MS and Insomnia please help!

Hey guys hope ur all good.


Its been 27 days since i have been diagnosed. At first I was not too bad but now its really hit me. my sleep has been shocking....It tends to happen on alternate nights so il have about 3/4 hours and then the next night about 8/9. It really is getting me down now, expecially as I am in the middle of a relapse too. Still got my optic neuritis. Yes there is a small improvement but looks like its gna b with me for a good few weeks/months. The hot weather has defo made it worse/more blurry. Think my sleep is bad cos im so anxious and stressed at diagnosis etc etc.

Did any of you suffer sleep wise initialy? If so how did u help yourself? I need advice please! 



Hi Rebecca.


Insomnia is a common problem for MSers I'm afraid. There are various things that help, but they do vary by person.


There have been quite a lot of posts about it on Everyday Living over the years, so if you do a search on there for "sleep" or "insomnia" you should find some good ideas.


Top tips from me are:

- do not look at the clock!

- do not get up and go to the loo unless you really need it (otherwise it becomes a habit; you literally train your bladder to wake you up during the night!)

- don't worry about it; relax

- try not to nap during the day if you can; if you have to, make it short


Karen x

Hi ya Beccy,

Oh this is something that I frequently battle with too!

I've found that if I relax and chill out in the hours leading up to going to bed then I have more of a chance of getting some half decent shut-eye.

Avoid using your laptop/pc and mobile before bed, cut out caffeine in the evenings and maybe consider trying some gentle yoga type stretches which may help.

I think it's a case of try it and see, but above all relax in the evenings and try to avoid anything stimulating.....if you'll pardon the think the key is to try & wind down.... 

I'd be grateful if you could let me know if you find the sure fire answer!

Debbie xx


I've suffered from sleeping problems/Insomnia for decades. Unfortunatley for me Tourette's and sleep problems go hand in hand ( It must ne a neuro thing?)

I rarely take sleeping tablets but do when my sleep is that bad that I literally don't sleep all night... or the next..etc, just to try get me back into a rhythm again.

I don't find anything works miracles but I do like lavender oil which helps promote better sleep. DO you like herb teas? Something like camomile can help. Or maybe a gentle massage? As long as you anne't in pain, of course.

Sometimes a warm bath helps a bit but not too close to bedtime because I need to cool down again.

My son has ADHD and also sleep problems and he takes Melatonin (natural) each night to help him sleep. It has worked wonders for him but for me it had the opposite effect. I take checimal sleep meds and they do work brilliantly, I just don't like taking meds unless I feel I really need to.

If your sleep problems are stress related then have you had or thought about any councelling?

It can do wonders sometimes just to talk about our worries.

Have you tried an eyemask and earplugs - if noise or light are a problem?

Using a pc is not good because it stimulates your brain and keeps it active.

Reading is another good one. A boring book that isn't going to keep you flipping pages all night ;)


Thanks guys. all amazing sggestions. Will give them a try. Karen re the bladder issue....ive realised that all these years ive been peeing so much and thought it was just me but now im starting to think it was the beginning of my MS.

Debbie- haaa yes i will avoid anything stimulating at night. not seein my bf then tonight lol.

midnight moon- yes ive heard melatonin is meant to be really good for soem and not for others. will see how i get on. i think mine is anxiety related and will be going back to counselling i think just cos ive not been diagnosed long so it prob hits me on and off



....LOL.....avoiding said BF isn't quite what I meant Beccy but it did make me chuckle!!

Midnightmoon mentioned herbal teas. Holland & Barret do one called 'Nightime' which unlike a few others is quite a pleasant taste and it does help with relaxing.

In my opinion avoid Valerian....It's meant to aid sleep - which it may well do but....OMG it stinks!! A lot of herbal teas designed to aid sleep do contain Valerian (the Nightime one does too) but the full whammy Valerian herbal tea on it's own....Oh no way Pedro!!

If you think your lack of sleep could be anxiety related then it might be worth speaking with your ms nurse too - she may be able to offer some suggestions. Learning some relaxation techniques maybe?

Also make a note to mention the bladder issues to your nurse as well. Mine has suggested I make an appt to see - well I can't remember who now, but she did give me the contact details - anyway, it's worth telling her!

Debbie xx

hahaha yea but ahh well the mind of a 26 year old girl what can i say!! haha

i try to avoid herbal teas or any liquids at night cos my bladder goes mad and im up peeing every hour.

Actually i dont have an MS nurse yet. Im goin back to neuro tomorrow so sure he will mention it then. Yea im starting meditation in a few weeks...mum thinks will be good for me :) xx