Author Topic: Zopiclone  (Read 892 times)

[Buddie]

Zopiclone
« on: August 25, 2019, 01:13:28 am »
Hi my name is [...].

I have been posting recently on the Other Medications section of the Benzobuddies site under the title "Mirtazapine Withdrawal". I will briefly outline the situation that confronts me. I took Mirtazapine at a very high dose of 90mg for around eight to nine months after a very serious bout of depression. I was finding that it was interfering with my sleep. So I decided without consulting my psychiatrist to cut the dosage to 45mg for a few nights and see if my sleep improved. It did but I went into withdrawal which involved really nasty aching throughout my body. The psychiatrist tried reinstating the dose but the symptoms remained. He then tried stabilising me on a lower dose of 67.5mg with no change to my symptoms. So the psychiatrist then took me off this very high dose within eight days.

Since then I have had awful withdrawal symptoms which were really severe for the first six weeks and have during the last week dissipated somewhat but are still really noticeable. One of the consequences of this situation is that I needed sleep medication otherwise I could not sleep. So for the last 3 to 4 weeks I have been taking Zopiclone with some Endep at low doses. The Endep appeared to be having little positive impact on my sleep and was giving me an uncomfortable stomach so I stopped it completely last night. I had taken very little of the drug at very low levels.The dose of Zopiclone, however, has needed to be increased in order to get the same amount of sleep. I am concerned about addiction but the problem is that in order to function, I need adequate sleep.

I tried reducing the dosage over the last couple of nights from 1 1/2 7.5 mg tablets to 1 1/4 the night before last to 3/4 last night. The result has been very little sleep. This makes my withdrawal symptoms appear to be worse. My GP has assured me that Zopiclone and its benzodiazepine sister drug, Temazepam, are not too difficult to get off as long as I am conscious that I should not take ever increasing doses for an extended period of time.

This does put me in a catch 22 situation. I was sleeping ok before the withdrawal although I was experiencing difficulties getting to sleep. Now it would appear as if I have a dependency on this drug.

As I am still experiencing withdrawal symptoms from the Mirtazapine, this is not really the best time in my life to be without sleep. So I am thinking that I will persist with the Zopiclone until the withdrawal symptoms die away much more. Sadly, the problem is that I don't know how long that will take.

If anyone has anything to say that may help, your input would be much appreciated.

Best wishes,

[...].
Suggestions, opinions and/or advice provided by the author of this post should not be regarded as medical advice; nor should it substitute for professional medical care. Consult your doctor before making any changes to your medication. Please read our Community Policy Documents board for further information.

[Buddie]

Re: Zopiclone
« Reply #1 on: August 25, 2019, 08:23:49 pm »
I was on 7mg of Zopiclone for sleep, but got switched over to a drug called Trazedone.  It is an SSRI with a sedating effect.  My doctor at the hospital said it is the lesser of all the evils out there.  Yes I will have to ween from it, but any of those Z Class drugs like Zopiclone are very hard to get off, just like trying to get off of a benzo!!! Maybe ask if Trazedone is suitable for you? Just an idea, totally your call and choice.  All the best,
[...] ❤
Suggestions, opinions and/or advice provided by the author of this post should not be regarded as medical advice; nor should it substitute for professional medical care. Consult your doctor before making any changes to your medication. Please read our Community Policy Documents board for further information.

[Buddie]

Re: Zopiclone
« Reply #2 on: August 26, 2019, 12:02:52 am »
Thank you very much for this suggestion, [...]. I took Endep for the same reason as you took Trazedone. Unfortunately, it didn't work. I will investigate the drug and mention it as a possibility to the psychiatrist when I see him this afternoon.

It is important to not only try an alternative to Zopiclone but to limit its dose; I am already finding that I need more and more of it (after less than a month on it) to get the same amount of sleep.

I will post an update later today.

[...].

Suggestions, opinions and/or advice provided by the author of this post should not be regarded as medical advice; nor should it substitute for professional medical care. Consult your doctor before making any changes to your medication. Please read our Community Policy Documents board for further information.

[Buddie]

Re: Zopiclone
« Reply #3 on: August 26, 2019, 07:23:27 am »
Hi again [...],

I discovered this afternoon that Trazodone is not available in Australia. I was taking Endep at 20mg until late last week. I got off it but have slept really badly since and the aching associated with the withdrawal has fired up again. So I might give the Endep another go. At really low doses it too can help with sleep and after a while with the kind of pain (parasthesia) I have been experiencing.

