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Old 08.11.2012, 10:32
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Can insomnia lead to death?

Hi... I happen to think about this because I am having insomnia these days. And I read something in the newspaper that some people died because they work too much and sleep too little. And I'm worried about myself now. Although I do not work so much, I do sleep little these days (only 5-6 hours every night due to insomnia), and during the day I feel very tired. Is it true that you can die from insomnia?
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Old 08.11.2012, 10:37
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Re: Can insomnia lead to death?

5-6 hours per night is pretty much average for me.
In answer to your question, I've never heard of insomnia leading directly to death. However, if your tiredness causes you to fall asleep whilst driving, that's pretty deadly.
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Old 08.11.2012, 10:39
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Re: Can insomnia lead to death?

Well, thinking about this won't make you sleep, isn't it?

You have to sit down and think of why you are having insomnia. What stops you to sleep? Something on your mind? Lifestyle? Eating habits? If this isn't enough, go and consult a professional who will help you with this.

I don't think you can die for insomnia but because of consequences on your heart and health.
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Old 08.11.2012, 10:48
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Re: Can insomnia lead to death?

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Well, thinking about this won't make you sleep, isn't it?

You have to sit down and think of why you are having insomnia. What stops you to sleep? Something on your mind? Lifestyle? Eating habits? If this isn't enough, go and consult a professional who will help you with this.

I don't think you can die for insomnia but because of consequences on your heart and health.
I have had insomnia since I am about 9. And sometimes it has been severe the effects, from my heart really feeling not right, to my speech being slurred(most people probably have interpreted that as me being on something or drunk, but really not the case at all).

Lifestyle does seem to impact how much sleep someone with insomnia gets. But in my case, if I manage to get myself to sleep for 8 to 10 hours, I am in an even worse state for the next week, as my body feels the need to stay up even longer to balance things out. Almost like when some people feel the need to sleep more when they don't get enough.

It does seem like the lack of sleep itself won't kill you, but your motor skills can be impaired, and that is harmful, around machinery, operation of a vehicle, tools, and the like much as alcohol or drug use is.

If you are working a lot, and stressing as well, then I would suggest trying to do some destress method. Actually drinking alcohol might in the beginning seem like a good idea(1 glass), but over time it will only make your body weaker, and more stressed. So if you are stressing, I think you should do something to counter that, and see if that works.
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Old 08.11.2012, 11:24
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Re: Can insomnia lead to death?

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Well, thinking about this won't make you sleep, isn't it?

You have to sit down and think of why you are having insomnia. What stops you to sleep? Something on your mind? Lifestyle? Eating habits? If this isn't enough, go and consult a professional who will help you with this.

I don't think you can die for insomnia but because of consequences on your heart and health.
Well, actually, the reason of my insomnia seems very simple.

Before, in all my jobs I had flexible time. Everyday I started and finished my work as I wanted. Everyday I woke up on my own and I almost never used an alarm. I usually slept >=8 hours everyday.

And, two months ago, I changed my job. I like the new work, but the only big problem is that, my work time is no longer flexible, and also, I have a long commute to do. Now every day I have to wake up at 6h30. I feel that my working style built during all the past years is suddenly changed. Now every day I use the alarm, and every day I am worried about my sleep. I go to bed earlier. Every evening 11pm in the bed I tell my self:" oh my god you have to fall asleep soon, because tomorrow you have to get up at 6h30". Then at midnight I raise my head towards the clock "oh my god I have only 6.5 hours to sleep", and 1 a.m. "oh my god I have only 5.5 hours to sleep, tomorrow I will be tired"... My sleep is like this now. The more I'm worried the less I sleep, the less I sleep the more I'm worried, like many people suffering from insomnia.

I think I have some psychological problem. Whenever I have a deadline to get up in the next morning, no matter when is the deadline, let's say, even it's 9 a.m., I cannot sleep well in the evening because I keep on telling myself that I have no "backup" and that even I stay awake all the night I have to get up at 9. On the contrary, if I know that I can wake up on my own, then I feel completely relaxed and sleep well (and sure, actually I will wake up before 9 a.m.). Also, whenever I use the alarm, I wake up in the morning on my own before the alarm. I feel like if I set the alarm then in the sleeping some part of my brain knows that there is something that will wake me up, and this makes me feel not solid and wake up very early.

And this sleeping problem bothers me really much now, especially on Sunday, Monday and Tuesday, when I tell myself that I have to suffer the lack of sleep all the week before the next weekend. On Thursday it's much better, because I know weekend is just one day to go, when I can sleep as I want...

I don't know if my problem is common, or am I just becoming crazy?
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Old 08.11.2012, 11:32
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Re: Can insomnia lead to death?

I think getting used to a new schedule is your problem. And it will take time to adjust. But I think, for a while, on the weekends you should also get up around the same time you would for work during the week to force that change sooner then later. It's just one idea. But you should do what you can to have no thoughts at all when going to sleep. Or do the classic counting sheep and focus on something meaningless.

