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PostPosted: Sat Dec 10, 2011 11:40 am 
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Yes, some people say neurontin helps with the notorious restless leg syndrome that almost always accompanies opiate withdrawals. Another common "comfort med" for withdrawals is clonidine. It's a blood pressure med but it addresses some of the areas of the brain that are affected by the withdrawals. Both meds are prescription so his doctor would have to prescribe them.

Hope this helps.

I'm SO happy to hear your dad got a night's sleep! No wonder he feels so good. Keep us posted.

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 11, 2011 11:53 am 
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get him some l-theanine (preferably suntheanine-seems more effective to me) and this will help him a ton. Also, niacinamide, l-tryptophan, and melatonin at bedtime. At the worst of my chronic illness I couldn't sleep a wink and this combo took care of it. I'd take up to 3000mg of l-tryptophan, up to 2500mg niacinamide, and just 3mg melatonin under the tongue. You should be able to buy all this at your local vitamin store.


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PostPosted: Sun Dec 11, 2011 6:25 pm 
kla wrote:
No more pot and I'll take his coffee away, not having much but I agree 0 is best. I think his leg pain prognosis is pretty grim, he's been to probably a dozen drs trying to alleviate it. I'll check physio out, tks


I think it's really admirable that your father doesn't want to take any medications that cause dependence; my father is 100% the same way. Sometimes I can't help but feel that this is to his own detriment, though. My father is not an addict, but sometimes I think he is a glutton for punishment. He has had major back surgeries and refused pain medications except when recovering IN the hospital. Meanwhile, I had a couple herniated discs and I was taking hundreds of mg's of opioids daily for many years. I've tried over the years to influence my father the opposite way -- trying to get him TO take meds that might decrease his discomfort. I've learned to stop and let him live his life how he wants to live his life. I hope, though, that if it is a seriously painful situation that he listens to his DR's in terms of what they think is best for him. I hope your father is doing this for himself and not because anyone in his life is influencing him. I also hope he's listening to his actual Dr's. My 2 cents.

-Travis


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 12, 2011 11:06 am 
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Hey kla,

I just now saw this post or I would have posted earlier.

When I quit Suboxone, my sleep was HORRID for a long time. The first 10 days or so off of Suboxone, I would get maybe 20 or 30 minutes of sleep a night, if I was lucky.

Around a month off of Suboxone, I was only getting 2 hours of sleep a night. I wouldn't fall asleep until 5am and I'd usually awake by 7am, 7:30am if I was lucky. I started on Clonidine (.1mg twice daily) and my sleep improved to where I could fall asleep around 3am or 4am. That put me up to about 3 or 4 hours of sleep per night and that pattern seemed to go on for months and months and months!! It was definitely a stressful time, not being able to sleep at night like the rest of the population messes with your mind. Heck, I even went so far as to buy some books on how to get a good nights sleep. I remember the title of one of the books was, "I can make you sleep"....well, he didn't, all he did was piss me off for the $20 I wasted on his dumbass book!!

Slowly, very slowly my sleep would improve to the point where I was falling asleep at 3am pretty steady, then 2am pretty steady and eventually 1am. A lot of those nights, I would wake after only 2 hours of sleep. I'd have to get up, get my mind off not being able to sleep by watching TV and I'd grab a quick bite of food (potato chips and a Coke usaully) and I'd eventually get back to sleep.

Right around the 1 year mark off of Suboxone, my sleep improved markedly. I was able to fall asleep around 11pm. I'd get my 2 hours of sleep, I'd do my routine of grabbing a snack, watching some TV, then back to bed and I'd usually sleep until my alarm went off at 7am.

I'm now just over 1.5 years off of Suboxone and my sleep is basically normal now. If I do wake during the night, I can usually fall back asleep on my own without having to do my snack/TV routine.

Like your dad, I was horrified at the prospect of getting hooked on another drug so I was VERY careful with what the doctor gave me to help me sleep. I took Xanax (.5mg) for about a week or so early on, I tried Ambien (10mg I think) for 10 days, but I'd wake up 2 hours after taking it and I did some weird things.....driving around without really remembering much. The Clonidine is the only thing I used long term because it's non-addictive.

