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Having headache throughout the day and constipated. Unable to sleep in night. Treatment? - Online Doctor Chats

Date : 18-Sep-2013
User rating for this question
Very Good Posted in: General Health
Answered by

General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2004
Answered : 1722 Questions
Doctor:How can I help you?
User:Hi Dr XXXXXXX - this is XXXXXXX XXXXXXX here
User:I have a question - I am finding it too difficult to get sleep every night past couple of weeks
User:I was Working through nights last week for a few days
User:but, I see this as a general observation that I am increasingly finding it difficult to have a good sleep
User:I need your help on this pls
Doctor:If you have any other symptoms, please describe.
User:my appetite is generally low
User:and mostly have headache through the day
User:I take a saridon once i feel the headache is unbearable
User:my bowel movement is affected too
User:i always am feeling constipated
Doctor:Do you have any other co-existing symptoms?
Doctor:May I know your age?
User:i am 40
Doctor:Since when have you noticed all this troubles?
User:since 2 months
Doctor:May I know if your periods are regular?
Doctor:This may be related, so I hope you do not mind answering that.
User:no - i have pcod and they are not regular
Doctor:Have you seen a doctor to know what is causing the current symptoms?
Doctor:Do you have any other medical problems such as diabetes, thyroid disease?
User:no, i have not seen a doctor
User:and i dont have diabetes or thyroid problem
Doctor:Let me brief you.
Doctor:Since your symptoms are too generic, it is a bit difficult to predict what may causing the sleep issues. But based on the history provided,
Doctor:I shall provide you with
Doctor:some possible explanantions.
Doctor:1. First and foremost is perimenopause. As women inch closer to 40 to 45 years, the amount of estrogen (hormone that was regulating periods) starts to fall.
Doctor:This low levels of estrogen coupled with other menstrual hormones bring in different set of symptoms.
Doctor:you tend to feel warm, there can be hair changes, there can be hot flashes.
Doctor:All these symptoms initially can be very subtle.
Doctor:These changes can be making you difficult to sleep.
Doctor:A person becomes used to this change gradually over a period of time and perimenopause/menopausal symptoms do not hinder sleep any more.
Doctor:2. Current change is work timing. Stress and pressure at work as well as changes in shift timing
Doctor:can disturb body sleep rhythm.
Doctor:These psychological and physical changes can make you hard to sleep.
Doctor:3. Rarely a systemic problem such as thyroid hormone issues can be a cause.
Doctor:These are the only three possible explanations I can think of based on your history.
User:what can I do to help myself -
Doctor:Systemic examination may add if any other causes are associated.
Doctor:In this circumstances, I suggest the following:
Doctor:1. Avoid too many shift changes. Your body is most likely not adjusting to that.
Doctor:2. Prepare a proper sleep schedule. It is better to sleep at fixed hours say 9-10pm.
Doctor:3. Preferably sleep with lower temperature. It's getting warm these days. Coupled with the perimenopausal changes it can be causing more difficulties.
User:Yes, i agree - i feel really warm while sleeping and sweat too - while it is not too hot outside
Doctor:4. Tryptophan helps. There are some food products XXXXXXX in tryptophan. It can be helpful to take them for dinner.
Doctor:Non vegetarian food, peas and nuts, curd and yoghurts are XXXXXXX source of tryptophan.
Doctor:And yes, your meal should be atleast one or two hours before your bed time.
Doctor:5. If you have gastritis/GERD issues, prefer to take treatment for that.
Doctor:6. Sleep in a comfortable and relaxing space. Keep the sound and light low.
Doctor:7. If you suffer from very frequent headaches, visit a neurologist and ask for preventive treatment.
Doctor:Chronic headache can make you difficult to sleep.
Doctor:8. If these few changes doesn't help, then next step is to take melatonin supplements.
Doctor:These are not sleeping pills but just supplements to aid you sleep.
User:and i need a prescription for that and is not available off the shelf right
Doctor:9. The last option is to take sleeping pills briefly under guidance of an expert.
User:Ok - i will try with the options and see if i am getting better, if not, I will consult a physician
Doctor:Melatonin is available over the counter at most places.
Doctor:However I would recommend you to take those in the first instance.
Doctor:I would suggest you to try other diet and life style options.
Doctor:If things don't improve, visit a doctor for clinical examination. He/she may be able to pull out any missed reasons and treat it accordingly.
Doctor:If there are no other reasons for lack of sleep, then melatonin supplements are an option.
Doctor:Have you followed?
User:yes, i have - thanks
Doctor:Do you have any other query?
User:nothing for now
Doctor:Thanks for consulting me.
Doctor:Bye for now.
User:thanks for your help
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