Anxiety and sleep

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Joined: 02/20/11
Posts: 865
Anxiety and sleep

I am not sleeping well at all. If I can get a 45 minute stretch in then Im doing well. I was wondering if anyone is taking anything to help them sleep?

I have anxiety and stopped my meds when I found out I was pregnant. My doctor told me that because I had a depression after my last birth that I should start the anti depressants right now so to help prevent another one. I am all for it, the risks are low so I got a perscription. Unfortunatley, the first day, the baby stopped moving, so I decided that I would wait until she was born. I just cant handle not knowing if its normal for her to move less or not. I'm okay with the decision but the side effect of the pills was also me getting to sleep!!!

When I wake up at night, strangely enough it has nothing to do with anxiety. I dont worry or think about things that worry me then, only in the daytime.

Any suggestions on what to do? Ive heard Tylenol PM works and is safe. I dont see my doctor again until Tuesday and she is pretty unattainable (you have to call L and D for any inquiries), but I am a walking zombie and would really appreciate some sleep TONIGHT. I dont want to go into labour already exhausted!

So what would you do, go back on the pills (as I said they are safe, less than .25% chance of her lungs not developing properly but they are already developed according to the ultrasound last week, and I was warned her movement would slow down ) try Tylenol PM or just suffer through it?

Joined: 04/10/11
Posts: 1703

Oh man, sounds rough. Getting sleep is definitely important for your and the baby's health. As annoying as it might be, I'd still call L&D and see if they're able to give you advice on what to take. The Tylenol PM is purely for sleep but the antidepressants help with the sleeping issues and can also help prevent depression after birth. That right there is going to be really important again for both you and the baby. I would lean toward continuing the antidepressants but be sure you get satisfying answers on what to expect with her movement.

Starryblue702's picture
Joined: 04/06/11
Posts: 5454

I was absolutely going to recommend Tylenol PM, as it's safe for baby and will definitely help put you to sleep. As far as your other meds, I'm so glad you said that you were going to wait to take them. There are tons of lawyers running commercials where I live on suits that are being filed against doctors and drug companies who prescribed anti-depressants to pregnant women and their babies were born with all sorts of problems (such as cleft palate, club feet, spina bifida)... I would never put any pill in my body that wasn't guaranteed 100% safe for me and baby while I was pregnant!! Good luck with getting back to sleep!

Joined: 02/20/11
Posts: 865

I think Ill give the tylenol pm a shot and talk to the dr on tuesday. All the lawsuits etc are why I wouldnt take the pills during the rest of the pregnancy, but now I feel that everything is formed the risk should be worth the benefits. Hard choices.

sweetsriracha's picture
Joined: 03/29/11
Posts: 1318

Sounds like you've got a solid plan!

I actually slept less than 8 hours over the course of three nights this week. :eek: Hormones and a racing mind. Yesterday, I went to acupuncture and it really seemed to help.

seyelephant60's picture
Joined: 07/18/11
Posts: 214

Not sleeping sucks but I'm a strong advocate for taking care of yourself. I suffer from depression and have for years. If its just sleep your worried about then I would go with the typm but if its more than that please please talk with your doc about the other meds its so much harder to fix it after its started then to prepare for it before it happens. I know that the tv commercials are very scary but they dont give you details about the meds at all just the names not the doses or how offten you take it or for how long.... Please talk with your doc and I will send the sandman your way Smile good luck sweet heart

Jenni Beth's picture
Joined: 03/03/11
Posts: 1407

Okay I have a lot to say on this because I'm right there with you. I'm replying on my phone so here goes.

I, too, suffer from anxiety. I was doing great on Paxil. Then along came Carter! So my ob switched me to Prozac, which is an SSRI like Paxil is. But Prozac is a very old drug and, while not 100% safe, has been shown to have less side effects on baby because doctors have had a chance to observe it for all those years.