I used to do that in school. Strangely most my teachers had monotone voices, and I could barely keep msyelf from passing out in their classes.

Only if my 9th grade Algebra teacher could try to explain to me basic math every night from the end of my bedside, I'd be sleeping like a baby.

Yeah you got to get your head out of worrying.
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Old 08.11.2012, 11:40
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Re: Can insomnia lead to death?

No. Just makes you look like hell in the morning and puts you in a very cranky mood. Life threatening for others is a possibility. . I have insomnia once in a while as well. Factors for most people. Smoking, drinking, stress, lack of excercise, bad diet, too much caffiene or liquids before bed. Reduce all that. Maybe change bed and mattress aswell. Helped me!
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Old 08.11.2012, 11:43
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Re: Can insomnia lead to death?

This sounds more like an anxiety problem than an actual sleeping problem. You are worried about how tired you will feel and keep thinking ahead to that.

You could look into Mindfulness exercises or meditation. It could help you sidestep that worrying about tomorrow by bringing your focus into the now. A good one to try would be the body scan, where you bring your awareness to different muscle groups, notice how they feel, flex and release and move on to another area of your body. As you practice more your awareness will fine-tune and you'll be able to notice if you are wrinkling your forehead or clenching a jaw.

When I've struggled with insomnia I also side-stepped the worrying but physically getting up and moving to another room, and doing something else to engage my brain, whether surfing, reading a book, or watching some mindless television. This seemed to help me "reset" when I then returned to bed.

Good luck!
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Old 08.11.2012, 11:47
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Re: Can insomnia lead to death?

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This sounds more like an anxiety problem than an actual sleeping problem. You are worried about how tired you will feel and keep thinking ahead to that.

You could look into Mindfulness exercises or meditation. It could help you sidestep that worrying about tomorrow by bringing your focus into the now. A good one to try would be the body scan, where you bring your awareness to different muscle groups, notice how they feel, flex and release and move on to another area of your body. As you practice more your awareness will fine-tune and you'll be able to notice if you are wrinkling your forehead or clenching a jaw.

When I've struggled with insomnia I also side-stepped the worrying but physically getting up and moving to another room, and doing something else to engage my brain, whether surfing, reading a book, or watching some mindless television. This seemed to help me "reset" when I then returned to bed.

Good luck!
If you mean internet surfing, that is about the worst thing for me to ever do. For example, look at me at this exact moment.
I fell asleep at 5 this morning, woke up at 7:30, felt tired, but decided to surf a bit, and now it's almost 11...
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Old 08.11.2012, 11:54
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Re: Can insomnia lead to death?

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I think I have some psychological problem.

I don't know if my problem is common, or am I just becoming crazy?
I've not met you in person, but I'd say you have generalized anxiety disorder. It is very common. The best remedy is called behavior modification therapy and does not involve any medications.

First thing to do is find a psychologist to help you learn the techniques. A few examples: Have a "wind-down" routine to slow your brain into a more restful state. Turn off the TV at 10 and read a book while sipping a cup of tea. After setting the alarm, turn the clock around so you can't see it at night. If you feel tired earlier in the evening, go to bed as soon as you are tired.

If you are laying down for more than about 20 minutes and you cannot fall asleep, get up and do a soothing activity like listening to soft music. Again drink something like warm milk or tea.

As for your worries about your presentations, learn to build in a Plan B as you're making Plan A. Generally that means having at least one printout of your slides that you can use if the electronic stuff fails. It means practicing answers to questions that probably won't come up.

It is not as easy as just telling yourself to relax. You must learn how to relax yourself from an excited state. Worrying about your worrying is not the way to do that.
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Old 08.11.2012, 11:55
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Re: Can insomnia lead to death?

Well, the "Old Fashioned" advice for people with insomnia is - to establish a going to bed routine ...... warm bath/shower, sip a glass of red wine, read a book in bed, make sure your pillows are comfy, you have enough fresh air in room, and wind-down.

Then .....(my advice, that works for me) ...... visualise the time you want to wake up - work out how many hours you have to sleep - then do a "count-down" thru each hour you will be sleeping to wake-up time.

You will sleep - and you will wake up at the right time. (If you`re normal, if you`re not, then try someone else`s advice)
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Old 08.11.2012, 12:05
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Re: Can insomnia lead to death?

Lots of good tips already here.

Another good method I learnt (as an insomniac child) for calming down and helping you drift off to sleep is to tense (or imagine tensing) then relax each muscle/bit of body one at a time.

Work through from your toes up and then down your arms, concentrating on each, slowly and mindfully tensing then relaxing each. Distracts the mind from fretting and helps your body wind down and prepare for sleep.

Hope you manage to find something that works for you!
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Old 08.11.2012, 12:05
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Re: Can insomnia lead to death?

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Well, the "Old Fashioned" advice for people with insomnia is - to establish a going to bed routine ...... warm bath/shower, sip a glass of red wine, read a book in bed, make sure your pillows are comfy, you have enough fresh air in room, and wind-down.

