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    Old 04-13-2006, 04:24 AM   #1
    Chuck65
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    paxil and insomnia

    Hi

    I'm about a week into Paxil CR and I can not sleep. Last night I slept maybe one hour. Before going on Paxil CR I was just on Xanax 2 mg to sleep and it worked great although I always woke up with a panic attack.

    Anyone experience insomnia on Paxil, Paxil CR or any SSRI when you first started? This is very bad. Worst part is I'm driving my wife crazy.

     
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    Old 04-13-2006, 07:47 AM   #2
    harlequin
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    Re: paxil and insomnia

    My first thought is that a week of Paxil probably isn't enough time. IMHO, there's also the question of why you're having the panic attacks. Is it just Panic Disorder, is it PTSD, or what exactly?

    One interesting thing that I've read that sort of "keeps me going" is the new information that has come out regarding the role of stress hormones in depression. The stress hormones apparently cause diminshed replacement of cells in a brain structure called the hippocampus, which is strongly implicated in depression and anxiety, and that treatment with medication like Paxil helps the hippocampus get back to normal replacement with new cells. But that takes time.

    So, like I say, IMHO one week of Paxil probably isn't enough time.

    Does your psychiatrist have anything against just giving you something for sleep? There are new, non-habituating ones that can be used. Your psychiatrist would know about those and which one might be right for you. There are also some over-the-counter and herbal things for sleep, but I wouldn't suggest you start taking them without asking your psychiatrist.

     
    Old 04-13-2006, 09:43 AM   #3
    All-alone
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    Re: paxil and insomnia

    Yes, yes and yes.I am glad you have posted this, I have been on various SSRI's but for the last 2-3 months on Paxil, my sleep has stopped. My doctor just blames the depression, I blame the Paxil.

    I was given temazepam for sleeping with no effect whatsoever, I have just been given a different sleeping pill to try tonight.

    It's a horrible thing not sleeping, I hope you can get some sleep soon.

     
    Old 04-13-2006, 09:50 AM   #4
    Spin444
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    Re: paxil and insomnia

    Hi Chuck, Insomnia and sleep disturbances are a listed side effect of Paxil. As usual, Glaxo has vastly understated its commonality. It might get better, but it might not. Everyone has different side effects. There's not much you can do except, like someone else is doing, take yet another drug for the problem. Adding new drugs to deal with side effects and worsening behaviors, put my my sister in law, my nieghbor and my dear friend, on over 10 drugs! The friend who died last fall, was on 30 at one time, but down to 14 shen she died.

    I hope that you get some sleep soon. Please be careful of that slippery slope of drug use.

    Good luck to you!

     
    Old 04-13-2006, 11:32 AM   #5
    Chuck65
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    Re: paxil and insomnia

    Thank you. I'm in a complete funk. I emotionally neutraul (which is weird) but I can't think or concentrate.

    I've slept perhaps 7 hours in the last four days.

     
    Old 04-13-2006, 09:31 PM   #6
    oceandreams
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    Re: paxil and insomnia

    I really feel for you, I know how awful it is to not be able to sleep. Honestly, every SSRI I've tried (Paxil, Zoloft, Lexipro, & St. John's Wort) has caused insomnia for me. I'm not taking any ADs now, and my sleep pattern is getting better, I actually don't have to take a sleeping pill every night. Of course, my depression might come bounding back, but it seems like I always feel much less depressed when I get a good night's sleep.

    You could try a different class of AD instead of an SSRI. And of course, you can always try sleeping pills, but then you end up dependent on them eventually.

     
    Old 04-14-2006, 08:55 AM   #7
    Chuck65
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    Re: paxil and insomnia

    Thank you. Yeah, I am so there right hooked on Xanax and sleep aids.

    I did not take any Paxil this morning and while I still feel numb and emotionless I feel less spacey than I did yesterday.

    I slept maybe 4 hours last night. It's been a very stressful week for me (real and imagined).

     
    Old 04-14-2006, 09:10 AM   #8
    Spin444
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    Re: paxil and insomnia

    Chuck, be careful. You could have a withdrawal problem even being on Paxil for a week. That's about how long I took it and had a bad time of it. The problem with Paxil CR, is that it makes it impossible to break, cut or shave the pill, to wean off slowly. Nice, right? Let me know if you start feeling badly, dizzy, headachey, weird thoughts, etc. You can find the Paxil withdrawal guide and learn a lot more there.

    Hope you're feeling better.

     
    Old 04-14-2006, 10:24 AM   #9
    macadamiaNUT
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    Re: paxil and insomnia

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Chuck65
    Hi

    I'm about a week into Paxil CR and I can not sleep. Last night I slept maybe one hour. Before going on Paxil CR I was just on Xanax 2 mg to sleep and it worked great although I always woke up with a panic attack.

