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What do you take to sleep?


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I'm currently on Trazadone, Latuda, Vistaril, MS Contin, and Norco. My medications have always done wonders for my sleep. Recently it's not had the same effect so I've been taking the generic form of Benadryl. That worked good for like a month, but even that is losing its effectiveness. 

I also usually drug myself to sleep around 8 (even though I sleep at least 10 hours and get a 2-3 hour nap). So I'm not really tired, I just get bored and love to sleep.

So. What's a good medicine for sleep? And do you think if I stayed up later until I'm actually tired that I'd sleep better?

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I've tried a number of sleep meds, and I've settled upon temazepam as the best option for me (usually combined with some diazepam). I dislike the grogginess it can sometimes cause, but it's much better than the alternative meds at this, and my Adderall/Fetzima usually compensates for most of the grogginess the next day if it's an issue.

I had a love/hate relationship with trazodone - it was quite effective, but tolerance develops pretty quickly and that damn mCPP metabolite always ruined my day (grogginess and sedation on the good days (sometimes quite severe), with bonus (very nasty) migraines if I didn't take it continuously). Still, it was my primary sleep med for a while.

Mirtazapine worked well for sleep but gave me horrific nightmares and increased my appetite far too much. I couldn't tolerate it long-term.

Doxylamine works but the next day grogginess is too severe.

Diphendramine was generally worthless at low doses, with nasty side effects at higher doses.

Melatonin is completely worthless for me.

Can't tolerate almost all antipsychotics (several of which were tried for non-sleep-related reasons), so that's not an option for sleep.

Unwilling to touch Z-drugs.

...that's about it, I think...

Edited by JustNuts
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Update:

I stayed up till 1230am last night(was not easy) to see if it's make a difference with my sleep; and boy did it ever! Instead of laying there for over an hour with my eyes closed trying to fall asleep, I fell asleep within 10-15 minutes. I did wake up a couple times to pee because i drink alot of water, but i fell back asleep realky fast. And I didn't wake up until 1230pm! I haven't slept past 9am in months. Last night's sleep was truly amazing. 

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3 hours ago, IcePrincess88 said:

Update:

I stayed up till 1230am last night(was not easy) to see if it's make a difference with my sleep; and boy did it ever! Instead of laying there for over an hour with my eyes closed trying to fall asleep, I fell asleep within 10-15 minutes. I did wake up a couple times to pee because i drink alot of water, but i fell back asleep realky fast. And I didn't wake up until 1230pm! I haven't slept past 9am in months. Last night's sleep was truly amazing. 

That is great!  I hope it continues for you!  I might give it a try too ... thanks for posting!

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  • 2 weeks later...

My normal meds, the quietipine can knock me out. I mostly take it for sleep lately. I never take it in the morning now because I don't want to go back to sleep. Alchohol knocks me out to as well when I do indulge.

If I need to make sure I need to wake up though, I stay up all night or don't take anything. 

Before anyone says anything..yeah I'm not the healthiest individual but I'm stable. 

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  • 3 weeks later...

I'm writing this now because I've wanted to give this a while to test, to see if there was a direct effect between me sleeping with lights on vs off.

I don't take specific meds to sleep ... but what has helped me the absolute most is going to bed and being asleep in the dark (or with a dim nightlight).  That has made a world of difference for me.  I still dont sleep through the night, but I get better sleep, and feel better overall in the morning.  And the time up at night is usually about an hour or less before I fall back to sleep again.  I still need a nap during the day, but it isn't from being tired from the night before.  I still have insomnia at random times, but it usually lasts only a night or too.  The insomnia isn't as bad as it has been in the past.

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3 hours ago, melissaw72 said:

what has helped me the absolute most is going to bed and being asleep in the dark (or with a dim nightlight).  That has made a world of difference for me.

I agree, a dark room helps a lot, although I do take meds for sleep.........

Also, a cool  temperature in your bedroom helps as well......The optimum temp for sleep in your bedroom should be between 60-68 degrees F........This helps your core body temp to drop slightly, which helps to induce sleep:

http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2009/12/19/Do-Cold-Temperatures-Improve-Sleep.aspx

Dark and cool room--ideal conditions for sleep....

And although many might know this already, don't play on your phone or watch t.v while trying to fall asleep.

Edited by CrazyRedhead
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Trazodone used to be effective for me, but then I started needing higher and higher doses, until I finally got to 300 mg, and it wasn't even working anymore.

Recently, I switched to doxepin 75 mg, and it helps a lot better than trazodone, but I still find myself having difficulty falling asleep and maintaining sleep. I take Restoril 30 mg with it, but to my understanding, if I remember correctly, you aren't allowed to take benzos because of your pain meds.

Quetiapine (Seroquel) in low doses (25-100 mg) is a good sleeping med, but I had to take 300 mg for it to work and it caused me weight gain.

Olanzapine (Zyprexa) (in the doses I've taken, 5-10 mg) makes me sleep for 15+ hours, which I just can't handle. Plus it makes me binge eat all next day.

I've also used chlorpromazine (Thorazine) at 100 mg, which at first, was so much that it made me sleep for 15+ hours and then I couldn't walk right or talk right for several hours the next day, but then I actually developed a tolerance to it and it quit working! It also made me gain weight.

Saphris (asenapine) 5-10 mg (sublingual tablets, they taste baaaad!) at bedtime used to knock me out within 5 minutes—it was by far the fastest working sleeping med I've ever taken! But I started developing dysphoria upon waking the next day.

Benzos and even Z-drugs I guess are off-limits too.

One thing you could do is try increasing your trazodone to 150-200 mg and see how you do. I don't know how much Vistaril you're on, but 100 mg is a good sedative dose, generally.