Anyway, I just wanted you to know that I think he'll improve as time goes by. Oh Yeah, I had several of those nights where I'd sleep right through the night and I thought, YAY, I'm all better....only to sleep like crap for the next week or so.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 12, 2011 12:43 pm 
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Tearjerker I take 600mg of seroquel at night and 1 ambien to sleep, did that before during and after subs.. I take the seroquel for bi polar disorder and it dont make me sleepy till I take the ambien. I have never had to go up on my ambien dose either, I take them about 20 days a month when I really cant sleep.


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 13, 2011 11:05 am 
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I was up to about 800mg a day when the doc put me on it in high school, and for the first week or so my friends had to pretty much carry me to my classes, and I'd just sleep all through them anyway. But a couple of weeks in I could carry myself around, and start to function okay after my morning dose with a strong coffee. It seems like it's one of those meds people get used to. I've had my 25mg now before bed, and I could stay up fine, I spose. It knocks people who don't take it regularly tho. Even 25mg. When I first started taking it again this time, the first couple of nights 25mg smashed me. I stumbled to the fridge to stuff my face with left-overs, then went back to bed. That was the only thing that could get me up :lol:


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 Post subject: out of control Insomnia
PostPosted: Sun Dec 18, 2011 10:28 am 
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I'm not sure where to start here, dad went to his primary on Tuesday and came home with Trazadone, Corbidopa-Levadopa and Rozeremin, unfortuantly i had my own dr. appt at the exact same time so another family member went with him. I was happy that he did get the trazadone like i had requested though. I wasn't a fan of him trying 3 drugs at once but he did take 50mg of trazadone and a forgot the doseage of the corbidopa-levadopa.

Anyhow he said he was very relaxed and stayed in bed all night even though he felt as if he slept only 4 hrs. I still felt this was progress though. Unfortunatly he added 8mg Rozermin to the mix the next 2 nights and was really nervous and jittery. Last night i suggested that he back off the rozerimin and see what happens. It could have been just a rough night or caused by the rozerimin, i don't know with so many drugs in the mix.

He is open to trying scripts, only not opiates or benzo's. We've just had a hard time with his dr.s understanding the magnitude of opiate withdrawal since nne of the three are well versed in it. Changing dr's isn't an option since i did get a list of pain mgmt. dr.'s in the area and only one is accepting new patients and not until the end of march. That's why i'm helping him so much. He just tries to please all three of us kids and that leads to my sister siding completly with the naturopath, who i think means well for sure but is simply using homeopathics which i don't think in this situation is helping at all.

My brother and sister in law believe everything dad's primary says because a family member works for this dr. and although i think this dr. means well too, he doesn't know anything about opiate withdrawal.

I have more faith in his pain mgmt. dr. but have been disapointed to learn that he's only been prescriping suboxone for a year or so and hasn't had any of his patients taper off, so he's not versed in the process at all.

Anyhow i've been sort of waiting to see how a few nights go on all these new drugs and not sure if an ok nights sleep is just a random thing, (which i'm leaning towards) or that it might have anything to do with the new drugs he's trying. Starting to believe it's all random and won't be influenced by anything but an opiate.

Thanks for all your thoughts and input, i wanted to address all your comments personally but am over whelmed at the moment with a sinus infection/headache, my daughter leaving for grad school soon, really soon! and my son coming home from a year abroad, woot woot!

So trying to keep my head above water here! Oh and shopping for a dr. who will write the scripts i need since my insurance company told me 2 weeks ago that i can't go to my pain mgmt. dr. any more. He was awesome, even adjusted my neck at every appt. Truly a one stop guy and now i'm scrambling to get into different specialists to take his place. Trying to keep my balance and hanging on so far, even though my car was broke into as well so can't drive until the front window is replaced as it's 12 degrees here today, deep breathing, deep breathing :)

Love and peace to you all, Lori

_________________
Lori writing on behalf of my dad

Previously taking Hydrocodone 10's (3-4 per day) then switched to methadone for about 5 mos. Cut down a bit, then dr. switched him to suboxone. Done with suboxone on oct. 8, 2011 after @6 mos.


