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Insomnia while on TRT

I get insomnia sometimes too, and it usually correlates with when I’m feeling bad overall… I think it’s because my hormones are out of wack, or the insomnia itself influences the brain in a way that screws up my TRT. Not sure which is the case.

Ativan. It is more of an antianxiety. Can’t remember if you tried trazadone. Works pretty well.

Insomnia is a bitch and I’ve struggled with it for at least 10yrs. I’ve tried just about everything for sleep. Lots of things work a little or for awhile. I’m currently taking:
50mg Trazadone
3mg Melatonin - Time release from LEF.
100mg Mod GRF
100mg GHRP-2
If I’m feeling really wired before bed, I’ll add some Z-12.

This works really well. I went from not sleeping much every night, to just occasionally waking up at 3am and not get back to sleep. Maybe once or twice a month.

Hello Tabman,

Can you tell us how is your sleep now?

Agree with what the guys said about E2 above. When mine isn’t dialed in between 18-24 – I am prone to insmonia myself sometimes. Or sleep, but without feeling rested in the morning.

Hi All,

Thanks for the note on ZMA and Aspartame, I agree and threw out the supplement after I was convinced enough by doing a bit of research.

As I mentioned above I stopped testosterone a while but sleep didn’t get better until I started supplementing Vitamin D. I read some good information on Dr Mercola’s website and Bulletproofexec about vitamin D been a hormone and how getting enough its probably one of the best things anyone can do to improve their health. I also learned that it needs to be combined with Vitamin K2 because high dosages increase the requirement for Vitamin K and eliminate the possibility of toxicity (assuming your not taking over 10,000iu according to the vitaminD council). Anyway look into it, this made a high difference for me and I started sleeping normally since I started using it. As in I literally started sleeping 8 hours a night from day 2 using 10,000iu. I think I slept about 5 hours on the first night…

I thought to myself, I couldn’t believe I was so far away from the problem by thinking that estrogen and testosterone are involved in the problem so 2 weeks after I started sleeping properly I decided to re-introduce some testosterone (Cypionate), I took 100mg. I continued to sleep ok, however the weeks following I noticed that my sleep started deteriorating again.

Ive always believed that finding the cause and treating it directly rather than trying to masking up symptoms. I mentioned in an earlier post that my late afternoon cortisol level was high (based on blood test results).

I dont understand why my cortisol level was high or irregular and spiking or toughing at the wrong time but after doing some research into it I came across an interesting website that published a paper on stubborn high nighttime cortisol and how using nutritional supplements to lower it eventually get it back into a normal rhythm where you can ease off the supplement and everything returns to normal.

Not sure if I can publish a link here, so just google “stubborn insomnia townsend letter” its the 1st search result.

Anyway, after reading this paper I was convinced that I had the same condition they describe in the section on stubbornly high cortisol levels so I ordered the product mentioned called Seriphos which lowers cortisol. They did also mention a couple of other products to lower cortisol, one in particular “Lactium” which they said works really well in combination with Seriphos. I didn’t buy it as I wanted to try their best idea at first, the Seriphos.

Ive been using it for a week so far, I started on 1 tablet and noticed a big difference, no so much in terms of how long I slept but more to do with the quality of sleep. I actually felt refreshed the next morning, even though I only slept 3 hours. Anyway, Ive been increasing the dosage since and am currently on 4 pills (2x2 at 9pm and 11pm).

I slept 5 very solid hours last night and feel great today, I still want to get that number up to attest 7hrs so Im going to add more Seriphos. I think each additional pill is giving me about an extra hour of very solid sleep at this stage.

I need to look into the max dosage, they do mention 3 on the townsend letter that I reference above but I have seen other things online where people are been recommended 6 or more for very stubborn cortisol levels. Perhaps this is why they recommended combining it with Lactium (which I plan to order today).

But yeah overall feeling great and sleeping very solid hours, Im monitoring myself on the “Sleep Cycle” app and I can see that last night I was in very deep sleep for 5 hours. Im completely out when I sleep, my wife woke up to a screaming baby at least twice last night, I heard nothing and didn’t even realise she was out of bed in the morning until I awoke. Prior to using Seriphos I could hear everything and was waking up on the slightest sounds.

So the improvement has been immense and I plan on continuing use of the product for at least 3 months after which Ill try and sleep without it and see if my cortisol can self regulate itself.

