Sleep remedies & alternatives to prescription drugs

A discussion where members can share and inquire with other members into alternative sleep remedies, such as herbs, acupuncture, weighted blankets, and hypnotherapy.

Posted 3 Jan 2012 at 7:56 PM
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  • Sleepio Member

    • 3 comments
    • 2 helped
    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Graduate

    Yes – I've had some success with gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) 500mg obtained at a health food store and CBD 30mg (a component of cannabis) obtained on-line.

  • Sleepio Member

    • 5 comments
    • 1 helped
    Graduate

    I have spent a fortune in various supplements over the last couple of years and to be honest I don't believe many of them make a great deal of difference. I find it often just makes me more obsessive about my sleep and can cause more anxiety when I find they don't help.

    I do take a couple of things still at night but have cut back from like 5 supplements that I was taking at night. I tend to take stuff now that I also take during the day for my anxiety/depression such as inositol and 5htp and magnesium as I feel they may help me in other ways and not just sleep.

  • Sleepio Member

    • 10 comments
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    Session 5

    I have also tried several, currently take magnesium and 5htp alongside a multivitamin (to cover all bases as I can't possibly take everything linked to sleep!) Also awaiting a delivery of magnolia bark, i know these things probably aren't the answer as I took them all last night and none worked! Have tried cbd oil too with no success :( I'd not rule out any recommendations though, you never know!

  • Sleepio Member

    • 10 comments
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    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Session 5

    Melatonin can only be prescribed to over 55s in the uk, however I ordered some from an 'online pharmacy' and sad to report cost me £30 and did nothing. My doctor told me to try it if I ever went to America, so on that basis I didn't consider it too unsafe.

  • Sleepio Member

    • 5 comments
    • 1 helped
    Graduate

    You can purchase melatonin in the UK at various strengths from a company called biovea.com which also sells many other supplements.

    It is sent from the USA and costs around £4 delivery and takes around 1 week-10 days to arrive. I have just ordered some to try again 5mg time released and I think it was around £20 for 90 tablets.

  • Sleepio Member

    • 2 comments
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    Session 5

    Hi All,

    Just wondering if anyone has tried hypnotherapy at all for insomnia? I'm deeply sceptical, but also desperate!

  • Sleepio Member

    • 1 comments
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    Session 5

    Has anyone tried acupuncture to help with insomnia? Is it worth going down this route?

  • Sleepio Member

    • 453 comments
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    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Graduate

    Hi John I’ve left you a detailed message on your Profile page :)
    Kurly

  • Sleepio Member

    • 2 comments
    • 3 helped
    Pre-course

    The 4-7-8 breathing technique used to work for me but it no longer now. I am now trying out soothing sleep music every night, by listening to nature sounds to calm my mind. You guys can give it a try too. www.music-for-sleeping.com

  • Sleepio Member

    • 1 comments
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    Graduate

    Hi there – I am new to this and in week 1. I have tried various supplements, the one that worked the best was melatonin, but 3mg did nothing and 6mg made me feel incredibly hung over the next day! I have tried CBD gummies 25mg but at £75 for a month supply they are expensive and I have only ha very mixed results. I am pretty desperate – am now starting month 3 of awful insomnia – sometimes sleeping less than one hour a night! I take Amitryptoline for my IBS but this has not helped my sleep and GP prescribed me some antihistamine, but they do not work for me sadly. I have everything crossed this programme will help – good luck guys
    :)

  • Sleepio Member

    • 453 comments
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    Graduate

    Hi vlm1979
    Welcome to sleepio and sorry that you have to be here! It means you’re having a rough old time of sleeping (or not sleeping…just like the rest of us insomniacs!!)

    I know it’s hard but if you can give the programme your best efforts, you may see progress in a few weeks time. It’s probably not what you want to hear, that it takes weeks, but it does take time to introduce new sleeping habits and get rid of the bad ones you already have. It’s not a quick fix – it’s a change of habits, for life. And it works :)

    I cannot really comment about supplements as I don’t take any. I did try turmeric in a milky latte but it had no effect…another waste of money!! But the whole point of melatonin is to promote sleep….so if you’re not getting the benefit it doesn’t make sense to keep taking it! Do discuss this with your GP and see if it’s ok to come off them.

    During the first two weeks on this programme you learn about sleep and sleep hygiene, nothing much else happens, but you must keep completing your sleep diary so that by Session 3, the prof will have enough information about your sleeping habits to give you your Sleep Restriction hours – the hours you are allowed to be in bed sleeping.
    This is a whole game-changing exercise that squishes all your sleep into a shorter period and starts to get rid of your awakenings. It is hard but it works! 80))

    Over each coming session you will learn new things, techniques and handy hints, form the prof or you’ll glean from us here on the community. In the Library, a new set of topics and discussions will be unlocked after each session, and stay available to you whilst you are on Sleepio.
    Familiarise yourself with how the website works pop over to your Case File, the Library and the Community page to see what’s what and who is where!
    If you click on a name in turquoise blue, (or grey in this page,) you get taken to that person’s profile page, where you can learn a bit about them.

    Many sleepios have come to the programme clinging on to tablets and gadgets hoping to get that elusive sleep, but giving this programme every effort they are rewarded with better Quality sleep, and I’m sure you will too. You’ll hopefully find that any other problems diminish too as you’ll be getting deeper, restorative sleep.

    Keep in touch to let us know how you are doing and we will be here to support you along the way.

    Best sleepio wishes
    Kurly :)

  • Sleepio Member

    • 2 comments
    • 0 helped
    Graduate

    Not sure this is technically a sleep aid but I'm addicted to audiobooks to get me to (or back to) sleep and am concerned this is going to turn out to be a bad habit later in the programme.

