Severe Insomnia and Sleep issues

I’m at the stage where I can’t take much more . I had severe insomnia after initially stopping finasteride and used Eszopiclone every single night for 3 months (averaged between 4-6 hours a night on it).
In Jan 2020 I started tapering off and went down from Eszopiclone very slowly by March 2020 I was off of it and could sleep on just Melatonin or Valerian root for about 6 hours . This went on for 6-7 weeks and I thought I was over the sleep issue finally . The last 4 weeks it has come back and it’s now at the point where it’s as bad as where I initially quit the drug . A good night is 4 hours , most nights are about 2-3 hours of crappy broken sleep and about once a week I get zero hours and lay there all damn night .
I spoke to a doctor over the phone and he referred me to a sleep disorder clinic - but they are not accepting patients right now because of covid . He said just to use the zopiclone for a week , which I did but then as soon as I stop it goes back to terrible nights sleep . I’m currently using a great product called Irwin naturals Melatonin , 5htp and Rhodiola and at first I was getting 4 hours a night and mood has been lifted 90% which made it bearable. The supplement is still having a positive affect on mood but the sleep is just decreasing again and I’m getting 1-2 hours . It’s really effecting my life and is the WORST symptom for me as it affects just about everything else . I read here a lot of accounts and most people have severe insomnia at the start of discontinuing finasteride but then a lot of the stories I read people see improvements. I’m on 8 months of discontinuing and I was sure I’d be over this now . It’s really affecting my life in ways I never thought possible . I read most of the finasteride suicide stories and they all seemed to have severe insomnia too . I sure as hell know how they feel , it was probably affecting just about everything for them . I’m usually a positive person through this but at the moment Im really struggling. I have tried most things - Melatonin , CBD , Valerian, magnesium, …this supplement I take at the moment has just about everything in it - L Theanine , passionflower, lemon balm, ashwagandha, Rhodiola, Melatonin, magnesium , 5htp and it makes me feel great and takes the edge off it but isn’t knocking up the hours . It’s almost like my body has lost the ability to fall asleep . I lay there for hours and hours . I can’t even nap during the day . It’s really bizarre and if it is from this drug , then this drug is PURE evil to do that to someone’s vital body function like sleep . Should I try glycine ?

I don’t have any particular medical advice man but if your body managed to get back to a decent sleep schedule for 6-7 weeks just trust that your body can get back there again. My sleep has improved recently where I’ve actually managed to sleep for 7-8 hours unassisted several times a week for the last 2-3 weeks. My sleep was absolute shit for 6 months very similar to what you describe. What helped me was just managing the shit periods (talking to people in my support network, seeing a psychiatrist), and striving to go about my day as normally as I can despite brutal insomnia.

Personally I agree that fin-somnia is far worse than the sexual sides. I can relate to the passing suicidal thoughts bud. Just recognize these thoughts are simply a product of lack of sleep compounded by circular thought processes like ‘i’m broken’ ‘my brain doesn’t work anymore’. Try and reduce manage these sorts of thoughts as much as feasible, be kind to yourself during these rough periods, and avoid stress. Your body will find its way back if it has managed to do so before.

Sorry if this advice is ‘run of the mill’

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Im in th3 same position as you.
Cant sleep at all. It screws everything up.

Can you tell me which chemicals are ‘risk free’ to try?

No way is this advice run of the mill , it’s really encouraging and has helped me today reading it . I’m glad you are doing better and that you understand how rough it is . I willl take those points and try my best to get through , I know it’s easy to manifest a bunch of negative thoughts after a night of 1 hours broken sleep . In fact it’s a struggle today just getting through this part but I’m trying

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Not sure any of the pharmaceuticals are risks free - the one I took Eszopiclone has tolerance , dependence issues with it , which is a shame as it works good . I know the antidepressant Mirtazapine (Remeron) is supposed to be good for sleep but it has a terrible weight gain side affect . The only anti depressant I would consider for sleep is Amitriptyline which I am debating to take myself at some stage. I have heard things about the amino acid Glycine which is supposed to be great for sleep issues

No worries give this podcast a listen, it really helped me when my symptoms have been at their worst.

Dr. Bruhin is a psychologist who has PFS himself he touches on a helpful mindset to have whilst going through PFS. He does an excellent job explaining that although it is going to take a fair bit of time for our health to improve, we should be optimistic that progress will come and central to this is to actively avoid falling into despair.

I’d also advise focusing less on the specific number of hours you sleep and more on how you feel in general. Stressing on specific numbers of hours is unhelpful. If you feel ok don’t make yourself feel worse by stressing about set hours.

Also if you can’t sleep don’t go toss and turn in bed all night, go have a bath, watch some tv or read a book. Nothing worse than punching a pillow all night.

Try and keep progress in perspective. Hope you feel better soon.

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This is awesome - I have heard of Dr Matthew Bruhin - he is based in San Diego and I was in LA at the time when I first got this issue so I considered going to see him. I guess I still can via Skype! I will check this out today- didn’t realize there is a PFS global podcast either , awesome !That’s some good tips , it’s the right thing to do re getting up in the night , it’s the only thing to do really. Thanks again for the encouragement , I hope you get continued progress too!

Thanks for the podcast! Why there are nothing new there from 2017?

We have a psychologist who has pfs and we haven’t gotten in touch with him?

Has anybody attempted to do so or does anyone who know someone who has?

Take 10mg of hydrocortisone prior to bed along with your melatonin

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Try this, exactly how I did with this air mattress

https://forum.propeciahelp.com/t/body-temperature-needs-to-be-colder-when-sleeping-now/9310/16

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Interesting …core temperature has to be kept down . This mattress plays a part in helping ??

Hydrocortisone like the steroid cream yeah …Is this available over the counter and do you know the mechanism of action for it??

Yea it traps practically no heat as long as the room is cold. Regular mattresses trap too much heat. You’ll have to experiment with blankets and layering of clothes, and ac temp though.

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Woa! That’s awesome , it is a problem for me getting hot at night . It’s not that expensive either

You can try the chilipad or bedjet to keep cool at night. The chilipad, which I have, goes on top of the mattress and actively circulates cool water. The bedjet is a fan that blows cold air under the sheets. 63-68 degrees is probably the best temp for sleep

I’ve also heard some people here have great results with Belsomra, a sleep drug.

I never knew these devices even existed , that’s really good to know and I’m gonna check em out ! As for Belsomra…I tried them one night while I was still living in the USA, I have since moved back to the UK where they don’t have it . It didn’t help much that night from what I remember but it did have a nice sedating effect ( I did take right in that 1st month post discontinuation where insomnia was particularly severe and stubborn so that might have had something to do with it not working that great) I’d also be reluctant using anything that’s made by Merck lol do you know how many people have used it on here?!