Has anyone used sleeping pills short term to help get their sleep pattern back on track?

The past couple months my sleep pattern has totally lost its way, I have Hashimoto's and suspect my adrenals are at play here as I am up until the early hours usually 4.00am but at times 7.00am and then sleep for 3 hours max and then am wide awake and then spend hours trying to get back off to sleep as I cannot function. I am losing days of my life this way and am missing important health appointments and other things because of this. I was just about scraping by prior to this and I self medicate with 25mgs of T3 split over the day, but have always been wary of sleeping tablets due to becoming over reliant on them and the risk of weight gain, I have already gone up 3 dress sizes and could not bear to add even more.

Anyone's advice or experiences are greatly appreciated...

23 Replies

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  • You could try melatonin - a natural hormone that your body should already be producing but often seems not to produce nearly enough! It is best taken in tiny doses - it actually works better for me that way than taking a higher amount. I have 3mg tablets, cut them into 4 bits and have 1 bit if necessary, but you ought to settle down to sleep, stop reading, turn the lights off as soon as you take it.

    If you suffer from depression and are not being treated for it with anything else, then you could try 5-HTP. It is also a chemical your body produces naturally, and it eventually ends up being converted into melatonin so helps with sleep that way. But the effect can take a while to build up and improve sleep.

    This diagram shows the relationship between tryptophan, 5-HTP (second chemical down in the left hand column), serotonin and melatonin.

    en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:...

    5-HTP is available online and over the counter in the UK. Melatonin must be bought from abroad - it's readily available online from US sites.

    Edit : Forgot to say... Have you ever considered reserving a tiny bit of your T3 to take just before sleep? It helps some but makes others completely wired. I found it helpful.

    Edit 2 : Put in a link to the diagram I referred to!

  • Hi Humanbean, thanks for getting back to me...I am using Melatonin and that gets me off to sleep for 2 or 3 hours and then I am wide awake again, I use it as and when and it used to work better for me, I have also tried 5-HTP and again it was useful but I have never experienced such dire sleep patterns like this with such a detrimental effect on my everyday life which is dire at the best of times, hence why I am considering what I would call this desperate measure. I wish I had not tried your suggestions (also am trying a pinch of T3!!) but I think I have gone beyond the more natural alternatives sadly!

  • Have you ever had your cortisol levels checked? If cortisol is out of whack it upsets sleep, big time!

  • Had a ACTH a year ago via NHS but told all was well...!!! At that time did not have the fight in me to contradict results...But have a feeling the adrenals are very much off kilter, saw a private endo who suggested trying a week of Prednisolone a few weeks ago but again was wary about going on it long term, but I may have to reconsider...Thanks again

  • Unless you know whether you have normal/high/low/mixed cortisol there is no way of knowing what treatment or adrenal support is necessary. I had the Genova Diagnostics Adrenal Profile (Saliva) done - it is a spit test done at four times in a day and it helps to identify where things might be going wrong.

    For further info, this is a very informative page :

    stopthethyroidmadness.com/a...

  • Thanks for being so helpful...Do you have adrenal problems, if so how do you manage yours?

  • I have adrenal fatigue. I had the saliva test ( it's not available on the NHS and costs about £70 but is well worth doing). I have had Hashis for about 20years and am still struggling with it. The saliva test showed the reason I wake at about 4.30 am every morning is when my cortisol is very high. It goes down over the day.

    My specialist has put me on Adrenal Support by Nutri. I am trying Erfa NDT as Levo made me much sicker. Apparently, unless you fix any adrenal/iron problems first, it is much harder to sort out your thyroid/sleep issues. Any extra stress in your life may just tip things too, as I have just found out over Christmas. It's a fine line. Good luck.

  • Looks like I will have to do the adrenal test, I am sorry that you are still struggling, mine has been 4 years now and I am just going more and more downhill as each year passes...I tried Nutri support and they upset my stomach, but I have been gluten free for a few months now so could be worth trying again...Thanks for your info, and I hope one day things get better for you...