Then .....(my advice, that works for me) ...... visualise the time you want to wake up - work out how many hours you have to sleep - then do a "count-down" thru each hour you will be sleeping to wake-up time.

You will sleep - and you will wake up at the right time. (If you`re normal, if you`re not, then try someone else`s advice)
I have never met anyone who just sips a glass of red wine at home at night and does not finish it all and maybe go for a second. Or is it just me??
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Old 08.11.2012, 12:12
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Re: Can insomnia lead to death?

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I've not met you in person, but I'd say you have generalized anxiety disorder. It is very common. The best remedy is called behavior modification therapy and does not involve any medications.

First thing to do is find a psychologist to help you learn the techniques. A few examples: Have a "wind-down" routine to slow your brain into a more restful state. Turn off the TV at 10 and read a book while sipping a cup of tea. After setting the alarm, turn the clock around so you can't see it at night. If you feel tired earlier in the evening, go to bed as soon as you are tired.

If you are laying down for more than about 20 minutes and you cannot fall asleep, get up and do a soothing activity like listening to soft music. Again drink something like warm milk or tea.

As for your worries about your presentations, learn to build in a Plan B as you're making Plan A. Generally that means having at least one printout of your slides that you can use if the electronic stuff fails. It means practicing answers to questions that probably won't come up.

It is not as easy as just telling yourself to relax. You must learn how to relax yourself from an excited state. Worrying about your worrying is not the way to do that.
Yes. I think what you said is correct. I can feel that every time when I'm worried, I'm actually "worrying about my worry". I tell me that if I'm worried then I cannot sleep, then I'm really worried. For everything else in the life it is the same. One reason I think I'm crazy is that I sometimes worry about very small or meaningless things. For example, when I'm about to talk to the secretary about some office routines, I suddenly think that if I am nervous then my voice will be shaking and she will laugh at me, then when I really talk with her, I'm really nervous and my voice is really shaking. But I know it is completely not necessary to be nervous when talking with the secretary. Or, another example, when I hold a glass of water, I'm suddenly worried that if I let it drop it will break, then I really let it go and it breaks. It's like I self-realize many bad scenarios in my mind... What is this? Is this obsessive compulsory disorder?

Also, you mentioned psychologist. Is there some psychiatric treatment or medication for that?
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Old 08.11.2012, 12:12
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Re: Can insomnia lead to death?

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I have never met anyone who just sips a glass of red wine at home at night and does not finish it all and maybe go for a second. Or is it just me??
Well darl, when I hit the big X0`s mark I found myself having difficulty sleeping thru the night, and a wise old person told me that a glass of red wine works miracles. The secret is to take it to bed with you - minus the bottle - otherwise one could be inclined to get all jolly and finish the contents, go on EF and get carried away! And THEN one will have difficulty waking up, and have a headache.
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Old 08.11.2012, 12:14
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Re: Can insomnia lead to death?

I never had a hangover in 28 years. Ya me!!
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Old 08.11.2012, 12:16
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Re: Can insomnia lead to death?

And duh i meant the contents of the glass not the wuole bottle :s now that would be a bad idea on a week day for sure
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Old 08.11.2012, 12:16
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Re: Can insomnia lead to death?

Whole bottle*
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Old 08.11.2012, 12:20
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Re: Can insomnia lead to death?

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Yes. I think what you said is correct. I can feel that every time when I'm worried, I'm actually "worrying about my worry". I tell me that if I'm worried then I cannot sleep, then I'm really worried. For everything else in the life it is the same. One reason I think I'm crazy is that I sometimes worry about very small or meaningless things. For example, when I'm about to talk to the secretary about some office routines, I suddenly think that if I am nervous then my voice will be shaking and she will laugh at me, then when I really talk with her, I'm really nervous and my voice is really shaking. But I know it is completely not necessary to be nervous when talking with the secretary. Or, another example, when I hold a glass of water, I'm suddenly worried that if I let it drop it will break, then I really let it go and it breaks. It's like I self-realize many bad scenarios in my mind... What is this? Is this obsessive compulsory disorder.

Also, you mentioned psychologist. Is there some psychiatric treatment or medication for that?
You`re not "Mr Bean" by any chance?

No seriously - You ARE self-realising! And your sub-conscious takes over, and displays your "self-realisation".

Try this. Use the "I am" in POSITIVE statements about yourself.

Be the great "I am" person. "I am going to sleep now, and I am waking up at ....." / I am fully prepared for (whatever). /I am in control of (whatever you`re doing, going to do, etc).

Just try it.
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Old 08.11.2012, 12:22
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Re: Can insomnia lead to death?

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And duh i meant the contents of the glass not the wuole bottle :s now that would be a bad idea on a week day for sure
Yes, well ... a glass of wine, in a smallish wine glass! Not one of those big bowl style glasses you get next to your dinner plate in a restaurant! Just a normal little old fashioned type of glass, with a stem. Or use a shot-glass if confused about the size.
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