Live Discussion with Dr Vicki Creanor - 19th February

Dr Creanor will be hosting a live online discussion here on Wednesday 19th February 7pm-8:30pm (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 19 Feb 2014 at 11:36 AM
  • 71 comments
  • 24 helped

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  • Sleepio Member

    • 79 comments
    • 16 helped
    Graduate

    Thanks very much Dr Creanor, that's very helpful!

  • Sleepio Member

    • 1426 comments
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    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Expert

    Hi Jo90 – sorry I didn't make it to your question til now – thanks for your fellow sleepio classmates who brought this to my attention.

    I'm sorry you're feeling despondent just now. Having no sleep at all is very likely a large factor in this feeling, as I'm sure you'll agree. I'm sure if you ask many people on here, many of them have felt this way too. There are times when treatment of any kind can feel very overwhelming – sometimes more overwhelming than the problem itself.

    Although I have not seen the exact figures for what percentage of people Sleepio is effective for, I can say that, with all treatments, there will be some people who do not find it helpful. HOWEVER, please also be aware that, if this is the case, there are other forms of help out there. Your GP can point you in the right direction for this help. Have a look at the post i wrote tonight about why some forms of treatment don't help some people – it may not be the right time/the right problem to sort first etc.

    It's worth remembering, though, that you are right in the middle of treatment. This is a hard time. You are putting a lot of energy into learning new things….while you are sleep deprived. Not easy. So well done for getting to where you are so far. Not everyone makes it this far. It's also perhaps hard to hear other people who say they are coming on leaps and bounds at the same stage you are at in the programme, while you may find you are struggling a bit more. It's important to remember that we all recover at different rates, depending on a huge, varied number of factors.

    What might also help is trying to note down any tiny little improvements you have seen – it will be hard to notice these at first as you may be more able to notice the negatives (we usually do this when we are feeling despondent) – but hopefully you wil build up a list of positives that you can keep looking at and building your motivation.

    Is anyone familiar with what Jo90 is feeling? Often it's helpful to gain support from those who have been through this and come out the other end.

  • Sleepio Member

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    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Expert

    Good I'm glad that made sense, SleepySal.

  • Sleepio Member

    • 105 comments
    • 24 helped
    Graduate

    Hi Dr V
    I asked about dealing with being disturbed in my final SW hour. I've had some good suggestions from fellow members( thank you) but wonder if there's any psychological ( or practical)technique for minimising the impact and allowing me to continue to sleep.

  • Sleepio Member

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    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Expert

    Hi JollyBob,

    Thanks for your question. I would agree with you that acceptance/mindfulness can be a very useful tool for many people – it simply puts a stop to using energy for thought-battling. The evidence is building with this type of technique especially for health related problems – if you're interested, look up 'acceptance and commitment therapy' to read more about it.

  • Sleepio Member

    • 55 comments
    • 15 helped
    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Graduate

    I have had not dissimilar feelings as none of the Sleepio tools, which were aimed at getting back to sleep in the early hours worked for me. However, I think I explained to jo90 in my pursuit of my needs, I found Brainwave Entrainment, which worked for me. if I had not completed the Sleepio course then pursued what I needed, I would not have found BE. I am now sleeping better than I ever have in adulthood

  • Sleepio Member

    • 111 comments
    • 17 helped
    Graduate

    I had a period of feeling quite low particularly in the first 3 weeks of the course. However, I acknowledge that I have probably not found things as challenging as some other members have reported. I have found community members really exceptional in the support they continue to give and I hope Jo90 can continue to draw on their sport and that of the Sleepio team to get through what sounds like a very difficult time.

  • Sleepio Member

    • 1915 comments
    • 442 helped
    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Graduate

    Yes I will contact joe on his profile, it took a long time to click for me but with nothing to lose and a lot to gain you need to keep at the Sleepio program and it does help, I don't do 8 hours a night but I am so much better, thanks to staying on course with this program.

  • Sleepio Member

    • 1915 comments
    • 442 helped
    Graduate

    Looks like I made a mistake joe is a female and I thought different but the message is the same, sorry.

  • Sleepio Member

    • 1426 comments
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    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Expert

    Hi Jacqui – congratulations on graduating! Sounds like you’ve put lots of hard work in to get to here – well done. Hmmm, what I read about your husband sounds frustrating. And yes, hammers are not allowed. Not one of our recommendations!

    I think what your fellow Sleepio mates said about talking to him is a good option as he may be able to work out some ideas that would help you both.

    From a psychological point of view, what I think is happening is something called 'hypervigilance'. You may have come across this before, but I'll explain it in case anyone hasn't heard of it. When we experience sleep problems, we become very aware of anything to do with sleep or the lack of it. It becomes a bit of an obsession in our minds! I'm sure many of you know what I'm talking about. So, if your bed partner starts to toss and turn, you will be aware of it in a nanosecond! Furthermore, once you're aware of it, you obsess about it and it become annoyed by it, making it ever harder to get back to sleep. It becomes a bit of a new negative cycle.

