Breast cancer

Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women in the UK. Men can also develop breast cancer, although this is rare. This group is for anyone affected by breast cancer to get together, ask questions, share experiences and support each other.

insomnia and worry

No. of entries: 17 | Posted on 8 Oct 2012 2:55 AM

insomnia and worry

  • hello,

    I have just joined this group and feel a little uncertain?

    I have had breast cancer, diagnosed in May , resulting in a double masectomy in June.Since diagnosis I have had less than 5 nights full sleep and at 40 yrs with a 3 year old and being a single parent, am finding this exhausting! Sometimes just tossd and turn worrying and just read high statistic on chances of secondary cancers with breast so beginning to panic alittle........

  • Dear Topcat

    Sorry to hear about your insomnia and worry. I am not surprised you're tired with a 3 year old, recent op and worrying. It is a tough journey and there are times when it is really scary. Please try not to worry it won't change things and just takes energy that you need to look after and be kind to yourself. My advice would be to try not to predict what may or could happen and just focus on here and now and what helps right now. 

    Sending kind thoughts and a virtual hug your way


  • Dear Topcat    Things must be a bit hard for you at the moment, with your 3 year old and being a single mum as well.    I don't know if this may help you.    I have taken these herbal pills for years, before I had the big 'C'.    They are pretty safe and when I had my first chemo my husband asked if I could take these to help me sleep the chemo nurse checked with pharmacy and they said I could because they are herbal containing hops, valerian and gentian.  They are called Kalms and you get 200 in a bottle. In actually fact they are a general calmer, taking just two at night before sleep, you will feel relaxed, and will sleep well.       I haven't taken them with my chemo, but if I was pushed I would as they are a natural remedy.       Hope this helps.


    Winston xxxx   Love and hugs xx

  • Hi Topcat

    I have suffered from being rubbish at sleeping all of my life (i'm 35) and was diagnosed this year. I thought it would be a nightmare and sleep would never come but a few things can help.

    Firstly realise that if you don't sleep it is not the end of the world. I know it feels like it but you will still function and everything else will carry on as normal. That way the pressure is off a little.

    Secondly tell everyone you know whats going on. You will find people you didn't think cared come out as amazing support and can help you in different ways. Maybe a friend of your daughter can have her for the night so you  can relax. If you force yourself to sleep you probably wont but relaxation is just as important.

    thirdly, dont google statistics. They are out of date mostly and everyone is individual. concentrate on how you are going to get yourself well, don't worry about whats happened to everyone else.

    and fourthly a psychotherapist once told me that if you try to stay awake, instead of trying to sleep you will become more tired.

    Oh and KIWI fruits are supposed to induce sleep (i saw that on food hospital this week)

    lots of hugs,

    Ali x


  • Thankyou Ali,

    I will certainly try these methods....anything will help!x

  • Hi Winston,

    i am really going to have a look at this xxx

  • Dear Monkey,

    Thankyou for this.......I do worry about it and once you start tossing and turning it just gets harder and harder.....x

  • Hi Topcat

    Tossing and turning is the worst, I find.   Once I've realised I'm not going back to sleep, I get up, go to the loo, get a drink of water and lie on the sofa with a story book.   I usually find I wake up some time later on the sofa, a bit cold but definitely sleepy and creep quietly back to bed!

    There are a number of other suggestions on this thread that I'll certainly try too.  

    Sweet dreams, Lilybeth

  • Thanks Lilybeth,

    did indeed get up at 2am and eventually went to bed at 7 am ready for my darling 3 year old to wake me at 8 ! Just feels like and I am now owrrying that just getting on with this and not really telling people means maybe I havnt dealt with this fully and its appearing in the night? Sorry for this .......

  • It breaks my heart that you aren't telling people. I understand wanting to just get on with it but honestly it is other people that are getting me through it. Its a massive support. Also since I have told people I have had 2 friends come to me and say they went to get lumps checked that they were putting off because they were I feel like I have helped others too....

    be brave, talk about it x

  • Hello Ali and Topcat

    I agree it's best to talk about it, not just for yourself but also for the sake of immediate family who can become overwhelmed if they are your only outlet.

    I also do think friends can help get you through these hard times.   I certainly would not recommend keeping such a big thing to yourself and as they say "a trouble shared is a trouble halved", though I know it's not my way.

    Unlike Topcat, I don't have any worries, just a great sadness and fortunately it doesn't stop me from sleeping.   I think if you have worries you are best seeking advice to put them to rest and allow yourself to get some rest.  

    I rang one of the MacMillan nurses when I was really worried and she gave me some good pointers.   I also had a Mantra "It's not my choice but I will get through it".   I liked the idea on the "Worrying scan results" thread where Cassie makes up a parcel of her worries to leave under the bed before going to sleep.



  • Topcat

    I took Valerian whilst having chemo and although wouldn't say it got me to sleep it def relaxed me (and my jumpy legs).

    I saw the food doctor/hospital programe too and as well as kiwi's at night she put the lady on pasta/carb dinners before bed too which apprently helps you to sleep.

    I hope it helps -the is nothing worse than sleep deprivation. When I have bad sleep I think the worst and after good sleep I'm so much more positive. No wonder they use it for torture!!!



  • Thanks Ali,

    i have had had a bad experience with my breast nurse and cant talk to her but being on here has helped a little in feeling less isolated and i am going to try and find another nurse.....x

  • Thanks Lilybeth,

    i missed that one but will def go and have a look search of a BIG BOX  ! x

  • Thanks CX,

    i have got some good ideas off here and def need a sleep now back at work part time .,........

    cant keep it up on 2 hrs a night xxx