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I'm afraid to go to sleep


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I've had a very busy day and I'm exhausted, but I'm up at 1:50 in the morning because I'm afraid to go to sleep. Every time I nod off I'm startled awake and I have this horrible feeling, like panic and depression all rolled into a ball of compressed terror. (It's impossible to describe it accurately).

For awhile, I was having trouble getting my meds, but now I'm all set with that, so I don't know what it could be. My pdoc hiked up my Paxil dosage from 40 mg. to 70 mg. I wonder if that could have something to do with it.

Has anyone else had this problem of being "startled" awake?

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Oh yes - I can so relate to this. It happened to me just last night in fact.

I would say it is definitely possible that your Paxil increase has something to do with this. Especially if this just started happening after the increase. SSRIs do seem to mess with sleep and dreaming - they do for me anyway.

Anyway - I think what you are describing is a myoclonic jerk. It's pretty common, but can be scary - especially for someone with panic and anxiety who might get an extra kick of adrenaline with it.

Maybe you can ask your pdoc about ramping up the Paxil a little more slowly and see if that helps?

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Oh yes - I can so relate to this. It happened to me just last night in fact.

I would say it is definitely possible that your Paxil increase has something to do with this. Especially if this just started happening after the increase. SSRIs do seem to mess with sleep and dreaming - they do for me anyway.

Anyway - I think what you are describing is a myoclonic jerk. It's pretty common, but can be scary - especially for someone with panic and anxiety who might get an extra kick of adrenaline with it.

Maybe you can ask your pdoc about ramping up the Paxil a little more slowly and see if that helps?

Thanks, Isobel! I love to do research, and Google has so many links to "myoclonic jerks", I'll be busy for awhile! Suzanne

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