Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

Depression Insomnia

Home care measures for insomnia in someone with depression include:

  • Avoid heavy meals, smoking, alcohol, caffeine, and colas prior to sleep. A light snack prior to bedtime may be effective.
  • Avoid naps: daytime napping can make it hard to fall asleep at night.
  • Avoid watching your clock: this can cause anxiety.
  • Do not drink fluids before bedtime: this may cause you to awaken to urinate.
  • Do not go to bed too early: sleep when you are sleepy. Find a way to relax before trying to sleep: read, watch TV, or take a warm bath. Do not read or watch TV in bed.
  • Keep the lights as dim as possible if you must get out of bed. Bright lights reset your brain's sleep clock. Do not watch TV because the light is too bright.
  • Limit stress whenever possible.
  • Make sure your bedroom is a comfortable temperature. A room that is cool and well ventilated is best.
  • Regular exercise can benefit sleep, but heavy exercise close to bedtime can delay sleep. Exercise prior to dinner may make you sleepy when its bedtime.
  • Sleeping pills should only be used for short-term insomnia. Long-term use of these drugs can cause more problems.
  • Try to follow a regular bedtime and sleep cycle. Remain in bed, with the lights out and your eyes closed if you awaken during the night. This will help sleep return and will not affect your normal sleep-wake cycle

Continue to Depression Stress

Last Updated: Dec 9, 2010 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Depression References
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  6. Wulsin LR. Is depression a major risk factor for coronary disease? A systematic review of the epidemiologic evidence. Harv Rev Psychiatry. 2004 Mar-Apr;12(2):79-93. [15204803]
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