Live Discussion with Dr Audrey Espie - 27th November

Dr Espie will be hosting a live online discussion here on Wednesday 27th November 7pm-8pm (GMT).

She will discuss as many topics as possible in the hour, starting with the most popular questions with answers being given in a way to give the most benefit to the general Community.

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Posted 21 Nov 2013 at 10:19 AM
  • 45 comments
  • 7 helped

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  • Sleepio Member

    • 258 comments
    • 62 helped
    Graduate

    Let me chime in here. I'm no expert, but I agree that 7 or 8 hours for a SW is huge. Also, agree that it's difficult to know if you are sleeping or not. If you think you are not, then you become more anxious. Right? I find that remembering when I am awake and when I am asleep is a tad difficult, but in reality, it doesn't matter, since it would be very difficult to get all of this right unless you had a recording device. I had a good laugh about looking at the window, but then, I will look at my wife's clock to see what time it is when I am awake or asleep. Not sure there's an easy solution to this one.

  • Sleepio Member

    • 243 comments
    • 50 helped
    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Session 3

    Sorry Caliman, I wish I could type a bit faster! You've made some good points here, not least of all that people tend to present with very similar issues.
    You mention that the techniques such as meditation haven't been especially helpful but it sounds to me like you are perhaps a good example of someone who becomes anxious due to racing thoughts. You explained that towards the end of your 3 hour window that is left you seem to be increasingly anxious and of course that will not induce sleep. Sometimes a paradoxical approach can be of benefit – start by writing down some of those anxieties or at least solutions as they occur and once you feel less anxious tell yourself that you will probably not get back to sleep but that you can manage on 3-4 hours. Sit quietly considering this statement each time an anxious thought appears. This will require some practice but I have used such a technique before with someone with similar issues to yourself.
    Please see this session as an opportunity to discuss your own issues and I'm happy to answer questions if I can. You seem to be in a difficult situation in that your medication side-effects may be difficult to tease apart from your sleep problems. Have you spoken to your GP about an alternative? I suspect you have.How are you coping in the day? After the initially early drowsy period are you actually managing ok on the little sleep that you are getting? That's a very big consideration here.

  • Sleepio Member

    • 243 comments
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    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Session 3

    Exactly! That's what I thought you would say. The problem with a recording device as Caliman mentions is that you would really benefit more from an assessment such as an EEG carried out in a sleep lab. As this is unlikely to be available I would go back to my point about decreasing your sleep window in an attempt to improve your quality as opposed to quantity.

  • Sleepio Member

    • 243 comments
    • 50 helped
    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Session 3

    Good discussion here tonight about sleep quality. in relation to your question Angie, if you are not feeling fatigued during the day I would just keep doing what you are doing!

  • Sleepio Member

    • 1692 comments
    • 339 helped
    Graduate

    Thanks for your answers today Dr. Espie!
    Angie

  • Sleepio Member

    • 243 comments
    • 50 helped
    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Session 3

    Hopper, for session 4 I think that's a great result. We do appreciate that SR is by far the most difficult part of this programme. On the other hand, some of the Graduates can tell you what a difference it has made for them.

  • Sleepio Member

    • 243 comments
    • 50 helped
    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Session 3

    Thanks for helping me out too! I think i will stay on a bit longer just incase those who have posted want to reply to my comments. For those who have to go, thanks for contributing.

  • Sleepio Member

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

    Thanks Dr Espie
    I do find the discussions helpful land I didn't think I would!
    its good to no your that im not alone.
    but my real reason for sleepio is to get off dreaded sleep pills which ive taken for years, this is a work in progress!
    Tina

  • Sleepio Member

    • 258 comments
    • 62 helped
    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Graduate

    Thanks for this one. I am the one who is impatient. You are fine. You have given me a lot to work on here. Yes, I am probably anxious about not sleeping the rest of the night and will try the paradoxical approach you suggest. Not sure my thoughts are “racing” but clearly, I am concerned about not sleeping. Maybe the fact that I start to think about all of the things on my plate says these are “racing” thoughts. I can see it will not be easy, so I will give it some time.

    I have several times spoken to the eye doctor about this med. I will ask again. The good news is that the drowsiness is over within 3 1/2 hours. While I don't necessarily feel drowsy for the rest of the day, I do lack energy to concentrate and exercise. It's only natural for me to think that my reduced sleep is a big factor here and it seems to be cumulative.

    For now, I will work on those negative thoughts during the night when I am awake. Heretofore, I only wrote things down during other times of the day.

  • Sleepio Member

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

    apologies for slight typing errors!

  • Sleepio Member

    • 258 comments
    • 62 helped
    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Graduate

    Good for you! I know it is a dilemma, since the pills aid sleep, but they don't “solve” anything. I support what you are trying. I am doing the same thing and it's not easy!

  • Sleepio Member

    • 243 comments
    • 50 helped
    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Session 3

    Tina, In that case you're doing really well. As I'm sure you are aware benzodiazepines are generally regarded as short term interventions for sleep problems. If you can improve as you have been doing then perhaps that will encourage you to visit your GP and discuss your goal further.

  • Sleepio Member

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

    Thanks Caliman.
    I tried cold turkey at the start of sleepio but that proved a bad idea! most nights I take half a dose now, so after 13 years, this is progress!

  • Sleepio Member

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

    Yes Dr Espie I know your are right and the pills don't really work after such a long time, I definitely still need to work on the negative thoughts and cognitive behaviour but im giving my self a pat on the back for my small progress.

  • Sleepio Member

    • 243 comments
    • 50 helped
    Session 3

    Thanks everyone. Caliman, you are right about the duration of the sessions – some weeks they just fly in and we don't always get to answer in as much detail as we would like. Can I suggest you post before the session as you have done and I will discuss with the team what we can do? Goodnight.

  • Sleepio Member

    • 1692 comments
    • 339 helped
    Graduate

    Goodnight all!

  • Sleepio Member

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

    goodnight angie!

  • Sleepio Member

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

    Sorry, you may have gone now. But to what, do you think, should I adjust the sleep window?

  • Sleepio Member

    • 258 comments
    • 62 helped
    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Graduate

    Thanks, Dr. Espie.
    I appreciate the support and suggestions and for your willingness to do more. I look forward to hearing from you after you confer with your colleagues. It has to be hard to offer suggestions with this little to go on. Let me know if you need more from me. That said, I will take whatever helpful suggestions you can offer.
    Jim

  • Sleepio Member

    • 54 comments
    • 11 helped
    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Graduate

    Sorry, I missed the reply. Did not get it and was waiting….hope to have more luck next week. It is QHR tie which now is hours. When I get to bed I am wide awake and fearful. So I spend more time outside of bed now sleeping only 3 -4 hours. Kind regards

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