Review: 'Through the Shadowlands’ describes Julie Rehmeyer's ME/CFS Odyssey
I should note at the outset that this review is based on an audio version of the galleys and the epilogue from the finished work. Julie Rehmeyer sent me the final version as a PDF, but for some reason my text to voice software (Kurzweil) had issues with it. I understand that it is...
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Anyone have experience with Ambien?

Discussion in 'General Treatment' started by bakercape, Dec 23, 2009.

  1. bakercape

    bakercape Senior Member

    Cape Cod. Mass
    Does anyone have any experience taking ambien they would be willing to share?

    I was taking Lexapro and it helped me with my sleep but had to stop. As soon as I stoped my insomnia came back and my doctor wants me to try Ambien.

    I went on a web site where some people people complained they got up at night and did activities but did not remember doing them while taking ambien. I also read you can become dependent. Of course my doctor did not mention these things to me when he gave me the prescription. AHHH!

    Any personal experience or info would be most welcome and helpful.:eek:
  2. Terri

    Terri Guest

    Ambien reaction

    I took Ambien for a while a few years ago. It did help me sleep but left me feeling groggy and somewhat spaced out for the first few hours of the morning, also it gave me headaches and I had to take around 7 pm in order for it to be worn off by 10 the next morning. It also stopped being gradually less effective as time went on.

    I have tried other sleep aids, Benadryl (Tylenol PM without the Tylenol) probably being the best one with the least side effects, but a doctor did tell me it tends to cause fluid build up in the lungs with can lead to more bronchitis.

    For the last 6 months I have been taking 1200-1800 mg of calcium along with 250-500 mg magnesium at bedtime, actually works wonders, I fall asleep quickly and 7 times out of 10 sleep well through the night. Added benefit for me is that magnesium is supposed to help with pain.

    I have purchased 5 HTP and Gaba which are supposed to help with sleep but tried them for the first time last night and actually woke up at 1:00 with a headache (which may not be from the supplements). I am still in the experimental stage with these.

    I should probably also mention that I am not a person who does well with drugs in general (anti depressants, muscle relaxers, etc.) because I can't tolerate the side effects.

    Hope this helps!

  3. Lily

    Lily *Believe*


    Well......:rolleyes:, I have taken it for 10 years. Yes, 10 - that's since all this crapola started. Oh, I've tried others along the way, but always came back to Ambien. For me, it is the one that works the best. Do I always get a great nights sleep? NO. Do I wake up feeling refreshed? NO. Have I had any bizzare side-effects? NO. It's simply the best I've been able to do, and I gave up trying new things about 3 years ago. I do like it because, for me there is no hang-over effect at all.

    What I really liked about it initially, was the quick onset. It certainly doesn't knock me out or anything, it just allows me to go sleep. For me, if I take it and then decide I'm going to stay up, then I do - so it doesn't really make me all drugged feeling like I HAVE to sleep. (that may be just me though).

    I've gone through long periods with it where I only sleep about 3 hours though. Those were times when I tried something else, which never worked, including Ambien CR and Lunesta, which are also short onset, and supposed to keep you asleep. (I also tried many others, actually:(

    During those rough periods of time, I ended up taking it twice. My general rule was not to take the second dose after 3 AM. This was still when I used to get up at 5AM for work. There would be many a time that I wouldn't even go back to sleep after that second dose.

    Most of the time I can get about 5 - 6 hours of sleep now (that's not straight of course, but when I wake up, I usually fall asleep again fairly quickly IF I go immediately into my breathing exercises to keep my mind quiet).
    It usually works. Not always of course. Occasionally, I'l still take that second dose, but very rarely.

    I have talked with people who experienced the bizarre amnesic side-effects, so that IS a definite possibility.

    I'm trying magnesium now with it at bedtime. I thought maybe eventually I'd try taking less ambien - like first cutting it in half (I'm taking 10mg). Maybe eventually get off it altogether. I think that would be nice, but it's not something I trouble myself worrying about.

