't disturb her hubby. She reads to clam her mind, then she is able to sleep. I know after the baby this will be harder to do, but I don't think you'll still have this problem then. Just remember in the first several weeks...if the baby is sleeping you sleep. Don't try to keep up with everything you do now. Your gonna need those little naps! Congrats on your first baby and God bless.

1 mom found this helpful

Are you comfortable while laying down? I bet your stomach is big and getting into a position of comfort is difficult. One thing I did was purchase a body pillow I could hug into while sleeping on my side. The pillow would help hold up my large belly from the bed. For a racing mind there are many relaxation methods to choose from. My favorite is closing my eyes and concentrating on each individual part of my body. What you are to concentrate on is relaxing that specific body part before moving onto another body part. Start with the body part furthest away from your head and slowly make your way to your neck and each individual part of your face. For me this works because I have to change what I am concentrating on in order to do the exercise and as it works the relaxing feeling feels good. Most times, I fall asleep before ever getting to my face muscles. This is a mind over matter exercise. Hope this helps.

1 mom found this helpful

Forever I had difficulty getting to sleep. I finally went to a specialist. Along with the regular recommendations like no TV in the bedroom, he gave me the best advice. He said you go to bed for 2 reasons. Sleep or "quality time ;)". Unless reason #2 applies, if you aren't asleep in 20 minutes get out of bed. Go into another room to read, do some light yoga or corchet, basically any calming activity. Something to take your mind off knowing you just wont be able to sleep. When you feel tired, go back to bed & try it again. This really does work. Getting up at the same time every morning help too. Sometimes when I go to bed, I think how I feel in the morning. How warm & cozy the bed is & desperately wishing for 10 more minutes. Letting my body remember how tired -heavy-my body feels helps too. White light noise is good, like a fan or a gadget that plays ocean waves.

When the baby comes it's a non issue. Sleep when the baby does. Once you have your beautiful child in your arms, you'll feel the peace. "What to Expect when your Expecting" is a terrific resource. I only wish I's read "What to Expect in the First Year" before my daughter was born. It would have helped me to feel more confident instead of racing to the book each time I had a question.

Everything will be just fine I promise :)

1 mom found this helpful

E.,
First I send you my prayers, because I remember those days. What my Obstetrician did was prescribed me Benadryl. I worked nights and got to the point where I was not sleeping but maybe 2 hours a day. He had me start with 1 25mg tablet, and then increased it to 2 about 45 minutes before I would lie down. This really helped me and I did this for both of my pregnancies. As far as the anxiety, is everything ready for the baby, do you have someone to help you after the baby is born? Things like this can weigh down on our subconscious and make it almost impossible to rest. One thing that helped me was to keep a notebook beside the bed and when things would pop into my head I would write them down, so that when I woke that would be the first thing I could take care of or get ready. Writing it down helped, because then I knew that I would not forget to take care of it, and I was able to quit worrying about it. Good Luck and Congratulations!!

1 mom found this helpful

Totally normal. First be careful with herbals they can have other side effects. Make sure you get excersise during the day. Swimming is great while PG. Don't have anything electronic in your room. and warm milk. SOunds cazy but it works for some people

1 mom found this helpful

Hopefully you are resting a little better by now. If you are not I am sorry to hear that I am sure you know the importance of sleep. It appears as though your thoughts are the culprit. Try writing down some of your thought to get them out of you head. Answer any questions you may come up with. Prioritize anything that may weight heavily and dismiss things we have no control of. Sometimes its our mind trying to organize things and with so much going on it's a little hard to put everything into perspective. I am in Yokota, Japan and I understand the nervousness of being away from family, and uneasy about what the future will hold. No doubt you will be a GREAT mom, God has given US supernatural abilities when it comes to taking care of our children. When in doubt get a book, read it before you go to bed, especially one on What to expect when you are expecting that was really a good one, if you know what to expect you less likely to be anxious. One very important piece of information. If you haven't considered breast feeeding, it is very rewarding for both you and your baby (e.g less ear infection, diarrhea, allergies, stronger immunity for you less Breast/ovarian cancer, and quicker recovery of pre-baby days ;) You may want to encourage the hospital staff to allow you and your baby to have Skin to Skin as soon as the baby is born. This will establish a much needed bond, and greater breastfeeding success.

1 mom found this helpful

benadryl, it's a drowsying medication that's safe to take during pregnancy. it has the diphenahydramine that you take in a sleeping aide at a safe dose for your body and your baby...it's the only way i got any sleep.