Best wishes,

[...].
Suggestions, opinions and/or advice provided by the author of this post should not be regarded as medical advice; nor should it substitute for professional medical care. Consult your doctor before making any changes to your medication. Please read our Community Policy Documents board for further information.

[Buddie]

Re: Zopiclone
« Reply #4 on: August 26, 2019, 12:26:21 pm »
Dang that it is not available there!!! The only other thing I can suggest is to take melatonin with the Endep that didn't work, ONLY IF YOUR DOC SAYS THE 2 ARE FINE TO TAKE TOGETHER. My doctor has me taking 6mg a night along with the Trazodone.  I have no clue if it does anything but I am willing to try anything to help me as I was only getting 2 to 3 hours a night.  I was unable to think clearly and was a crying mess, like a tired child, before I got put on the Trazedone.  Now I get 7 to a max of 8 hours and am able to function a lot better than before.  Wishing you all the best ❤
Suggestions, opinions and/or advice provided by the author of this post should not be regarded as medical advice; nor should it substitute for professional medical care. Consult your doctor before making any changes to your medication. Please read our Community Policy Documents board for further information.

[Buddie]

Re: Zopiclone
« Reply #5 on: August 27, 2019, 05:35:15 am »
Thanks for your kind thoughts. It's great to read you are getting more sleep, [...]. I tried taking the Endep last night and it seemed to help. I was able to get more sleep with less Zopiclone. I only took 10mg but may up it tonight as I have a very busy day tomorrow. I have some Melatonin and will talk to my GP on Thursday about whether it's worth a try. However, I think two drugs are enough to be going on with for the time being.

Best of luck,

[...].
Suggestions, opinions and/or advice provided by the author of this post should not be regarded as medical advice; nor should it substitute for professional medical care. Consult your doctor before making any changes to your medication. Please read our Community Policy Documents board for further information.

[Buddie]

Re: Zopiclone
« Reply #6 on: August 31, 2019, 06:07:19 am »
Here's an update four days on from my last post. The aching from the withdrawal from Mirtazapine continues. If I were to be asked, "Has it improved?", my answer would be yes. Compared to the brutal savagery of the aching two weeks ago, it is less painful. But it is still very much evident and imposes itself on my thoughts every minute I am awake.

I have been trying really hard to keep the addictive drug Zopiclone as low as I possibly can; last night I got a reasonable amount of sleep with one tablet of 7.5mg and a 10mg tablet of Endep. I find if I take a higher dose of the antidepressant, I get a really uncomfortable stomach. I am just hoping that this drug holds my sleep together so that I don't need any more Zopiclone other than the two half tablets I take in the night. I have to take it this way because the drug is so short acting.

If you were to say to me: "How long do you think this withdrawal will take to end?", I would say at least three months and that is probably being optimistic. After three months of these sensations and seven and a half weeks since I took the drug at all, I feel as if this aching has become a part of me. It seems at times as if it will never go away.

All my plans for the future are on hold; my job is to survive by keeping as active and as fit as I can. I have already lost out on a trip overseas. My wife is going with her sister.

And I can't help feeling angry and frustrated with the psychiatrist who prescribed a ludicrously high dose of 90mg Mirtazapine each day. And I still blame myself for not contesting this and not finding out about the dangers that come with high doses of antidepressants.

At least I can now say to myself that I am no longer on such a high dose and that I will never allow myself to be on a dose like this again. It is also important for me to find ways to keep control of my life so that I don't get into a position once again when psychiatrists are free to do what they like with me.

I know they believe they are acting in their patients' best interests but the sad thing is - as I can attest from bitter experience - that they frequently get it wrong and inflict harm on those they are trying to help.

Best wishes,

[...].
Suggestions, opinions and/or advice provided by the author of this post should not be regarded as medical advice; nor should it substitute for professional medical care. Consult your doctor before making any changes to your medication. Please read our Community Policy Documents board for further information.