My current protocol is 100mg of test every 4 days, 250iu HCG every 4 days, 6.25mg exemestane (Aromasin) every 2 days, 100mg DHEA every morning, 10,000iu Vitamin D every morning, 2000mg Vitamin K2 every morning.

On late nights to bed to induce instant sleep, Im taking 500mg of Tryptophan, 500mg GABA, and 10mg Meletonin. This combo does nothing for me in terms of staying asleep, it just inducing quick sleep and I can literally fall asleep within 10 minutes of so after taking this combo. I don’t take this often, only if I need to fall asleep very fast because Im going to bed late.

Ill keep everyone updated on how I continue to go but it sure is good to be sleeping again.

Can we get an update. Very interesting thread.

My Vitamin D level reached 70ng/ml so I geared down to 5000IU every day about 5 weeks ago.

I also had a Pulmonary Embolism 6 or 7 weeks ago, doctors are not sure of the cause. I don’t know if they checked RBC and I certainly was not monitoring it. I will check if RBC was high with my new Endo tomorrow. I still get pins and needles in my arms when I sleep which is a new occurrence (started within the last 2 months, probably after the PE but not 100% sure).

I am 37 years old and eat a very clean diet, so can’t think of any other reasons why this may have occurred, anyone with good knowledge here, please share.

Too make sure the Vitamin D does not cause calcium leaks in my bones and teeth, I was also supplementing with 2mg of Vitamin K2 a day. After the PE I dropped the vitamin K thinking it may have been the cause, however my teeth very quickly became sensitive and my lower back started to hurt which may have been an indication that the high Vitamin D levels was causing calcium leaks. So I added the K2 back in and all returned to normal. Vitamin K is known to thinker blood, but according to the information Ive read, the body has a way to get rid of excess and does not store it as it does with other oil soluble vitamins (A,D and E).

As far as sleep is concerned, I stopped testosterone shortly after I last started it, I think I stopped after a 3 week trial because insomnia returned (surprise, surprise). I continued with Exemestane and got a little more aggressive with dosing to try and stimulate the hypothalamus by upping my dosage to 6.25mg a day. Traditionaly this would have caused me all sorts of back pain due to dry joins, but I think the high Vitamin D & K levels seems to have fixed this somehow. I also noticed that a 8 year long tooth pain (that I only feel when I floss) disappeared once I started supplementing with D and K.

The insomnia continued but I did not know why.

I got some bloodworm done 5 weeks ago and my testosterone level was 3 (12-30 is normal range). At this point, I decided the exemestane was not working so I switched to Tamoxifen at 40mg a day, once again an aggressive dose to try kick start the hypothalamus.

I started seeing a new endo 3 weeks ago, he insisted I stop taking every so he can figure out what was going on (I was reluctant to drop the Tamoxifen because I knew how low my test levels were but I did it anyway, after all I was paying a big premium to see this doctor). The man was very sincere and wanting to help, this was a first and somewhat unusual from my previous experience.

The second night that I stopped Tamoxifen I started sleeping much better, I think I got about 4 solid hours that night, the night after same thing, my sleep improved significantly in comparison with the last few months. However I was still only sleeping about 4 hours, hardly enough.

3 nights ago I went though my supplement draw and noticed I had Seriphos in there, I used this previously successfully for a short period before it stopped working. I wondered it it might work better now that I have stopped all medications, so without hesitation (and because my doctor never said anything about stopping over the counter supplements) I immediately took 6 capsules. It was 8pm at the time and by 10pm I saw extremely sleepy. Seriphos is supposed to lower cortisol which is what I suspected was my main issue all along.

I stayed up until about midnight, still extremely tired, I went to bed and fell asleep fairly quickly. This was nothing unusual, as I don’t normally have an issue falling asleep. From the first night back on Seriphos, I slept a solid 6 hours, second night about 7 solid hours, last night I was scheduled in for a sleep study and I didn’t sleep well due to 20 wires attached to my head and bright white fluorescent lights everywhere, but guess what? When I got back home this morning, I went to bed and slept another solid 1.5 hours and felt totally refreshed.

Now, I did drop the dosage of Seriphos because I noticed on the first night that I was still groggy in the morning, so 2nd night I used 4, and last night I used 4 again for the sleep study. I still feel 4 is too high because my lower back it hurting in the mornings. Possibly because cortisols inflammation lowering effect has been reduced. So now that Im back home and have the comfort of my own bed, Im going to try reduce the dosage to 3 capsules and see how I feel in the morning.