  • Sleepio Member

    • 33 comments
    • 14 helped
    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Graduate

    Hi Agatha,
    I'm sure there will be divided opinions on this!

    As addictions/habits go I'm not sure it's such a bad one. Also if it works/helps then that's got to be worth something. However I'm guessing you don't want to become totally reliant on it as a way of falling asleep or might be worrying that it'll become less effective. Luckily Sleepio will give you a whole range of other strategies to help you fall/get back to sleep which you may find helpful.

    Since starting Sleepio, over the last 6 months, I have worked my way through various things to aid me falling asleep – sleep music, guided meditations, visual imagery, progressive relaxations – all of which helped me along the way. However – in the end I realised I needed to be able to get myself to sleep, and using some of the techniques I've learned I have concocted my own kind of sleep mantra. It generally works now and if it doesn't, it's just a blip and I know it will again.
    Hope this helps – Good Luck in your Sleepio journey – it goes well beyond the actual weeks of the course.
    Jarabia :)

  • Sleepio Member

    • 2 comments
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    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Graduate

    Thanks for your reply Jarabia. You're right, I do worry that the audiobooks while brilliant sometimes don't always work and I can end up getting very cross with them when I set a sleep time for them to switch off (usually 20 minutes) and then find I'm still awake! Looking forward to seeing how Sleepio helps me cope.

  • Sleepio Member

    • 2 comments
    • 0 helped
    Graduate

    Just to add to this discussion I am currently doing well ((5.5 to 6hrs good sleep) on melatonin and L-theanine 200mg. The melatonin I had from previous travels, started with 3mg nightly for 2-3 wks then have dropped to 1.5mg. It didn’t work immediately, it did take about a week or so. The L-theanine is from health food stores. I know people feel differently about sleep aids but the sleep I am getting is much better quality than before and much more consistent. I am still following the Sleepio rules and sticking to my sleep window. Will see how it goes. Good luck and good sleep to all.

  • Sleepio Member

    • 453 comments
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    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Graduate

    Hi LyloLil 80))
    I was interested in what you are taking – the L-theanine had to look it up to remember where I’ve heard of it – of course it’s in tea!!
    Black tea is a lower-caffeine alternative to coffee during the day, and I don’t mind proper tea (!) and decaffeinated tea can be a calming part of the night-time wind down ritual before bed. But I stop drinking tea after 4.30 pm because I’m not as keen on the decaf variety!! Whatever time it is in the day, I do like a cuppa and a cup of tea can be a soothing 80)

    Have also read that L-theanine…“L-theanine elevates levels of GABA, as well as serotonin and dopamine. These chemicals are known as neurotransmitters, and they work in the brain to regulate emotions, mood, concentration, alertness, and “sleep”, as well as appetite, energy, and other cognitive skills. Increasing levels of these calming brain chemicals promotes relaxation and can help with sleep.”
    So maybe we need to buy some decaf tea and have it black in the evenings!!
    My OH has been getting up in the night – and having a cup of normal tea – then he is up for an hour or more and comes back to bed at 6.00 ish, wakes me and he goes back to sleep for a few hours!!! He’s a nightmare – have told him not to drink tea in the night…ugh!
    Thank you for posting about L-theanine. Ve ve interesting – it may help others.
    Also pleased to see you are getting a steady block of 5-6 hours of solid sleep – that’s so refreshing <80)
    Kurly ;)

  • Sleepio Member

    • 1 comments
    • 0 helped
    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Graduate

    I just started using Theanine a couple of weeks ago…400mg 30 minutes before bed, and it has made a very noticeable improvement in my sleep quality. I still wake up several times but can get back to sleep. It reduces anxiety without being sedating. It can lower your blood pressure so make sure that you don't already have low blood pressure. Try a supplement that uses the Suntheanine brand in it. I use the one from Jarrow Formulas. You can find out more here: https://podclips.com/c/TsjV2t

  • Sleepio Member

    • 3 comments
    • 0 helped
    Graduate

    At the moment, I am finding that only anti histamines are helping me sleep. GP prescribed a short dose but only a week reccomended and no more. Valerian and hops are useless and sleepio does not seem to be making big difference as yet. I am on the sleep restriction bit now. I keep waking up at regular points in the night if I do manage to drop off. 2 good hours sleep then broken from then on. How long can this process take without medication?

  • Sleepio Member

    • 3 comments
    • 0 helped
    Graduate

    Hi,
    10 years ago i was diagnosed with sleep apnea and insomnia, and it probably took 10years to come to this diagnosis.
    I was given a CPAP and prescribed Zopiclone & Clonazepam, which was ok for a while but about 3 years ago my sleep was really poor again, so i decided to make a an effort to lose weight, which I did with surprising ease once I made a conscious effort.
    Now the CPAP and apnea have gone but my sleep didn't improve as I'd hoped . so today I've graduated from the course albeit with the Zopiclone & clonazepam, I suppose my next step is to ween myself of the med's by cutting the daily dose in half.
    Has anyone any experience of doing this or any suggestions as to the best way to go about reducing med's?
    Paul

  • Sleepio Member

    • 2 comments
    • 0 helped
    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Session 2

    hi i was on zopiclone for 4 years after the death off my mum.i was on 7.5 i noticed that they wasnt working so good after a while and started to take a extra half.that was when i decided i needed to stop.i finished my weening off them slowley and now 9 weeks zopiclone free but my sleep cosists off no sleep or 2 hours a night. i have started the sleepio hoping to get some help but i got to the bit about thoughts and the video has crashed.so carnt get any further. i knowcoming off zopoiclone or any sleeping pill is hard.i just hope i get my natural sleep back.i have taken some nytol medacine just get good night sleep it did work but next day felt like a zombie.try and taper off them slowley with the support good luck

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