Hun I was the same way! I would sleep for alittle bit but wake up by 5am... It just last stage of pregnancy I think. Try a warm bath with gerbers bedtime wash.

Hi E.,

One of the things I read is that calcium helps you to sleep better. So a glass of milk(warm if you like it) before bed. I used this as a excuse to have Ice cream before bed. If you take a calcium supplement (which I do) take it before bed. Since I had trouble sleeping I told me husband let me sleep when I fell asleep somewhere othere than the bed ( the couch while watching tv). Good luck

H.

I have been told that eating a large baked potato within about 2 hours of going to bed will make it easier for you to go to sleep. They say it is because the carbs in the potato produces the checimal tryptophan the same one from eating turkey. Maybe if you tried it with your chamomile tea it would work? Also, you could try reading a very boring book. They say that watching tv or reading a good book will only gets us excited and not help us to sleep. Hope I have helped. I will pray that you are able to sleep now and that your baby will sleep good and through the night once it is born.

I had a similar problem when i was pregnant w/ both my child, but my second was worse. Take benydryle. Thats what my doctor, both times, different doctors told me to do. You only have to take it for about a week. then you get back into a good routine. Take it about 2 hours before you want to go to bed. It worked great for me. Hope this helps. Good Luck and God Bless

J. Levinson

This may not be the greatest solution but I heard my doctor say that in case I can not sleep to take Benadryl.
Ask your pharmacist over there and you can get it from the hospital or OB/GYN. Don't have to get it over the counter. Cause Benadryl makes you drousy and sleepy. Maybe really not the best way to fight something that is happening with you emotionally to treat with that kind of stuff , but however if you are really sleep deprived....
Another thing you may want to try are the " Bach Flowers" drops like the "Rescue Drops" Look for it online.
Chamomille is not a bad suggestion, there is also a homeopathic " Chamomilla" in little prills you may want to try it is also good later when you are a little stressed or when you have PMS and even for babies it is ok when they are teething. It is "Chamomilla D6" .
The another alternative method is warm milk with honey.
No Caffeein, no sugared soda pops all that may keep you awake.
Try lavender "essential oil" a few drops in a candle burner.
Or a nice warm bath with a few drops of essential Lavender Oil, or if they have " WELEDA Lavender BATH Milk " there that too. It has to be the real Lavender not a room warmer fake stuff:) .
Or if you can get lavender buds, put them in a little sacj cloth and keep them close to your bed. It will also keep away moth:) You will probably only find these things in a " whole foods" store I don't mena the brand but a alternative vegetarian store of some sort. You would probably hav e to ask some Japanese person there to find one and probably go with you. But the Japanese are quite up to date in some alternative medicine so it would be worth asking them too?!

Hope anything helped and will help?!

Try doing yoga to some soothing music. You don't have to follow a routine, just do whatever stretching you like until you become relaxed.

I'm so sorry E.! It must be tough for you not being able to sleep! On the bright side, maybe it's natures' way of preparing you for the baby's arrival! Will you be breast-feeding? You know you must be up every two to three hours during the night to do so....and you're already prepping for that, it will certainly help. The last time I slept well through the night was probably before my girls were born. Okay, partial joking aside; have you tried Benadryl? It's completely safe during pregnancy and even breast-feeding. But, just to be safe, do ask your doctor. It really helped me sleep! Don't think about the future; things will just fall into place once you have that baby in your arms. And one more thing...whatever you do, try your hardest to sleep when the baby sleeps! It was the best advice I received and it helped me make it through those first tough months. After my second baby came along, there was no way that I could sleep alongside the baby; I had to entertain the first one! But it does get better! Good luck and congratulations on your first baby. M.

I have several children (7), I found a nice gental walk after dinner is soothing and gets your mind in the right place. If you have a husband and he is not on a cruise, take a walk with him. It is a good time to talk about 'things'. Not controvercial things!! Plans, next duty station, where you would like to sight see in the next couple of months. Imperial gardens are great. That kind of thing. Remember the house can wait, sleep and baby will not. Enjoy your first child and if you want more, enjoy them all. They are all special in their own way.

I had trouble sleeping at the end of my second pregnancy and the doctor Rx sleeping pills for me I believe it was only a weeks worth but it helped, not sure how you will feel about it, it concerned me being pregnant but the doctor reassured me that as long as they were taken appropiately and under their supervision that it was ok.

