Insomnia is often a symptom of clinical depression and 1 missed nights sleep can mean the symptoms seem much worse. In order to ensure you are dealing with depression effectively, you will need to ensure that your Sleep Insomnia is under control. Any treatment for depression will need to include the good management of your sleep insomnia.
Insomnia and Treatments
The main reason why you struggle to sleep is that you will have things running through your brain that consumes your thoughts in the middle of the night. You may struggle to get to sleep, or wake up after 2 or 3 hours and have difficulty getting back to sleep. When you have depression, these thoughts are very unhelpful, as they tend to focus on the negative. In normal brain function, this is how we problem solve and our thoughts are more constructive, it is different with a depressed persons brain. In order to overcome this, during the day you can use distraction techniques, by keeping busy, but in the middle of the night this is quite difficult.
Your doctor can prescribe all sorts of pills and potions for insomnia, but they will be reluctant do this unless you are suffering from chronic insomnia, as they do have disadvantages. The effect of any sleeping tablets/sedatives will reduce after a month's regular use. Unfortunately as the causes of Sleep Insomnia are mainly in your own head, you will find that you will start to question whether or not you sleep because you took a tablet or, whether you sleep because you KNEW you had taken the tablet, even though the tablets have ceased to have any effect.
This is the main problem. I have suffered with depression and insomnia for a long time and I have got caught in this loop. You could just as easily give me a placebo and tell me it has sedative properties and I will sleep better. Knowing that you have some help to sleep, in some way allows you to switch off easier. It is a a loop, you should try to avoid if you can.
So, bearing in mind that distraction techniques help during the day, you should try to develop some to help you through the night. Here are some that help me. Try and read a book and make sure that you only turn the light off when you are absolutely knackered and can barely keep your eyes open.
I find background noise helps me sleep. I leave the TV on and put the dullest thing I can find on. The noise of the programme takes my mind off the things whizzing in my brain and helps me get to sleep. If you don't have a TV in the bedroom or you are disturbing your partner, a small radio with a headset can do the same. Through the night there are some really low key radio stations which offer mainly chat which I find can help me sleep.
Milky drinks are thought to help you get to sleep.Lavender essential oil is recommended to help you sleep. Take care though, as too much can act as a stimulant. Put a couple of drops on your night clothes and change them each day. If you add to your pillow eventually the build up will have the opposite effect.
Try to avoid sleeping in the day. This can be difficult if you are really tired, but if you do succumb to the temptation, set an alarm and don't sleep for ages. Some exercise, however little will help you sleep at night.
If all else fails, GET UP. Don't lie there getting frustrated. Do some ironing or watch some TV downstairs. Make yourself a drink. Write down the things on your mind. If you need to take some actions, get them out of your head and write them down. That way you are mentally moving these things from your brain onto paper and hopefully your sub-conscious will cease to worry about them.