Live discussion with Dr Vicki Creanor - 15th Aug 2018

Dr Creanor will be hosting a live online discussion here on Wednesday 15th August, from 8:15 to 9:45pm British Time or 3:15 to 5:45pm US Eastern Time.

She will discuss as many topics as possible in the hour and a half and, as always, you are welcome to ask any questions at all about sleep or the Sleepio program.

Please do note that, as per our guidelines, Dr Creanor will not be able to give personal medical advice, including that concerning medication. Her replies to questions will be made in such a way as to help as many people as possible who might have similar issues. If there are a lot of questions, she may not be able to answer all in the time available, but will try to answer as many as she can.

To keep up with new comments as they are posted you will need to refresh this discussion page.

To do this

On PC hit CTRL and R keys or the F5 key
On Mac hit CMD and R

Posted 9 Aug 2018 at 4:20 PM
  • 25 comments
  • 0 helped

Comments

Show older comments
  • Sleepio Member

    • 18 comments
    • 11 helped
    Graduate

    My sleep is improving with Sleepio, and I can generally now sleep uninterrupted for 4-5 hours. After that it is in short bursts, with several wakenings before it's time to get up (currently my window is 7 hours). Although I am not awake for long (mostly not having to implement the QHR), and without too much mind activity, I'd like to stop these short (but annoying!) multi-wakenings in the early morning. Any ideas – will they reduce eventually, or will they always be part of my sleep pattern? Thank you.

  • Sleepio Member

    • 2 comments
    • 0 helped
    Session 4

    Hello,
    I have had sleep problem for approx 27 years now. All GP's have done is prescribe 7.5mg sleeping tablets, i have not taken them regulary, only when very tired and mostly only half tablet, this is due to after affects next day, also if i seem to get a better sleep one day of say 4 hours, the next night will always be worse.
    I have tried a local Wellbeing SD course which did not work for me and this is my second Sleepio effort.
    I try really hard and stick to the rules but it just is not working for me, last night only an hours sleep.
    I did get my GP to recently refer me to nhs sleep centre in Cambridge, but as my issue was not apnea they suggested i try Sleepio again, which is what i am doing.
    It's got worse over last few years and i'm at my wits end now as it affects rest of health,outlook etc.
    I have trouble getting thoughts out of mind when in bed, thinking just get to sleep,stop thinking etc, have tried all the tips from prof and relaxation cd's but just cannot seem to think of nothing and relax. Any tips to help me appreciated, also is there anything i can do if i cannot get it to work for me.
    Thanks

  • Sleepio Member

    • 4 comments
    • 0 helped
    Graduate

    Dr. Creanor
    My problem is I have trouble falling asleep, but I’m definitely not wide awake laying in bed. Usually I’m very groggy and on the edge of sleep, but can’t quite make it over the hump into sleep. Often my sleep tracker has me in a light sleep during this stage even. This has made it very hard to estimate the 15 minute rule, it’s usually closer to an hour honestly, and when I get up I stumble to the living room and am only able to sit in the dark for a few minutes before nodding off. Or I can barely read one page in a book. Then I head back to bed only to be in that very sleepy, but not yet asleep stage. Any advice on how to do this program better given my current situation? I feel like I’m not doing it correctly to establish the bed sleep connection, but I don’t want to do anything to heighten my awareness more when I’m in the described state above. Thanks!

  • Sleepio Member

    • 2510 comments
    • 383 helped
    Expert

    Hi and welcome to the live Sleepio session. I see there are a few posts waiting so I will start to answer these but if anyone is on live, please send your question here! Let's begin…

  • Sleepio Member

    • 2510 comments
    • 383 helped
    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Expert

    Hi there and thanks for your post. I'm sorry to hear things are so difficult for you just now. There are some people certainly who experience chronic pain as a result of poor sleep, but also stress. It sounds as if the two may be closely linked as you point out. I wonder if you have tried the relaxation strategies within Sleepio to relax the muscles (and reduce stress)? What I would say, however, is that in order to fully understand what is going on with the pain, it would be wise to seek advice from a medical professional, such as a GP or physiotherapist, who may be able to pinpoint the cause for you.

  • Sleepio Member

    • 2510 comments
    • 383 helped
    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Expert

    Hi there, thanks for getting in touch. Many people do actually use reading as part of their wind down routine, but I would say to be careful what you are reading…if it something stimulating/disturbing, it may go some way to preventing sleep. It is also best if the reading can be kept to rooms away from the bedroom in line with the guideline that the bedroom should only be used for sleeping/sexual activity. Common activities for wind down routines include: having a warm bath, listening to music, watching TV (again as long as it isn't too stimulating and doesn't have an LED screen). You may also want to ask the community what they do for their wind down routines for some extra tips?

  • Sleepio Member

    • 2510 comments
    • 383 helped
    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Expert

    Hi – sorry you've had a few bad nights. To answer your question, it's very common indeed. The body is getting used to a new routine and so there will be blips along the way. Viewing them as blips rather than total setbacks is really important though, so that they aren't blown out of proportion and don't cause too much anxiety. It may also be worth looking at what it might have been in those days/nights that may have reduced sleep quality/quantity (stress/diet/caffeine) so that these things can be targeted.

