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Tips for tapering off Z drugs for sleep (Ambien, Lunesta, etc.)

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Francis

ADMIN NOTE

 

AKA

From http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/717142
 

Zolpidem is a nonbenzodiazepine used to treat short-term insomnia. This agent binds to the gamma-aminobutyric acid-A receptor and has selectivity for benzodiazepine receptor subtypes.%5B1%5D Initially, zolpidem was thought to have lower incidences of tolerance, dependence, and abuse than benzodiazepines. However, animal studies,%5B2%5D reviews,[3,4] and case reports[5-8] demonstrate that zolpidem use can result in these conditions.....
 
Case reports describe zolpidem dependence, abuse, and withdrawal.[5-8] Dose self-escalation can result in tolerance to the hypnotic and sedative effects of zolpidem. Symptoms of sweating, tachycardia, tachypnea, tremors, and severe anxiety have been reported upon discontinuation of zolpidem. Discontinuation syndrome symptoms also include fatigue, nausea, flushing, panic attacks, abdominal discomfort, uncontrolled crying, emesis, and delirium.%5B9%5D Withdrawal seizures may also occur upon discontinuation.[5,7,8]....

 
The Tranquilliser Recovery and Awareness Place (TRAP) in the UK (now closed) suggests using diazepam to go off zolpidem http://www.non-benzodiazepines.org.uk/zolpidem.html (Diazepam, a benzodiazepine, can also be difficult to taper.)

 

HOWEVER, rather than risking a drug switch, we recommend a direct, gradual taper from Ambien and other Z-drugs. As they all have very short half-lives -- meaning they wear off during the day -- you might try a 25% reduction per week.

 

If you get rebound insomnia, reinstate the full dose for several nights and then reduce by 12.5% or less per week, according to your own sensitivity.

 

Depending on the drug you're taking, reduce by these methods:

Cutting up tablets
How to cut up tablets or pills
Using a digital scale to measure doses
 
Making a suspension with water yourself
How to make a liquid from tablets or capsules
Pharmaceutical liquids to make suspensions
Using an oral syringe and other tapering techniques
 
Have custom dosages in liquid or capsules made by a compounding pharmacy
Compounding pharmacies (US, UK, and elsewhere)
 

Using a combination of tablets or capsules and liquid

Rather than switch directly to an all-liquid dose, you may wish to take part of your dose in liquid and part in lower-dose tablets or capsules, gradually converting to all liquid as you get to lower dosages. This can be very convenient and reduce any problems switching from one form of the drug to another.

 

If your doctor prescribes compounded liquid and tablets or capsules at the same time, most likely he or she will have to indicate "divided doses" in the prescriptions to get the drugs covered by insurance.

Also see
 
FDA Warning re Zolpidem (Ambien etc.)
 
The Z Drugs (Ambien, Imovane, Sonata, Lunesta, Intermezzo...

 

Important topics about symptoms, including sleep problems

 



Hi all- Im on Celexa and ambien. Was on an ambien CR 12.5 plus 5mg of regular ambien (total 17.5mg). I took the 12.5mg CR last week alone and last night just the 5mg. I have been taking the ambien for around 2 months now. Does anyone have experiences getting off of the ambien and should I go very slowly? Thanks, Francis Edited by Altostrata
updated admin note

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Barbarannamated

That's a good question ~it's only supposed to be used for a short time (2 weeks perhaps) so I'm thinking that tapering more slowly MAY be detrimental and possibly increase body adaptation to it ~this MAY be an exception to the slower is better rule esp bc you've only been on for 2 months •

I've taken most of the Z sleepers prn sometimes for several days or weeks and stopped w no problem but I dont want to say that's the best way to go ~

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Whatever

Why have you decided to stop taking Ambien? Whatever the reason, it is a smart decision.

 

In answer to your question:

 

Yes, you must go off Ambien very slowly if you have taken it for more than the recommended 10 days.

