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Looking for input on my zolpidem (Ambien) taper


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Hi Everyone! I am on Day 14 of my taper from zolpidem 10mg a night (divided doses during the night) to 5mg once at bedtime.  I have noticed a real decrease in anxiety which had begun to plaque me during the night as well as better mood during the day.  Have experienced new withdrawal symptoms of dental pain, hives/swelling around eyes at day 10. 

 

My first question is weather the pre-taper symptoms that I had before the recent anxiety (back/muscle pain, nerve pain) were due to tolerance and inter-dose withdrawal while at the higher dose? Those pain symptoms got a little better with CBT (pre-taper) but never really left, and now I'm wondering if all those symptoms were zolpidem related to begin with?!  I still have all these symptoms to a slightly less degree during the taper- so thinking I'm still experiencing inter-dose withdrawal. 

 

My second question is to which dose should I next taper? Dr suggests a full month for this first taper before decreasing to next lower dose.  We didn't explicitly discuss but I think she's thinking 2.5mg next.  Haven't seen much on this site re: Ambien tapers.  Do I go to 4mg, then 3mg, etc every two weeks?  Any input is much appreciated! 

 

So grateful for this community!  :smitten:

 

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When I tapered Ambien, just went in 2.5mg chunks.  I split the pills into fourths.

 

I took a month tapering off, but I was still taking Ativan and so I think that’s why this taper was so easy.

 

Muscle pain can be from Ambien, but it could also just be normal pain from your daily activities. 

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Thanks for this info! 

Just wondering - did you do your entire taper in one month? or one month intervals for each 2.5mg?

Thanks in advance :-)

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Short taper of just one month.  But again, I had Ativan to help me through.  That said, once I was off, I had no other symptoms. 

 

I cut down by 1/4 every week. 

 

I hope you are practicing good sleep habits.  You will want to be doing this now so you are ready when you jump off.

 

Go to bed only when tired.  Bedroom is for sleeping only, no work or watching tv.  Limit screen time at night.  Relax and meditation or other relaxing things.  If you wake up and can’t sleep, get up and do something.  (I read or work on a jigsaw puzzle).  If possible, don’t set an alarm, wake up whenever you wake up. 

 

And don’t fret about not getting 8 hours, that is just a myth anyways. 

 

Good luck!  Keep us posted on your progress.

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I tapered my 10 mgs of Ambien by getting my doc to prescribe the 5 mg pills. They were oval shaped and easier to split than a 10 mg round pill. I cut one of the 5 mg pills into quarters, and tapered that way. One eighth of 10 mgs is 1.25 mgs (one quarter of a 5 mg pill) . . . so that was my reduction rate. At the "bottom" of my taper it was a big reduction and I noticed it, but I kept the taper rate constant because I was too brain dead to do anything else. I reduced my dose once every 2 weeks. It worked out okay.

 

Hope this helps.

 

Katz

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