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Old 04-22-2007, 09:49 AM   #1
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Effects of Weaning? Don't Know

Well, folks, I'm 9 days away from ending my three months on Chantix. I wanted to share something that I've begun to notice in the past 4 days of the weaning process: I can't sleep. One of those nights, I only got 3 hrs. sleep (even after taking 2 sleeping pills), one night I slept well (took a stronger sleeping pill.) It's like I'm wired....4:00 AM could just as easily be 4:00 in the afternoon. I was up all night long last night. I knew I wasn't gonna go to sleep so I just went on and got up @ 5:00 AM. I took a 45 min. nap later in the morning. I'm feeling tired right now, but not especially sleepy. Of course, I think we tend to blame everything on Chantix, but it may be something else....but I think it really is coming off the Chantix. I'm just gonna continue to monitor my insomnia and see how it goes. For damn sure, tho: I WILL be taking a sleeping pill tonight!

Oh...I haven't had any of the vivid dreams that most others have until my 45 min. nap a little earlier. I woke up in a TOTAL panic: I dreamed I was sitting on my screened end porch smoking! I could actually smell the cigarette smoke. It scared the living hell outta me -- I really thought I'd started smoking again.

Well...that's my story and I'm sticking to it If you all have any thoughts about my inability to sleep, please let me know. Thanks..

 
Old 04-22-2007, 09:59 AM   #2
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Re: Effects of Weaning? Don't Know

Hi Trish
I had issues with not sleeping but only after I stopped Chantix completely and I think Skimmer did too . It lasted a week or two. Now I sleep well every night again. I am SURE this is just a side effect of withdrawing from Chantix and will pass.

Last edited by True Brit; 04-22-2007 at 11:22 AM.

 
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Old 04-22-2007, 10:03 AM   #3
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Re: Effects of Weaning? Don't Know

Trish, I'm asking this here because I don't know if you go to the Sleeping Forum.... what kind of sleeping pills do you take? I can't sleep as well after quitting smoking so my doctor gave me some Ambien... it works pretty well. But I like to have all the info on drugs/procedures etc. when I ask my doc about something.

Thanks! Happy Sunday!

 
Old 04-22-2007, 01:13 PM   #4
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Re: Effects of Weaning? Don't Know

Hi Traveller: I've had sleep issues off and on for years. Have no idea what causes my bouts of insomnia...happens for a few weeks or so every 3 or 4 months. I've taken Ambien and it worked for me. However, generic Valium works just as well and it's much cheaper. Also, an occasional Benadryl works. The other night, I took one Valium and in about 1.5 hrs. later, took another (I NEVER do that -- one normally sends me right to dream land). I finally drifted off about 3:30 AM and woke @ 7:30 AM. The next night, I went to the heavy duty stuff - generic Desyrel. Can only take a half 'cause I'm in a stupor the next day if I take a whole one. (I'm very sensitive to CNS medications.) Last night, I decided I was just gonna see what happened and took nothing....and didn't sleep!! In both instances - getting only a few hrs. sleep and then getting none - I'm not exhausted. Today, I continue to feel really wired -- like I might be on "speed" - and have done a bunch of stuff around the house, went to the grocery stone, went to exercise for an hour and walked the dogs. Normally, if I miss sleep, I'm just worn out the next day. This, then, leads me to believe it's the Chantix creating this particular sleep problem. One thing for sure: I'm not a happy camper. I feel like I'd just knock someone's head off if they "crossed" me. And I'm not mad for any particular reason....just mad.

No...I've never been to the sleep forum...maybe I will. Thanks for listening, you all.

 
Old 04-22-2007, 01:15 PM   #5
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Re: Effects of Weaning? Don't Know

PS: I don't like taking anything for sleep....I don't wanna get addicted to any of that stuff. That's just what I need: ANOTHER addiction!

 
Old 04-22-2007, 02:33 PM   #6
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Re: Effects of Weaning? Don't Know

I don't go to the Sleeping Disorders forum too often, I hate to say it but I don't find that forum particularily useful. I've never heard of Desyrel, I'll go look it up. And I am dependant on Ambien.... My doctor doesn't seem too concerned about it. I hope he doesn't make me stop taking it. I don't have the strange problems others have experienced with it. It was a lifesaver when I first quit smoking, but I didn't start taking it a lot until a few months ago.