    So, how do we address it? I think talking about it would help in the first instance. This might break a part of the cycle of it being a frustration in your head, alongside (potential) feelings of guilt that you don't want to get annoyed at him when he's been so supportive. So, talking will likely ease some annoyance in your mind.

    Second, if you are lying there for any more than about 15 minutes getting annoyed about his movig around, get out of bed, just like before, because there is a danger that you will start associating your bed (and perhaps your husband) with poor sleep and begative feelings not conducive to good sleep.

    How does that sound to start with?

  • Sleepio Member

    • 1426 comments
    • 247 helped
    Expert

    Thanks everyone for your words of support for Jo90 – I'm sure she will find them reassuring – and I'm sure she is not alone in the negative feelings that go hand in hand with sleep problems.

  • Sleepio Member

    • 105 comments
    • 24 helped
    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Graduate

    Oh. Thank you. That does sound like what's happening. I've sort of made light of it as a trivial thing but it actually has been building up for me. So yes, treating it as any other awakening and using QHR sounds a really good idea, to get it in perspective .. And maybe get me relaxed enough to sleep again. Great.. Hammer put away now :)

  • Sleepio Member

    • 1426 comments
    • 247 helped
    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Expert

    I'm glad about that hammer…

  • Sleepio Member

    • 1426 comments
    • 247 helped
    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Expert

    Hi JIMK,

    Thanks for your question.

    First of all, I would say that it is very important to get out of bed after the 15 minutes (you're perception of 15 mins – so you don't clock-watch) even if it is 30 mins before the end of your sleep window. It may seem bizarre and I very much understand that you will not want to (who would?) but the reasons for this are based on the science behind it. Every minute that you lie in bed not being able to sleep and getting annoyed about this fact, you are making connections in your brain that tell it that your bed is where sleep should not happen. By getting up, out of your bedroom, you are avoiding this from happening and taking charge of the associations in your brain, forcing it to create a better association between your bed and sleeping well.

    So, you're basically wanting to make sure that your bed is only used for sleeping – not lying awake worrying about not sleeping.

    Does that make sense?

    As far as feeling worried about not graduating, I'm sure the posts on here tonight will reassure you that you are not alone in that fear and that many of your fellow sleepio friends have felt that way too yet graduated well and with better sleep. Keep going – it may be very hard in places, but you'll get there.

  • Sleepio Member

    • 1426 comments
    • 247 helped
    Expert

    Thanks all for the great questions tonight – it was nice to talk to you. Apologies if I didn't make it round to your question – if I didn't, please ask the expert on the next one. Night all.

  • Sleepio Member

    • 105 comments
    • 24 helped
    in reply to Sleepio Member
    Graduate

    Hi SuperSue. I'm sorry DrV didn't get chance to reply to you. Hopefully next week's expert will have some thoughts. Meanwhile I'd suggest you keep persevering with an alternative treat. It's just a habit in our minds that alcohol is the thing we need to comfort/reward/celebrate/fortify ourselves with. It sounds like even a small amount is disagreeing with you now. (You maybe should consult your own doctor too)
    I know it's hard. I had to do it. But it's worth it and is possible. I make that drink I mentioned last time but it needn't be a drink, what about a special treat to eat ( same calories as the wine!) Keep trying.

  • Sleepio Member

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

    Hi Jaqs,
    My husband has been having early am waking as well, but he knows how fragile my sleep is round then, so he does take himself off to the spare room if he knobs he's going to be tossing and turning. I am sure your husband would be sympathetic and want to support you in recovering your sleep; it's lonely waking up by yourself when you are used to having a partner in bed, but it's just a phase [right?].
    If the duvet tussle is disturbing you, have you tried using 2 singles instead of a double?
    Good sleeping, and congrats on your progress so far.

  • Sleepio Member

    • 105 comments
    • 24 helped
    Graduate

    Thanks Marie Elaine. I have talked to him about it now and he has offered to do just what your husband does. So that's a back up plan, but first of all I'm going to try the QHR approach. Ironically all went well this morning so I had no chance to try. :) Thank you for the comment. I hope things are getting better for you? X

  • Sleepio Member

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

    Hi Dr. Creanor.
    I just wanted to say thank you for your response. It was comprehensive and
    very supportive. That must be difficult when you're dealing with so many
    people. I felt I was being dealt with personally and thoughtfully.
    It really is a rollercoaster isn't it. The last two nights have been very
    good and I haven't needed to get up, although I've woken briefly each night.
    Thanks for reinforcing my resolve around the 15 minute rule, whether it's
    right at the end of my sleep window or not!
    I read through your Wednesday night session. All very useful and reminded
    me I'm part of the 'community'. I just think it's such an important part of
    the process.
    I had a lovely start to today, pottering around from 6 am onwards, reading
    some beautiful poetry – timeless.
    Thank you.
    Jim Kieran.

  • Sleepio Member

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

    Up and down for me at the moment, thanks Jaqs, but hanging on in there and still hoping.

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