Sleep quality and fears: Hi everyone... - Action on Postpar...

Action on Postpartum Psychosis
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Sleep quality and fears


Hi everyone, so I am 6 months into recovery and have poor sleep quality and everyday fears about relapse, experiencing bad side effects again from medication, and suffering and death. Not to mention that my mother and grandmother have suffered from mental illness after childbearing. Mental illness and medication claimed the life of my mom last year.

I was really wondering about the sleep though, if anyone else experienced insomnia, low sleep quality during their recovery and if/when sleep returned to normal. I miss getting a good night's rest and waking up feeling like I had been restful. When I wake up, it feels like I had hardly gotten any sleep.

6 Replies

Hello Kayla

Good to hear from you. I'm so sorry to hear that your mother passed away last year. I think that must also be an added stress for you and a terrible loss to come to terms with. I hope you have given yourself time to grieve although it must be a challenge coping with recovery from PP too.

As you are in the USA, I wonder if Postpartum Support International would be helpful at as well as the mums here? It might be helpful for you to find a local support group as you are going through so much.

Have you had a medication review with your psychiatrist? Side effects of medication can be very tiring when you are trying to cope with routine at home. Perhaps if you tell your psychiatrist how you honestly feel he / she will be able to make changes to help with side effects of medication and lack of sleep. Was the CBT helpful with coping strategies even though you have had so much to think about lately? If you're not sleeping well at night, are you able to sleep when your baby takes a nap during the day?

Take good care of yourself and keep in touch if it helps. We are all here for you.

I suffered badly with insomnia trying to come off olanzapine, the antipsychotic I was prescribed. Was given an antidepressant with sedative properties and that has helped lots. I also try to walk with the pram lots and keep caffeine free after 2pm. The road to recovery has a few bumps along the road but you will get there, one day at a time. Don't stress too much about sleep as it will make you anxious and anxiety and sleep don't mix well. Go to your doctor and see if they can help you out or relieve your fears.

Good luck xxx


Hi Kayla,

I'm so very sorry to hear you lost your Mum last year. What an awful lot you've had to deal with.

I'm sorry you're struggling to get good sleep, I find poor sleep has such an impact on everything. I'm afraid I don't have any useful experience to share but I'm sure others will have some good advice. Do you have good 'sleep hygiene' generally? Does your little one sleep well for you? If poor sleep quality is down to medication side effects I'd definitely discuss this with your doctors as lilybeth suggests. Rest whenever you're able to (easier said than done with a small child I know) and look after yourself.

Sending you very best wishes,

J x

Hello Kayla. I know you wrote a while back that you were suffering from depersonalization and very low mood and dark thoughts. I am 4 months into recovery and have the same feelings. I'm just wondering if it got better for you and were you taking an antidepressant? I also hope your sleep quality has improved. I'm having an issue with that as well due to waking up in the night to pee (as a side effect of medication). Anyway, I hope you are better. Just reaching out because you seem to have a similar trajectory in this illness as I do. Thank you.


Hello Kaylay,

yes, me too. I am so sorry to hear about your added stresses. Loosing your mum after PPP is so very difficult to cope with and I am truly sorry about your loss.

I belief that grief maybe a contributing factor to slowing down recovery. I just can draw back on my own experiences as I lost my dad suddenly and short afterwards my mum in law.

Obviously a lot depends on your make-up and coping strategies or how you implement survival tools. I have suffered with insomnia and needed to implement alternative therapy to calm/reduce my mind racing.

My yoga and meditation slowly but surely starts to help me with my breathing and creating some control of inner calm. Exercising helps, too. I walk other people's dogs or go into the hills with my bike...yep, I paint, too.

I have had to stop setting myself far fetched goals; deciding when I am OK again...or at such and such a time I will be back to my usual self again...I did learn a lot in support groups and accept that nowadays I am coping differently (after PPP).

Enjoying the momentum, using stepping stones and accepting support in different ways has helped me to move on.

Giving yourself time to heal and listening to your body...learning about triggers and how to self-manage them...maybe some ideas you could discuss with your GP and see what sort of therapeutic route would match your needs...

Look after yourself,



Hello Kayla

Just wondering if you have been able to sleep any better since you posted? I hope the replies were helpful and you have found support in the US.

Take good care of yourself.

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