 

If not, you can expect insomnia for a minimum of two weeks. Other possible WD side effects are anxiety, panic and inability to concentrate.

 

However, since Ambien CR is a coated extended release pill in order to taper you will need to switch to the regular Ambien.

 

Please, please do not substitute it with Seroquel, Xanax or Klonopin which is what doctors like to do. As those meds cause worse problems down the line.

 

Ambien is chemically similar to benzodiazepines. So I suggest that you join benzobuddies.org. They can help you devise a taper plan.

 

It is possible that your insomnia is caused by the Celexa. I do not know what you are taking Celexa for, but when I took it for PTSD it caused insomnia form me. Also, Ambien can cause extreme anxiety and depression, which is what Celexa is used to treat. So you are in a bit of a catch-22 situation.

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Francis

I have been having tightness and burning in my chest and upper arms in the mornings. Sometime accompanied by tingling in my hands.

I am also taking supplements, but after thinking about the timeline of symptoms, I am strongly thinking that the ambien has something to do with the morning tightness/burning. I feel panic along with the tightness/burning but am not completely sure if the tightness/burning is happening at the same time as the panic or if the physical discomfort brings on the panic. (or a combination, which is probably the case)

 

My insomnia started when I went off of celexa quickly. I am now back on the celexa.

The insomnia was initially middle of the night waking with horrible rumination. Now, it is waking around 4-4:30 and getting this chest/upper arm discomfort and panic feeling around 5am.

 

I wouldnt make bets that the physical feelings/panic are due to the ambien, but if I can be off of it (smartly), I would at least be able to have one fewer dependency and clarify if the feelings are from ambien rebound/side effects.

 

Thanks so much for your guidance!

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InNeedOfHope

Sometimes when I read other people's symptoms it is like looking in a mirror.

 

For what it's worth I did the same as you but with Zopiclone, taking as and when needed. I was later told this is a rubbish way to take it and it is sending your body in and out of withdrawal and that for people who are sensitive (as you will be at the moment) it is best taken regularly, same amount, same time every day. I came off Zopiclone in a week because I did not know any different. I am now told that a) I should have come off much slower and B) I would have been given Diazampam to do it as it has a longer half life. That is what I was told for Zopiclone, which is what in the end led me to Cymbalta (though I did not know it at the time) because I was told all the symptoms I mentioned were anxiety feelings I created, I now know the difference. I'm not sure if you should switch to anything really, but just to take it slowly and to know it will improve. Keep searching the BEnzo forums and you may find advice for Ambien.

 

I have the chest constiction and burning worse in the morning and at night. I imagine it is worse in the morning as you will have cortisol running through you to wake you up. One thing that helped me a little was to get up,keep it dark, have a warm drink, a cracker or a piece of toast, (cos I think the thyroid goes hyper and we burn calories fast in wd) I would then have a change of scenery by falling asleep on the sofa, but not really trying to, just sitting there resting my head, trying to think of the burning as lying on a beach (the things one will try in an effort to trick the brain!) and sometimes I would nod off but dream heavily but at least get another hour or so before normal waking.

 

My sleep is not great, it can range from 4 hours of deep sleep, to sleep with nightmares, but sometimes I do get 6-7 hours of sleep with lots of waking and dreaming in between. What I do know is that it can change very fast, so instead of panicking and thinking it will always be like this, this is one area I am a little better at managing and try to catch up in the day. I am not able to work now, but when I was, I would set my phone alarm, fall asleep in my car and cat nap during my lunch hour and this helped. Could you catch up in the day in any way for now?

 

You may do this already, but keep a diary to help you find out what works and doesn't even down to the food you eat. It does help you discover patterns. I know how you feel and reading this forum gives you lots of ideas of things to try. I have really bad days and some moments of relief and try to hang on to those. From my experience unless you get a good one, forget the doctors advice and do your own research and seek advice from people who have gone before you, you will probably end up knowing more than most doctors.

