Live discussion with Dr John Cape - 23rd September 2015

Dr Cape will be hosting a live online discussion here on Wednesday 23rd September 7pm-8.30pm BST.

He will discuss as many topics as possible in the hour and a half and, as always, you’re welcome to ask any questions at all about sleep or the Sleepio program. Please do note however that, as per our guidelines, Dr Cape won’t be able to give personal medical advice. His replies to questions will be made in such a way as to help as many people as possible who might have similar issues.

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Posted 17 Sep 2015 at 3:33 PM
  • 11 comments
  • 0 helped

Comments

  • Sleepio Member

    • 12 comments
    • 1 helped
    Graduate

    I am just starting week 3. I find I want to do my prebed rountine prior to the relaxation. The progressive relaxation – if works well brings me very close to sleep and I don't want to wake myself up again …brushing my teeth, washing my face, etc….
    Is this counterproductive?

  • Sleepio Member

    • 30 comments
    • 3 helped
    Graduate

    I've been suffering with insomnia for 12 months. My average night is 5.5hrs. I drive for a living and my GP wouldn't give me sleeping tablets. I've joined sleepio after a few private CBTsessions. My problem is I'm worried about sleep restrictions as I don't think it'll be safe for my job. So at the moment, I've been sticking to the get up time but going to bed when I felt sleepy (much longer window than suggested). However I still don't sleep that well, I'm either awake for long periods or waking up a lot. I don't know what I should do for the best- I want to see improvements but without danger to falling asleep at the wheel. I can't always take a 10min nap during the day as my duty doesn't always allow it. My anxiety has gone up since setting restrictions and I'm exhausted all the time…help

  • Sleepio Member

    • 435 comments
    • 252 helped
    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Graduate

    Hi bkarrer1, that's what I have usually done, and got myself bed-ready before the wind down then used the relaxation last thing, once I get in bed. It works well for me, and you are absolutely right about not wanting to jolt yourself awake with tooth brushing etc just before bedtime.

  • Sleepio Member

    • 302 comments
    • 72 helped
    Expert

    Hello everyone. Welcome to this live session. I look forward to answering your questions and having some discussion. There have only been a couple of questions posted earlier so there is plenty of opportunity for others. So if you are on line, go right ahead and pop a question or post a comment.

  • Sleepio Member

    • 302 comments
    • 72 helped
    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Expert

    Thanks for your question, bkareer1. There is no one way to go about winding down before bed. The relaxation described in Sleepio can be part of a wind down routine and certainly many people find doing the relaxation as the last part of their wind down routine before bed is helpful. As described in the library article on the wind down routine, spending 60-90 minutes slowly getting ready for bed doing relaxing and pre-bedtime activities like washing teeth is important in preparing for sleep and establishing a routine for this helps. The specific routine that works best is an individual choice.

    https://www.sleepio.com/library/article/before-bed-the-wind-down-routine/

  • Sleepio Member

    • 302 comments
    • 72 helped
    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Expert

    Excellent question about sleep and sleep restriction when you drive for a living. There is good evidence that sleepiness is a factor in some accidents. Because of this, it is generally recommended that people who drive for a living have a sleep window of at least 6 hours to allow more opportunity for sleep. This will sometimes be longer than the sleep window set from a person’s sleep diary records. If this is the case for anyone who drives for a living, they should use the longer (at least 6 hours) sleep window in carrying out sleep restriction. In other respects sleep restriction can continue as described in the Sleepio program, although the effect of lengthening the sleep window may mean that people are awake longer during their sleep window (and so their sleep efficiency is less).

    Doing energizing/alerting activities as far as possible to keep alert/awake and counteract the tendency to sleep when driving is of course clearly important too. Energizing activities are the exact opposite of the wind down activities recommended to help prepare for sleep. If a person’s work involves driving at night, there is evidence that having a blue light in the vehicle can help with alertness:
    https://www.sleepio.com/blog/2012/12/29/blue-light-and-nocturnal-driving/

    Does this help answer your question? If not, or you have further queries, do post back.

  • Sleepio Member

    • 302 comments
    • 72 helped
    Expert

    That's the end of answering the pre-posted questions. Plenty of time now for other questions and discussion. I shall be here until 8.30 pm BST (3.30pm EST)

  • Sleepio Member

    • 302 comments
    • 72 helped
    Expert

    Very quiet this evening. Some people will be observing Yom Kippur today.and unable to join us. Maybe others are contemplating the Autumnal equinox – the day half way between the longest and shortest day – which is also today; a time in the northern hemisphere for mellow contemplation on autumn/fall, summer gone and winter ahead. Does anybody find the changing light levels between summer and winter affect their sleep and mood?

  • Sleepio Member

    • 302 comments
    • 72 helped
    Expert

    OK. Time to finish this evening. Anybody interested in seasonal effects of changing light on sleep can check this: https://www.sleepio.com/articles/sleep-science/seasonal-effects-on-sleep/

  • Sleepio Member

    • 4 comments
    • 1 helped
    Graduate

    I have been fine with the sleepio programme for the majority of weeks, but then there is a hormone fluctuation mid cycle when i ovulate and later menstruate, the sleep schedule goes out of the window! I am lethargic most days and can easily slip into sleep in the daytime or evening. I can oversleep when my alarm goes off and i find the negative thoughts take over. A general hormone article has been brought to my attention by the sleepio team, but it does not cover this specific topic.

  • Sleepio Member

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

    The wind down routine mentions caffien and alcohol, but there is no mention of the latest tiem to eat or have a drink of water / juice / milk etc. I often wake needign the toilet and wonder if i can help my schedule in some way with minor tweaks

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