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need advice Insomnia for 4 years


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Insomnia for 4 years i can go weeks without sleep and the last 1.5years  i went to shrink and she prescribe me BENZO. I never know what is benzo i am still so young. Lately i join facebook group about insomnia and all the horror story of benzo pop up. something i never imagine . Benzo has helped me get some sleep and now i learn about how bad it is . I am in a dilemma if i stop my benzo i go back to my past condition where insomnia is tormenting me day and night for years. In that 3 years of insomnia my auto immune wreck havock and it attack my immune system and slowly my hair gone and i go bald. i still remember how bad insomnia is for me . Constant panic attack and cold sweat and unable to focus or open my eyes i am a walking zombie everyday. Anyone in such condition and what is the best path ? Maybe someone who has experienced what i am going throught and know the best path? I am still so young 28 years old. Thanks for any advice you can give....
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I'm so sorry to hear your story, you're faced with more insomnia as you taper and when you're free from the drug you'll just go back to your normal which is torture. 

 

Can you tell us more about your condition, when it started, what you've done to combat it and what your lifestyle is like?  Maybe we can help you find another way to deal with your insomnia. 

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Thank you for asking.... my insomnia started by 2 events. The first insomnia happen because my maid was noisy at 4am in the morning!! I was almost falling asleep and woken up badly. Since then i suddenly unable to fall asleep at all! So the next night me trying to fix my sleeping hour. It started 4 years ago. At that time i was trying to sleep early. I usually sleep at 3 am now want to sleep earlier at 10PM if you ask me why? Its because the previous night i cant sleep due to noisy maid downstairs. But what happen next is i cant sleep at all again..... so it become 2 night of sleeplessness then the 3rd night come and again i try to sleep early and.... i cant sleep again this happen for days until i crashed. What is worst is that i start obsessing over sleep and fear of sleeplessness set in to me i am anxious i am afraid if i dont sleep every night and this fear become vicious cycle i keep staying up every day. I can go more than a week not sleeping to crash or get sick then i can sleep a little bit. What i did wrong is that because of this i lost my job my girlfriend and everything about my life. I cant function i cant stand up i often get panic attack i am shaking and at the end i have auto immune disease.... slowly my hair go bald . My white blood cell increase big time and attack my own cells. I end up spending so much time in bed obsessing and fearing of sleep . I am in a country where there are no treatment for insomnia. No doctor understand . It is only recently i know about CBTi or ACTi when i joined international insomnia group. So at one point i become so depressed.... everyday i cried on my bed when i stand up my heart beat like a bass and my head dizzy and hurt . My eyes heavy like there is elephant on it but i cant fall asleep.... i am at my wits end i cried everyday depressed everyday i pray but there seems to be no healing or answer. Then a friend of mine worried about me and told me to go to shrink. After 3 years i end up going to shrink and ask for help. The shrink of course gave me benzo and anti depressant. She also teach me about CBT but not insomnia only CBT she dont understand what is insomnia. But somehow at that time the benzo works..... and slowly i get some sleep nightly. With benzo.... until recently i read the group post about benzo . I am scared of the effect and withdrawal and side effect , but i still remember my insomnia i dont know anymore what am i supposed to do.
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Sorry you are in the sleep situation you are in.

 

Since your insomnia started before Benzos, CBT-i should be effective after you are off of the Benzos?

 

You could also try sleep restriction to get your body used to going to bed at 10:00 pm instead of 3:00 am

 

Sleep takes a long time to resolve for some.  I will be 4 years off of Benzos in about 3 weeks and my sleep is still not perfect, but is enough in terms of hours and quality to live a normal life

 

In my opinion, Benzos are never the long-term solution or answer for any condition, but especially sleep.  Your body wants to sleep on its own and will given the right frame of mind and sleep conditions.

 

Benzos and ADs are merely band aids that mask any underlying issues and they all eventually stop working.

 

Some others on this forum had severe insomnia like you - MTFan, EastCoast, etc.  I had severe insomnia too for about 10 months then it slowly got better.

 

I started Benzos because of some sleep issues so I had insomnia before Benzos and now that I am off of the Benzos I do pretty well each night with sleep.

 

You'll get there too.  The first step is to safely get off of the Benzo and AD.  Then you can look into CBT-i, sleep restriction, etc.

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Thank you the way.... from your story it seems like benzo withdrawal last for 2 years. Is it because of cold turkey or actually tapering will be better? Goodness man i cant imagine going sleepless for 2 years i can go insane. I still remember before benzo how i get depressed and cry every single day. Also after stopping benzo when is the right time to do CBTi? After stopping benzo totally or wait until withdrawal symtoms gone? Because with rebound insomnia people said CBTi is meaningless.
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My sleep wasn't terrible the entire time...it was UP and down and slowly improved.  It came back in fits and starts, sort of like the stock market.

 

Doing a cold turkey is not recommended, but that is the only way some people can get off of these drugs.  While not recommended, I would do a CT again if I had a chance to do it over.  I wanted the Benzo out of my body and wanted my body to start healing.  However, there is the risk of more intense symptoms and possibly a longer withdrawal period with a cold turkey, but nothing is for sure and it's a guessing game at best.

 

I would wait until your WD symptoms are gone before you start CBT-i  Not much can touch Benzo induced insomnia and CBT-i is almost guaranteed not to work until you start to sleep some on your own?

 

I think people mean "rebound insomnia" or insomnia caused by getting off of Benzos that can't be touched by CBT-i? 

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My sleep wasn't terrible the entire time...it was UP and down and slowly improved.  It came back in fits and starts, sort of like the stock market.

 

Doing a cold turkey is not recommended, but that is the only way some people can get off of these drugs.  While not recommended, I would do a CT again if I had a chance to do it over.  I wanted the Benzo out of my body and wanted my body to start healing.  However, there is the risk of more intense symptoms and possibly a longer withdrawal period with a cold turkey, but nothing is for sure and it's a guessing game at best.

 

I would wait until your WD symptoms are gone before you start CBT-i  Not much can touch Benzo induced insomnia and CBT-i is almost guaranteed not to work until you start to sleep some on your own?

 

I think people mean "rebound insomnia" or insomnia caused by getting off of Benzos that can't be touched by CBT-i?

 

I have a question how do you differentiate sleep deprivation with withdrawal symtoms? How do i know if there is no longer withdrawal only sleep deprivation? I think tapering will help me more im scared with cold turkey last time i tried cold turkey for 7 days and i am a whack jelly fish. My neck feel like breaking my body in pain my head want to burst and i am shaking heavily and sweating and depressed. I can feel my brain cant turn off at that time when i cold turkey benzo its like i am so wide awake and whenever i am going to doze off i wake up jerking automatically. are you doing CBTi also currently? or not?

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You really won't be able to tell the difference between preexisting insomnia and WD insomnia since your preexisting insomnia was very severe.  However, you will know when your symptoms end and you no longer feel like a wacky jellyfish.

 

I tried the Shut-i CBT-i program while I was still in WD and it didn't do anything for me.

 

I tried parts of it again after I healed a bunch and it seemed to help.  It was mostly sleep hygiene stuff anyway that most people with regular (non Benzo) insomnia try.

 

 

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