HysterSisters Articles for Hysterectomy
SHARING IS CARING
Insomnia after Hysterectomy
From the Hysterectomy Recovery Articles List
I can't seem to fall asleep and stay asleep since my hysterectomy. What is wrong with me? What can I do to get back to my normal sleep pattern?
Having difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep is common among hysterectomy patients, particularly during the early post-op weeks. The trauma of surgery combined with hormonal disruption (even if you retained your ovaries) can throw your body completely out of whack. Even if you have never been plagued by sleep problems before, you may find yourself lying in bed wide awake for most of the night after you return home from the hospital. For most women, this problem gradually goes away as they continue to heal and recover from the surgery. For temporary aid, many of the HysterSisters have found these remedies effective in promoting a good night’s sleep:
- Drink a cup of Ovaltine, a mug of hot milk, or “Sleepytime” or other herbal or decaffeinated tea at bedtime.
- Have a few slices of turkey on crackers as a bedtime snack.
- If your doctor has cleared you to take baths, take a warm bath (whirlpool if you have one) before bed. Light a scented candle and play some relaxing music to enhance the soothing atmosphere.
- Take extra steps to make your sore and hurting body more comfortable in bed, such as using extra pillows.
- When you are sufficiently recovered and physically able to do so, start getting outdoors everyday for fresh air and a brisk walk. Exercise during the day helps you sleep at night!
- During the late afternoon and evening, avoid foods and beverages that contain caffeine.
- If you indulge in alcoholic beverages, do so sparingly.
Some women take over-the-counter medications like Tylenol PM, Sominex, Melatonin, or herbal products and say these help combat their insomnia. Please check with your doctor before taking anything of this nature. Just because products are sold without a prescription doesn’t mean that they are safe and appropriate for everyone to use in all situations.
If you start taking hormone replacement therapy (HRT) after your hysterectomy, the hormones “should” help alleviate your insomnia. However, bear in mind that it may take up to three months for HRT to reach its full effectiveness. With or without HRT, if your insomnia persists, it is important that you see your doctor about this issue. Chronic sleep deprivation is unhealthy and can be dangerous. It can contribute to the likelihood of being in auto accidents and other mishaps. And, it certainly compromises your feeling of well-being and jeopardizes your overall quality of life.
It is a medical fact that insomnia is caused by an underlying condition. Your doctor can work with you to uncover that condition and treat it with the appropriate therapy. If the underlying condition is successfully treated, the insomnia will go away. So, if you find that you don’t start getting “quality shut-eye” soon, do see your doctor so that you can be helped. After all, you deserve to be the best “you” that you can be, and getting sufficient sleep is part of the formula.
This content was written by staff of HysterSisters.com by non-medical professionals based on discussions, resources and input from other patients for the purpose of patient-to-patient support.
03-10-2005 - 09:12 PM
SHARING IS CARING
Do you have a question?
If you have a medical support question related to this article, come JOIN US in our HysterSisters Community Forums. You will receive helpful replies to your questions from our members. See you there!
Recommended for Hysterectomy Recovery
Mesh panties are stretchy and light - perfect for holding peri pads securely during hysterectomy recovery. [...More]
Post-operative compression panty with medical grade silicone to speed hysterectomy recovery + reduce scarring. [...More]
Softest Bra Ever
When you want to wear something, but feel nothing. Two in a value pack for your hysterectomy recovery. [...More]
Options to Hysterectomy
Hormone and Menopause
Intimacy after Hysterectomy
Fitness after Hysterectomy
Grief and Loss
Ask A Doctor
Find a Surgeon
|Debra Richardson, M.D.
Gynecological Oncology Clinic - SW Med
2201 Inwood Road Suite 106
Dallas TX 75390
|Donna Chester, M.D.
2841 Debarr Rd
Anchorage AK 99508
|Ellen Wilson, M.D.
5323 Harry Hines Blvd - Dept of OBGYN
Dallas TX 75390
|Caren C Reaves, M.D.
Caring for Women
2805 S. Mayhill Rd
Denton TX 76208
|Lillian Schapiro, M.D.
3200 Downwood Circle, Suite 220
Atlanta GA 30327
|Clifford Rogers, M.D.
The Everett Clinic, Dept. of Surgery and Gynecology
1330 Rockefeller Ave, Suite 120
Everett WA 98201
425 339 5424
|Nonnie-Marie Estella, M.D.
10 Research Place
North Chelmsford MA 01863
|Melvin Ashford, M.D.
2603 White Bear Avenue N
Maplewood MN 55109
|Nathan Mordel, M.D.
105 Collier Road Suite 1010
Atlanta GA 30309