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 20, 2011 12:29 pm 
Wow, Lori, I feel really bad for your father. I know all about this, having dealt with it myself. I tried EVERYTHING..trazadone, seroquel, ambien, EVERYTHING. Ambien worked for a few months but it eventually stopped working COMPLETELY. Like I would take a pill and not feel anything, not tired in the least. Ambien is habit-forming, but at doses of 5-10 mg, it is not "addictive" per se. Meaning it has no withdrawal symptoms at the commonly prescribed doses in the US (at 20+ mg/night all bets are off).

After the Ambien stopped working, I didn't know what to do. After a few weeks of progressively feeling worse and worse (2-4 hours of sleep a night for a month will do that to ya), my doctor and I decided that benzodiazepines could not be as evil as this was, and because I had had previous benzo scripts and never once abused them, I was put back on Klonopin, and then Ativan (2-3x per day). I didn't like carrying them around with me or taking them during the day, so I switched to a nightly Temazepam (7.5 mg -->15 mg and decided not to go up from there. Since they are capsules and can't be broken apart, rather than up my dose AGAIN, the doc writes me 45 pills instead of 30. That way I can take two if I really need to one night, though I almost never do, but I didn't need to go up to 30 mg nightly and get myself an even larger benzo dependence).

I don't know that it was the BEST idea, and I know your dad wants to stay off benzos..but for me, it was what I needed. As my doctor said, not sleeping at night is more hazardous to your health than taking a low dose benzo as prescribed. Honestly, sometimes I skip a night, just to make sure I can, and I never notice any withdrawal symptoms or anxiety.

I am not trying to convince you that my way is the right way or anything like that. Just trying to bring you an alternate perspective from someone who has been there.


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 20, 2011 2:10 pm 
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Ironic wrote:
I don't know that it was the BEST idea, and I know your dad wants to stay off benzos..but for me, it was what I needed. As my doctor said, not sleeping at night is more hazardous to your health than taking a low dose benzo as prescribed. Honestly, sometimes I skip a night, just to make sure I can, and I never notice any withdrawal symptoms or anxiety. I am not trying to convince you that my way is the right way or anything like that. Just trying to bring you an alternate perspective from someone who has been there.


Having read over how long this poor guy has been suffering without sleep, I'm going to have to agree that, at this point, other alternative should maybe be considered. I've had chronic insomnia my whole life, but nothing was worse than withdrawing from Seroquel for a month...which is sort of extra bad considering it's supposedly "not addictive." Yeah.

Like dealing with "actually" addictive drugs, the only thing that helped was taking something short term to weather the storm until the effects of withdrawal were entirely gone. Sadly, having a *cough* extensive history of drug abuse didn't look good when I was sleep-deprived and screaming, "Just give me Valium!" into the phone but I actually wasn't abusing anything, at the time...but was so sleep-deprived, I might as well have been fall-down drunk. Benzos were the only class of drugs that had any effect, even if they only worked for a four-hour nap, and knowing I was "being watched" meant I couldn't abuse them.

It seems that your father has a pretty good caretaker, which might help ease concern over being left to his own devices and spiraling back into addiction. Maybe this fact will alleviate some fears?


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 01, 2012 9:24 am 
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kla wrote:
Hat,
Well I'm amazed here! Out of the blue dad slept 8 hrs. on Thursday night, not sure how last night went but i'm hoping ok as i haven't received his usual "i didn't sleep worth a darn last night text" This looks hopefull, he felt so good yesterday that he was out and about all day long.

We had tried to get Trazadone on thursday and it looked like it was going to happen and then didn't. I told him that I guess it wasn't meant to be. I'm feeling a bit more hopefull now, will keep you posted.

much thanks, Lori

truely amazing- first off trazadona is an anti-depressent and not meant to be a sleeping pill. id you told a dr a geriatric has had basicly NO sleep that long they would do blood work and addmit to er. also, you ask questions that these guys on the forum ARE NOT QUALIFIED TO ANSWER. be smart. this is serious. get the old man to the dr ASAP


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 01, 2012 1:43 pm 
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Yes, Trazodone is an atypical antidepressant, I never said it wasn't. But the truth is, it's hardly used as that these days. It's much more often used as a sleep med. All I can do is suggest what has worked for me and I've always stated that I'm not a doctor. Christ, it's even in my signature.

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 Post subject: Trazodone as a sleep med
PostPosted: Sun Jan 01, 2012 2:08 pm 
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hatmaker510 wrote:
Yes, Trazodone is an atypical antidepressant, I never said it wasn't. But the truth is, it's hardly used as that these days. It's much more often used as a sleep med. All I can do is suggest what has worked for me and I've always stated that I'm not a doctor. Christ, it's even in my signature.