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Rhiannon

One thing I've noticed about Ambien and Z drugs stories is that if anything they are even more variable than benzo and AD stories. And those are really variable. These drugs all do seem to affect different people differently. I have seen people get off Ambien with few problems and I have seen people have terrible withdrawals.

 

I would recommend, since you have had a recent Celexa crash and burn and reinstatement, that you be gentle and cautious with any other psych medication changes for at least a year, until your brain has had time to heal and regain neurochemical stability.

 

That is to say, taper gently. Maybe you can transition from the CR to the regular short-acting Ambien first, about 15 mg (the 5 you are already taking plus another 10) (if needed, you can divide it up and take half at bedtime and the other half a few hours later) and then taper down slowly from there. No more than 10% cut at a time and I'd recommend starting with a smaller reduction than that the first couple of times just to see how your body is going to respond. Wait two weeks or longer between reductions.

 

The forum "benzo buddies" is more focused on benzo and benzo-like drugs than this one. You may find more support and information there.

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Altostrata

All good advice! Thank you, Whatever, Barb, InNeed, and Rhi.

 

Just wanted to add that InNeed was misadvised, you do not need to take the "Z drugs" (sleep drugs) regularly. They are safer when you do NOT take them regularly, only very occasionally, so you do not become physically dependent.

 

InNeed was also misadvised that the rebound effects she may have experienced were withdrawal symptoms.

 

All the benzo-type drugs, including the Z drugs, can cause rebound anxiety or sleeplessness when they wear off. In fact, that's how many people become addicted -- when they start to feel rebound, they take more of the drug.

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Rhiannon

All good advice! Thank you, Whatever, Barb, InNeed, and Rhi.

 

Just wanted to add that InNeed was misadvised, you do not need to take the "Z drugs" (sleep drugs) regularly. They are safer when you do NOT take them regularly, only very occasionally, so you do not become physically dependent.

 

InNeed was also misadvised that the rebound effects she may have experienced were withdrawal symptoms.

 

All the benzo-type drugs, including the Z drugs, can cause rebound anxiety or sleeplessness when they wear off. In fact, that's how many people become addicted -- when they start to feel rebound, they take more of the drug.

 

just want to ditto this--this is my understanding and my own experience. I actually use Ambien on a very limited basis when I have to work graveyard shift and need to reset my sleep schedule for day sleeping. When I used to take it regularly I did experience some withdrawal when I quit, but as long as I use it intermittently like this (every two or three months) I seem to do okay with it, although I usually have to take a couple of nights to wean off. Would definitely not recommend taking it regularly if you can avoid it.

 

However, if you have been taking it regularly, it seems to be quite likely that you will experience a withdrawal syndrome similar (or identical) to benzo withdrawal when you stop taking it. So if you've been taking it regularly you do need to taper off.

 

In your case I wouldn't recommend the "crossover to diazepam" approach, I think a slow taper would be better.

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Francis

Im so grateful for everyones advice. Thank you. I will definitely taper off the ambien and am not giving in to my impatience.

Can rebound from the ambien be causing my tight chest/burning upper arm feelings?

Its hard for me to tell what is "me," what is the leftover reaction from unsuccessfully getting off the celexa, and what is from something new that Im taking (ambien or a supplement). I understand completely that this is why it is important to not add a bunch of new supplements at a time or supplement mixtures.

I never had panic attacks or tight chest manifestations from anxiety before I tried to get off the celexa (before the celexa or while on it).

 

What should I be looking for, in terms of withdrawal symptoms, as I reduce the ambien?

 

Its definitely hard to imagine that I can be looking toward years of tapering/withdrawal (hope to get off the celexa eventually). Im hoping for the best, but also dont want to disappoint myself.

 

Rhi- would you recommend that I hold off on tapering the celexa for at least year? I will certainly only focus on the ambien for now- just curious for your opinion, since you mentioned being extremely cautious for at least a year. I want to go about this in a smart way- Id very much like to keep my job.

