Discussion in 'General Treatment' started by heapsreal, Nov 3, 2009.
what drugs dou use for insomnia??
I have taken elavil for 18 years for sleep and pain and it has helped me survive - but not without side effects. I have now been able to reduce my elavil down to a very small dose by using magnesium glycinate (recommended by Dr. Cheney), at bedtime. I do not take the kind that is combined with calcium. The change in the soundness of my sleep has been astonishing. You might have to gradually work up to an optimum dose since most magnesium can cause loose bowels if you take too much at once.
Hope this helps,
thanks for the reply
Sleep/ insomnia is probably my one of my biggest issues, i tend to build tolereance quickly to meds so i rotate between a few. I also use seroquel when on days off for catch up sleep as sometimes has a bit of a hangover affect. Lots of negative stuff written about seroquel on the net for insomnia such as weight gain, diabetes etc. But i can say i dont use it anymore then twice a week, mostly just the once and have had no sides other then a great sleep and feeling a little groggy the next day which passes quickly. Would be nice to get that sleep every night but i believe the way i use it helps avoid side effects.
After starting this thread i was hoping others might know of any new sleep meds on the horizon.
I know that the magnesium doesn't sound like it would have a big impact, but it does.
Also, Cort just started a new thread on an article on sleep that showed up in the NY Times. If you look at the listing of the posts from today, you should be able to find it. Maybe more people will talk about their sleep meds there.
I alternate between Restoril and Lunesta. On top of this I take Melatonin time release. I still wake up a few times, but this is much better than before.
thanks weldman and andrew for the replies,
where do you get your magnesium from, brand etc,
Andrew, i use imovane(zopiclone) which i think is similar to lunesta, i have found it the best of the benzos.
Hi again Heapsreal,
I use two kinds of magnesium - both recommended by Dr. Cheney
Douglas Labs Magnesium Glycinate (100mg) - I take 300 mg at bedtime
Kirkman's Magnesium Sulfate Cream - I take 200 mg at bedtime
For the Douglas Labs magnesium glycinate - I get this from a friend of mine who orders it in volume. If you go to the site www.thefind.com and search by cost, you will be able to find a good price on it.
I order the Kirkman's Magnesium sulfate cream from www.NEEDS.com. If you are not familiar with them, they carry a wide variety of products useful for the CFIDS/fibro community.
I think there are some caveats in taking doses of magnesium other than the obvious - it can cause loose stools so you might have to slowly increase your dose.
Also, you should not take much magnesium if you have kidney disease or myasthenia gravis - unless recommended by your M.D. In addition, if you are on many allopathic meds you need to check to make sure they don't interfere with those meds. Magnesium can increase the efficacy of some meds and decrease the efficacy in others.
This may seem like a lot of work, but I can't tell you what a difference these supplements have made in my own sleep improvement.
I use 100mg amitriptyline(Elavil, Endep) and .5mg alprazolam(Xanax, kalma)
Im keen to try that mag glycinate though, having bit of trouble finding it in australia though
All of these tips are absolutely useless for people with CFS.
I took as much as 300 mg of doxepin 18 years ago to finally be able to sleep. Over the period of about 3 years, I got to a point where I only needed 10 mg several times a week. I still had poor quality sleep, though, with night sweats and lots of thrashing about.
This year I tried Lunesta and I've had tremendous results. No night sweats and I get at least 6 hours of uninterrupted sleep. I have yet to have a night's sleep I'd call restful, but I'm doing very well on it. I alternate the Lunesta and doxepin, mostly because the Lunesta is so expensive.
If poor sleep hygiene is the cause of insomina, these tips might work. But from my personal experience, the causes of insomnia and poor sleep in PWCs has nothing to do with poor sleep hygiene.
Hi Sammy, you can get Kirkman's magnesium glycinate in powder or pill form from http://www.biomedcafe.com.au/
This article by Cort (again!) is a good one about sleep drugs various leading doctor's advise. Often a combination of an initiator and a 'stay a-sleeper'.
Why is your signature 3 ads?
