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Old 02-06-2012, 05:31 PM   #1
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Those of you with sleep problems during peri-meno and meno

What kind of sleep problems are they?

I've been having this horrible anxiety throughout the day, it comes and goes for no reason really. But it is most noticeable when I lay down and am trying to relax. It just wells up in my chest and I feel it go up into my throat. And I can't seem to breath through it or meditate through it.

When I began taking the phosphylated serine, I would lay down and fall asleep. No anxiety. Then I got a cold and my period was coming and it just stopped working These last few nights have been horrid! If I didn't take a little xanex to calm me down, I honestly don't know if I'd fall asleep at all.

I'm going to try upping my phosphylated serine dose and see if I can get back that wonderful sleepy, relaxed bedtime feeling again. I start my hormone replacement this weekend but am skeptical (like always ).

So what is your sleep issue with peri-meno and menopause? Anxiety? Can't fall asleep? Can't stay asleep? Can't fall asleep or stay asleep? Sweaty? I always feel like I'm the worst case in the world and that makes me feel alone and even more panicky.

Last edited by irisrose; 02-06-2012 at 05:33 PM.

 
Old 02-06-2012, 05:51 PM   #2
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Re: Those of you with sleep problems during peri-meno and meno

I primarily have the problem of waking up in the middle of the night and not being able to fall back asleep. (Not hot or sweaty) I doze on and off thereafter, but never wake up refreshed.

I do know what you mean when you describe the anxiety upon laying down. I get that, too. I found relief in having the tv on and setting the sleep timer, this way my mind doesn't pay so much attention to it.

Do use caution with the Xanax. Right now, I'm going through Xanax withdrawal on top of the menopausal symptoms and it's beyond miserable.

 
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Old 02-06-2012, 06:35 PM   #3
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Re: Those of you with sleep problems during peri-meno and meno

Thanks CherylLynne.

I'm trying to be careful with the xanex. I have already gone the withdraw route with it. I was taking it back in the fall when I had trouble with sleeping and anxiety. I was mostly popping it in the middle of the night when I woke up and couldn't fall back to sleep. I didn't even think about it. I never really increased the dose past .5mg but that was enough to do it.

One night I decided I wasn't going to take any because I had had a few glasses of wine. The next day was horrible! It wasn't a hangover because 3 glasses of wine wouldn't do that to me and I've had plenty of hangovers in my day - so I know what those feel like. This was a whole different beast. Dizzy, nausea, shakes, hot and cold, more dizziness and a feeling of doom. I almost went to the ER but made it to bedtime, took some xanex and passed out. Then the next day I quit again and for 2 weeks I had loss of appetite, insomnia, shakes, dizzy and just felt like crap.

I'm very afraid of getting physically dependent on it again so take the bare minimum. I start out with less than quarter and will only work up if I absolutely have to. So far with the melatonin, I've been able to get by with less. I'm hoping once I start the hormone supplements I'll calm down and will be able to fall asleep.

Otherwise I don't know what more to try. I put in my ipod and listen to soft music or guided imagery. I've tried leaving the tv on but it hasn't worked.

:sigh:

 
Old 02-07-2012, 10:17 AM   #4
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Re: Those of you with sleep problems during peri-meno and meno

Hi Irisrose,

Xanax w/d surely isn't a cake walk, is it? I took a low dose for FMS for over 10 years, hit tolerance (in hindsight) and my general doctor increased me to 5 mgs (Yes, you read that right....5 mgs) which made me horribly ill for years, so I've been tapering for quite some time now and beginning to feel much better than that awfully high dose. The bad thing is, I've heard many describe peri-meno symptoms similar to those of Xanax w/d, so it's been difficult to know what's what. (If that makes sense)

I'm surprised that a few glasses of wine did that to you. That must've been frightening. I know that alcohol and Xanax both work on your GABA receptors in the same manner. Maybe that has something to do with it? Who knows....

Does the melatonin help you with sleep? If so, how much do you take?

I had another restless night...sigh. I'm tired of being tired.

 
Old 02-07-2012, 11:23 AM   #5
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Re: Those of you with sleep problems during peri-meno and meno

Thanks again CherylLynne,
That is a high dose! My dad too xanex for a long time as an adult. It was the cat's meow back then and the go to drug. But I think his highest was 3mg per day. Although, I think he was having withdraws while taking it because he felt sick a lot. What happens is even if you take the higher dose, your body has become used to it and needs more making you feel sick. Even if you're still taking it! I think it's called walking withdraws.

Fortunately, my peri-meno symptoms are nothing like withdraw from xanex!