 

Having the wisdom/support of those on this list is amazing.

 

Thank you

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InNeedOfHope

I just need to explain the Zopiclone situation as I haven't been very clear. I was initially given it and the direction were 7.5mg a night. I only took 3.75mg as I have never touched anything like this before. I was told there were no problems with addiction for the length of time I would be taking it. So I took it and my sleep very quickly got worse and I developed severe paranoia and burning issues. I was told this was because of anxiety and to keep taking the medication. I queried addiction as I had read the leaflet and read up on line, but was told no there are people on this for years.

 

So I carried on, I took it for a total of 10 weeks. Some nights towards the end I took 2 tablets (7.5mg) which was stil the permitted dose. One to get to sleep, one when I woke two hours later. I told the doctor I wanted to come off as I was worsening, I could tell they didn't believe the medicine could do this to me and so was just told, ok, come off if you want and just taper down over a week or so. Cutting the tablet up and taking it every other day etc. So I did. Big mistake...I was subsequently told withdrawal should have taken a couple of months maybe longer and should have used Valium to do it.

 

I was told the yo you dosing, some nights 3.75 some 7.5 was not good and once addicted I should be taking it consistently until I was free of it. As in same dose every day and every night, gradually tapering down over a period of weeks. They weren't advocating take it that wasy in the first instance, just because I had become addicted and would need to stabilise and the best way to do that was every day, slowly working my way down. So every day dosing was because of addiction.

 

A neurologist I saw was surprised I had been told to take it in this way by the gp in the first place, he would give it for one or two nights max every now and again to catch up on sleep until the problems had been sorted another way. This annoys me, if he as an expert knows this, then why not write to the GP telling them so it does not happen to anyone else?

 

Just wanted to make it clear advice given to take it regularly was only because of the addiction mess I had got into. I have been told z drug addiction is far worse because doctors think they are a benign solution to Benzo's yet have much shorter half lives and can cause serious addiction.

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Altostrata

InNeed, I did not mean to imply you were in any way at fault in the way you were taking Ambien. You got bad advice from your doctor.

 

The neurologist was correct.

 

I just wanted to clarify your statement up above in case a visitor read it and thought taking Ambien every night was necessary.

 

Sorry for the confusion!

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Altostrata

Francis, you've decreased the Ambien by a quarter of a tablet, is that right?

 

And you've not suffered any symptoms? Have the morning symptoms lessened any?

 

How much are you taking now, in milligrams?

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Francis

I cut the 10mg pill in quarters and took 7.5mg

I havent noticed any changes in symptoms, better or worse so far.

Fingers crossed.

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Francis

Last night I did an epsom salt soak. I have no tight chest this morning, but I also didnt sleep very well last night, only sleeping soundly for around 2 hours. Held steady on the ambien dose (7.5mg). Im grateful for a more calm chest and no burning in my arms, though.

Is it possible that the epsom salts are stimulating to me?

Thanks!

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Altostrata

Epsom salts contain magnesium, which tends to be calming, relaxing muscles.

 

Tight muscles, even tiny muscles inside, may contribute to your tight chest and burning arms feeling.

 

The Epsom salt bath may not have been connected to your night of poor sleep. You'll need to observe more incidents to see if it's a pattern.

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Francis

Hi all- I have been tapering my ambien and have had some very bad nights of sleep when I cut the amount but I think Im doing okay so far. Unfortunately, I completely forgot to take my dose of ambien last night and Im feeling weepy and just "off" today.

I previously felt that being on celexa zapped me of my motivation to get work done... and I feel like its doing that again.

Right now I have 10mg pills of ambien, so once I go below 2.5 mg, it will be very difficult to cut the pills. My Dr is pretty incompetent and has messed up my last 3 prescriptions and dismisses all of my concerns, so I highly doubt that he would be open to writing me a new prescription for 5 mg pills.

