Fighting Multiple Sclerosis

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Suffering from Insomnia with MS

This is something I found after hearing that so many of us with Multiple Sclerosis suffer from insomnia. I don't know about you but this can be one of the most aggravating things to deal with. You are so tired all day looking forward to going to bed to find that you can't sleep.... Here is some information I found that I hope with maybe help someone and to give us all some insight into why this happens to us.

"As most of you with multiple sclerosis (MS) know first-hand, the fatigue that comes with MS has a very special, “crushing” quality to it, making even simple endeavors seem huge. While there are many reasons for this fatigue, poor sleep quality and quantity make fatigue (and other symptoms) much worse.

By improving sleep habits and addressing the causes of poor sleep, we can do a great deal to increase our overall energy levels. In a recent study of 60 patients with MS, about 50 percent reported some form of sleep disturbance or insomnia.

People living with MS experience several different kinds of insomnia, such as:

* Initial Insomnia: Difficulty falling asleep at night.
* Middle Insomnia: Waking up during the night and not being able to fall back asleep quickly.
* Terminal Insomnia: Waking up too early.

Causes of MS-Related Insomnia
There are a variety of reasons why people with MS have difficulty falling asleep and staying asleep. These include:

* Initial Insomnia Causes: Anxiety and/or pain may make it difficult to fall asleep. Some side effects of medication can also cause you to have difficulty falling asleep.
* Middle Insomnia Causes: Ironically, people with higher levels of daytime fatigue tend to experience middle insomnia, but the causal relationship is unclear. Middle insomnia is also caused by nocturia (the urge to urinate frequently at night), a very common form of bladder dysfunction. Muscle spasms and pain can also wake a person in the middle of the night.
* Terminal Insomnia: The causes of terminal insomnia in MS patients are not well-understood, though lack of exposure to daylight can contribute to not sleeping long enough.

Getting a Good Night’s Sleep
You can improve your chances of getting a good night’s sleep by establishing good daily sleep habits, which include:

* Exposure to bright lights during the day
* Avoiding caffeine, alcohol and nicotine in the late afternoon and evening
* Getting daily exercise
* Having a bedtime routine that includes relaxation
* Avoiding reading or watching TV in bed
* Have the same sleep schedule every day, including weekends
* Not lying in bed awake; rather, getting up after 15 minutes of not sleeping"

I have found this to be very insightful as to why we have so many problems with sleep. I would love to hear everybody's stories and thoughts on this subject.


Have a great day everybody. Hope to hear from everybody soon.

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