I started having issues sleeping right around the same time my anxiety and panic attacks revealed themselves (about 10-12 years ago).
With that being said, bad sleep/insomnia also runs on my mom’s side of the family. My mother does not sleep well and neither does her mother.
For me, the issue doesn’t seem to be falling asleep. In fact, that happens quite quickly sometimes. However, I wake up multiple times throughout the night. This leaves me feeling frustrated and exhausted when I have to get up for work.
I actually function quite well and don’t feel much of a drain throughout the day, but it’s annoying not sleeping completely through the night.
What have I done to combat my sleeping issues? Let me list them for you.
- Weighted blanket- I don’t actually know if this makes a huge difference, but I love it. I love the weight and warmth. It was one of my best purchases.
- Cooler room temp- This has helped the most.
- Noise machine set on white noise- I would like to note that I wear earplugs at night AND I still have the noise machine on because I can hear it through my plugs and still reap some of the benefits (it drowns out the other sounds in my house like my roommate getting off of work at 2am)
- Ear plugs- Happy Ears. Buy Them. Now. They Are Amazing.– I spent years going through a multitude of earplugs ranging from foam to wax to this silicone version and I’ve made my choice.
- I find that taking a hot shower (just body, no hair washing) right before I go to sleep is nice.
- I stop drinking liquids at 7pm so I only get up once to use the bathroom during the night.
- I sleep in complete darkness.
- I have made my bedtime 9pm every single night whether it’s a weekday or weekend.
I’ve never actually been diagnosed with insomnia, but I’ve also never asked my doctor about it because it seemed normal to me. I will probably ask my doctor about further options the next time I visit just to get that professional opinion, but I don’t see much changing.