I know a lot of people here have crushed their pills in water- does anyone have a good experience crushing ambien?

I could crush/dissolve 2.5mg in water and then use a syringe(no needle, of course!) to slowly reduce my dose.

Thanks all!

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Altostrata

Francis, you might want to use a digital scale to measure precise dosages of a tablet.

 

If you cannot trust your current doctor, do you have another doctor who will write prescriptions to help you out? Any MD can write these prescriptions.

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Francis

Thank you for that scale recommendation. Im going to attempt using a razor tonight to get more exact cuts than the pill cutter. I think I'll buy the scale this weekend if the razor cutting isnt successful. I slept 5.5 hours last night and feel pretty good today after taking 2.5mg of ambien, so I'll stay on that for a bit before going any lower.

Thanks!

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xx1Ken52

CAN SOMEONE ANSWER MY QUESTION PLEASE

 

i started taking Ambien in December about the 20th

 

about the 26th or 27th of January i developed a TOLERANCE to it

 

i was just wondering if that TOLERANCE go's away after about a month

 

or does it stay with me for more than three month

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Altostrata

Once you develop tolerance, you develop tolerance. It's not going to go away.

 

Strongly suggest you taper off. These sleeping drugs are supposed to be used for only a short time. They are addictive.

 

You may suffer rebound insomnia as you reduce the dosage.

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Rhiannon

Francis, it sounds to me like you're having a normal and successful taper. Congratulations!

 

I agree with Alto that it might be a good idea to do some doctor shopping. You should be able to find a doctor who will support your desire to take smaller quantities of Ambien and who will prescribe you the 5 mg size. You can choose whether or not you want to tell him or her that you're tapering.

 

I divide my 5 mg Ambien pills into approximate fourths, when I take them, but I'm not tapering, I just use them as I've described above, for shift changes.

 

I personally am titrating all of my meds by dissolving them in liquid. If you decide that's a route you want to explore, I'd be glad to share my experience and methods with you.

 

As far as your question a few weeks back, about eventually tapering Celexa and how long you should wait and how long it might take: As you've noticed I usually advise at least starting a taper conservatively. It's better to start slow and then speed up if you find you can tolerate it, than to start too fast and hit the wall and risk never really stabilizing well.

 

I would say, once you're off the Ambien and feeling stable from that, you can start a Celexa taper as soon as you're feeling pretty stable and strong. As long as you take the taper slowly enough that you can hold whenever symptoms ramp up, and hold until they settle down, I think you'll do okay. As for how long that will take, only time will tell; I don't think it's predictable. We're all different, and we all have different histories.

 

But if it helps, I am finding that the side effects of the med are decreasing along with the dose. So even if it does take you a year or two to taper off, if you go carefully you will probably find yourself feeling better and better as the taper goes along.

 

I taper my Celexa using liquid titration. I highly recommend that. It allows small and consistent increments all the way to the end. I think it may come in a liquid form by prescription, but I dissolve my tablets in water, personally.

 

Hope that helps! Best of luck to you. It sounds like you're handling things well and thinking well and making good choices about your tapering.

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Francis

Thank you for the advice, Rhi. I've been looking for a new doctor but havent had luck so far (either not taking new patients or only seeing new patients for meds along with therapy... I like my current therapist, so Im not taking my chances with a new one right now!) but Im not giving up the search.

 

I got 8 hours of sleep last night!!! I feel incredibly spoiled and lucky. Its the first night of good/restful sleep Ive had in 4 months- yippee!

I'll keep going slowly with this ambien taper and once Im off and stable/feeling relatively good, I'll definitely have questions about tapering from the Celexa. Im definitely feeling more concerned about the celexa taper than the ambien taper (only been on ambien for a few months total... use of celexa goes back almost 7 years). I also seem to have a bad mineral imbalance and will try to get that stable before tapering from the celexa. Taking magnesium, Ive felt a lot more stable and upbeat, even when I dont sleep well.