  • Sleepio Member

    • 2510 comments
    • 383 helped
    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Expert

    Hi there,
    Thanks for your questions. First of all, regarding sleep efficiency and when you can add time to your sleep window, Sleepio recommends that people record the following things in their sleep diaries: 1) total time slept each night and 2) total time spent in bed each night. You then take 1) and divide it by 2) then multiply this by 100 to get your sleep efficiency . Once efficiency over a week has been 90+, people can add on 15 mins to their sleep window, either at the start or end of it.

    Secondly, regarding not reaching the previous average length of sleep window, I would go back to calculating the sleep window – how long you are actually sleeping for just now (average this over a week) – just to check it's still accurate. I would go a bit longer in working with this and if there is still no improvement, come back to the live sessions and we can have a think about next steps.

    Lastly, regarding anxiety, if people feel that there is an underlying anxiety it is helpful to get some additional support with this. General wakenings during the night are OK – and very normal – what matters is how quickly one can return to sleep. They won't affect efficiency unless the person struggles to get back to sleep. Here it's the quarter hour rule that is important to implement.

  • Sleepio Member

    • 2510 comments
    • 383 helped
    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Expert

    HI there thanks for getting in touch. These frequent wakenings can be very frustrating. Various things can cause them, including the body getting used to new sleep regimes, underlying stress/anxiety/depression conditions. If it is the former, then they tend to improve with implementation of sleep techniques. If it the latter, it would be important to seek support for these problems as well in order to see improvement. Hope this helps?

  • Sleepio Member

    • 2510 comments
    • 383 helped
    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Expert

    HI there – I'm so sorry to hear things are so difficult just now. It sounds as if you have tried many things. I noticed that you say you lie awake and say “just get to sleep”? I'm wondering if you recall the paradoxical intention technique? This is when you say to yourself “don't fall asleep” over and over – in order to take the pressure off the brain to fall asleep (quite different to “just fall asleep”) – however the brain only hears “fall asleep”, negating the negative “don't”, leading to more likelihood of falling asleep?

    Or the thought-blocking technique – repeating “the the” to yourself to block thoughts?

    However I also wonder, whether there is perhaps an underlying reason for poor sleep that also needs addressed, such as pain/stress/depression/trauma/anxiety? They can all lead to poor sleep but, if untreated, can lead to unresolved sleep issues.

  • Sleepio Member

    • 2510 comments
    • 383 helped
    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Expert

    Hi there – thanks for your question. Can I ask what makes you thin it's closer to an hour you lie in bed for? Is there some way you are calculating the time? I wonder if this can be used to calculate 15 mins instead to support the timing better?

  • Sleepio Member

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

    Thanks for your helpful response.

  • Sleepio Member

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

    I roll over and think it’s time to get up and when I look at the clock it’s been an hour. I’m always shocked at how long it’s been.

  • Sleepio Member

    • 2510 comments
    • 383 helped
    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Expert

    OK – thanks. I would aim to get up if you feel you have been awake for too long – even if it's the hour…often we just have to go along with what our bodies are doing – it may be that you are actually asleep but in light sleep and in which case, you wouldn't want to get up anyway. But whenever you feel you are in bed for long enough, try and get up. Sorry it's not black and white here – sometimes it's just about listening to your body as to whether you think you're awake or asleep…if you're awake enough to get out of bed, do so.

  • Sleepio Member

    • 53 comments
    • 0 helped
    Graduate

    Hello Dr. Creanor,

    Apologies for the delay in contacting.

    Since coming off restricted sleep I have had difficulty in getting sleep from 10pm with 10:30pm being the earliest with a view to 8 hours sleep by 6am.

    Added to this, despite sitting up 15 minutes post an awakening having done some reading I in recent days found difficulty getting back to sleep until some 3 to 4 hours later!!!

    Thankfully my family is away on holiday and I am currently at home therefore, have the opportunity to sleep till I wake without disturbance of an alarm indeed family.

    Kindly advise on way forward.

  • Sleepio Member

    • 2510 comments
    • 383 helped
    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Expert

    Hi there,

    I wonder if it is possible to move the wake time to 6.30am to allow for the 10.30pm bedtime and still achieve 8 hours?

    In terms of those who experience sleeplessness after reading – there may be another activity to try that is more passive during the quarter hour rule times – is it possible that the books are too stimulating?

    Lastly, I would try and avoid sleeping until one wakes naturally while still trying to improve sleep – sleeping in is very tempting, but will usually affect sleep the next night.

  • Sleepio Member

    • 2510 comments
    • 383 helped
    Expert

    That's all for tonight – thank you to everyone who got in touch with questions. Speak to you again soon.

  • Sleepio Member

    • 53 comments
    • 0 helped
    Graduate

    What forum closedmafterm9pm BST?

  • Sleepio Member

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

    I hope you still respond!

    I did not see your response posted on site when I checked before 10pm BST.

    6 AM is when the alarm goes off!

    Regards not waking up naturally even after a rough nights sleep! ! Is that beyond tough love?

  • Sleepio Member

    • 2 comments
    • 0 helped
    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Session 4

    Hello Dr Creanor,
    I will certainly try the “don't sleep” thought.
    Re there may be an underlying reason for the poor sleep that also needs to be addressed, how would i be able to confirm if stress/depression is the cause, i do suffer from stress/depression but believed the tiredness from my sleep issue was the cause.
    Thanks

Return to top