When I started having problems waking up in the middle of the night and not being able to go back to sleep I was told two (2) things.
First trying eating peanut butter (not sure why, but I was willing to try anything. It didn't work for me.
Second I was told to get use to it; most likely the times I was waking up would be the schedule the baby would be on.
That’s seemed to hold true for me!!!
Good Luck

If you have a husband home ( I didn't most of my pregnancies) then he can help by perhaps gently massaging your back before going to bed. I had a horrible time sleeping both pregnancies and for me relaxation exercises really helped. Muscle relaxation, putting on soothing music that will calm your racing mind before bed, focusing on your breathing (either count 1,2 or in, out can help calm your mind and body).There are books or tapes you can get, perhaps at your library (or the internet). Also, I kept a pen and paper by the bed to be able to write down all those annoying thoughts of what I need to do, forgot to do etc, so I could put them "to rest"! I hope some of these help with the sleep..... good luck and good sleep!

Try taking a tylenol before you go to bed. It is safe for the baby and it helps your mind shut off. This worked for me.

You should try taking a warm bath before bed, and drinking a glass of warm milk. There are a variety of other natural sleep aides, try googling it. I had a hard time sleeping too, most of the time it was because my body decided it hated the matress, and the only way I could get any sleep would be to sleep on the couch. Try changing venues. If it really is just your mind running, try reading a book or lay down watching the tv (not news) to change the focus.

First, Congratulations! It sounds as if you're just anxious and a little nervous about giving birth and welcoming your family's newest addition. If your husband is at home and not deployed gainfully employ him by having him rub you down to relax you. I also would suggest that you get a little active during the day or evening by walking (plus it will help your delivery) so that you're tired at night. Since you can't sleep at night, are you able to sleep during the day? If so, get it when and where you can if you're not still working. Check with your doctor about having a small glass of red wine and make a night or two romantic. Not to be funny, but while I was pregnant every time my husband planned something romantic I always fell asleep...that may help:)

Oh you poor dear! I believe this is natures way of getting your body ready to go go go on no sleep. I think most of us have gone through this in our pregnancies. Towards the end of my second pregnancy (of twins) I think I averaged 3 hours sleep twice a day. Which is more then I was getting after they were born. I tried tiring myself out many different ways but it never worked. It's like mom-to-be boot camp. Condition your body for what's to come. Good luck with everything. The only tip I have is that, just laying back on the couch watching a movie is very relaxing and rejuvenating for your body. You don't necessarily have to be sleeping to get that rested feeling. Hope this helps!

Hi E.,

I can empathize with you....I was almost 30 when I had my first child, but lived in the same city where my mother & sisters lived. Giving birth to your first child without having family around and getting ready to move to another foreign country may be adding to your stress...not to worry...these major changes in one's life can and do cause major stress. However, you don't have to let the stress overwhelm or overrun you. I am a single mom of 2 boys living in Korea as a DoD civilian. Even when things get hetic and there is lots of chaos around me because of my circumstances, I still have peace because of a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. I find that meditating on a Scripture helps to transform my thoughts, and talking to God about my concerns, AKA as prayer, helps me to conquer anxious thoughts. Try to establish a support system with other women (to include older women who may be able to give you a lending hand or just act as sounding board). Is your mom still living...do you keep in touch with her...are you able to talk to her about your concerns? Even if you don't have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ now, I will leave you with a Scripture that hopefully will calm your fears, because the Creator of Heaven and earth and all that is in it, cares for you and wants you to know Him. "Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all of our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God." 2 Corinthians 1: 3.
I will pray for you and ask God to help you and that He may reveal Himself to you so that you may be able to tell others of His goodness and faithfulness. Take care of yourself. Patsy

I think every first mom experiences this. I know I did after my little boy was born. But then I realized that my lack of sleep was my fault. I tried to do everything when the baby was sleeping and then when I was ready to rest, it was too late...baby, hubby, everybody needed me during that time. And thne by the time I got everyone down for the night my sleep cycle had already passed. It really messed me up for about the first 3-4 months. Then one day I just broke down. I could not take it anymore; I was completely exhausted. My mother who had been through several surgeries and suffered sever insomnia told me a couple of things to try and believe it or not, one of them actually worked for me. 1) Take a nice hot bath and drink a glass of red wine right before bed time. This one did not work for me because wine gives me a headache...even a sip.
2) Stick with the hot bath (relaxing) and eat a banana. There is something about the level of potasium in a banana that is supposed to help you sleep. This really worked for me. So now, when I can't sleep, I get up and eat a banana...works everytime.

I really hope you start to get some rest soon. It is rough enough being a first time mom away from "home" and family. I went through that too...my family is in South Carolina and I am in Germany.

Good luck...let us know how you are doing.

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