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xx1Ken52

my doctor try to do the same thing to me

after i developed a tolerance to the Ambien and i stopped taking it

she tryed to get me to take Ativan but i Told her im not taking no benzo's

my neurologist gave them to me for cluster seizure's beacuse i have Epilepsy

i just took one i felt very stoned it didnt even work

it made me fell very sleepy but yet i cant still go to sleep

i had a right frontal lobe resection in November on 11,11,11,

i think i got insomnia because of the surgery

 

can someone point me in the right direction

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xx1Ken52

sorry i forgot to mention i take two Epilepsy meds

Keppra(Levetiracetam) Lamictal (Lamotrigine)

i started that a year and half ago i never had insomnia

from it until after the surgery

sleep During The Day i wake up about 5pm or 6pm

and fall sleep about between 6am and 9am somtimes i wake up after 4 or 5 hour of sleep

but most of the time i sleep through the whole day

 

Can Someone Point me in the right Direction

i would Really appreciate it Thanks

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Altostrata

sorry i forgot to mention i take two Epilepsy meds

Keppra(Levetiracetam) Lamictal (Lamotrigine)

i started that a year and half ago i never had insomnia

from it until after the surgery

sleep During The Day i wake up about 5pm or 6pm

and fall sleep about between 6am and 9am somtimes i wake up after 4 or 5 hour of sleep

but most of the time i sleep through the whole day

 

Can Someone Point me in the right Direction

i would Really appreciate it Thanks

 

You may need adjustment of your other medications. They can make you sleepy.

 

If you sleep a lot during the day, it may cause you not to sleep at night. Your sleep cycle may be messed up.

 

You need to talk to your neurologist.

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Whatever

Based on personal experience tolerance to sleeping pills MAY go away after a long period of absitnece, like one year. But as Alto stated, Ambien is intended for short term use, the PI sheet states up to 10 days. Unfortunately in practice many doctors prescribe Ambien for years and up the dosage to address tolerance issues, ignoring what the PI sheets state. If you are uncomfortable taking benzos you should be equally concerned by taking Ambien or "Z" drugs as they are chemically similar.

 

Otherwise, my thoughts are similiar to Alto's.

 

When are you taking your meds?

 

If you take them in the morning than they could be causing you to sleep during the day. If this is indeed the case, you could talk to your neurologist about taking your meds before bed or come up with a schedule so that the meds are working with your natural sleep patterns and not against it.

 

Based on the information you have provided here, it sounds to me that you don't have insommnia, just a skewed sleep pattern.

 

Also if there are any other meds you are taking you should list them. Perhaps there was a med added after your surgery that could have complicated things? To get the best help it is best to list all medications so people see the total picture.

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Rhiannon

Hey Francis, how's it going?

 

I actually tried, for the heck of it, dissolving my 5 mg Ambien tablet in water, then portioning it out into five little bottles of 1 mg each. It seems to have worked okay, although I'm not really dealing with withdrawal symptoms from the Ambien that I know of. It does seem to be helping me taper off after working a week of graveyard shift.

 

So, something you can try if you can't get the smaller tablets.

 

And when you're ready to taper the Celexa I'll be glad to give you support. It's basically the same deal as with all tapers: start stable, start slow, start with conservative cuts and longer holds and then speed up to your tolerance level. Listen to your body and adjust as needed.

 

If you start stable and take it slow I think you need have little to no fear about it. And a cool thing about Celexa, I have found that the side effects are going down as my dosage goes down, so you don't have to wait till the end of the taper to get some relief from the side effects. Which makes it easier to take it slow.

 

I dissolve my Celexa too, but I'm pretty sure you can buy it in a liquid form.

 

Anyway, hang in there, sounds like you're on track!

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Rhiannon

Oh wait I just read your sig line, you're off the Ambien?!! CONGRATULATIONS WAY TO GO!!!!!!

