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I'm an only son and I've been taking care of my mom for 2 years now. She'said bed ridden and has no clue who I am although sometimes she smiles at me and every now and then she kisses me when I beg for them.
I have aid 2 days a week (for 2 and a half hours per day ), but it's tough. I've been through depression phases but managed to get out of them.
However, I get to sleep around 9 (I'm tired) , but I wake up every 2 hrs on the clock, very out of control , and I am getting really getting upset.
Any suggestions, please!

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Many good, gentle ideas in this thread. I would add: use 10 slower, deeper breaths (throughout the day too!) This is enough to calm the "fight or flight" response that can creep in - it also turns on the "relaxation response" in the body. Middle of the night it can help bring the mind back to the present and to the body, instead of fueling nervous or anxious thoughts in past or future.
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My guess is that you are worried that while you sleep your mother will need you.
I'll bet you get up and check her when you wake.
You've unconciously set your "internal clock" to wake you.My advice (works for me) is that I "cat nap" at any opportunity.
Short sessions of sleep will work just as well as a good solid night's rest and keep you healthy without sleep aides.
The trick is to find the time when you know your mother is settled and comfortable for an hour or two.Set an alarm to wake you so you won't worry that you'll sleep through a crisis.
You will relieve mind of worry, thus dozing off quickly and deeply for that stolen hour.
Also consider are unduly attentive to needs that may not exist?
Make a mental list of everytime you check on her and ask yourself was that really necessary ?
You'd be surprised how easy it is to turn ourselves into dotting mother hens.
Keep well.Sleep well.
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I just found out that the body goes through a type cycle for sleep. We enter a "sleep gate" every 90 minutes to 2 hours. If you miss your sleep gate, you have to wait for the next one. Tossing and turning in bed won't help. It's better to get up, drink a warm cup of herbal tea, think of peaceful things (such as what you're grateful for) listen to soothing music--just like juddabuddhaboo advises. Then when you feel sleepy, go back to bed.
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Lots of good ideas here! Just wanted to add that I have had good results using Natural Vitality products-Natural Calm & OsteoCalm.
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I have used Bach flower remedy: Rescue Remedy with great success too. Find it in the health store or sometimes a super market. It's $15 dollars but lasted me for a few years!

I listen to Steve Halpren's music made to help you go to sleep. Also I put my computer on the itunes radio station Sleep Radio. or use Pandora.com and create your own new age station playing Deuter and others. Very soft and soothing music. Make sure computer is not in your room though.

Lots of choices in herbal teas: Celestial Seasonings has Tension Tamer Tea, Sleepy Time, and Sleepy Time Extra. Special herb teas without caffeine can be found in supermarkets or health stores.

Taking time to have happy thoughts before you go to bed is good. Or write down a list of things to do that are on your mind and then dismiss them. They will be there on your pad tomorrow. Let go and trust.
Don't eat before bed. This one is hard for me to do! But some foods are worse than others. If your tummy is busy trying to digest food on top of all the other work it does while you sleep, you will feel agitated.

Peace!
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I'll start with asking a question. Is one of the reasons because you are checking on your Mom to make sure she's ok? My husband has dementia and sleeps in another room. I have gotten a Phillips LifeLine button. Besides the button he can push if he needs help, I have the option installed that if he falls, the unit goes off to alert me & LifeLine. I can sleep. This option also gives me the option of NOT following him around like when he goes outside. This gives him a bit more of a feeling of self-esteem. And, no, I'm not an employee. Just a user. Check with the different "button" companies to see what they offer. Depression on your part? Yes, You need the help of the earlier suggestions or a physician. God bless & good luck.
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You can take graval -- or travel tabs 50 mg It is a natural sedative .Take two about seven in the evening.You can not become addicted to them.Works for my husband & son.I'm from Ont. & to buy them by the 100 's I have to ask the pharmasist They keep them behnd the counter .
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I feel you. I don't get a full nights rest either due to dad calling me every two hours at night. I have done this so long that my mind "thinks" it hears my name being called...and after this i am changingbit lol because i know for years after dad is gone i will still hear my name being called. It is hard to be up ann day and not get the required sleep. I am afraid to take anything in case i sleep through him calling me. I am giving dad melatonin suggested by his cardiologist but it does not help him sleep any longer than he already does...hoping it would help me get more sleep and not disturb my husbands sleep everytime i'm called. I am on anti anxiety meds which make me tired and help fall asleep...but again i'm still bothered all night. I am not comfortable with a stranger here at night to help with this issue..I don't think it would make me sleep any better...great suggestions above if you are able to not be bothered during that time and can actually sleep for 8 hours. My mind is on alert even if i don't want it to be no matter if i take benadryl or melatonin or any other sleep aid...hope something works for you. We ALL understand on here. Great people with great suggestions. I'm looking into respite care just so i have a week off and can finally sleep worry free for a little time...hang in there!
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Jose,

Are you working or have you needed to stop working to care for your mother? How is your current financial situation? What money does your mother have coming in and what are her assets that could be used to help pay for outside help for her care?

You really need to see a therapist about your depression and anxiety.

