Chronic Insomnia Help - Suffered with for 20 Years

Updated on May 08, 2010
P.B. asks from Haslet, TX
11 answers

Hi Moms,

Ok, just right off the bat I don't have situation insomnia and I've tried many herbs like valerian root, melatonin and prescribed meds like ambian...etc. I follow all the rules of the bedroom and have stopped caffine and alcohol but nothing has helped. I'm now looking into other methods and thought I'd ask you other mothers and grandmother's if anything has helped for you. I'm at my witts end because it's only getting worse as I age and I feel like I'm not the mom I want to be for my two girls.

I'm thinking about magnetic therapy with a magnetic pad for my pillow or accupuncture and I HATE NEEDLES. Anyway, I thought maybe there is someone out there like me who has actually found a solution to their problem that just may work for me.


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answers from Anchorage on

I do not have help. I just wanted to say you are not alone, and thank you for posting this question, I will be looking over the answers to see if I can find any help for myself. I wake up so many times a night many days I feel I am sleep walking through my life. My doctor now has me on pills to sleep, and different pills to wake me up. I would love to find a way to sleep without all these chemicals!

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answers from Toledo on

I'd like to recommend yoga if you haven't tried it yet. It can be very soothing and there are several techniques to relax the body and mind. There are a zillion kinds of yoga, so find one that suits your problem. It's really simple to follow and learn the techniques to use without the tape. Good luck. PS Don't be afraid of acupuncture-- the needles are so small that you can't feel them.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Indianapolis on

Is your problem falling asleep or are you having trouble staying asleep?

I've had sleep issues for years as well, but I'd not say I'm an insomniac. I've had sleep studies, been on medications, and still, I don't sleep well and wake-up multiple times/night.

When I was going through chemo, one of the antinausea meds (originally an anxiety med) helped me sleep through post-treatment side effects. I still take one/night to help me fall asleep. it's a short-acting drug that doesn't leave you feeling groggy.

Just wondering if you've tried anything like that which targets different areas of the brain.

I even did a sleep study a few years ago that was a complete waste of time and money, but my husband did one that was very comprehensive and helped him target some of his difficulties.

Good luck! Hoping we both sleep better soon.



answers from Charlotte on




answers from Austin on

Hi P.. I will tell you an experience I had with my husband. He has a very stressful job and is so busy and usually falls asleep fast but wakes up and can't go back to sleep. I sent him to do a food allergy test and it came back with tons of things he had "intolerances" to plus positive for candida (yeast overgrowth in his body). I put him on a diet free of dairy, bread, yeast, sugar, wheat products, corn products, plus the many things he had intolerances too. We also put him on probiotics. After about two weeks when his body detoxed he slept through the night. He was taking tylenol pm every night and before that lunesta. He doesn't take anything now.
I also have food intolerances and if I eat the things I have issues with I don't sleep well and I am tired and irritable during the day. Just a thought! Changing your diet is cheaper and MUCH better on your liver and your body.
Let me know if you have any more questions.



answers from Dallas on

I have been there and it is awful. My doctor gave me ambien and I felt drunk the next day. She gave me a natural drug called Sleep Tight - It has been wonderful. I bought it in her office, but now buy it from It is the first thing that every worked for me.



answers from Atlanta on

HI P.,

My husband had insomnia since he was a teenager. It's not stress and there are no known reasons for it. I give him a supplement called RestEZ that helps him sleep and sleep restfully with no grogginess. It is primarily valerian root but it is a blend of other things as well. Not all supplements are created equal!

He did everything you did PLUS the acupuncture and it still was not relieved until the RestEZ. Sorry you're dealing with this and wish I had more suggestions.




answers from San Francisco on

Hi P.,

I have also been suffering from non-situational insomnia for more than 20 years and I'm happy to share some of the things that work for me.

You mentioned having tried a variety of herbs and prescribed meds like valerian, melatonin and Ambian. I've tried all three of those and none of them ever worked for me either (in fact Ambian actually made it worse). I have had remarkable success with a prescribed medication called Trazadone, as well as kava kava (not a long term solution due to possible liver damage. I've been on Trazadone for more than 10 years and have experienced zero negative side effects.

In addition to the more emergency solution of medications, I've found yoga to be a great tool for helping me become more aware of the activity level in my mind and to help sooth and still my thought processes in general. I would also recommend exploring workshops for yogic breathing exercises as these are continually helpful for me.

Lastly, I suggest you look into hypnosis. Maybe therapist are qualified practitioners. In truth I found hypnosis to be somewhat less effective as a long term solution than yoga and breath work, but I still the relaxation techniques I learned there to be useful tools for long term insomnia management.

Good Luck!!




answers from Indianapolis on

Have you tried Bach to Sleep remedy? It's a homeopathic bach flower remedy. Google it or try a local natural vitamin or food store.



answers from Boston on

The New York Times is doing a whole series on insomnia and they just recently had a piece on light therapy that looked really interesting. I think it was in there sometime last week. I don't have this problem, so I can't say it works for sure, but I think it would at least be looking in to, given that it's totally noninvasive. Good luck. I know when I had insomnia during my pregnancy it was the worst - I can't imagine it long term.



answers from Denver on

Have you been tested for sleep disorders?

I know from personal experience that if the brain is afraid that you will, for example, stop breathing in your sleep, it is extremely reluctant to allow you to go to sleep. The mind races, there's always something you can't stop thinking about, and you get less and less sleep at night. It seems like it's made up of many other problems, and you try a million things like meds to get to sleep, but really it is the reptile part of your brain being afraid you will die in your sleep and thus keeping you awake.

If you have insurance, it's worth doing the test to find out for sure. The first pass for most testing is just to tape something to a finger for the night and see what your oxygen saturation levels do overnight in your own home, in most cases. It is easy, then they pick up the device and analyze the data and see if you're oxygen levels are dropping. If so they will order a full sleep study.

This might not be your problem, but it certainly sounds like you've tried most other options and this one, if it is going on, can make gigantic amounts of difference if you get a CPAP machine and mask that really works for you. If it becomes relevant and you don't have very very tiny nostrils, I personally find the nostril masks much easier to sleep with than the other kind which tip and leak into my eye and other such problems more often.

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