 

Well, take some time to make sure you're feeling really stable, and then let the Celexa taper commence! I'd recommend looking into getting the liquid. You can take, like, two 10 mg tablets and then use the liquid for the rest, down to 20 mg, then one 10 mg tablet and use the liquid down to 10, then just the liquid all the way down.

 

If you can't get the liquid you can dissolve a 10 mg tablet and do the same thing that way.

 

Rock on, this will be great!

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Francis

Yes- Im off of the Ambien as of a few days ago!!! At the lower amounts (5 mg and under), I felt no different as I made the cuts, so I made the cuts faster.

Im still waking up at 3-4am, but for the last 2 days, have been falling back to sleep for little snippets from 4-5... so thats a good trend.

I havent had any luck finding a new psychiatrist, but I'll keep trying. Id really like to be able to get the liquid celexa. I feel anxious about even bringing it up with my current psychiatrist because he has completely dismissed anything Ive mentioned about withdrawal. He also told me I could take a ton of ambien and for months- then encouraged use of klonopin (fortunately, I didnt listen to his klonopin cheerleading). If I can get him to prescribe 25mg as opposed to 30, I think I can get some 10mg pills, so at least that would be a smaller pill to cut/dissolve (and I have enough in my possession abready that I wont have to drop immediately from 30 to 25).

Im going to try to see if I can get my sleep a bit better over the next few weeks/months and then will definitely start the celexa taper. Im feeling much more hopeful now that Im no longer taking ambien and also since Ive been taking magnesium (which seems to have made my chest tightness and burning go away).

 

Thanks so much for the support- I'm hopeful but pretty scared to start the celexa taper... so I'll certainly be looking for some guidance and support.

My naturopath is absolutely amazing and listens to/addresses all of my concerns. He is extremely thoughtful about all of his recommendations, taking me, specifically, into consideration (no cookie cutter solutions).

 

Thank you so much,

Francis

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Altostrata

Any MD can prescribe liquid Celexa. If you have better rapport with your GP, perhaps he or she can write the prescription.

 

And then you can let that mean psychiatrist go!

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moses

Hi Everyone!

I quit taking Lunesta almost two weeks ago after taking it for 8 months. Do you know if causes withdrawal effects? I am feeling really dizzy and a little anxious as well and really tired.

This could be correlating with the fact that I lowered my Pristiq dose over a week ago as well.

Does anyone have any experience quitting sleeping pills?

Thanks,

Rosie

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elizabeth11

I was able to quit taking CT Ambien after one night in which is jacked me up instead of helping with sleep.

 

I stopped melatonin on Sunday and am able to sleep but not yet long or deep enough.

 

Don't know if this info will help you at all, but for me, I was pleasantly surprised skipping ambien turned out to be okay.

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Altostrata

Usually withdrawal from sleeping medication involves rebound insomnia, but if you've also changed your Pristiq dosage, it's unclear what's doing what.

 

It sounds to me like the dizziness, etc. is from Pristiq withdrawal rather than quitting Lunesta, so you might have gotten away with that.

 

Still, it's not a good idea to cold turkey sleeping medications. If you've been taking them regularly, taper off over a week at least, please!

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elizabeth11

Alto is so correct. I should not have CT ambien...tapering is best.

 

Elizabeth

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Barbarannamated

Just to weigh in -

Husband CTd zaleplon several weeks ago at same time he began Effexor taper - he won't tell me what he's experiencing although his sleep is defintely disturbed (and inevitably it's my fault) -

Overheard him calling his doc for refill of zaleplon (sleeper) yesterday -

I really need a webcam to be documenting all of this ;)

 

Perhaps there is a support group for spouses of those afflicted with Medical Divinity Personality Disorder (MDPD)-that is a new DSM diagnosis I WOULD support -

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Altostrata

Perhaps you could murmur "rebound insomnia" to him....

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