I think you read that part wrong - it wasn't the wine. I had drank the wine and then decided not to take the xanex. After having taken it for nightly for about 2 months, I guess my body had a physical dependence on it. That first day was horrendous. It never even crossed my mind that I could just quit. It wasn't a high dose and even my doctors told me it couldn't be withdraw symptoms.

I called a couple of drug rehab places to ask them if it was possible that how horrible I was feeling was because of the xanex and they told me, absolutely.

It took 2 weeks before I felt a little better. But this was cold turkey. I lost weight, felt dizzy and out of my head, my brain was foggy and I couldn't think. It does sound like peri-meno and meno, but it was different and icky.

So I'm terrified of the stuff and never want that to happen again. So I try to be very careful with it.

Last edited by irisrose; 02-07-2012 at 11:26 AM.

 
Old 02-08-2012, 10:56 AM   #6
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Re: Those of you with sleep problems during peri-meno and meno

Irisrose,

I'm certain that my retired general physician would've never put me on such a high dose. It helped (in small doses) my FMS for years. I could sense when I was beginning to hit tolerance, let my doctor know and I'd wean off of it for a few years. This past time when I hit tolerance, (my doctor had retired), so I explained the situation and how to remedy it to the new physician that had taken over his practice. Well, he didn't want to be "told" anything and jacked up the dose to 5 mgs. I was sick constantly (as you said that your Father was), my weight plummeted to 90 lbs and the depression and anxiety had gotten so bad that I didn't even want to continue on. He insisted that there was no such thing as "tolerance." I wish that I never would've listened to him for I know my body best. I can't fathom what he's done with his other patients over the years, he also took over my retired physician's patients at nursing homes, as well. Can you imagine being in a nursing home with a reckless physician like that?

You're right, you hit tolerance w/d when your body physically feels it needs more, isn't getting it and rebels on you. Since it has such a short half-life, the inter-dose w/d gives you the sensation of a cold turkey, as well. Anyway, I got through a few years of misery with all of that, got my dose back down to about 1.5 mgs and now am getting peri-meno symptoms...which brings me here.

Oh, I see now what you were saying about having wine and your next-day symptoms. I didn't realize that you had been steadily taking the Xanax for 2 months. That'll do it to you. You found out the hard way, but many don't realize that most become physically dependent with 2 weeks of regular use.

I'm sorry if I sounded like a "Mother hen" to you. That wasn't my intention. I just wouldn't wish what I've been through on this med on my worst enemy.

I do hope that you're sleeping better.

Last edited by CherylLynn24; 02-08-2012 at 10:58 AM.

 
Old 02-08-2012, 11:56 AM   #7
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Re: Those of you with sleep problems during peri-meno and meno

I have become rather skeptical of a lot of doctors. I realize many patients want a quick fix, so a pill of any kind is what they want and will accept to find relief. And that's why some doctors are pill pushers, it's simply easier. I'm not one of those people. Oh, I suppose if there was a pill that helped me fall asleep or got rid of all of my peri-meno symptoms and it DIDN'T have any risk of addiction or risk of bad side effects, I'd definitely take it. But we know no such thing exists in the pharmaceutical world. None.

I am the type of person that wants to find out what's causing my problem and fix that, not simply mask the symptoms. So when doctors have been pushing anti-depressants and anti-anxiety meds and even thyroxine on me I have resisted. Using the xanex as needed is bad enough. I shudder to think if I began taking an anti-depressant for sleep or peri-meno. Then what? Take it for the rest of my life because weaning off is the only way and it's difficult. And how long does that take? And then once I'm off, how will I feel? I have heard from others that when they wean off of anti-depressants they feel great or they feel awful and start them again. I really don't want to become dependent on a drug so early in my life. And I'm not depressed!! I tell that to these dippy doctors time and again. Even with crappy sleep, I'm still not depressed. I laugh with my kids and my husband, I laugh at funny programs and things I read, I look forward to weekends and upcoming events. I'm not depressed, so why screw with my brain chemicals because I have peri-meno and can't sleep and have anxiety with a sweaty chest sometimes at night?

It's insane, really.

 
Old 02-08-2012, 05:01 PM   #8
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Re: Those of you with sleep problems during peri-meno and meno

Thanks Susieq! I'm going to start with some progesterone and testosterone gel this weekend. My doc wants me to take it starting on day 14 but told me I could start as early as day 12 because I still ovulate and have a regular period. I guess if I take it throughout my whole cycle (except for during my period) I might stop ovulation only causing less progesterone and more estrogen dominance.

