Suffering from insomnia

I suffered from very severe insomnia and anxiety relating to relationship issues about 5 years ago. I have pretty much recovered from the anxiety now but I still experience insomnia. I have gone days without sleep before. I feel tension and aches throughout my body. I feel headaches and slowness. I thought my problems were related and if I got better from anxiety, I would get better from insomnia because both derived from the same issue. What can I do?

Thank you for your question regarding your severe insomnia and anxiety. This is a serious issue so I am glad you have contacted me. 

I’m glad to hear that you have recovered from your anxiety concerning the relationship issue. It sounds like the experience was particularly traumatic. Before I discuss some possible options to address your insomnia, I would like to say I am concerned about your physical symptoms – they must be worrisome to you. 

Physiologically speaking, your headaches and slowness and tension may be related to lack of sleep – your body calling out to you to rest. But the fact you are unable to sleep may mean either your anxiety is still causing you issues or you have a physiological imbalance. 

To rule out a physiological cause I would suggest you see an endocrinologist. The doctor may check thyroid functions, respiratory or neurological causes. I know it is not desirable to have to go through this, but you will feel relieved to know some major illnesses have been ruled out. 

Some medications cause insomnia but you have not listed any in your profile. 

If we can assume there is no chemical imbalance, we should consider other causes of your insomnia and what should be done about them. 

Firstly, you would be well advised to learn all you can about insomnia. Physicians may look at a reference such as the one below. 
Types of insomnia 

In order to help you more, I would like to ask you to provide more information about your relationship that was the origin of your anxiety. Please tell me why you think you have overcome this anxiety. 

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