An exhausted mum has overcome extreme insomnia after two years surviving on less than one hour’s sleep a night.
Angel Bendall’s sleep started suffering before she fell pregnant with her first child and anxiety and nightmares kept her up at night.
The 18-year-old was so tired she suffered terrifying dizzy spells before turning to hypnotherapy.
She was diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) as a result of an abusive relationship but hypnotherapy helped her deal with her trauma.
And since giving birth to Archie, Angel, from Coventry, has been able to sleep when her baby goes down for a nap, enabling her to claw back hours of precious rest.
Angel said: “It was torture. For almost two years I was walking around like a zombie.
“I could barely even make a cup of tea without needing to sit down because I felt dizzy and faint.
“Even though I was exhausted I couldn’t sleep because I just had the nightmares and would wake up crying.”
Angel’s sleeping problems started when she was in an abusive relationship with Archie’s father who she has now split from.
She said: “I got together with my ex in December 2018 and it was abusive almost from the start.
“I was physically and mentally harassed. I didn’t know just how bad it was until I fell pregnant last February and it was a wake up call for me.
“I didn’t want to have a baby in this relationship so I ended it with him but my dreams were haunted by what he had done to me.
“The dark experiences came back to me at night and I just couldn’t sleep. I was exhausted but never able to rest.
“Even when I did manage to drift off I was still going through the trauma in my dreams. I couldn’t escape even when I was asleep.”
After two two-hours hypnotherapy sessions at the start of August last year, Angel’s sleeping pattern has been restored.
Angel gave birth to 8lbs 5oz Archie in November and despite the challenges of caring for a new baby, she was still able to sleep more than she had before.
She said: “Not many new mums can say they get more sleep after their baby is born but I can.
“I try to sleep when Archie sleeps but even when I can’t I manage to get my head down at night without suffering night terrors.
“Before I was waking up at least three times a night, sometimes crying if I’d had a bad dream.
“I’ve really noticed a massive difference in the way I feel and I don’t even mind being woken up by the baby.
“I’ve got so much more energy and don’t feel like a zombie any more.”
Davie Kilmurry, cognitive behavioural hypnotherapist, said: “Angel booked in to the practice withdrawn and desperate for sleep.
“She was suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder as a result of her abusive relationship with resulted in insomnia and anxiety.
“She was really struggling to sleep but we treated her with a combination of mindfulness and cognitive behavioural therapy, Angel was able to regain control of her sleep patterns.
“Coupled with the clinical hypnosis the results are always good.
“I am honoured to have helped her to achieve sound sleep.”