  • Ive used sleeping pills before...but I also have seen my Mom addicted to them, so Im scared of them. Have you ever tried motion sickness pills ,1 or 2 would do the trick...they are pretty harmless. called (Gravol) in Canada..but real name is Dimenhydrinate.

  • That's what I am worried about, but I have heard they can help short term...That's interesting about the motion sickness pills, I will check it out. Thanks

  • Hi Missdove,I too have been having problems sleeping lately,my problem was taking my 10mg T3 too late in the day, I take 10mg first thing in the morning,but I was taking the other half 4pm was too late, so now I take the other half between 1pm and 2pm and that seems to have worked for me! Take care bev x

  • That's an idea, I will give that a go, sure as hell have nothing to lose...Thanks :-)

  • Hi there,

    I can empathize with you, firstly you can try magnesium as this is quite helpful in getting some people to sleep. or you could get a prescription for anxiety pills as a temporary measure, they´re not strong and most definately dont leave you with after effects. I take them once or twice aweek when I get really fatigued through lack of sleep. As we both know you need to reverse the symptoms in the first place. I might be able to help you there, because I was developing hashis but I reversed my symptoms through diet chang(gluten among other things) and vit support. let me know if you´re intersested in how I did It. god bless you.

  • I use oxazepam which i get on private script. It only costs £5 from superdrug. NHS wont give it, but in any case I wont give them the pleasure of putting me down as a mental health case and getting extra funding points - which is what happens and why they love to shove anti depressants down our throats rather than effectively treat out thyroid issues. It's all about revenue for nhs gps

  • Who does the private script for you? And can I get them online without? The system is a shambles and I have a lot of anger in me at the way we are all treated!!!

  • Hello, I have used a combination of Melatonin and pure Lavender oil, either in a bath or in my electrical oil burner, you can also buy relaxing oils for this and they work great as well. It is hard not to get stress and worked up with the condition you have. Would suggest doing the ASI test for your adrenals, because Adrenal Issue can cause sleep Issues (loved you choice of pic)

  • Yep going to get the test done...I have chucked so much money at this illness that another £70 is not going to hurt!!!!! Thanks I have always liked oils, could I put the oil on my pillow? And as for the pic I think it sum's up everything rather nicely!!!

  • I couldn't agree more, I am still paying off for all my failled treatments & Medications but I would personally say that the ASI test is money well spent, as doctors don't seem to think their is such a thing as adrenal fatigue. The oil's I have can be put on the pillow, Lavender is the obvious choice but I find the relaxing blend just as helpful - it contains Lavender, Cedarwood, Ylang Ylang & Clary Sage - It really does relax me and that is good for the adrenals along with certain yoga postures and Vitamin C

  • I used them when my son was in Afghanistan and could not sleep. They were brilliant. Felt as if I could cope with days if I could just sleep through night. Only used for a while and they did the trick. Now if I ever need to get sleep pattern sorted I use Melatonin (off internet) natural help with sleeping hormone, exercise really helps even if it's just floating about a pool or a good long walk x

  • Thanks for that, that's interesting to hear...I am not a great fan but needs must as I am at breaking point regarding this awful sleep pattern...Lots of great advice as usual on here...:-))

  • Hi Missdove. While your waiting to have your salvia cortisol/dhea test done, this may help you:

    drmyhill.co.uk/wiki/Sleep_i...

    Go down to where Sarah Myhill writes about: Natural preparations and prescription drugs to help sleep, it's in section 8.

  • Thanks for that, interesting article also mentions the sea band/travel motion tablets as per @dgleds reply, going to read up some more...

  • my mum swore by her Irish remedy - boiled mashed potatoes with lots of butter and milk plus chicken (contains natural sleep enhancing chemical) with whatever veg, turn off TV, don't read anything miserable and go to bed an hour earlier than normal and relax...

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