Tony, thanks for posting a possible source of magnesium glycinate for Sammy. Sammy, if you decide to take it just remember to start slowly (magnesium can cause loose stools) and that you shouldn't take magnesium if you have kidney disease or myasthenia gravis. You should also check to make sure it doesn't interfere with any allopathic meds. Magnesium can increase the efficacy of some meds and decrease others.
If you want more info check out there are two books that I really like - "The Magnesium Miracle" by Carolyn Dean, M.D., N.D., and "The Magnesium Factor" by Mildred Seelig, M.D., M.PH. These books seem to be well researched. You can go to Amazon and browse thru them.
I agree with the sleep hygiene thing. I think it was invented by someone who has never had insomnia. If it really worked there wouldnt be sleeping pills. With out different sleeping pills my ability to function would be very much reduced and i doubt if i would be able to work at all. True insomniacs are greatful for 4-6 hours of drugged sleep. People that dont have insomnia complain of being tired when they get 6 hours of natural sleep, i wish, lol
I don't disagree entirely, and let me start by saying I haven't been diagnosed with CFS. In fact, there's strong suspicion that I have a primary sleep disorder rather than the secondary sleep issues that appear in CFS, but this is proving hard to untangle.
I do want to say, though, that while sleep hygiene certainly hasn't solved any of my major issues, it's also not totally useless for me; I find that in particular if I make sure my sleep schedule is as regular as I can manage, it does help some over time. For me, this has meant getting up at pretty much the same time every day, trying to nap at the same times every day during times I need naps, and aiming for bed, if I can manage it, at roughly the same time every night. The last point isn't the most important, I've found, for me. If I can't sleep, trying to force myself isn't helpful. But at about the same time every night -- about 9:30 -- I try to analyze whether I could go to sleep, and if I think it's possible, I try.
The most important that I've found overall is to go ahead and get up at whatever time I feel myself basically awake, whether it's in the morning or during a nap. If I let the niceness of the bed or my feeling of tired other than sleepiness keep me drifting in and out, I will absolutely feel worse when I do get up, and it will impact my entire day into my trying to sleep later at night. Get up when you're basically awake, sleep when you feel you can, try to make those things regular as much as possible. That's actually helpful for me, though it's certainly not a solution.
As for drugs, I'm still in search of a good solution that will keep me asleep. I have insomnia occasionally, but my bigger problem is in staying asleep, and I have yet to find anything that really improves my sleep quality well enough to keep me from getting drowsy again a few hours after I get up. My sleep doc won't prescribe xyrem without a diagnosis of narcolepsy with cataplexy, which I actually may have but is diagnostically difficult, and absent that I've fiddled with all sorts of supplements, but I still lack good deep sleep.
Exercise does jack other than make me feel terrible, I agree, and the sleep problems in CFS really aren't behavioral, they're almost certainly chemical (as with many other sleep problems, I think). But I think sleep hygiene is worth a shot, even if it's a pretty subtle help. Other people's mileage may vary, of course.
Its hard to find a medication that helps you sleep deeply for 8 hrs without a hangover. But i think combining a few different things in low doses helps and rotate between a few different things also helps avoid tolerence.
I think a benzo type med with something like doxepine or trazadone or maybe an antihistamine might help. As far as hangover effects, u need to look at half life of drugs aand this can help with possible hangover effect. But this isnt always the case, trial and error is the only way to really find out what happens.
I have good results with trazadone about 8pm and lunesta right before bed. It worked very well for a couple of years but recently I began waking up around 2AM in pain and struggling to get back to sleep. My pain doc added flexeril for when I wake up at 2AM. I have taken it once or twice a week for the last month and I am sleeping very well again. I am not your normal CFS patient - I rarely have adverse reactions to drugs. My bed bound years were marked by horrible sleep problems and according to my pain doctor, once you have experienced markedly abnormal sleep patterns you will never again sleep normally. She believes I will always need sleep meds.
Never sleep normally again?
Wow, I've never heard this before and I hope it's not true. Any idea where she got her info from?
Not true in my case - I had months of hardly sleeping at all when my fibromyalgia was bad a few years ago, but when I'm in remission I sleep normally.
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