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5 hours ago, CrazyRedhead said:

I agree, a dark room helps a lot, although I do take meds for sleep.........

Also, a cool  temperature in your bedroom helps as well......The optimum temp for sleep in your bedroom should be between 60-68 degrees F........This helps your core body temp to drop slightly, which helps to induce sleep:

http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2009/12/19/Do-Cold-Temperatures-Improve-Sleep.aspx

Dark and cool room--ideal conditions for sleep....

And although many might know this already, don't play on your phone or watch t.v while trying to fall asleep.

I totally agree with you about sleeping in a cool room.  I forgot about that.

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I currently don't take anything regularly,  but I've tried melatonin and benadryl with mixed results. Right now, it seems like I'll sleep a few hours then wake up, and maybe I'll be able to go back to sleep, but lately it's been that I'm a restless sleeper after that, and sometimes waking up an hour or so before I need to. Painting my bedroom window black helped better than any of the room darkening blinds or curtains....total darkness helps so much.

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I've been getting good results with gabapentin. The psychNP who prescribed it for me says it helps stabilize sleep architecture. Anywhere between 2-3 times a week and 2-3 times a month I take 0.25 mg clonazepam, which really does wonders for my sleep as well. I try my best to not take it more than 2-3 days in a row, though, because rebound insomnia is just no fun at all.

I second the cool, dark bedroom. I use a sleep mask since I can't totally block out the light in the bedroom. I also have a white noise machine that works great to take care of random noises that would otherwise wake me up. Now if only it would drown out the cats wanting to be fed at 5am!!!

Getting a fair amount of physical activity during the day, no caffeine after 12 noon, no screens an hour before bed, managing my stress as effectively as possible, and having a regular bedtime routine are also things that help significantly.

I figure if I take all the little things that help, even a small amount, and don't cause any other problems, and add them up plus try my best to not worry about whether or not I'm getting good sleep (because that makes it suck so much more), I'm doing everything I can.

My sleep used to be really, really, really messed up so much so that I was averaging 2 hours of broken sleep a night. The sleep study just came back with "you wake up a lot." DUH. I could have told you that! Being kind of hard core about sleep hygiene has been really helpful.

There's also a really good free app put out by the Veteran's Administration called CBT-i (cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia) that's really comprehensive and can be quite helpful, too.

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10 hours ago, mikl_pls said:

Trazodone used to be effective for me, but then I started needing higher and higher doses, until I finally got to 300 mg, and it wasn't even working anymore.

Recently, I switched to doxepin 75 mg, and it helps a lot better than trazodone, but I still find myself having difficulty falling asleep and maintaining sleep. I take Restoril 30 mg with it, but to my understanding, if I remember correctly, you aren't allowed to take benzos because of your pain meds.

Quetiapine (Seroquel) in low doses (25-100 mg) is a good sleeping med, but I had to take 300 mg for it to work and it caused me weight gain.

Olanzapine (Zyprexa) (in the doses I've taken, 5-10 mg) makes me sleep for 15+ hours, which I just can't handle. Plus it makes me binge eat all next day.

I've also used chlorpromazine (Thorazine) at 100 mg, which at first, was so much that it made me sleep for 15+ hours and then I couldn't walk right or talk right for several hours the next day, but then I actually developed a tolerance to it and it quit working! It also made me gain weight.

Saphris (asenapine) 5-10 mg (sublingual tablets, they taste baaaad!) at bedtime used to knock me out within 5 minutes—it was by far the fastest working sleeping med I've ever taken! But I started developing dysphoria upon waking the next day.

Benzos and even Z-drugs I guess are off-limits too.

One thing you could do is try increasing your trazodone to 150-200 mg and see how you do. I don't know how much Vistaril you're on, but 100 mg is a good sedative dose, generally.

I'm on 300mgs of Trazadone and 300 of Vistaril 

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I was just reading a study (because it's more fun than my lab report? I fell down a rabbit hole? I'm just that geeky!) comparing trazodone to gabapentin head to head for sleep, but it was with a small sample (50 patients) of people in outpatient treatment for alcohol addiction. So it may not generalize well.

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I took trazodone for years, between 100 mgs and 300 mgs. Weaned off it and got onto Restoril aka temanzepam and at 30 mgs it's okay, but I need my pain meds or I can't sleep. Recently added a eye mask to block the night light and am sleeping better. Hope you get some relief.

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11 hours ago, The Hitcher said:

I used to take doxylamine, but now switch between lorazepam and zopiclone. I've found all three to be beneficial for sleep.

 

Doxylamine is a potent anticholinergic, as with many antihistamines. There is good evidence anticholinergics are implicated is dementias. At the very least past age 50 you have falling acetylcholine levels so you don't want to take something that lowers acetylcholine even more.  acetylcholine is an important neurotransmitter and is used at the neuromuscular junction, autonomic nervous system, and central nervous system. It is an important player in memory.

It and benadryl are common to many OTC sleep aids. More attention should be given to anticholinergics and their effects on memory and elsewhere in the ageing brain. 

http://www.agingbraincare.org/uploads/products/ACB_scale_-_legal_size.pdf

Edited by notloki
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1 minute ago, Wooster said:

Hey notloki, be pleased that I've completely discontinued Benadryl and it's no longer in our house except next to the anaphylaxis response first aid.

 

Great ! I also had to reevaluate some of the meds I was taking, OTC and prescribed.

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Arg...  The GDocs office called to tell me AmbienCR (Generic) is no longer a formulary drug.  I've tried Trazadone which did not get me to sleep but made me groggy the next day.  The are suggesting Doxylamine.   I have Valium as a prn.   I think I'm going to start with better sleep hygene (No laptops) and try to keep a more normal schedual.

I think Visteral worked once but I can't think of anything but Z drugs thats worked.   I really hate the formulary police.

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