 
Old 04-22-2007, 03:11 PM   #7
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Re: Effects of Weaning? Don't Know

Desyrel, I believe, has been around for a really long time. When my physician first gave me the script, I took a whole one. It put me to sleep for sure, but I had bad dreams and when I woke up, I didn't know who I was for about 8 hrs. Well......I exaggerate a tad -- but I truly was in a stupor for hours. Taking a half one doesn't leave me all goofy. Well....more goofy than usual

 
Old 04-22-2007, 07:50 PM   #8
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Re: Effects of Weaning? Don't Know

Hi Trish,
You are talking some of my language with the sleep issues.
My first summer of insomnia was after 8th grade, and I'm 55 now...
If I'm remembering Desyrel correctly, that used to drop me in my tracks like an elephant gun, but I was a zombie for much of the day after. I took amytriptaline for a few years after a whiplash accident, but taking enough to work for pain and sleep also left me a zombie.
Valium make me want to stay awake and enjoy the experience, so those don't work for me.
Usually, in my life, 'trouble sleeping' (retrospectively) usually came with stress in life, and you have to admit, quitting smokes has been 'stressful'.
I've been taking Ambien CR, the blue ones (12.5mg?) for most of the quit experience. Some nights were still just 4 or 5 hours of sleep. Some nights I took nothing, just to break the cycle every few days, and it would be about the same. Towards the last month, I've been getting mostly 7 hour nights.
At the same time during the quit, I've been taking Xanax everyday, and at first they would put me to sleep, but I barely feel them now. I take one (or a half) when I start feeling like I'd REALLY consider buying some cigarettes.
I finished my 12 weeks of Chantix...last tuesday, I think it was.
I just 'stopped' on the last dose. No trickledown.
I was a little cranky for a day, and I got extra 'stinkey' but it wasn't so bad. I still feel about the same as when I was taking it. Waiting for my pleasure reflex to show back up for something.
I'll tell you what, the last 2 weeks taking care of my wife 'post-hysterectomy' and working this week, has gotten me really good at sleeping most nights!
You can come help!
Seriously though, you mentioned 'sleep issues on and off for years', and I'd suggest a serious look at your habits leading up to sleep with things like cut off night-time caffeine. I hit the bed EVERY night at 10:30, where I have a tv, and when I do take the Ambien it is right then at 10:30. I don't troll the dial looking for something interesting. ( I *want* to get bored!) Sometimes a book complex enough that after 20 minutes or so my brain sez: 'the heck with this!' Eastern philosophy works fairly well.
I'm usually out by 11-11:30, but start waking up by the dawn's early light.
Well, every time I quit smokes before, it was the not-sleeping that got me smoking again, and this is better than that.
I hope this is some reassurance. I've lurked around the sleep disorder forum but seen nothing to suggest particularly.
No matter what I'm taking right now to make life 'livable' getting used to being a non-smoker, I'm certain it will be easier to walk away from than nicotine, eventually. Just like at the start of the quit, I'm doing a 'one-foot-after-the-other' approach, trusting things are going to work out in the end.
At least I'm still smoke free!
Good luck, and let us know how its working!
Best Regards,
DeadFish

 
Old 04-22-2007, 09:49 PM   #9
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Re: Effects of Weaning? Don't Know

Trish,
I've been taking 50 mg. trazedone (Desyrel) for 15 years!!
Don't take it every night. Maybe 4 or 5 nights a week.
I've had insomnia since I was 14 years old!! Sometimes the trazedone works for me and sometimes it doesn't. I have been off caffeine for 17 years. (That was as hard as quitting cigarettes!!) If I get at least 6 hours sleep, I'm doing good!! Less than that I tend to get a little cranky.

When I got off the Chantix, I took the trazedone every night for about a month. So if you need a sleep aid, use it!!

Memaw

 
Old 04-23-2007, 01:24 PM   #10
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Re: Effects of Weaning? Don't Know

Hi Trish,
I am cutting back on chantix - .5 mg every other day. Mornings are tough - I am crankier and more emotional. I have been falling asleep before 9 am and waking up at 4 am (this has to stop!). I have been taking st. johns wort to take the edge off, and that seems to help my mood throughout the day. I have exp. some weight gain, and hope to start slowly losing it. I will go in to have my thyroid checked next month - I figure 3 months quit is a good wait period - some of my weight gain and fatigue could be attributed to my under-active thyroid.
Hang in there - you've done a great job and this too shall pass.
deb

 
Old 04-23-2007, 04:21 PM   #11
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Re: Effects of Weaning? Don't Know

Thanks, all of you, for your responses. I did take the Desyrl (sp) - 25 mg. - last night and slept the entire night. If they paid people to sleep, I woulda sho nuff made some money!! I still feel sorta "wired" today, but not nearly so much. I think I'm probably gonna take something tonight - maybe a Valium - so I can get two good nights sleep in a row.

