Insomnia – why?

A very early good morning from me as once again sleep is proving to be beyond my reach.  Over the years I have experienced varying levels of insomnia (often linked to varying levels of depression) from an inability to get to sleep, repeated waking through the night, or waking early and being unable to get back to sleep.  Today is a mixture.

Yesterday evening, lazily browsing Pinterest, I could have happily retired to bed before 8pm, I felt so tired.  My normal sleep routine is to go up to bed at around 10.30pm, take my low dose mirtazapine (anti depressant which helps with sleep) and read for a short time before lights out.  Generally, I’m falling asleep with my book within less than 30 minutes and the next day I often have no recollection of what I’ve read before going to sleep.

But sometimes the meds don’t seem to kick in quite as readily, usually when I’ve had an active evening such as a late race or band practice.  I would class yesterday as a moderately active day achieving over 8,000 steps, compared to less than 4,000 each day for the preceeding week, but the majority of this activity I completed in the morning walking to and from the car park to race start/finish.

My sleep can be disrupted by diet, for example if I’ve eaten a heavy meal late in the evening I can find it hard to get to sleep, or if the meal was particularly greasy or contained a lot of garlic I find it hard to stay asleep.  Yesterday we ate out at Pizza Express in the afternoon, my meal wasn’t particularly garlic heavy and hadn’t been eaten late in the day.

Or, the big one, stress. . .  stress about something that’s happened during the day, or about something that will happen the next day.  The problem with stress/anxiety insomnia is that I’m not always aware of being particularly stressed or worried about anything and certainly last night I wasn’t ruminating on anything while failing to sleep.  However, I acknowledge that there are significant stress factors that may have contributed even if they weren’t obviously playing on my mind.

  1. will I be able to run next weekend?
  2. is the kitchen ready for the tiler to come?
  3. where am I going to put all the stuff in the garage when the builder comes to convert half of it into a utility room?
  4. random child worries
  5. and other random running worries!

Any, or all, of these could have played a part in delaying sleep onset and causing early waking last night.  It’s now 4am UK time and I’ve been awake from 2am and up since 3am. . .  it’s going to be a long day!

ps love that searching ‘sleep’ in the free image library gives so many results of sleeping cats!  This chap looks exceptionally peaceful.

close up of ginger cat lying on floor
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

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