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Insomnia and Ativan taper


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Hey there, I have been having a lot of issues with insomnia.  I originally ended up on Ativan for it after being benzo free for 3 months.  I was up for about 5 days and could not take it anymore so I went to a walk-in clinic here for help.  I was on the Ativan for about 6 weeks and the first 2 weeks I slept great.  I realized I was getting addicted again at about 4 weeks and now I am finally trying to quit but I still cant sleep.

 

I was up for 5 days straight and I binged out on Ativan about 3 days ago..I took 6 1mg Ativans to get to sleep and then I slept for 5 hours.  My regular dose is 2mg/day and that is the first time I did that because I was desperate for sleep.  One or two other times I may have taken 3mg but not often.  I never ran out of my prescription before it was due to refill so my standard dose is 2mg/day.

 

Anyways, I decided I wanted to quit after I binged out to get sleep.  I had been wanting to quit for a long time but really want to do it now.  I have not slept since then and I have been awake for about 2 days.  I cut my dosage down to 1mg/day and I am trying to let my body get used to the dosage reduction.  Tonight will be the third night that I take only 1mg/day.  Is it wise to do this even though I am not sleeping?  How long of being up is too long?  I am hoping this gets better soon and maybe I can get some sleep tonight, but it seems like I just lay there and struggle.

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I'm worried that you may have made too large a reduction, GlynG.    Going from 2mg/day to 1mg/day is a huge drop which you may not feel the effects of for several more days.  What kinds of things have you already tried to improve your chances of sleeping, other than taking extra Ativan?  My doctor told me I could take up to 100mg of benedryl but I never had to go higher than 50mg.  I often had a kind of benedryl hangover the next day so didn't use it all the time but after you've been up a couple of days, that hangover doesn't look so bad, does it?  I also listen to relaxation CD designed to improve sleep.  I believe there are some threads on this board about them, including some program called "Sleep Tracks" which I have not tried.  Hope you get some sleep tonight.
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Hmm..I have tried all sorts of things to get me to sleep but nothing seems to really work.  I tried Unisom, my doctor gave me Elavil (an antidepressant) which did nothing, and I used to drink or take Norcos to go to sleep.

 

Drinking or taking Norcos in particular seems to be too chaotic and unhealthy so I have not been doing that but I am still considering buying some red wine because they say 2 glasses a night can help you sleep better.  Benadryl never seemed to work for me either.  I seem to be in the class of insomniacs that is truly severe, most likely the worst possible.  I have had the problem off and on for about 4 years at least and the benzos made it worse in the long run.

 

Like some others said, I am kind of an all or nothing person but not to the exteme.  I am stubborn and want to get down to that 1 mg dose but I may bring it up to 1.5mg if this does not work and I still cannot sleep.  The sleep track stuff does not seem to work for me either but maybe I just have not found the right one yet  Thanks for the encouragement, I think I am going to take my 1mg dose pretty soon and try to get some sleep.

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