Something about your mother's care must change because you cannot humanly keep up this pace.
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You are extremely lucky and blessed to be getting the 4 hours of sleep! You really need more help than you are getting. If you don't find a way to add additional hours of help, you won't ever be in a position to get more sleep, and will probably actually end up getting even less. You really need to take care of yourself first, and if you're up to it and in good health and have all the resources you need at your fingertips, you can keep caregiving. If not, you shouldn't be doing it at all. You will burn out, get sick, and then you'll really be in a pickle. This happens all the time, because people don't realize they can't do it all, or shouldn't be caregiving in the first place, because they lack what they need or lack the personal traits and qualities it takes to be a caregiver. This is the hardest job on the planet.
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Can you call on anyone else to help with mom? If you wear out /get sick who would take care of your mom? Try the good suggestions from previous answers. Best wishes.
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mercyzay, you obviously are struggling with anxiety and depression. Sleep disturbances are oftentimes an indicator of depressive episodes, especially if this has gone on for more than 2 weeks. Good news is that this is treatable! Please speak with your doctor about this to get to the root of what is troubling your mind, receive support and skills for coping with your thoughts and emotions in a healthy way, and get that essential, well-earned, good night's sleep!

With all the demands and pressures you are experiencing, anyone in your position would suffer from degrees of depression. Can the home health aid days and/or hours be increased? You need respite time to take care of yourself and reconnect with others.

It's wonderful that you are reaching out for ideas on this board. Using OTC medications and supplements may alleviate some of the symptoms temporarily, though I suspect this runs deeper. You won't believe how much better you will feel once your condition is treated!
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A neurologist recommended a combination of melatonin + magnesium at bedtime - both 400 mg. He told me magnesium will reduce anxiety and melatonin will help me sleep. Seems to help.
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Folbic Acid vitamin or Folbic Tablet works better it can be prescribed by a Dr. My father has been using it now for about a year and sleeps through the night. Try it your self. You will sleep like a baby. You can't OD on it. You just pee out what your body doesn't use. I found this out when doing fertility treatments and was prescribed folbic tablet and I couldn't hold my head up during the day. I started taking them at night and wow. You will dream and sleep all through the night. My dad has Altzhimers.
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I would recommend a book "Healthy At Home" for natural remedies including sleep remedies. Safe with documentation. I cannot stress the value of yoga and meditation (nothing mystical just focus and exercise)." Do Yoga with me" is an online free yoga instruction (great for persons of a certain age LOL). When I do the stretching moves I feel like I've had a massage. The very simple breathing exercises in meditation resets your brain, and thats been golden for me. Hope you can find an effective solution without involving the pharmacy.
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I am also struggling with the same pattern. Here's what I'm trying. My son in law gave me a fitbit for christmas and when I set it to monitor my sleep, it isn't actually as bad as I think. I thought I slept only 1.5 - 2 hours at a time, but it shows that I do sleep for 4 hours at a stretch. Also, I MUST get myself to the gym! I walk the mall and that helps a little, but not enough. I found a $30/month LA Fitness membership. If I get there and work out for an hour, perhaps you can do that when help arrives for your mom, you can sleep better on those days. Also, surprisingly ... heavy duty house cleaning like vacuuming the whole house and floor scrubbing helps me sleep. As others are saying here, yoga and meditation are great too, but if I sat all day what I really need to sleep well is a great workout. Hoping you find your solution to this and just want you to know I'm with you on this journey too.
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You might try a calming routine before going to bed. Even 5 minutes could help.. For some people, this might be meditation. Others might use prayer (use positive prayer, such as asking for peace, love, health, etc. Avoid negative prayer, such as asking to rid yourself of problems). You can also try listening to calming music. Hot herbal tea, such as camomile or spearmint (but not peppermint - that's too stimulating) could help. Or warm milk.
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Please get to a therapist or doctor who can address your anxiety about your caregiving duties. Add some melatonin a non-drug sleep aid that will reset your biological clock. You can buy a bottle at Walmart for about $3. Hang in there and know you are doing your best!
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No screen time within 2 hours of bed
Bach's night remedy
Eat healthy
Exercise or yoga or a walk or dance during the time your aid is there away from the house and preferably outside.

Good luck, I feel your pain.
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Same problems as freqflyer described, could not shut my mind off. After discussing with my doctor i was put on a low dose of celexa and it has really worked. Being sleeped deprived really stinks! Good luck.
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Bach's night time rescue remedy capsules have worked for me in the past when I've been insomniac through obsessing about a subject. At the very worst, they're definitely harmless.
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I definitely would not recommend using Benadryl. In some people like myself and my son it causes hyperactivity not drowsiness. I can tell you that our experience with just 3mg of melatonin has been terrific. My son has had problems with insomnia for years and now he falls asleep within an hour of taking the melatonin and sleeps for 8 hours.
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Are you exercising. I try to walk during day And I do yoga
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... I would instead suggest melatonin. Time released 10mg works for me but your mileage may vary!
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Just FYI for anyone considering Benadryl (aka diphenhydramine or zzzquil) as a sleep aid, a study was just released saying it and other similar drugs increase dementia risk: http://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/common-anticholinergic-drugs-like-benadryl-linked-increased-dementia-risk-201501287667
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Merczay, I've had that happen to me many a time. We have so much on our minds regarding our elder parents that it's hard to turn our brain off. It then becomes a bad habit waking up every 2 hours or so.

What helps me is to take Benadryl allergy medicine, but first check with your doctor so that it doesn't interfere with other medicines you might be taking. What I like about Benadryl is that it isn't habit forming compared to some prescription sleep aids.

Also, I need to get off the computer by a certain time of night, otherwise my brain is still active. Same with those who use SmartPhones or Kindle type devices... it's something about the background light that keeps some people awake.

And no caffeine after 7pm, and that includes any chocolate.

Hope you get the much needed sleep you need.
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