For the past 3 years, my son Mitchell has struggled with insomnia. He frequently took three or more hours to fall asleep. We have tried everything to help him with little to no success. The neurologist tried medication with very little improvement in sleep and lots of side effects.
- Melatonin – horrible nightmares
- Clonidine (a blood pressure drug used off label for sleep and behavior) – no improvement in sleep or behavior
- Focalin (a stimulant used for ADHD) – slightly improved sleep, but decreased appetite and increased anxiety
- Kapvay – (extended release Clonidine) – no improvement in sleep or behavior
The sleep doctor tried changing his routine. The doctor clearly did not believe that we had already made most of the changes he suggested before coming to him. Every visit he questioned if we were really following his suggestions. I still don’t understand why he thought why we would bother to come to the visits if we weren’t searching for solutions. We were desperate for sleep.
His suggestions included:
- No screen time two hours before bed. – No problem.
- Moving bed time back to 10 pm instead of 8:30 pm. Wonderful! Now when it took 3 to 4 hours to get to sleep, we were awake until 1 or 2 am!
- A consistent bedtime every day. – That was already our standard.
- A calming bedtime routine. – Apparently family read aloud time, devotions, and prayer time weren’t calming enough.
- No night lights in his room. – That set off panic attacks that were definitely not conducive to sleep.
- Giving him his own bedroom. – That one we never tried. I’m not sure how he thought that was feasible with seven children in three bedrooms.
- Waking him up at 7 am no matter what time he went to sleep. – Ugh! I won’t even mention how horrible our days were with an overtired, irritable child.
- Melatonin – Been there. Done that. And we didn’t like the T-shirt.
We had just resigned ourselves to trading off staying awake until midnight or later most nights waiting for Mitchell to fall asleep. We stopped having a set wake up time for Mitchell, and started let him sleep until he woke up on his own (sometimes 10 am or later). Our days were much better, but it was not a perfect solution. We needed sleep!
When I started using Young Living Essential Oils, Peace & Calming was one of the first oils I purchased. It worked fabulously for six of my children, but not Mitchell. Well, that’s not exactly true. It helped his mood and hyperactivity, but made no difference in sleep. I added Cedarwood next. Still no difference. I was starting to get discouraged.
One evening Mitchell was having a particularly rough time. He was loud and very active. His brothers and sisters were trying to hide from him because he was constantly in their faces. He wasn’t doing his chores and was very defiant. It was one of those nights I just wanted to go and hide. On a whim, I asked Mitchell if he would like one of my “special” oils that none of the kids had tried before. He jumped at the chance to have something that before his siblings. I applied Joy to the back of his neck and over his heart and prayed.
It didn’t take long to see a difference. He came up to me just a few minutes later to thank me and ask if he could have Joy again. I was so happy to get our evening back on track. I didn’t even consider that it might help with sleep until Mitchell asked for Joy with his nightly oils.
My husband and I were relaxing waiting for everyone to fall asleep less than an hour later when we realized something was wrong. We couldn’t hear Mitchell. We checked the monitor – it was working. We checked the rest of the house – he wasn’t there. Finally, we checked his bed. We never expected him to be there. He was sound asleep. He hadn’t even been up one time. He didn’t wake up his baby brother. It was only 9:45 pm. Amazing!
I hesitated to believe that Joy was the reason for our extra sleep that night. Even if it was, would it work again? Nothing else had helped for more than a week. Seven days later I was cautiously optimistic. Two weeks later I was starting to try to change my schedule to go to sleep earlier. Three weeks later I was explaining to the doctor why we had stopped the last medication to try to help him sleep because it wasn’t working and why we didn’t want to try anything stronger. I know the doctor doesn’t believe me yet, but I’m working on making a believer out of her.
I posted this to encourage you to not give up if you have tried essential oils and not seen the results you were expecting. Everyone’s body is different. There are multiple reasons for most issues you may be facing. Don’t be afraid to try different oils, even oils that aren’t normally suggested, in your search for a solution. Please be sure to only use good quality therapeutic grade essential oils. Many oils are available that are not of the highest quality and will not have the same results as Young Living oils.
If you are wanting to try essential oils, I highly recommend the Young Living Premium Starter Kit. It contains 11 of the most used oils, including Joy, a diffuser, a roller fitment, and samples of NingXia Red and several oils. It is an unbelievable value at over $120 off of retail price. There have definitely been medications that I wished our family had never tried, but I have never regretted any Young Living Essential Oil that we have used. Just let me know if you would like to learn more.