Can't Sleep

jake10
jake10 Member Posts: 202
edited March 2014 in Breast Cancer #1
Before all this, I was a wonderful sleeper. I remember laying my head down and going to sleep almost instantly. Now it's 3 or 4 am before I fall asleep, and if I do sleep earlier I wake up after only about an hour or so. I am roaming the house at all hours. I get out of bed and do something like the experts tell us but when I feel sleepy and I return to bed, I still can't fall asleep. I am on Arimidex, Zoloft, Prilosec and Claritin. Even Loratab don't make me fall asleep. My doctor gave me Ambien but warned against taking it 2 nights in a row. Said I would never sleep unaide again if I did. I have only taken it 6 times over the last 4 months but that is not enough sleep. Help!!!! funny thing is come morning I do not want to wake up.

Comments

  • squeeboo
    squeeboo Member Posts: 29
    See if your doctor will give you a mild anxiety medication like lorazepam. I had a lot of trouble sleeping during my treatment as well. I didn't feel like I was anxious and it wasn't active worrying or anything that was keeping me awake, but I just couldn't fall asleep. The lorazepam (at 1/4 - 1/2 the dose) did the trick. It was just enough to relax my brain enough to sleep. My oncologist even said to pass some to my parents and husband if it would help them too and she assured me that it wasn't habit-forming like many sleep drugs.
  • jamjar62
    jamjar62 Member Posts: 135
    I also was having trouble sleeping and my doctor prescribed an anti-depressant called Trazadone which I take at night. I also take Prozac in the morning for depression. I take 50 mg of the Trazadone and I'm sleepy within 30 minutes and I sleep so hard that I don't hear my husband come to bed. It is not habit-forming because I've been taking it since December and I've never had to increase my dose. I took it before about 8 years ago when I was having trouble sleeping. You can't just stop it cold turkey because it is an anti-depressant so when I wanted to stop taking it, I cut the tablet in half, took that for about a month and then in quarters and took that about a month. Then I just quit and had no trouble sleeping or no side effects from quitting. It is not a tranquilizer or a sedative but it definitely makes you sleep. My neighbor was having trouble sleeping and "borrowed" one awhile back. She called me the next morning and said she woke up with drool on her pillow and that was her gauge of a good's night sleep! I have also taken Ambien and I get a better night's sleep with Trazadone. I don't understand why more docs don't prescribe it for sleep problems because it saved my sanity! Oh yeah, its cheap too in case you don't have a good prescription plan. Good luck! Karen
  • ksfc
    ksfc Member Posts: 251
    I agree with the others - there's a med that will help without leaving you addicted. I've recently had to take prednisone and while I too am usually a good sleeper, it makes it very difficult to fall asleep. Something like lorazepam, klonopin, or xanax can help without causing long term problems. Take care - Diane
  • hummingbyrd
    hummingbyrd Member Posts: 950 Member
    Been there, done that!
    The ladies are right, no need to suffer. Personally, I like xanax (correct spelling thank you very much!). I was corrected in chat the other night. LOL
    It is an anti-anxiety med, it does help you sleep, and I've been on the same dose for 5 years, however, it can be addicting. Sounds like the doc you got the ambien from is not much on sleep aides, so I'd advise you to talk w/ family doctor. God bless. hummingbyrd
    As you can see I haven't taken my xanax yet...LOL
  • bullfrog13
    bullfrog13 Member Posts: 213
    jake10-my doc gave me ambein also-I only took it for a short period of time. Acually, I sort of started enjoying my ''night alone time''. Then I was like you coudlnt get up for work in the morning. I resorted to taking tylenol PM -mostly for the pain- it worked better than the Ambien (spell check -lol)
    Good luck and God Bless
    [email protected]
  • llange
    llange Member Posts: 54
    I have a long history of sleep problems, and I've tried a lot of medications for it. I don't like Ambien - I can only sleep 5 or 6 hrs on it then I wake up and can't go back to sleep. However, it's not addicting in only 2 nights. Problably more like 10 days or 2 weeks. It's o.k. to use once in a while. I've also been on trazadone, which worked well but I felt it made my brain a little slow during the day, so I went off of it. During treatments I used lorazapam, which helped. I also have Sonata, which is great if you wake up during the night and can't get back to sleep. One of the pleasant side effects of my year of treatments (I finished 8/02) is that I seem to be cured of my insomnia - praise God! I've been sleeping like a baby for the first time in years, but part of the reason is because I have options if I'm having trouble (Sonata, Ambien, lorazapam), so I relax more about falling asleep, and I hardly ever need them. Also, after battling cancer I've relaxed more about the little things in life that had been stressing me out. So anyway, there are a lot of options to talk about with your dr.
    Good luck!
    Lisa
  • prayerangel
    prayerangel Member Posts: 147
    llange said:

    I have a long history of sleep problems, and I've tried a lot of medications for it. I don't like Ambien - I can only sleep 5 or 6 hrs on it then I wake up and can't go back to sleep. However, it's not addicting in only 2 nights. Problably more like 10 days or 2 weeks. It's o.k. to use once in a while. I've also been on trazadone, which worked well but I felt it made my brain a little slow during the day, so I went off of it. During treatments I used lorazapam, which helped. I also have Sonata, which is great if you wake up during the night and can't get back to sleep. One of the pleasant side effects of my year of treatments (I finished 8/02) is that I seem to be cured of my insomnia - praise God! I've been sleeping like a baby for the first time in years, but part of the reason is because I have options if I'm having trouble (Sonata, Ambien, lorazapam), so I relax more about falling asleep, and I hardly ever need them. Also, after battling cancer I've relaxed more about the little things in life that had been stressing me out. So anyway, there are a lot of options to talk about with your dr.
    Good luck!
    Lisa

    Holy Cow! I must really be addicted then. I have been on Ambien for 2 yrs. straight. I sleep like a baby and get up at 6:15 every weekday morning for work.
  • marytres
    marytres Member Posts: 144
    hi, I must be the weird one since the oncologist gave me Halicon, hope I spelled it right. And when I take it, I get to sleep but I don't take it all the time. I'm afraid to get addicted too. Hugs, Marie
  • jake10
    jake10 Member Posts: 202
    marytres said:

    hi, I must be the weird one since the oncologist gave me Halicon, hope I spelled it right. And when I take it, I get to sleep but I don't take it all the time. I'm afraid to get addicted too. Hugs, Marie

    Halcion isn't used much anymore because you don't get any REM sleep or whatever the best sleep is called. Halcion can also cause severe confusion in the elderly.
    Somebody at work suggested Alluna Sleep. Ever hear of it?
    Thanks for all the responses, it helps. Beth
  • MicheleD
    MicheleD Member Posts: 3
    I too can't sleep. Since all of this happened I can't sleep wven with Tylenon PM which always used to work for me before.
    I had a lumpectomy & 19 lymph nodes removed in April. Oncologist started me on Tamoxafin for a couple weeks then stopped as they found cancer in the sentinal lymph node. Took my first A/C chemo rx 3 weeks ago.
    At first the pain and tingling in the arm after surgery woke me up. I found I could not go back to sleep, cried a lot trying. Then strange feelings woke me up several times a night. Like electricity going through me from my head to my feet. Waves of weird feelings that lasted only a second but enough to keep me awake. The waves of feeling still persist, but now they only go from head to chest and still keep me awake. My onchologist said it was probably "hot flashes". Well I have those too, but they are different from this. Anyone else have these strange waves that wake you in the night? I feel depressed.
  • jake10
    jake10 Member Posts: 202
    MicheleD said:

    I too can't sleep. Since all of this happened I can't sleep wven with Tylenon PM which always used to work for me before.
    I had a lumpectomy & 19 lymph nodes removed in April. Oncologist started me on Tamoxafin for a couple weeks then stopped as they found cancer in the sentinal lymph node. Took my first A/C chemo rx 3 weeks ago.
    At first the pain and tingling in the arm after surgery woke me up. I found I could not go back to sleep, cried a lot trying. Then strange feelings woke me up several times a night. Like electricity going through me from my head to my feet. Waves of weird feelings that lasted only a second but enough to keep me awake. The waves of feeling still persist, but now they only go from head to chest and still keep me awake. My onchologist said it was probably "hot flashes". Well I have those too, but they are different from this. Anyone else have these strange waves that wake you in the night? I feel depressed.

    I only got tightness in my chest, kind of like a panic attack. And I love male doctors telling you you are having a hot flash. Like they know how that feels.
    I'm still not sleeping well but it's better than it was. I now sometimes take Benadryl. That seems to make me drowsy and I fall asleep. I have to go to bed kind of early when I take this, if I don't I wake up feeling hungover. Beth