Thursday, June 23, 2011

Is This News to Anyone?

I recently read an article in Good Housekeeping that says all that advice about getting up at the same time every day, even on weekends, is a bunch of hooey.  They used to say you can't "catch up" on lost sleep by sleeping in on weekends.  This new study has found that's not true.

Seems they allowed a group of people to sleep only four hours a night for five nights, and the participants were found to be less alert.  (You don't say?)  Then they allowed them to sleep up to 10 hours the sixth night.  After a good night's sleep, the participants had large gains in alertness and reaction times.  (Shocking!)

Is this news to anyone?  Because I could have told them that I'm a completely different person when I'm allowed to sleep in.  And we hear stuff all the time about not getting enough sleep being one cause of weight gain.  I firmly believe that if I could just fall asleep and wake up according to my own bodily clock (which would mean going to bed about 1:00 a.m. or so and getting up around 11:00 the next morning), the world would be a happier place.  Well, at least my world would be.

Alas, most of the world doesn't share my night owlish ways.  And I find myself struggling to get enough sleep while getting up in time to make a living five days a week.  So, my doctor has prescribed me various forms of sleeping pills.  I'm telling you, I've tried them all.  The only thing that's worked for me is Ambien.  And it has some undesirable side effects (such as amnesia, but whatever...  Who are you again?).

On my most recent visit, the doctor prescribed me something else.  Something he said I hadn't actually tried yet.  He warned me that it might make it difficult for me to get up in the morning.  (Like I need anything making it harder for me to get up in the morning?)  But he assured me I'd sleep through the night, which is something I swear I haven't done like since I was a child.

It was Trazodone.  100-200 mg.  And I'm here to tell you, my advice for you is, do not take this.  EVER.

He told me to take one to two pills at bedtime.  So I started with one the first night.  And I laid awake for hours.  Then I finally did fall asleep, and slept like a log until 11:30 the next morning.  At which point I got out of bed, made my way to the couch, and there I stayed the rest of the day.  (This was a Saturday, thankfully.)

Since I didn't have so much luck with the falling asleep on one pill, I took two the following night.  And I still laid awake for hours.  I was making R as miserable as I was, and I finally broke down and took an Ambien on top of what I'd already taken.  (Which I am by no means endorsing.  As you will soon read.)

I slept.  I slept until after 1:00 Sunday afternoon.  When I woke up and spent the next hour sicker than I've ever been in my life.  R wanted to take me to the doctor.  I refused to leave the bathroom floor.

When I finally could stand of my own accord, I made my way to the couch, and that's where I spent the remainder of Sunday.  I didn't feel sick anymore.  I just didn't feel much like moving either.

So, I shoved those pills in the back of the medicine cabinet, and I'm back to Ambien.  Some nights I only take a 1/2 pill.  And if I have more than two days off work in a row, I can get by without any, assuming I'm free to stay up as late as I wish, then sleep as late as I wish.

Anyway, I'm telling you, if you have the same issues I have, don't take Trazodone.  Run far away.  While you can still run.

1 comment:

Regina said...

I do find that I tend to get up and go to bed mostly at the same time both on the weekend and during the week - if I sleep in or stay up late - it's hard to get back to normal. Even if I get the same total number hours of sleep.