Sleepless In Texas By Cookie

WHY IS SLEEP IMPORTANT TO YOUR HEALTH?

Those seven simple words put into my Internet search brings up about 5,090,000 pages of important information telling us why sleep is important to your health. I have spent years struggling to get a good nights sleep, most of the time the pain was too much to get comfortable to get a full nights sleep. As my Ankylosing Spondylitis progressed so did the amount of pain I endured. It became impossible for me to deal with the pain of lying down on the bed and finding a comfortable way to sleep. Every doctor visit for more years than I can count ended up with me in tears and frustrated and angry. I would always ask for something to help me sleep. The response was always, well it is short-term use only and is addicting so there is really no need to begin it. You will need to find a happy medium that will bring you relief. I became desperate, I drank, and I took over the counter drugs having no clue if they would mix with my prescription drugs. I always meekly listened and followed my doctor’s advice as society and our mothers taught us to. I was only able to become my own advocate out of pure desperation. I was at my pain management doctor, for my once every three-month visit. How are you, where do you hurt, how are you sleeping, what is your pain level and here are your prescriptions and see you in three months. I finally got the courage borne of desperation to question why I couldn’t have a prescribed sleep aid to help me. The response was I (doctor) am afraid you will become addicted to sleeping aids, and we will have to deal with your addictions. I said you are f…, well let me rephrase that, I said you are kidding. I have been given every narcotic drug and procedure you can imagine with no thought of consequences. I mean really? You are afraid I will become addicted to sleeping pills, so what if I do? I have to sleep every night till the day I die. I told him you tell me how important it is to my health and well-being to sleep, yet you won’t help me. I told him that I need to sleep, and I can’t because of the pain. It hurts to lie down, it hurts to have the covers on me, and it hurts to turn over. I finally convinced him, that even if I did become dependant on the sleep aids, it would be worth it because of the benefits of sleep. I have been prescribed the smallest dose of  ambien for the past 4 years and I take a half a dose nightly

I do not have a sleeping problem; I can fall asleep at the drop of a hat. My sleeping dilemma is caused by pain, pain in every fiber of my body and I am not able to lie down in the bed, without crying out in pain. I am thankful that my doctor was willing to listen to my first attempt to be my own medical advocate, and I am thankful I loved my self enough to do so. What that day taught me, was I do have the right to challenge my doctor, I do have the right to present my side of the story, showing the pro and cons. Sleeping is as important to health as are eating properly and getting proper exercise. It is actually damaging to your health to work too hard and not get enough rest. Although most of us have heard we need eight hours of sleep a night to maintain good health, we are seldom reminded that quality of sleep is just as important as quantity. Poor quality sleep can lead to poorer performance at work, accidents, and mood swings. Health problems also begin to develop if poor quality sleep persists for a number of days or weeks.

Remember you have to be your own best friend, both physically, emotionally and in your health care program because you have the most to gain or lose.

I pray each sunset brings you peace and comfort and each new sunrise brings you hope.

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2 Responses to “Sleepless In Texas By Cookie”

  1. Very nice post. I just stumbled upon your blog and wanted to say that I have truly enjoyed browsing your blog posts. In any case I will be subscribing to your rss feed and I hope you write again very soon!

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