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Downers addiction Support for coping with benzodiazepine, barbiturate, and sedative-hypnotic drug addiction and downers addiction treatment.

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Old 04-05-2012, 22:19
bellelaide bellelaide is offline
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Xanax and insomnia: help!

This is my first post here. I found this web site on a sleepless night, and it seems like people here have good advice and support for each other.

I love Xanax. I have GAD and severe insomnia and it is the only drug that has ever worked for my insomnia. I've used Xanax for years for fear of flying, traumatic situations (like nursing my dying mom) and occasionally sleep. For the past 10 years, I've had a prescription for about 30 0.5 mg pills that I've been able to make last over 3 months. I've been aware it is addictive, and have kept it in check.

Back in November, I decided to go off of Lexapro (hated the side effects), and since then I've had a much harder time with sleep. At the same time I was going off Lexapro, I started working with a doctor who was willing to prescribe me 30 0.5mg tablets of Xanax a month AND a friend brought be 60 0.5mg tabs from Mexico. So, I abused Xanax. Only at night to sleep - but I was finding I need more and more to get the deep "knock out" sleep I craved. I started taking up to 1.25 mgs a night to sleep, and soon found I could not sleep without Xanax.

I quit caffeine (which was was hellish) thinking that would help me sleep, and I tapered my Xanax by .25 a night. My last does was 1/4 of a 0.5 pill last Saturday. I am not having any anxiety-related withdrawal sxs but I CAN'T SLEEP. I have not slept for more than 4 hours a night for the past 5 nights - last night I could not sleep at all. I have a job that requires me to be very emotionally present and I don't feel like I can afford to be this exhausted much longer. I have had a life-long struggle with insomnia and have tried everything - Ambien (which was hard to come off of, but not nearly as bad as Xanax), CBT for sleep, melatonin, trazadone, acupuncture, benadryl, meditation, deep breathing, etc.. Honestly, Xanax works. But I'm afraid of it and how much I like it. I can see myself getting into trouble with this drug, and I read stories on this website and it really scares me.

After day 5 should I be through the worst of the rebound insomnia? What were other people's experiences? I'm trying to decide whether to cave and take some Xanax tonight to sleep with the goal of trying a slower taper with longer half-life benzos or to just tough it out and get this stuff out of my system. I do have an appointment with my doctor next week, but am wondering what all of you think and what your experiences have been re: Xanax and rebound insomnia.
Thank you for any words of wisdom.

Old 05-05-2012, 00:07
reef88 reef88 is offline
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Re: Xanax and insomnia: help!

I suggest you talk to your doctor about a longer-acting benzo. Insomnia is common when coming off benzos, I for one am coming off right now, although 0.5mg every 7 days, on a long-acting benzo which is Clonazepam, I have no sleeping troubles whatsoever.

You might want to give it a try, there is also Diazepam which half-life is even longer.

Talk to your doc about it.

Edit: You said "I tapered my Xanax by .25 a night" and that is an extremely fast way to taper, specially if we're taking about such short acting benzo like Xanax. This may be the cause of your insomnia.

Last edited by reef88; 05-05-2012 at 00:14.
Old 05-05-2012, 02:29
bellelaide bellelaide is offline
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Re: Xanax and insomnia: help!

Thank you for responding Reef88! I think I will talk to my doctor about this and try to taper more gradually. I was really hoping to be done with it, but I am craving sleep.

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