I do realize that part of my problem is my weight. So I will go ahead and put that out there. I have to get up several times a night to make trips to the restroom and I just don't breath well when I sleep. But even when I was young and skinny, I never slept well. I remember my mom getting down behind me for reading under my covers at night til 2 and 3am because I had school the next morning.
Another part of the problem is my mind doesn't rest. I mean literally I can practically feel the wheels in my head spinning. So even if my body goes to sleep my mind just keeps whirling and whirling. My dreams are vivid and in all my senses. For the record most people only dream in one or two senses. Dreaming in all senses is rare. I can see why, its like being awake when you aren't awake and when you finally do wake, you are just as tired as you were when you went to bed.
Its enough to make anyone want to scream in frustration!
What makes it worse is its harder for me to sleep at night than during the morning to noon or evening to early night hours. I can be dead tired all day and it hit midnight and its like this magic button is pressed and BAM I am wide awake until 4am. This is made worse when on a manic and my mind feels crammed with ideas and I keep thinking, just one more this or let me finish that.
I know some of you may say go to bed around 9 or 10pm then. Sounds like a good idea doesn't it. Well I have tried it and guess what..yep..somewhere between midnight and 2am I wake up and can't get back to sleep. I have repeatedly put myself on a proper bedtime schedule just to have it slowly but surely revert back to its usual can't sleep at night self.
Now the reason I am posting this in NRNR is because sleep is important..here are a few things that happens when you don't sleep. As you can tell this isn't good even for a normal person. Now add Bipolar to that mix..and well I think you are starting to see the big picture.
In the short term:
- Decreased Performance and Alertness: Sleep deprivation induces significant reductions in performance and alertness. Reducing your nighttime sleep by as little as one and a half hours for just one night could result in a reduction of daytime alertness by as much as 32%.
- Memory and Cognitive Impairment: Decreased alertness and excessive daytime sleepiness impair your memory and your cognitive ability -- your ability to think and process information.
- Stress Relationships: Disruption of a bed partner's sleep due to a sleep disorder may cause significant problems for the relationship (for example, separate bedrooms, conflicts, moodiness, etc.).
- Poor Quality of Life: You might, for example, be unable to participate in certain activities that require sustained attention, like going to the movies, seeing your child in a school play, or watching a favorite TV show.
- Occupational Injury: Excessive sleepiness also contributes to a greater than twofold higher risk of sustaining an occupational injury.
- Automobile Injury: The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates conservatively that each year drowsy driving is responsible for at least 100,000 automobile crashes, 71,000 injuries, and 1,550 fatalities.
In the long term, the clinical consequences of untreated sleep disorders are large indeed. They are associated with numerous, serious medical illnesses, including:
- High blood pressure
- Heart attack
- Heart failure
- Psychiatric problems, including depression and other mood disorders
- Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD)
- Mental impairment
- Fetal and childhood growth retardation
- Injury from accidents
- Disruption of bed partner's sleep quality
- Poor quality of life
As you can see, especially in the long term this would most certainly have a profound effect on you if you already have a mental disorder that causes some of the same issues listed. This issues would be compounded and could really make life difficult.
I highly recommend if you can sleep, get a good nights rest each night. It is important for your well being including your mental health. I rarely get a good nights sleep but I keep trying to anyway.
Next week I am putting myself on a schedule as I feel that it is the next step in balancing myself. Feel free to join me for my rant that I am sure will be forthcoming. Til then Rest Well.
I will leave you with this..which is pretty accurate except I got to bed around 1am and get up around 8am. It never fails though 7am every morning and I finally drift off into good sleep just to be woke up around 8 and have to get up. Its enough to make you have a melt down. :P