Being a nurse I work odd hours. Consequently sleep is something I think about, talk about and complain about a lot. I have tried all types of natural rituals and remedies but over the years I find that sometimes my only option is pharmaceuticals.

My drug of choice to get to sleep is Diazapam (Valium). It puts me to sleep but generally I wake up about 4-4.5hrs into my slumber wide awake. It also makes feel like a hard core Eastern Suburbs Lush.

Tamazapam is my second drug of choice but I find I have to take quite a lot of it to get me anywhere.

Phenergan is a drug that I hated taking until today. I find that when I take it I sleep for 12-14hrs then am sluggish for another 6hrs.

Today I cleaned out my medicine box. I found two packets of Phenergan and noticed there were 10mg tablets and 25mg tablets. Guess what I’d been taking…. the 25mg tablets. I asked around at work and most people take only half a 10mg tablet. However to treat allergies people take 25mg three times a day. I would be asleep 24hrs/day!

Here are some tricks I use to sleep and try and work off my sleep deficiet.

– on the day of night duty I sleep in as long as possible, have a big lunch and have a sleep as soon as I feel tired in the afternoon.

– between nights – make my bed and set it up before I leave fir work. This means, leaving a water bottle beside the bed, putting my electric throw between the sheets, closing all the blinds, and turning my phone on silent and setting an alarm. I come straight from work wearing dark sunglasses, run in and turn my blanket on. Then I go have my shower brush my teeth, bathroom etc then jump straight into bed. I turn my blanket off then so it doesn’t wake me when It gets too hot. If I wake up during the day I go straight to the bathroom then go straight back to bed and am not allowed to check my phone! If I wake before 2pm I have to lie in bed until 2pm. Usually I only sleep until about 1230-1pm. (4-5hrs sleep -not a lot!)

-after nights the bigget problem is falling back asleep that night. I try and book appointments around midday that day so that I HAVE to get up. Once I’m up I’m ok but it’s bloody hard that first half hour. I try and keep busy untilbed time that night. I’m especially feral around 6pm. I go to bed about 9pm and i find this is the best time to take a tablet. I have stayed up many a time until 5am looking
at the ceiling if I don’t as you get a second wind about 8pm and feel a million dollars! (I think because you’re so sleep deprived and you’re hallucinating!)

Last week I worked 1 day and 4nights. If a normal persons week is 8hrs/night sleep times 7nights They have 56hrs sleep a week. Last week I had 34hrs sleep 😦 that’s 2.5 nights of sleep completely missed out on. What a joke! The likelihood of me having Rem sleep is very unlikely on those days I only slept 1-4hrs.

So yeah.. That’s why I think about, talk about and Complain about sleeping a lot… And turn to drugs.


4 thoughts on “Drugs

  1. I’m also a night shift nurse, and struggle with getting enough sleep as well. I also have routines I stick to like glue. I take clonazepam and compazine to help sleep, along with benadryl. I still wake frequently, but it’s better on nights than on days. On days I was averaging 4 or 5 hours of sleep, on nights I get 6-7. You’re not alone.

    • Thanks Lauren! You were my second ever comment. Very exciting!
      I enjoyed her yellow glasses in the post, but don’t think I would ever be that committed to trying it… More fool me perhaps! You’ve inspired me… I might make a special post and include links to other night duty tips including hers. Xx

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