Having said that...coming off an SSRI sucks majorly. I've been coming off since August 1st. The dizziness, headaches, and visual disturbances are miserable. That is why I chose to come off before the baby comes so he would not be withdrawing 'cold turkey'. I can't imagine how miserable those questions would be for a newborn. I've noticed a return of my anxiety and b*tchiness in general but I really do feel like I'm doing the right thing for my baby. I'm going to try to stay off until I'm done bfing him but may take an herbal supplement of St. John's Wort to help if I need it. It isn't as good as or a replacement for an SSRI but it would be better than nothing.e

Since coming off my medicine I have found myself in a similar situation as you with not being able to sleep. That is because the serotonin in my brain is lower than when I'm on my med. Serotonin is what makes you sleepy. When I need a sleeping pill I take an otc sleep aid called doxylamine, which is marketed as Unisom and is also in Diclectin in Canada. It works effectively and is approved for pregnancy. I don't like Tylenol pm because it contains Tylenol and all I want is the sleep part not the pain relief. Also I think the sleep ingredient is plain old Benadryl (diphenhydramine), which makes of drag the next day. But just take whatever works for you. With either of those drugs they dry out your mucous membranes so be sure to increase your fluid intake.

Sorry I wrote you a book! I understand so much what you are going through. If you have to go back on your meds then don't feel bad. You have to take care of you so that you can take care of baby! Try the Unisom though. I really think it might work for you.

Joined: 02/20/11
Posts: 865

Thanks for all the info e eryone! I was on diclectin to control my nausea at thebeginning of the pregnancy and you're right it made me sleepy! I still have some left so I think i try that. I didn't know that Tylenol pm had benedryl in it - I'm glad to know since I have a weird reaction to it - I get exceedingly hyper! Not what I need! I feel that my anxiety is there but not at a level where I must have my pills right now. When baby comes though I expect it to change just as it did with dd. I'll talk to the dr about it on Tuesday. Two weeks is usually long enough to get used to the meds so I think I'll wait til two weeks before the birth (that is only ten days from now OMG!!!) it's funny, I'm not worried about breadtfeeding while on them, only being pregnant on them. I took them the whole time I was bfing dd and she didn't have any problems. Mind you I was on the minimum dose. There is a lot less passed to baby tha. Through the umbilical cord.

Jenni Beth's picture
Joined: 03/03/11
Posts: 1407

Good luck! I hope you get some sleep!

Joined: 02/20/11
Posts: 865

I took the diculectin and slept a grand total of an hour and a half. I'm going to try as hard as I can to move enough boxes to uncover the bed in the spare room and try sleeping in there. Maybe having my own bed will help. Dd3 refuses to nap at home so today is going to be rough to say the least. I'm taking her to the aquarium and dh is supposed to paint the door frame of at least one closet so I have a place to putboxes. I'm afraid I have to go back on the anti depressants, 10 hours of sleep in four nights is so much worse.

Jenni Beth's picture
Joined: 03/03/11
Posts: 1407

I'm so sorry you had another sleepless night. I can't being to imagine how miserable you must feel! Milk and turkey both are sleep aids but other than that I'm out of ideas. You need some sleep though so do what you have to do to be able to function.

Joined: 10/05/09
Posts: 672

Lurker from December here... I was having a really rough time sleeping early in this pregnancy and still go through phases when I sleep just a few hours (if even) a night. I talked to my doctor and she said they couldn't give me any sleep aids during pregnancy, which was fine with me. However, she talked to me about my "sleep hygiene" and gave me some tips that really helped.

1. Stay up late - 1 PM, 2PM, whatever it takes to get me so tired I can barely walk. Do not sit in bed though - be in the living room or do something else.
2. Limit fluids after 6PM (but do not dehydrate yourself)
3. No naps during the day at all
4. Go to bed and see if I can sleep better that night.
5. Carry on until the duration of each sleep block increases - even if it takes days. The goal is to carry this on until I can sleep 4 hrs in a row (that never happens because of peeing but I was aiming for 4 hours total and generally "improved" sleep).

It has really helped me sleep better. I realized I got really anxious about not being able to sleep which then kept me from sleeping. Good luck!