I feel completely normal at the moment and have done so for the last 3 days. I will share this update with my new Endo tomorrow and will report back here at some point.

My previous endo was monitoring my RBC, however I stopped seeing his earlier this year and experimented with higher testosterone dosing there after, so Im not sure how high RBC reached. I will need to get copies of hospital blood tests to see if they checked this, and I will check my Endos blood results tomorrow to see if he took a reading. I suspect that the numb pins and needles in my arms is somehow related. It occurs if I sleep on my side (the arm Im sleeping on), or if my arms are bent up and sitting on my chest while sleeping? I hope someone can shed some light on this and how a blood clot may have occurred as a result.

I should add also, that I am actively trying to increase my natural testosterone levels, I don’t know if its possible but Ive been drinking 8-12 raw eggs a day for the past month or so to get my cholesterol levels up. I also dropped sugar and simple carbs and am only consuming very slow burning carbs (lentils and beans atm) to get my triglicerides down.

Im also consuming cod liver oil, fish oil and grass fed butter every morning upon waking up and every night before bed. I consume 4 eggs religiously before bed because most testosterone is made during deep sleep. Cholesterol is converted into testosterone by the leydig cells so the idea is to make sure they have plenty of raw material available for this process.

My testes have reemerged in size but I still think they are smaller than when I started TRT, hard to say or remember after 2 years of poor sleep which has caused poor memory.

I don’t know if the above will work, I read it in “The 4 Hour Body” by Tim Ferris (NY Best Selling Author). HE supposedly tripping his testosterone level in 3 months following this protocol, Im still short 1 ingredient (according to his protocol), Brazil nuts which I’ll add in shortly for selenium (although I may be getting enough from all the eggs Im drinking).

My libido is still very down, but hey, Ive only been sleeping properly for 3 nights so I want to give my body a good opportunity to recover in the coming weeks and see how I go. I did get a morning errection a few nights ago but that was after weeks of no sex so I won’t get too optimistic yet.

I haven’t seen the mention of hemoglobin anywhere. I’m assuming you get that checked regularly and blood-letted if need be? To high of hemoglobin will give you clots.

3 things affect my sleep

Hemoglobin
Estrogen
Testosterone

High or Low in any of those and I don’t sleep.

For myself: Low estrogen is the worse, followed by High Testosterone.

Getting just enough is the key and after 4 years I’m still not sleeping well.

I think the biggest one though is getting your testosterone level right… Then the other two will keep themselves a lot better in line.

Regarding your Trigylcerides, do some research on B3 (Nicotonic Acid). Make sure it is the FLUSH kind. non flush kind is useless. Start at 100 mg and work up to more, otherwise you will be in a world of hurt.

Testosterone levels have moved up very little, Im currently at 4.6 (8-28 normal range).

I saw a new doctor that looks beyond blood test results and actually asks patients questions to understand the symptoms (a rare thing these days) to diagnose patients.

She started me on Slow Release T3 medication before she even saw my blood work. She explained that thyroid T3 hormone is required by every cell in the body. If its not reaching various areas in the brain it can cause all sorts of complications. She suspected my problem was related to reverse T3 which blocks the free T3 from reaching its destination. She said the slow release T3 will lower reverse T3 if I have such a condition and normalise thyroid delivery where needed.

She also explained that cortisol is a transport hormone for thyroid and is used to delivery it around the body.

This all sounded interesting (because I didn’t know much about the cortisol thyroid axis), and I thought that perhaps my cortisol was high because there was a feedback loop somewhere indicating that thyroid hormone was not been delivered to certain cells. The other thing that I had noticed is that my free T3 and T4 had gone up since I developed this sleep problem (2 years prior). This tied in with the theory that my cells were not receiving the T3 hormone required and another feedback loop was increasing production to try and get the hormone where required.

Anyway, first day I took the med, I popped 2 pills just after lunch because I had to go for a 1 hour drive to pick them up from a compounding chemist whom this doctor worked with. I felt nothing at first but maybe 3-4 hours later I felt excessively warm and started sweating a lot. The heat I was generating was out of context with the weather on that day so I figured the T3 kicked in.

Anyway, the heat passed after a few hours and everything seemed normal again, I slept about 4 hours that night which was consistent with my sleep pattern in recent times.

