I’ve always had a weird relationship with sleep, but depression has pushed it into a completely different level.
I can easily sleep for 12 hours if I’m left to it. And that’s not dozing off and getting up, that’s 12 solid hours completely unconscious. I’ve always been jealous of people who can sleep for five and six hours a night no problem – if I don’t get at least eight hours I struggle through the day.
Depression seems to have made this even worse.
A lot of the symptoms I’ve read relate to people struggling to sleep and suffering with insomnia. I’m almost the exact opposite. Not only can I sleep the same as normal, I’m sleeping even more. But when I’m awake I’m exhausted, mentally and physically. I’ve slept for hours but I’m not refreshed. Feeling tired all the time is also a symptom of depression, but I would have thought this went hand in hand with lack of sleep. But for me it makes no sense. I wake up after nine hours sleep still exhausted. I suppose this is one of the things that falls to individual experience – some people lose their appetites, but that definitely does not apply to me.
It took some searching but I did find some articles that mentioned sleeping more as a symptom. And in my assessments one option was asking whether you were sleeping less or more than normal. It seems it is a symptom, but not a hugely common one.
I don’t really know what I can do about it. I’ve been trying to regulate my sleeping routine, making sure I get to bed early so I don’t sleep in too late. I’m also trying to make sure I get up with my alarm, but this doesn’t always work too well. Napping at the weekend is also been kept to a minimum as much as I can, but sometimes I feel like I keep going all week just to have the weekends to collapse on the bed and nap with the cat.
I’m hoping that once I start my treatment, and I start to feel better, the constant tiredness and need for sleep will go away. Because I’d really love to have more hours back in my day, and the energy to do something productive with them.
NHS Direct: 111
The Samaritans: 08457 909090
Saneline: 0845 7678 000
Mind: 0300 123 3393