    For me, I like that I can be awake in a flash if I need to be. So anyway that's just my experience. As with most drugs there will be horror stories, and I've certainly had my share. This one has been pretty harmless, but of course that's no guarantee. Good luck, if you decide to give it a try.:)
  4. CJB

    CJB Senior Member

    I had no problems with Ambien, but it didn't work as well for me as Lunesta has.
  5. bakercape

    bakercape Senior Member

    Cape Cod. Mass

    for the input so far!:) He wants me to start on 5mg. I don't know if I will try it but it's good to hear how other CFS patients have faired with it.

    I feel like I haven't really slept since having cfs. Insomnia is bad right now.

    Wishing everyone good refreshing sleep!
  6. gracenote

    gracenote All shall be well . . .

    Santa Rosa, CA
    I heart Ambien

    Thanks loldershaw for sharing your experience. I was hesitating. I've also been taking Ambien for close to 10 years. :eek: :confused: :)

    When I first started, I needed to keep track of the time I took it. I had better. It would kick in in 45 minutes, and if I wasn't lying down with my glasses off and lights off, I would wake up three or so hours later still sitting up holding my magazine. That big drop off changed over the years so now I can take it and can "over-rule" it by staying up.

    I took 10mg for the first 5 years or so and then it stopped helping me sleep through the night. I would get maybe 3 or 4 hours and then be awake for two (it didn't seem to matter what I did in those two hours) and then be able to fall back to sleep until morning.

    Now the original 10 mg will only last about 3 to 4 hours. I will then take about 1/2 more. If I chew it (please no one tell me that this is "bad" ;)) I can go right back to sleep. (If I swallow it, it takes longer). I will awake again in 3 to 4 hours at which time I take 1/4 more.

    I can sometimes go back to sleep without taking the Ambien, but I don't feel like I sleep as deeply I feel like I'm fighting to stay asleep in my sleep.

    I, too, am trying to find other things to help me sleep as I don't want to keep increasing the dose. I haven't had any weird symptoms with it, and I think I can wake up and over-ride it it doesn't knock me out that way.

    What I need it for is this: When I lie down and get quiet, my body starts getting loud my toe hurts because the blanket feels "too" heavy. My night shirt gets wrinkled in the back and it feels like I'm lying on a stick. My skin feels like it's sunburned in different parts. My tinnitus sounds louder. Basically, my body "noise" gets too loud for me to fall asleep.

    I'm actually not unhappy with the fact that I wake up several times a night. If I sleep too many hours in a row, my body gets stiff and is more painful in the morning. When I wake up after 3 or 4 hours, I get up, I pee, I go check the temperature of the house, I drink some water, maybe check Phoenix Rising forums :eek:, all knowing that when I chew the Ambien I will get right back to sleep. I somehow feel better getting the kinks out of my body and my brain before going back to sleep.

    Still . . . I want to find the underlying reason why my body doesn't know how to sleep on its own, and why it gets messages of discomfort so loudly. In the meantime . . . I heart Ambien.
  7. Lotus97

    Lotus97 Senior Member

    United States
    Has anyone experienced increased brain fog due to Ambien? It seems one person in this thread had a similar experience. I don't know for sure if it's Ambien that's causing the symptoms for myself.
  8. Sushi

    Sushi Moderation Resource Albuquerque

    I've also been taking ambien for years and am not aware of any side-effects (though who knows what is happening somewhere, somehow!). I have varied from 5 to 10 mg over the years depending on the levels of daily stresses that would tend to wire me.

    I haven't had to increase the dose though to stay asleep--it still works all night. BTW, re: chewing it, the drug company has come out with "a brand new drug" that is called something else and is sublingual. It is simply sublingual ambien but they can get another patent on it by changing how it is delivered.

  9. Ruthie24

    Ruthie24 Senior Member

    New Mexico, USA
    I've used it on and off for a couple years now. I take 2.5- 5 mg and that will usually get me 4-5 hours of sleep. When I take it, I try to do 2 nights on and then 1 night off to help avoid developing a tolerance for it. Have not had weird side effects and don't feel groggy in the morning.
  10. August59

    August59 Daughters High School Graduation

    Upstate SC, USA
    Been taking it for 15 years and have had the least side effects from it than any other medication I have ever taken.

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