The second night I only slept 2 hours, and I felt the T3 medication was the reason for this deterioration in sleep so I never took it the third day and slept 4 hours once again (my normal recent sleep pattern).

The fourth day the doctor returned a phone call that I felt her and she advised to lower my dose from 2 tabs (20mcg each) to 1 tablet. And if 1 tablet was also causing sleep issues to 1/2 it and see what happens. I

I did as she suggested and slept for 8 hours last night on 1 20mcg tablet in the morning.

I also received the blood test results this morning after a long refreshing sleep and her suspicions were true, my reverse T3 was way over the normal range which was confirmation that I was deficient in T3 even though my thyroid gland was producing plenty (both free T3 and free T4 were well over mid range and bordering hyper levels).

I have not discussed the results with her yet, she asked pathology to send me results in the mail but it looks like I will be on T3 for life to keep rT3 down and cortisol in check.

Now, I wondered why I never slept on the second night that I took 2 tablets and suspect its because my cortisol level was still high and the additional T3 supplementation had not yet had enough time to lower rT3 which then normalised cortisol. So with that said I may again need to raise the T3 medication but will not make any adjustments for a few days just to ensure I get consistent sleep before any optimisation.

I hope this helps others whom have not yet found a doctor that checked rT3, she also checked thyroid antibodies (which came back normal) and ordered an ultrasound on my neck but I don’t have the results for this test yet so I will update the thread if more interesting info surfaces.

Im just glad that Ive been diagnosed with a thyroid condition and hopefully my 2 years of insomnia is over.

Yes I suspect that my red blood count was high, but don’t have any proof.

I have tried B3 but it was also causing sleep disturbances so I couldn’t continue with treatment. Apparently B5 is supposed to also lower cholesterol (without the flush), I got a pack but have not used yet.

Tabman, would love to hear any updates on your insomnia now.

Insomnia condition has been improving overall although I still get bad nights here and there, its a slow progress, but there is a distinct increase in sleep quality.

Doctor said it will take a few months for things to normalise, from my own reading I found 8-12 weeks is how long most people find reverseT3 takes to normalise. Its been 6 weeks for me now, Im up to 80mcg a day at the moment (no hyper symptoms because my cell receptors are still saturated with rT3 I guess). Currently Im doing 40mcg on wakeup (8am) and 40mcg between 2-4pm (depending on my day). Im going to try add another 20mcg before bed because my hypothyroid heart rate is about 60BPM. I peak at 72-78BPM while on T3, but Ive noticed that Im hypo again in the morning because my heart rate is back to 60BPM. The 20mcg before bed is a wild card, from what my doctor explained she gets better sleep on it (she has Hashimoto’s), but some people wind up on it so I guess I have to try and see.

On a side note, I have done several testosterone tests over there last few months and my test levels were not moving up much at all. Without reading my previous entries and just going off memory my levels moved up from 4.x to 4.7 over the course of a few months (normal 8-29).

On my last blood test, my test level went up to 7 (8-29 normal) which was a big jump for me, and my LH went up from 1.5 or so, to 3.6 (1.5-7 normal), so I think my hypothyroid condition was limiting my recovery and possibly caused my hypogonadism symptoms to begin with. I can recall as far back as 2008, that my heart rate was 59-60BPM even though I don’t do cardio. Ive had CT’s, and Ultrasounds on my heart to confirm I don’t have an enlarged heart ventricle from late 90’s early 2000’s steroid use so I really didn’t understand why I had such a low heart beat until now. The hypothyroid condition explains the low testosterone and the slow heartbeat.

I did an ITT 2 weeks ago, thats an insulin tolerance test which checks if my pituitary responds to low blood sugar levels appropriately by raising GH and Cortisol to counter its effects. I passed and no pituitary condition was found so everything seems to be functioning normal.

The doctor also said Im insulin resistant, I did start on Metformin for a little while but then stopped after doing more reading and finding that it lowers testosterone, so Im now using cinnamon to increase insulin sensitivity but Ill also be adding in berberine (also a herb) to lower blood sugar and improve insulin sensitivity further.

Ive also started monitoring my blood sugar levels when I wake up at night, not enough data at this point to draw any conclusions but I’m trying to workout if my cortisol is rising or falling based on sugar levels. Low blood sugar would indicate high cortisol and high blood sugar may indicate low cortisol. I borrowed a glucose monitor from my mother to do this as she has type 2 diabetes.

