I have never slept particularly well for many years, but am finding now that even though I feel tired and want to sleep, it is very difficult coming.

When I do finally sleep, it seems to be for an hour or two, I look at the clock and notice that I’ve been asleep for maybe 2 hours, and that is how the night goes on.

Does anyone else have to deal with insomnia? How do you manage it, any tips for improving sleep quantity.

I thought chemo would make me exhausted and want to sleep all the time, the problem is it is more of a physical tiredness for me rather than a mental one.


I wish!

Ohhh Peacock, I know what you mean!

I usually go out like a light at night, sometimes I don’t even make it as far as bed and wake up at 3am cold on the sofa (you’d think the OH would put a blanket on me!). However, this chemo, and in particular the steroids, have absolutely screwed that up for me. I’ve never had such a spotless kitchen! I find there’s nothing worse than just staying in bed. I get up, have a cup of tea and do some tasks, then take myself back to bed again WITH A BOOK - anything to stop listening to the voice in my head going “blah blah blah” - you know, remember to do this in the morning, don’t forget it’s bin day on Tuesday etc etc.

Try a book. Mind you, when I was in hospital I played dvds on my laptop - which worked really well. A nurse managed to disconnect my antibiotics etc without disturbing me and I didn’t wake up until morning - when she was reconnecting me!

Just be gentle with yourself and sleep when you can, even if it is just a couple of hours kip, you need it as and when you get it.

I managed 4 hours sleep eventually last night!

Sue xxx

Just 4 hours? That is scary.

I’m probably not getting much more but I just wish I could get a few hours of quality sleep.

TV usually helps me to nod off, especially when its something pretty boring, but it disturbs the OH so I’ve tried reading. I started to read PS I love you before I was diagnosed, which seemed a good novel but since diagnosis I can’t look at it again. Anyone who has read it will probably understand why.

It has been hot here, so perhaps that hasn’t helped - oh well, off to have another restless night.


Good luck with the kip - let me know how you get on. Am really tired now, and thinking of hitting sack myself - will probably be up again at 3am - but 4.5 hours sleep sounds good!

I have been a serial insomniac all my life, according to my Mum, who unfortunately was not. Normally I would sleep about 6 - 7 hours max when working but can cope happily on 5 hours. When I first started chemo, I had days when i was barely awake and loved sleeping through it, the only time in my life I have not had dark shadows under my eyes! Since dose one, I have terrible insomnia again. My best nights are when I sleep in the spare room, so not disturbed by hubby, who gets up at 4.30 am. Or I have a hot bath, stay in it until I nearly drown myself falling asleep and then get straight into bed. The other thing that sends me off is a paracetamol or even more so syndol tablets. However I would only use this cure occasionally and not immediately after chemo in case it reacts with anything else.
Hope you sort it out. I blog for hours which makes me tired eventually!
Lily x

Och well Lily - they say it’s a sign of intelligence, needing less sleep!

I managed about 2 hours kip before waking up in pain. Legs REALLY hurt. Will need ot see doc tomorrow and get this morphine syrup stuff or whatever - I can’t keep going like this. I feel as though my legs are being twisted outwards and all the muscles are twitching in protest! Bizarre!

I like my sleep - I “usually” go about 10pm and am very quickly asleep. Nothing usually disturbs me, and then I waken bright as a button about 6.15am, before the alarm at 6.30. I am the type that leaps out of bed and down 101 things before even getting showered & dressed in the morning. Usually.

Unfortunately I do not currently live in “usual” times - but I’ll get there again!

What wouldn’t I give for a night’s sleep just now? Is it like this after every tax? Oh well, only two more to go. Bitesize chunks. All bearable in bitesize chunks.

Any ideas on coping with this, insomniacs?
Sue xx

Ouch Sue that sounds painful, let us know how you get on with the Dr today.

Hello Lily, hope you managed a reasonable few hours sleep?

I was tired at 12.30 after watching some TV, but I had taken one of my “anti anxiety” pills which are muscle relaxants and meant to make you feel relaxed and sleepy. Not me though, I manage about 3 hours, then was wide awake so watched some more TV (hubby was sleeping in the tent but that is a long story) and eventually went back off for about another 2 hours.

Once awake this morning at 8 I had to get up. Brrrrr it was a bit chilly this morning and my walnut head feels very cold.

great plan I will be looking at tents as another option!!! I would suggest the syndol tablets for your legs Sue as they contain muscle relaxants and always sort out tension headaches for me, but if you are talking about morphine they wouldn’t be nearly strong enough. I feel so sorry for all of you on the drugs like tax that give you these pains and even more anxious that the docs don’t seem to have recognised it and done something about relieving the symptoms! I like the intelligent bit!!! A bit short of compliments in my current state! Ask no insist they give you something.
I had an interesting night. Woke at 1.45 a.m. to find I was still in the bath fast asleep, no wonder I was having strange dreams!! Then slept until 7 and then thought about blood tests today and woke myself up but decided staying in bed was better and didn’t get to the hospital until 11 so hope they are done on time for tomorrow morning.
I could fall asleep now though, it is mad.
Take care
Lily x

Me too - no sleep in my head!!

It’s much worse when I’m taking the steroids - onc sugessted this cycle that I take 7 days not 5 and wean down a bit slower - It’s helped a bit - I did actually get a whole 6 hours in a row one night but generally do 4 hours -to wee - can’t get back off so up and tasks and online and reading… and of course you have to drink…

I am taking it easy though which helps - not working through my chemo is fantastic.

Finding paracetamol for leg/feet pains works, but do take it quite regularly. Tax really isn’t nice!!

Off to clean my shelves now as didn’t manage it at 4am…
Td x

Hi Lily - hope your bloods were ok for your chemo tomorrow, and good luck with that, how many is it to go now? Hope you sleep a bit better tonight.

Td - cleaning shelves, you are energetic I am full of admiration

My next chemo is in the morning this time, the others have been late afternoon so I am hoping that will make a difference to the sleep pattern??

Sleep, someone please remind me what that is - LOL

Hi wide awakers,
blood test went well thank you, so will wait to see if they are ok. Should be as had emergency tests in this cycle as they thought my neuts had crashed and actually found they were already above the limit. So just 3 tubes of epi and a harpoon in the chest between me and sleep tonight. I am planning to stay up late as I know who will win this one!

It is my fourth epi and then I move to CMF. That is treatment for 2 weeks in a row so not expecting that to be condusive to sleep. Do you think some drugs are worse than others?
Sweet dreams if you can
Lily x