Anyone tried xanax?

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by brensjoy, Feb 15, 2007.

  1. brensjoy

    brensjoy New Member

    My doc. put me on xanax to help me sleep, but i am wondering how safe it is. Has anyone tried it? What were the side effects?
  2. HurtsToMove

    HurtsToMove New Member

    I take 0.5mg when needed to sleep. It knocks me out and I sleep very soundly. No side effects for me, just be ready for bed when you take it!
  3. matthewson

    matthewson New Member

    I have a prescription for xanax for anxiety. I have the anxiety pretty much under control, so I use it on the nights I can't fall asleep. It works well for that. The only thing about the benzodiazepines is that they don't promote stage 4 sleep. I was previously on flexeril for a sleep med and that is one of 4 meds that promote stage 4 sleep. I think it works better than the xanax, personally.

    I had no side effects from taking it. But, there are better meds for sleeping out there than xanax. Usually it is just prescribed for anxiety. Do you have anxiety also? From my personal opinion, I would start out not taking the full dose, as it will really put you out until you get a little use to it! I have .5 mg dose and I only take 1/2 of it, even now that I am used to it! I started by taking a 1/4 tablet, until that no longer worked, then I went to 1/2 a tablet. I am not a Dr., so this is only my experience with it. You should discuss this with your Dr.

    Take care, Sally
  4. AllWXRider

    AllWXRider New Member

    GABA is Gamma-Amino-Byturic-Acid and its an essential neurotransmitter. It calms down overfiring neurons.

    When I asked my neurologist about just taking GABA from the health food store, he stated that "we don't know what the 'transport mechanism' is" to get it across the blood-brain-barrier.

    True, as I had tried GABA before and it didn't help my anxiety.

    There are several articles out now that an amino acid called Theanine (derived from Green Tea) is this tranport mechanism. I've tried this product and it does help the anxiety. Also, there is no drowsiness.

    Prohealth sells a GABA + Theanine + 5HTP product. The 5HTP is a serotonin precursor that helps with depression.

    Xanax knocks me out...so it would help you sleep.
  5. moab341

    moab341 New Member

    I think xanax certainly helps anxiety as I took it several years ago during my divorce. I had some major panic attacks and anxiety. Don't know what I would have done without it.

    The thing about Xanax is it can be addictive.
    I stopped taking it to go to sleep because when it wore off I'd wake up and not be able to go back to sleep.

    I wasn't addicted, and I took the dose as prescribed, but stopped taking it when my anxiety settled down.
    I would say it's not the best thing long term for sleep, because you can really build up a tolerance for this drug.
    This is just my experience and opinion.

    Good luck!! RM
  6. mujuer

    mujuer New Member

    I just started taking it three weeks ago and some nights it works and some nights, nothing. It makes me feel tensed up the next morning. I don't like it. I don't feel rested after I do sleep. I will see my doc. next week and tell him to give me something else. I was on trazadone for years and got good sleep on that but felt like it was giving me memory problems. I think the real problem was that the fibro was affecting my mind not neccesarily the trazadone but who knows. I have been on xyrem also and I didn't get any sleep with that also and the side effects were terrible.
  7. harrysmom

    harrysmom Member

    Hey -

    I have CFS and have taken Xanax at night for anxiety and sleep problems for 9 years. Only take a quarter of a .25 or a half a tablet. It works very well and the only thing I would say against it is sometimes it can make you feel foggy and sluggish during the next day. Otherwise I would say it's been of great benefit to me in coping with two major symptoms of this illness.

    Harrysmom
  8. krchamp

    krchamp New Member

    I take 1 mg plus a muscle relaxer for sleep which kinda worries me now because everyone else takes such small doses. My doc started me on a small dose but 1mg works well. I have tremendous pain and muscle spasms. The Xanax also helped with my RLS because Requipt didn't really help. I have always had trouble sleeping. My doc tried me on all the sleep meds and nothing worked.

    My doc says that I am dependent on it but I don't abuse it. I never take more than what I am suppose to but I cannot go without it. I did one night and the next day I was a shakey sick mess. So, yes, I am dependent but that doesn't make it or me bad. I use it because I need it. My doc says that it helps make me a functional person.

    Kristi

  9. GKTLA

    GKTLA New Member

    I was put on Xanax .25 mg over two years ago for panic/anxiety attacks and to take to help me go to sleep. I'm very sensitive to medications and their side effects. My only warning to you is that if you are sensitive too, and you don't need Xanax for panic/anxiety reasons, you should probably try another medication or supplement.

    I've tried to wean off of my dosage (which is the smallest dose it comes in) and cannot do it. Even when I taper it off for weeks at a time and cut them into half. The withdrawl is awful and I wish the original prescribing doctor had warned me. I don't know how I'll ever be able to get off of them.
  10. Slayadragon

    Slayadragon New Member

    I take Xanax or Klonopin in order to help me sleep better. i can sleep without it, but the sleep quality is not as good.

    I've always heard that these products most definitely promote stage 4 sleep (deep sleep), and that that is their purpose with regard to CFS. I waken much more refreshed on them.

    I have been taking 1-2 mg of Klonopin per night for about eight years. I can sleep without it (as well as I did before starting); it's just that the sleep quality is not as good and I feel more groggy when I wake up. I have not needed to take more as time has gone. I have no desire to take it during the day.

    If I am rested to begin with and do take it during the day, it does not make me sleepy. It only promotes sound sleep.

    These suggests that I am not addicted.

