Mental Health

Sleeping and Schizoaffective Disorder

It can be difficult to sleep when you are hearing voices or having delusions. Hearing voices and having delusions can be symptoms of schizoaffective disorder or schizophrenia. This is what I deal with.

Sometimes when I am trying to fall asleep I hear voices more clearly. Sometimes I can’t tell if it is part of a dream or not. They tell me all sorts of things. Sometimes they are calming and sometimes they scare the shit out of me. They seem to heighten at night.

I’ve been hearing a telephone ringing lately. It rings all the time. It is really annoying. It will ring and ring and no one will every pick it up because it is an imaginary phone that I have made up in my brain. It usually rings more frequently at night. It is always the same ring tone. A standard house phone sound. Sometimes it really messes with me and other times I can just ignore it.

Sometimes I have more thoughtful delusions at night. I think that people are out to hurt me and that they actually will. I think that people watch me and know when I am going to sleep so they know when to attack. I can, most of the time anyway, be rational about this because no one is out to get me but other times it is hard to convince myself that nothing bad will most likely happen.

I think being alone at night also makes it worse. I live with a roommate but she usually comes home after I’ve gone to bed. I go to sleep pretty early. I like to go to bed before it gets too dark outside. That helps a little bit.

Sometimes I have a difficult time falling asleep because of my hallucinations and delusions. I learned a technique called the butterfly hug from my therapist to help soothe me. You cross your arms over your chest and pat rhythmically with your hands. That has been helping some what lately.

I find that listening to music or a podcast helps me distract myself from the voices. I also sometimes will hum to myself to block out other noises. I will try the butterfly hug and go to bed when it is still light outside or use a night-light.

Some nights are harder than others. I do know though you will fall asleep eventually so don’t worry about that. If you struggle falling asleep, try any of the things I mentioned above and let me know if they helped. Sweet dreams.



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