I'm a little nervous about the testosterone. I've never taken it and have heard it can be hard to get just right, if at all. But I sure could use a little help in the libido department. That has slowly been dying for 5years to a mere trickle. My husband is not happy but very, very understanding - thankfully. I think he's really hoping the testosterone turns me into some kind of sex kitten I'd settle for half that and 8hrs of quality sleep!

The anxiety lets up once I get about 7 days into my cycle. I have no idea what hormones are in action the days leading up to my period and during it, but man they do some crazy stuff to me. The anxiety would just well up and bubble up simply out of nowhere. And then when laying in bed with it was frustrating!

I hope we all find some help and relief soon. And just make our way through this nutty phase of life.

Last edited by irisrose; 02-08-2012 at 05:02 PM.

 
Old 02-09-2012, 09:29 AM   #9
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Re: Those of you with sleep problems during peri-meno and meno

Yep - libido is one of the first things that "left the building" for me. It was actually my first symptom of peri and it started about 8 yrs ago. (I am 49 now) The awful symptoms didn't start until I was 48, almost 49. Then all hell broke loose.
I could probably stand some testosterone too. As long as it doesn't give me a mushtache and a penis! :-)
I can't take the saliva test for another 10 days so I won't know exactly where I am at for a couple of weeks. At least I am sleeping well now. I still occassionally have bad nights, but they are few and far between. Hope you feel better soon.

 
Old 02-09-2012, 11:40 AM   #10
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Re: Those of you with sleep problems during peri-meno and meno

My sleep is going back to really bad again It wasn't great, but at least I would fall asleep. Now I'm back to not being able to fall asleep.

I think this peri stuff has thrown my brain into learned insomnia. So I've been trying to find a therapist that uses Acceptance and Commitment Therapy. I don't want to work with a therapist who will only do Cognitive behavioral therapy. I tried that route with the stimulus control and the sleep restriction and it made my sleep anxiety 10 fold! Instead of laying in bed with 8 hours to get some sleep, I was restricted to 5-6 hours laying in bed thinking about how little sleep I can get in that amount of time. It was awful!

I actually was communicating with a doctor in London who is the founder of The Sleep School. He uses only ACT for his insomnia patients and has been seeing great success. He recognized the anxiety component of insomnia and sleep restriction and getting out of bed every 15 minutes if you can't sleep only adds to it. I could do a skype session with him for almost $400 But because the UK is ahead of the US on this third generation of behavioral therapy, I can't find anyone in my area that uses ACT for insomnia. Only depression and anxiety or eating disorders etc. Maybe I ought to just do the skype session and save my money from running from one therapist to another around here and still not get help.

I just lay in bed in like that first stage of sleep but won't go over into sleep. This has been going on for 6 mos now and I look like a haggard old bag. I actually can manage and feel fine for the day, but then I see myself and it's a glaring reminder of I can't sleep. My anxiety has calmed down considerably since I'm 9 days into my cycle but I think I've learned how NOT to sleep

 
Old 02-09-2012, 12:27 PM   #11
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Re: Those of you with sleep problems during peri-meno and meno

Not being able to fall asleep totally sucks. Been there, done that. I have had a couple of nights like that. And the more you worry about it, the more stress it causes. Once you figure out where your imbalance is, you will be able to treat it and then everything else falls into place. Regular medical docs just want to throw pills at it and that doesn't accomplish anything. You need to find out where you are lacking. Like me, I think my progestrone level is low and I think the saliva test will show this. After I started using the cream, I was alot better. The problem now is that I just finished my period and you have to go off the cream for 7 days. (21 days on, 7 days off) So now I am "jonesing" for what I fondly call "P Crack". My body is starting to crave it because the estrogen is over powering it.
Peri is just like what I think a drug withdrawl would be like. For years our hormones have been working properly and now everything is whack so the body goes through withdrawls. It's horrible.
I do take vitamins, B-complex, E, D (I live in Oregon and it RAINS ALOT) C, magnesium & calcium. They help some, but I really wish there was a magic pill that would get me through it quicker. This is definately not for sissies.

 
Old 02-16-2012, 07:10 AM   #12
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Re: Those of you with sleep problems during peri-meno and meno

susieq: Thinking I saw some earlier posts from you about Menersa? Did it stop working for you? I am also on progesterone and have to stop each time my period starts but they are beginning to skip around now and just within the last month I've started having hot flashes in the night and now the nausea and anxiety are getting worse again (it had been better the last couple of months) so I guess there's been some hormonal change taking place again. I ordered Mendapause, it seems to be similar to Menersa--hoping that will help with the hot flashes and waking at 2 am. I go back to see my doctor Monday, don't know whether we'll do another saliva test or not--I hate waiting for the results.

 
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