Eating and sleeping problems - Anxiety and Depre...

Anxiety and Depression Support

51,346 members52,156 posts

Eating and sleeping problems


I wanted to start a discussion about the two biggest problems I'm experiencing while suffering from depression to see if anyone felt the same.

Firstly, eating habits, when I first slipped into depression I hardly ate which has caused me to become underweight and I've gotten that used to being hungry that I tend to ignore it for ages until I end up pigging out on very calorific food. I find myself stuck in a cycle where I feel like I don't have the energy or motivation to prepare and eat three meals a day which obviously makes me feel more drained of energy so it's just a downward spiral. It also has to look very appetising in order for me to eat it which is usually unhealthy food.

Secondly, sleeping patterns, I feel tired pretty much all the time, I think the most I've ever felt awake since becoming depressed is only for about five hours at a time, and those periods seem to be few and far in between. Even though I feel tired I can still struggle to get to sleep, then when I am asleep I dread waking up again. I almost feel like a dead woman walking a lot of the time. My actual sleep has changed as well, it's never restful sleep, it sort of feels like I slip into another state of consciousness and it takes a lot of effort to bring my mind back to reality when I wake up. When I am asleep I either dream about nothing or I have very strange, slightly traumatic dreams. I had a nightmare the other day that terrified me so much I woke up in cold sweats, shaking and crying. It was just so vivid it felt like it had actually happened and I had to keep reassuring myself that it was all a dream.

Would appreciate hearing about anyone else's stories concerning theses issues or what the biggest problems you're facing at the moment because of you mental health.

Best wishes,


4 Replies

Hi I can emphasise with you very much on all these. I have suffered from depression for many years and fortunately most times it is relatively mild. I can cope with this but adverse events such as my last job, which I hated, caused me a lot of stress and took my depression to a higher level.

The first sign I had of this was not sleeping. Oh I would get to sleep fine but started waking up every half hour or so and it was very restless and I felt very tired in the morning. Then I started taking hours to get to sleep as well. I couldn't cope at work and took time off for stress and depression and eventually I was dismissed.

I went back to the doctors and was given ad's and also mirtazapine (another ad) to help me sleep at nights. This does help. I find I haven't got the energy or motivation to cook either. I manage it by having very easy to cook and mainly microwave meals I can just shove in. I do comfort eat though and several times a week just get crisps and chocolate and pig out. Or just reach for the nearest fattening thing. Sometimes I can force myself to make a sandwich as well.

My home is a tip and I spend too much time online or just mindlessly staring at the telly instead of doing anything.

You don't say whether you have seen the doctor and are on any meds or having counselling. All these could help you. Also check out mindfulness online as this does work for some people.

I am sorry I am not much help but at least you know you are not alone in how you feel.

BlueRobin45 in reply to Hidden


Thanks for replying I really appreciate it, sorry to hear you were dismissed from your job for mental health reasons and I hope you have found a job that is more suited to your needs. I feel exactly the same sleeping wise it is just so difficult, my sleeping patterns are so erratic.

I have the same issues with food and I get very picky because my appetite is pretty much non-existent.

I do exactly the same thing, I'd rather do anything else than actually do something productive, my bedroom and my car is a mess and I'm doing about the bare minimum just to get by.

I've been seeing a counselor since last year and it was at the beginning of the year that I started to become clinically depressed, I was at university at the time so I've had to leave for the time being.

I was admitted into hospital a few weeks ago for an overdose and they referred me to the crisis team, they checked up on me everyday until they thought I was safe and brought a psychiatrist out to assess me. That was when I was officially diagnosed, he put me on sertraline, extended my counseling and organised cbt for me. I was also given diazepam for times when I have trouble sleeping or get very emotional, but I am very apprehensive to use it as I need to drive for my job and it is a traffic offence to drive on that type of medication so I'd rather not risk it. I've done a lot of mindfulness already and it's had some benefit but I found it hard to commit to.

Don't apologise at all, it just helps to know that someone identifies with me and is going through the same sort of hardships.

Thank you and take care :)

I would suggest you see your psychiatrist. You have to deal with the depression issue which has caused you to become underweight. Obviously that is a primary issue. And might be the reason for the sleep issues.

"why continue to suffer needlessly?". ... Dr Oz


Thanks for the advice and the quote, I have only just started my antidepressants so it might very well be them, I'm going to see my gp tomorrow as the psychiatrist was only a one off visit, so I'll tell her about it and hopefully she can help.

You may also like...