If I figure anything further out I will keep everyone posted, I eat a pretty clean diet so I was surprised about the insulin resistance part and even till now, I suspect its due to low testosterone and low IGF-1 but only time will tell.

Any updates a year or so later? I have been having the exact same problems since June, and tried near identical solutions to no avail. I’ve done cortisol 24 hour test 3am, T3 T4, blood sugar (which is actually low, all the time, even after eating pure sugar), seriphos 2 bottles, and most everything else you’ve tried except DHEA.

Snacking at night seems to help somewhat, but still wake up at 3am /- 15 mins every night. Then usually again at 5, 7, 9, etc. Worse nights I wake up at 3 and toss and turn for hours, feeling super hot and can’t cool off, but never with any sweat.

I’ve tried trazodone, benzos, mirtazipine, melatonin, so on but all they seem to do is help me fall asleep faster. I still wake up at 3 with the co-ordination of a drunken elephant.

Would love to hear any updates. Gives me hope to think that it might be as simple as a thyroid thing, I also happen to have a 2cm benign thyroid nodule on my right lobe. Would make sense if that is the root cause and not all these other things I am trying to puzzle together.

Any updates?

Yes I’m sleeping much better. I still don’t know the root cause but my blood pressure is elevated to around 140/80. I noticed when I get it down to 120/70 I sleep much better.

I’m taking potassium 600mg a day (get potassium and rbc potassium checked before you self medicate. 1g calcium citrate, and 600mg of magnesium glycerate. I also recently added CoQ10 200mg a day and Hawthon Root (the NOW brand combines these).

My blood pressure is 120-130/70-75 now.

I also take 3 amino acids, L-tyrosine, taurine, and tryptophan.

I’ve been sleeping a solid 6-6.5hrs on this protocol. I also go back to sleep when I wake up in the morning but I wouldn’t say it’s deep sleep so I’m getting another 2hrs or so of light sleep on top of the 6hrs of deep sleep.

I’m still on t3, I came off for a while and my rt3 went up again so I’m currently using 40mcg, but may eventually reduce it to 20mcg as rt3 continues to come down and my t3/rt3 ratio improves.

The calcium, potassium, magnesium minerals are called electrolytes, they control electrical signals in the body. If electrical signals are not working properly then naturally the body suffers dysfunctional problems.

Let me know how you go, I hope this helps.

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Hey, thanks for this thread and hopefully no one minds that I’m replying to a year old thread. I’m basically having the same issue (hashimotos, adrenal issues and low T). I haven’t been treated for Low T yet, I’m seeing a new endo and my lab results are pending right now. I wanted to know if you had an update – are you still on TRT or were you able to sort out your thyroid levels and regulate your T that way?

I’m having the exact some insomnia issues as you. Wake up at 3-4am every night. Sometimes I can get back to sleep, and sometimes I can’t. Some things that helped me are 1. Not eating simple carbs past 5am. I think this helps reduce swings in insulin in the middle of the night which prevents cortisol from skyrocketing while sleeping. I have a hard time avoiding any simple carbs, but when I do it makes a noticeable difference. 2. I’ve also experimented with T3; I haven’t had my RT3 tested ever, but when I take a small amount of T3 when I wake up at 3-4 am, I can usually get right back to sleep.

I find it pretty difficult to keep my thyroid levels perfectly regulated. But my TSH is usually around 0.1, which is what’s required to keep my FT3 and FT4 in the upper end of the range. I’ve been hypo as well with the same sleeping issues; so I don’t think it’s correctly corrolated with being hyper or hypo.

Anyways, I’m wondering if I should start TRT to help sort out this problem – or if you found it was all thyroid related.

I haven’t been able to use trt yet but I’m much better now regardless. I’ve been using HCG for test replacement and it’s not causing insomnia.

I tried many things so it’s hard to pin point exactly what helped me recover. It took me some time to figure out testosterone was contributing to the problem.

Mind you I’m still not 100% but I feel much closer to it that I’ve ever been.

If I was to guess, I feel like Earth Pulse helped me a lot. It restored my energy, vitality and libido, I feel like it caused some internal healing with adrenals and dysfunctions within my body.

I would give that a go if you are looking for a direction.

Hey bro - just seeing this and wanted to chime in. I have Hashimotos and used to wake up every night around 2 or 3 Am every night. I recently went on TRT and sleep great - so if you are wondering if you should do it, I would tell you if your T levels are low,or even low normal it will help in many ways - better sleep being one of them.