Monday, October 12, 2009

ADHD Adults and Sleep

There are many insomniacs in this world, but Adders, both children and adults have insomnia( going to sleep or staying asleep) more often than the non-ADDers. Often ADDers are depressed, anxious, restless and obsessive (hyperfocus), which can worsen insomnia. If you have an ADD brain style, sleep deprivation will exacerbate ADD-like behaviors such as inattentiveness, “spaceyness”, distractibility and organizational skills.

It would be expected that ADD stimulants could lead to insomnia. Usually, when sleep is a problem, particularly with short-term doses of stimulents, my coaching clients tell me they do better with sustained release preparations, or when they take stimulants as early in the day as possible. Others engage in meditative practices or take sleep medications. However, it is important to be aware there are reports that many of the sleep medications antagonize REM sleep.

As an ADDer, do you have sleep problems with or without stimulants and/or sleep medications? If you do, what alternatives have you tried in addition to the usual suggestions for insomnia( alcohol before bedtime, going to bed and sleeping when you’re really sleepy, not reading or watching TV in bed)?

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