    Anyone experience insomnia on Paxil, Paxil CR or any SSRI when you first started? This is very bad. Worst part is I'm driving my wife crazy.
    Chuck, many of the SSRIs have this as an initial side effect. For many people it goes away after a week or two. Ask your prescribing doc about taking some Xanax until this initial side effect passes.

    Xanax is very short acting/short half-life, so that may be a factor in why you'd wake up with panic attacks. Other anxiety meds are longer acting, like Ativan or klonopin, but like Xanax can be habit-forming. Used short term to get through initial side effects though is common.

    And also talk to your doctor if you are going to quit an antidepressant. Even after a week, cold turkey can be rough. Keep us posted.

     
    Old 04-14-2006, 11:40 AM   #10
    Chuck65
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    Re: paxil and insomnia

    Ok...now I'm worried. I don't need any more side effects from anything. Whether it be anti depressants or coming off of them, lack of sleep, depression or anxiety. This is ridiculous.

    I feel very blah today but not depressed or anxious. I guess for some people this would be ok. I feel very stone faced. I haven't slept well in a week and I don't know how I'm functioning in anyway. Hopefully I will have nice weekend with my family.

     
    Old 04-14-2006, 03:32 PM   #11
    oceandreams
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    Re: paxil and insomnia

    Chuck,

    I was in the same boat. I can only make suggestions based on what I did, which may or may not be the right thing for you to do.

    I decided the most important thing was getting some sleep, so I took heavy duty sleep meds for several nights in a row (temazepam 30 mg, this is a very high dosage). I slept like a baby for 8-9 hours each night and felt like a new person each day, so this helped me tremendously. It also helped the depression and anxiety tremendously (both of which are made much worse by lack of sleep).

    Did you have sleep problems BEFORE you starting taking Paxil (or any other SSRI)? And what kind of sleep meds are you taking now--are they strong enough to really knock you out for 8-9 hours so you can get some really good rest? If not, you might call your doctor and see what he/she thinks about trying a stronger sleep med for awhile.

    If you do decide to stop taking Paxil though, do it slowly like others here have said. If you can start getting some good quality sleep, the side-effects of the Paxil shouldn't bother you nearly as much, at least that was my experience when I was taking SSRIs.

    As for eventually getting off the sleeping pills, I weaned off the heavy duty pills by taking a half dosage until they were all gone. I now take Klonopin at a very low dosage (0.5mg) to help me sleep, but I'm working on weaning off that too. My normal sleep pattern seems to be slowly returning.

    Finally, I have started exercising (walking) almost every day, trying to eat healthier, and trying to meditate w/deep breathing for 10 min. a day. I also take fish oil caps and a good vitamin supplement every day. Since I started walking, I have felt much less depressed & anxious. I really believe in the power of exercise now, and especially the power of good quality sleep!

    (sorry this was so long-winded)

    Last edited by oceandreams; 04-14-2006 at 03:36 PM.

     
    Old 04-15-2006, 08:20 AM   #12
    Chuck65
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    Re: paxil and insomnia

    I took 2 mg's of Xanax last night and slept 11 hours. :-) I did not take the Paxil yesterday and do not plan on taking it today. I will not go back onto Paxil until I finally hook up with my doctor. If he says that a week or so of insomnia is a common side effect I may seriously consider going back on it. I don't feel that much better with 11 hours of sleep than I do after a night of 1 - 2 hours sleep so in the case sleep is overrated. LOL.

    However, I feel completely emotionless and don't care about anything. I feel flakey and uninvolved. It's weird. I woke up with a jolt of anxiety this morning but nothing to the degree of in the past.

     
    Old 04-17-2006, 07:41 AM   #13
    Chuck65
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    Re: paxil and insomnia

    Good morning all,

    Quick update...slept wonderfully all weekend long with no Paxil. While I hate taking Xanax to sleep at least I do sleep and I have reasonable functioning levels during the day. On the Paxil not only could I not sleep I had this awful fog that cut down on my ability to think and remember things. Very scarey when you're working.

    I'm going to talk to my doctor about the side effects of the Paxil and other SSRI's. I had tried Cymbalta and that stuff made me want to jump out of my skin. Awful. So, as far as my opinion goes for AD's, what with insomnia, increased anxiety, sexual dysfunction, weight gain and general foggieness, I'd have to weigh in on somehow weining off Xanax and sticking with CBT and group therapy.

    Last edited by Chuck65; 04-17-2006 at 07:41 AM.

     
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