    I take Klonopin when I want to sleep for an extended period of time (6+ hous). If I wake up early or want a nap, I take Xanax (which gives me about 3 hours of good sleep).

    If I take Xanax, it's usually .5 mg.

    Some people say they awaken from Klonopin feeling groggy. I suspect they metabolize the drug more slowly. in that case, Xanax might be a better drug for bedtime sleep.

    To my knowledge, Xanax and Klonopin are the only benzodiazapines that help CFS patients get better sleep quality. This is consistent with everything I've read or heard, and also with my own experience.

    Some people with CfS do get mildly addicted to benzos. This does not seem to be any stronger of an addiction than many people get to antidepressants. In any case, decreasing the dosage slowly over a period of a couple of weeks seems to allow most people to ease off without any significant problems.

    Benzos are pretty clean drugs with relatively few side effects (especially compared to, for example, antidepressants). Of course, side effects could occur with any drug.

    Best, Lisa

  11. BobinGermany

    BobinGermany New Member

    Hi,

    I have used Xanax for many years now for anxiety. I decided to stop taking it about a year ago due to the fact that my anxiety was under control.

    I asked to be in the hospital to do this in order to avoid any withdrawal symptoms. My doctor there was super and smart concerning benzo's also. He told me it is somewhat hard to wean from Xanax as is has a short half life. Meaning that it doesn't work or stay in your system very long. What he did to overcome this was to switch me to the compairable dose of Valium and then wean me from that. Valium lasts alot longer in your system than Xanax does so it is easier to wean from without having withdrawal symptoms. I had no withdrawal symptoms at all. Felt fine all of the time I was coming off of the valium. I am not a doctor by no means but by personal experience I would have done this at home had I have known what I know now. Maybe tell your doctor about what I have written and see if he/she agrees. I think you will do well. Good luck with whatever method you choose.

    God Bless,
    Bob
  12. BobinGermany

    BobinGermany New Member

    As I mentioned before Xanax has a very short half life and does not make a good sleep med. Xanax works quickly when taken and then after around 3-4 hours (depending on your body)stops working. So as for a sleep med you would want a drug that lasts longer than Xanax. And from personal experience and from reading about the drug it does not promote level 3 or 4 sleep which our body needs in order to repair itself.

    God Bless,
    Bob
  13. Slayadragon

    Slayadragon New Member

    Dr. Cheney is the person who first recommended Klonopin with regard to getting deep sleep. I didn't make it up.

    I believe it was Dr. Teiteilbaum who said that Xanax also caused people to have deeper sleep.

    I have two doctors who agree that Klonopin and Xanax work in this way. One is my CFS doctor, and the other is my internist who is interested in CFS (although not a specialist). Both are well-respected MD's.

    Apart from that, I'm just reporting my own experience and those I've read from numerous people on the board who have reported good response from these drugs.

    The part about length of sleep issues, I noted carefully in my post.

    Of course, almost nothing with regard to CFS has been scientifically tested, and so all these people could be wrong.

    And your mileage may vary, of course.

    Best, Lisa

  14. BobinGermany

    BobinGermany New Member

    Hello Lisa,

    I'm not trying to argue but I was on the stuff for over 10 years and did alot of reasearch on it. If you research it past what cheney and titlebaum say you may see differently. I personally don't have alot of faith in either of them. But thats just my opinion. Benzo's produce a state of sleep close to that which alcohol does. It is sleep yes, but not a good type of sleep that we all need.

    Bob
  15. terrilynnb

    terrilynnb New Member

    I was prescribed Xanax when I first got sick for anxiety and chest pain. I felt great on it but found I needed more and more to feel this way. I literally after a year or so felt like if I did not take it, I couldn't breath. I think it is as addictive as valium.
    I read an article several years ago in the CFIDS journal about Chlortrimeton and sleep. I found that all the prescrition meds made me goofy and Benedryl makes you sleepy but again you keep needing more and more., and also, you don't stay asleep. Chlortrimeon, (antihistamine only-NOT DECONGESTANT) actually helps me sleep longer and though I have taken it for years, I never found that I needed more to have the same results. My doc said it is a pretty benign drug(for what that is worth.) I buy the off brand, generic, it is really cheap and does help me stay asleep. Hope that helps.
  16. momof471

    momof471 New Member

    Began taking 1mg in the morning. Take 20 mg of Elavil at night along with Toprol XL. Xanax prescribed to help with stress effects on heart(palpitations). I've turned into a total zombie! I've lived in my pajamas since I started this and I had broken that habit. I feel calm, but quite down and just no motivation whatsoever.There are very few meds I CAN tolerate so I'm scared to write this one off just yet. However, being a blubbering mass of raw nerves isn't fun either. Anyone relate to this?
  17. hollie9

    hollie9 New Member

    Once in awhile my regular sleep meds don't put me to sleep (Klonopin, Ambien, Doxepin) because something stressful keeps me thinking about the matter over and over.

    That's when I take Xanax, it seems to shut off the thinking about a problem over and over.

    I completely stop with no withdrawal frequently. My doc says I don't have withdrawal symptoms because I'm also taking Klonopin.

    Hollie
  18. ETN

    ETN New Member

    I have been taking xanax for um about 5 years. I take the lowest dose just as needed.

    I myself don't think xanax is a good sleep med.
    I was a pharmacy tech for 14 years and from what every pharmacist said that I worked with said that since it's such a short acting med that it's not good for "sleeping".

    It's a very short acting med and really only lasts about 4 hours or so.

    But that's just what I learned from working.
    I do believe that it does help you to get to sleep, at least it does relax me at night.