I used to sleep really well. And then I got a thyroid condition, and I remember the doctor looking at me, almost gleefully, saying, ‘You know, one of the symptoms of hyperthyroidism is insomnia.’ I thought, Can’t be that bad…it was. I didn’t have insomnia because I could not sleep. My bladder was keeping me awake. My visits to the bathroom became as much as three times a night.
I tried everything. I figured I just needed to relax.
First, I procured an essential oil burner and burned lavender oil. And for one night it worked – beautifully. But after that? It was like my body had said, ‘Trying to trick us, eh?’ And from that night on I had no further success with lavender. But that’s me. Maybe lavender will work, or has worked, for you.
Then I figured, maybe if I just relax I can fall asleep, and my bladder can relax too. So I tried something called progressive muscle relaxation, in which I start at the toes, and slowly and methodically tell each group of muscles to relax. And that did help. It relaxed me to fall asleep and stay asleep till at least 1am. But…nature kept calling.
You know, it wasn’t until the morning, in 2016, when I was being interviewed by an anaesthetist just before my parathyroid operation, that I found out that my elevated calcium levels were probably the culprit in prompting my overnight visits to the bathroom. This is because calcium contacts muscles, and the bladder has a muscle lining the front of it called the detrusor muscle.
But I was to find out that one can have a relatively normal calcium level, and still have a nervous bladder.