Thursday, January 19, 2012

Sleepless in Breast Cancer Land

I used to never have a problem sleeping.  Since when I first began chemotherapy in October I have difficulty getting to sleep and staying asleep - and I usually don't nap.  I have been telling myself it was from the chemo drugs keeping me wired.  But my last chemo was Dec. 13 & I'd think it was out of my system by now - but I still cannot sleep well.  I know you need to get deep REM sleep for the body to rejuvenate.  But, I still watch the hours pass by before I get to sleep, then I seem to wake up several times before morning.  This is getting old! 

My chemotherapy oncologist thought the sleep problem was a result of anxiety & prescribed me Xanax to take at night, but that does not help with the sleeping issue.  I really don't think I am anxious.  I have had good pathology reports & have a deep faith, so I am not worried about the big "C".  I finally called my internist from UTSW & have an appointment with him next week to discuss this.  I am hesitant to go on prescription "sleeping pills", but I think that is lesser than the evil of not getting rejuvenative sleep.  My body needs rejuvenative sleep while I'm undergoing breast cancer treatment.  I start radiation the first of February & they say that causes fatigue - so I need to be able to sleep to recover from that side effect.

I have tried all the "home remedies" - reading, watching tv & over-the-counter sleep aids which leave me feeling groggy in the morning.  So, I'm anxious to see my internist next week to see what solution he has to offer.