Yes- around here- Trazodone is widely used as a sleep med. In fact, I am on 100 mg QHS
(that is short hand for "take at bedtime")- and have been on it for several years, now.

-ex-

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 Post subject: out of control Insomnia
PostPosted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 11:02 am 
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I'm back and can see their has been a bit of heated discussion about the seriousness of dad's insomnia, so let me say first that he is slowly getting better. His nervousness, jitters and nights of zero sleep are behind him and the number of hours of sleep each night has improved enough so that he is at least able to get out and about, which is so good for his mood.

He has finally accepted that this is a process and not an event. Whereas he was so desperate to find a drug to "fix him" now he is being proactive in his daily habits towards wellness. This is a huge step for my dad. He's still taking clondine, Levadopa, melatonin, theanine and one other med for sleep that i can't remember right now. His gp and pharmacist say that these are all fine to take together.

I apologize for being off forum for a couple weeks but had so much going on with my daughters and my own health, her move out of state to school and my sons visit home after a year abroad, very intense! Dad is coming along, slowly but surely. I REALLY appreciate all of you support because whether i agreed with it or not i know it comes from a genuine desire to help. Lori

_________________
Lori writing on behalf of my dad

Previously taking Hydrocodone 10's (3-4 per day) then switched to methadone for about 5 mos. Cut down a bit, then dr. switched him to suboxone. Done with suboxone on oct. 8, 2011 after @6 mos.


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 1:10 pm 
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Hey Lori,

I'm glad to hear your dad is doing better, thanks for updating this post.

I'm also glad to hear that he now understands this is all a process and not an event.

For some reason, some opiate addicts get absolutely crushed by insomnia after they quit said opiates. I was certainly one of those people and I remember clearly how distrubing it was to not be able to sleep.

Clonidine was about the only med I used long term to help me get some sleep, I used it for months and months and months and had no issues with any kind of wd once I stopped it.

I wanted to also mention this, as my sleep improved, I seemed to get stuck with not being able to go to sleep any earlier than 2am. I was stuck at the 2am bedtime thing for a while then I started pushing my bedtime ahead by 10 minutes or so every week to slowly retrain my brain. It took a long time, but I eventually got to the point where I go to bed around 10:30pm or 11pm now and sleep pretty dang good. If your dad gets stuck, he may want to try what I did.

Good luck and I hope he keeps on improving.

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 Post subject: out of control Insomnia
PostPosted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 2:08 pm 
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Thanks for sharing your experience Romeo, much appreciated.

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Lori writing on behalf of my dad

Previously taking Hydrocodone 10's (3-4 per day) then switched to methadone for about 5 mos. Cut down a bit, then dr. switched him to suboxone. Done with suboxone on oct. 8, 2011 after @6 mos.


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 19, 2012 5:26 pm 
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tearj3rker wrote:
I was up to about 800mg a day when the doc put me on it in high school, and for the first week or so my friends had to pretty much carry me to my classes, and I'd just sleep all through them anyway. But a couple of weeks in I could carry myself around, and start to function okay after my morning dose with a strong coffee. It seems like it's one of those meds people get used to. I've had my 25mg now before bed, and I could stay up fine, I spose. It knocks people who don't take it regularly tho. Even 25mg. When I first started taking it again this time, the first couple of nights 25mg smashed me. I stumbled to the fridge to stuff my face with left-overs, then went back to bed. That was the only thing that could get me up :lol:


I take 50 milligrams of Seroquel nightly for sleep. I have got it down to 25 milligrams before and am going to try to do that again. It is pretty effective (still) which is a great help. I am a lifelong insomniac, some of my earliest memories are of myself struggling to fall asleep as a little child (weird, I know, I would tell myself to "change the channel or turn off the tv" in my brain).

That stuff makes me so damn hungry, the only thing I will get out of bed for is to eat. I am underweight so it sort of helps I guess. The hangover is pretty bad the next day, It takes me hours to get going in the morning. I would like to get off of it and plan on it. But I am also closing in on the end stage of my taper (at 2 milligrams now) and know I have to keep Seroquel as an option.


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