I've been so very fortunate in my Chantix experience, so if I have to go thru a period of insomnia, then so be it.

I know insomnia is not a medical "condition" in and of itself, but I've never been able to zero in on what causes the bouts I periodically go thru. It hardly ever happens during the winter....whatever that might mean. And I don't mean to imply that it's a "problem".....it just happens from time to time. But, this time it's different and I'm just sure it's getting off the Chantix.

Meemaw: Could you stop taking the Desryl (sp) if you wanted to? I have a real fear of getting "hooked" on sleeping pills....that's why I just hardly ever take anything.

Thank you all again for what you do best: support, encourage, offer suggestions, share your experiences. You're great!!

 
Old 04-23-2007, 09:54 PM   #12
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Re: Effects of Weaning? Don't Know

Trish,
Yes, I could quit. In fact, I have gone a couple of weeks at a time without taking it at all. But when I'm still up at 4:00 in the morning, I know the next night I better take something. I used to think if I worked myself to a frazzle that I would sleep really good that night. Nope. Never happened. My house was spotless though. I've got hardwood floors and I would get on my hands and knees and wax those suckers with paste wax. I would go for 2 or 3 days without sleeping. I would lay down and rest, but wouldn't sleep.
But I don't take it every night. The trazedone is not addictive according to the literature that I've read and talking to my doctor and pharmacist.

Hey Trish, how have you been rewarding yourself for not smoking?
(keeping on topic) My hubby took me out on a date last weekend. We had a wonderful time. I got to sit in the non smoking area of the restaurant!

Memaw

 
Old 04-24-2007, 04:23 PM   #13
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Re: Effects of Weaning? Don't Know

Well, Meemaw.....I haven't really done anything for myself. I've always treated myself sorta special, as far as getting what I want. So...I've just continued to carry on. I think the special things for me are things that can't be purchased: how good I feel, how proud I am of myself, my not coughing and wheezing, the freedom I feel by no longer being tied at the hip to cigarettes.

Had another sleep "situation" last night. When it became obvious that I wasn't gonna go to sleep, took a Valium. I might as well have eaten a stick.....didn't do a thing. So...about an hour later, took a half Desryl (sp). Even that took a while to kick in, but I finally got to sleep and caught about 4 hrs. of z's. I'm just not gonna worry about it.....I'm gonna take what I need to take in order to sleep and see how things go once I'm completely off the Chantix. If nothing changes, will speak w/ my physician when I see him on 5/7/07.

Bye

 
Old 04-24-2007, 10:39 PM   #14
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Re: Effects of Weaning? Don't Know

Trish,
Just a thought. Do you eat a snack before you take the Desyrel? My instructions are to take with food.
Memaw

 
Old 04-25-2007, 08:36 AM   #15
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Re: Effects of Weaning? Don't Know

Meemaw: I know you're familiar with these two phrases: "Can't see for looking" and "Can't see the forest for the trees". Well......it's true for me and the Desyrel. That script was filled in May of last year and I had NEVER noticed that sticker on the bottle saying "take w/ food"!!!! As I said, I rarely take it and still have almost a full bottle -- I'm offering that as my excuse for not reading the label

I looked Desyrel up on line and found that it's an anti-depressant as a first use and sleep aid as a second. I certainly didn't know that...did you? I thought it was just for sleeping. Also read what you'd said: it isn't addictive. That makes me feel much better about using it as I need to. I probably won't take it w/ food 'cause nothing has happened in not eating. I don't know why it has such a negative affect when I take it as 50 mg. (I only did that once -- that was enough for me!) Halving the 50 mg. pill is just right, it seems. The thing is: I don't wanna take anything -- I just want natural sleep. But....that doesn't seem possible at the moment so I'm just gonna drug myself to sleep

As far as any other "problems" in weaning off Chantix: zip, nada, none. I feel great!! On Friday, I will begin .05 mg. every other day and be off the med as of 5/1/07. Just hope being off the rx totally doesn't create anything.

I am smoke free and I'm lovin' it!!!!!

 
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