Advice for getting a Good Nights sleep

Hello my sister died recentlly and I am getting up very early in the morning. Any advice on this without taking anything?

Hello MC. It’s 2 years since my husband passed away and I still wake in the night. I have never taken any kind of medication, I just go with it. I get up, make a cuppa to take back to bed and I read. I never fight it. I used to be a very good sleeper and hated getting up in a morning, much to my husband’s annoyance. I haven’t had a full night’s sleep in 2 years but I just accept it for what it is. I bet my husband is finding it quite amusing.

I am so sorry for your loss. Sister’s are special. My sister was very poorly last year with bowel cancer. She recovered well from the operation but then had a terrible reaction to the chemotherapy. She was in hospital for over 2 months and the family were called in fearing the worst. We were fortunate in that she pulled through and I’m grateful for that.

Take care and I hope your sleep pattern soon recovers. Sending love xx

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Hi there MC. I agree with Kate and do the same. For every bad night I get I do get a good one occasionally. I go with it and read or put the TV on and watch some rubbish. I have got used to this pattern now and just grateful when I wake up at a reasonable time. I do go to bed early though most nights as I was dropping off on the settee and then couldn’t sleep at all. So by going early I can watch TV and then drop off to sleep while in bed. I don’t fight it and don’t take anything as I don’t want to be reliant on anything. Annoying when I go back to sleep at a time when I should be getting up though. Give yourself time.

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I agree you just have to go with it. I seem to have alternate good and bad nights. I think after a bad night where I toss and turn and think about my Harry and cry I wear myself out so sleep well the next night. We have two cats who my husband allowed to sleep on the bed and they get grumpy with my tossing and turning!

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I have 2 small dogs which sleep on my bed. They always used to sleep downstairs before my husband passed. When I get up in the night, they just look up at me through sleepy eyes as if to say “Here we go again, can’t a dog get any peace around here?”

We seem to be in agreement here MC…

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15 months on and I still find it difficult to have any quality sleep. No pattern, but I have accepted that I can manage on 5 hours. I stay in bed when I awake, 5 or 6am, and rest. Know it affects me through the day, not as alert as I should be. Once you get into this pattern, very hard to break it.

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Hello MC, My condolences on the loss of your sister. I lost my beloved younger sister a year ago, and can relate to your sleep issues. After she died I hardly slept at all, and that is when I found this site (looking for help at 3 AM in my bleary eyed grief stricken stupor). Now I put on mindless TV and drift off for a bit, but always awaken and have difficulty getting back to sleep. I use Lavender oil, and Linen spray, and take a warm shower. Chamomile tea helps too. I work and I am nodding off at my desk, something I never did before my loss. I never required a lot of sleep, but the 4 hours or so is not nearly enough. I understand how losing a sibling can impact every area of our lives. I have never been the same. I am here to listen any time. X Sister2

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You are so right Kate, Sisters are “special.” I am sorry for what your sister went through, but you got her back and that is a blessing. I hope she continues to do well. I miss my sister so much, and wish she could have beat her cancer too.
May we all sleep better soon.
Xxx Sister2

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Thank you Sister2, for your kind words. It is indeed a blessing that my sister came back from the brink of death. With all my heart, I too, wish that your sister could have beaten that wretched disease. I lost my brother to pancreatic cancer in January 2017. He died an horrific death, so awful to witness. He was very stubborn and in denial the whole time. He refused to go into the hospice where they could have made him more comfortable. We’re a family of 8 siblings (6 boys, 2 girls) and he’s the first one to die - just before his 65th birthday. I still think of us as being 8. Whenever I’m asked how many brothers I’ve got, I still say 6. I like to pretend he’s still in his flat - who’s in denial now? xx

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I was advised some years ago, when going through bad patch, to ‘rise on waking’. Now this is difficult for some people, but laying in bed with a racing mind full of negative thoughts is not good. We can so easily turn in on ourselves and ruin the rest of the day. In the mornings our metabolic rate, the way our body consumes energy, is low. It takes a while to adjust and that’s why so many find getting up and getting ready for the day makes them grumpy. More so in our case. I am not suggesting you wake up all bright eyed and bushy tailed. That would indeed be a miracle. But being just a bit busy when we wake up often helps.

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I wake up early some mornings but when it get’s to 6a.m. I put the TV on to see what the news is but mainly the weather.My dogs then glare at me and I have no option but to get up and walk them. I sometimes wonder if I would bother to get up some mornings if it wasn’t for them. I hope I will never know.
Pat xxx

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I think the worst thing of all is to start worrying about sleep, and lack of it. Once that internal dialogue takes hold then that’s it for sleep.
I just accept that it is what it is and I can just about function.
My sleep pattern changed over five years ago when my wife was diagnosed and given a year to live. I experienced a level of trauma that starved me of sleep for five nights and then my sleep pattern never recovered and a new one was established.
I bought a new mattress earlier this year and that helped, and I moved to a different bedroom. I avoid caffeine after 3.00 pm and spicy food seems to cause some problems. I do a lot of walking and try to tire myself. Nothing seems to make that much difference.

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Another one with sleep issues here. I now go to bed early and watch TV or read. Last night was a good night, it took three goes before I finished watching a favourite programme as kept dropping off. The wonders of catch-up! Could also be because I was out most of yesterday walking with friends in the sunshine.

I wake up very early/am woken up by my cats demanding breakfast. Can be anytime from 4.30m onwards. Once they are sorted out I take a cup of tea back to bed and often snooze after for a couple of hours.

I feel the more you worry about not sleeping the more it seems to be a problem. A friend suggested taking a hot water bottle to bed and cuddling it which works well in the winter but is not so good now. I have a lavender scented wheat pack in the bed with me, one of the ones that can be heated up if wanted. In the summer it stays cool and I find it comforting to hold in one hand.

A suggestion I saw on here a while ago was online jigsaws, the site is called Jigidi. The poster said it helped her to drift off to sleep though I found it made my mind race a bit and there is also the issue of looking at screens for too long. The site would be a boon for people staying awake sitting with ill relatives I think.

Pattidot has the best idea, get up early and go for a walk either with dogs or alone.

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Hi MC- I have this problem also, but find using the Paul McKenna sleep app or an audiobook helps me get back to sleep. Best wishes and keep looking after yourself.

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