[Buddie]

Re: Zopiclone
« Reply #7 on: September 01, 2019, 08:38:17 pm »
Try to hang in there [...]!  Sorry to hear you could not go on the trip with your wife and sister.  I also had to give up going to our family cottage.  This is the first year in my LIFE of 45 yrs I have not made it there bc my SX's have been too powerful!!! But I know when I am free I will be back!  We just have to try to survive and persevere!!! Glad your sleep has improved, as sleep makes everything more doable!  Good luck! ❤
Suggestions, opinions and/or advice provided by the author of this post should not be regarded as medical advice; nor should it substitute for professional medical care. Consult your doctor before making any changes to your medication. Please read our Community Policy Documents board for further information.

[Buddie]

Re: Zopiclone
« Reply #8 on: September 01, 2019, 08:57:53 pm »
Any kind of z drug should not be given, actually in my country is not allowed to be given, for more than 14 days!!
It makes as dependent as any benzo and needs to be tapered exact the same way. The fact that you even combine it with a SSRI is not a good idea either. I do not want to scare you, but its playing bingo. in the end you do not know is it the withdrawal from mirtazapine or tolerance from zopiclone or the combination of these 2, or the SSRI developing side effects.
Most of us have to go through months with insomnia - I know how hard this is, but if you continue to search for a new med in order to get sleep - well, you cannot win in the end, because withdrawal from meds comes with insomnia. Not forever, by the way.
I was once polydrugged and it all started exactly like your story here. For me it turned out that the decision to taper each med and stay off everything was the best in the end. Cause in the end, I did not know anymore - is it tolerance, kindling, side effect, combined effect, withdrawal, mental illness or what.
Suggestions, opinions and/or advice provided by the author of this post should not be regarded as medical advice; nor should it substitute for professional medical care. Consult your doctor before making any changes to your medication. Please read our Community Policy Documents board for further information.

[Buddie]

Re: Zopiclone
« Reply #9 on: September 02, 2019, 01:45:38 am »
Here are my replies to [...]'s and Marigold's posts.

[...], Yes it is good to get sleep but I really do wish I didn't have to take Zopiclone. As soon as my symptoms from withdrawal relent sufficiently I will be trying ever so hard to get off it. And I wish you well in your ongoing struggles.

Thanks very much for your thoughts. I will update you as things hopefully improve and be assured I want to get off this Z drug asap. I do hope you get to spend time at your cottage soon.

Best wishes,

[...].

Hi Marigold,

I sent you this message but I will post it here as well:

Hi Marigold,

I agree with your advice that Zopiclone should be avoided. Sadly, seven weeks ago after trying to survive a withdrawal from a massive dose of Mirtazapine drug free, I simply could not survive without sleep from the severe, relentless aching I was experiencing after the Mirtazapine was finally stopped after attempts to stabilise me on high and not so high doses. My bed was like a torture chamber as the most I could get was four hours of highly interrupted sleep. So I opted for the Zopiclone in desperation. Soon I was taking two 7.5mg tablets. When the Endep was introduced I was able to get the dose back to just one tablet. I have tried to take that amount or occasionally a quarter tablet more. I am now in the process of removing the Endep and will most likely take no more from tonight.

Unfortunately after eight weeks being off the drug the aching continues but at a lower level. I am now dependent on the Zopiclone for sleep and I suspect if I try to reduce it as I did a week ago, I will get very little sleep and be unable to deal with the symptoms I am experiencing from the withdrawal which are very unpleasant.

Having been addicted to benzos before I am very aware that I must try as hard as I can to limit the Z drug which I realise is extremely addictive. As soon as I feel that the aching is becoming more manageable I will try to get off the Zopiclone. It is a balancing act but the reality is that I need sleep and if I don't get it I cannot undertake the volunteer roles I perform.

To add to your point about benzos and Z drugs I have a psychiatrist who is so unbelievably casual about his prescription of drugs. That is why I am in this mess because he prescribed a ludicrously high daily dose of 90mg of Mirtazapine. Last week when I was struggling with the aching he prescribed 2mg of Clonazepam. When I discovered its Valium equivalency, I was horrified; he was in effect putting me on 40mg of Valium plus the Zopiclone. My faith in him disappeared at that point.


Suggestions, opinions and/or advice provided by the author of this post should not be regarded as medical advice; nor should it substitute for professional medical care. Consult your doctor before making any changes to your medication. Please read our Community Policy Documents board for further information.