Lucky - St. John's wort/melatonin

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by Jen F, Aug 2, 2003.

  1. Jen F

    Jen F New Member

    Hi Lucky! Hope you are having a decent day! I must be brief, gotta get going, but want to say...

    St John's wort is actually like a drug, if you get the right preparation.

    perhaps the study you mentioned used a pill that was not made well. That's why I pay the big bucks for the Neurapas which is a standardized product that HAS been shown in a double blind study to have beneficial effects, and was recommended to me by my friend who had good results with it. I did have good results also, when I took it about 2 years ago, but in order to really feel 'happy" I needed to take about 8 - 10 pills a day [of the previous formulation] and that worked out to over $100 per month. So when money got tight I went onto an SSRI which I got for free with my ODSP coverage.

    The neurapas now has a new formula, unfortunately they had to take out some of the other very beneficial herbs [corydalis, California poppy, and one more I think] due to new regulations and it doesn't seem Quite as good, but anyways,...

    that's my take on the St. John's wort thing...I'd be interested to see the study you read and am disappointed to hear that might give many people the impression that SJW not at all helpful. I think many ppl DO get some benefit, I know some personally and I don't think it's placebo effect. It probably doesn't help everybody, just like anything...

    Melatonin - yeah on it's own wouldn't help me enough for a decent night's sleep either...but I do find the sublingual form helpful for if I wake up too early. I bite off about 1/4 of the tablet and let it dissolve under my tongue and it can help me get another 2- 3 hours of sleep sometimes, without being hugely groggy when I wake up, cause it's absorbed faster and moves out of body faster than the pills. melatonin is broken down by light, so I make sure not to be around much bright light and even will wear an eye mask if it's light in the bedroom. A doc with a special interest in CFS [Dr. Kerr] tuned me in to the fact that some people benefit from lower doses of melatonin than they do with the recommended dosage and I seem to be one of them. A small amount works better for me than a larger amount. The doc showed me a graph from a study and it seems for some ppl, the effectiveness does not increase with a larger dose, but actually decreases at some point. Esp with seniors. She mentioned it when I found that taking regular melatonin capsules at night wasn't helping me and in fact I was getting little uncomfortable shocks in my brain. I know other people get them too, sometimes from other med's.

    I had a friend who was going to the US pick me up the subl melatonin there, but I think there are a couple of pharmacies here in Toronto that will sell it if you ask them quietly for it.

    What do you take for sleeping? As you may know, I take restoril, at least for now, but hope to get off it in the future.

    Have a great weekend, Lucky!!
  2. lucky

    lucky New Member

    and thanks for your message. You seem to be getting a little better and can at least take a stroll or see a friend for a little while which is great.
    Well, what can I say, I feel very different about alternatives than you do and have had my own experiences with them and if they help you or others, it is great, and each one of us has different results with them. Coming back to St. John's Wort, I have read about the research some time ago, and I for one am sure that there is not much to be expected from this supplement. Howewver, if people benefit from it the better.
    Melatonin alone does little or nothing for me and I take 100 mg Dyserel with it to get a good night's sleep. The difference between only alternatives and real meds very often is that you just do not get the same results especially if it concerns our sleep which we so desperately need for our body to rest which will result in less pain and other symptoms. Before I was put on Dyserel, I have tried everything I can think of and nothing but nothing helped and that's one of the reasons why I probably was much sicker then than I am now.
    Over the many years, I have learned to know what is helpful and what is not, what to believe and what not and that has also given me a lot of peace of mind. This board also has been very helpful in having so much information available and listening to other people and comparing notes.
    If you live downtown, there must be lots of traffic in the City today. Hope you have a great weekend. Sincerely, Lucky
    [This Message was Edited on 08/02/2003]
  3. Jen F

    Jen F New Member

    how are you today? How's your pain?

    I had a lovely visit with an acquaintance I haven't seen for about 2 years. She is a real gem.

    Though I wanted to curl up and go to sleep after I had my pasta lunch!!

    I am not downtown, but my area is pretty busy, a lot of islanders in my area. In fact, since I am white I am sometimes in the minority in my area. After moving here was the first time I noticed prejudice against me cause of my skin colour.

    If it wasn't such poor weather, there would be quite a party in the shared back yard here, the neighbours usually do that every year, iirc. And every year I thank goodness for the air conditioner blocking out some noise!! [esp when they party til 5 am and I am trying to sleep]

    anyhoo, what is dyserel?

    I'm glad you found something to help you sleep. I am definitely of the camp that if you've tried natural sleep remedies and they don't work for you, it's time for the big guns. I am aware our bodies do need better quality of sleep to heal. My friend who is very anti-benzo has been hassling me about using the drug since I've known him, but when you can't sleep without drugs, i think it's the lesser of 2 evils.

    I hope you are having a nice weekend!
  4. lucky

    lucky New Member

    The weather today does not agree with me, and that's why I am sitting at the computer because the additional fatigue which comes with this weather is not letting me do the things I usually like to do.
    Well, I believe you when you say that you are in the minority where you live. As exotic as it can be to live among different nationalities, but the noise some people can make and as you desribed can be quite something. Poor you, since if you have my intolerance to noise, you probably would climb up the wall.
    Luckily I live in a very quiet area which is great, no loud parties because there are still quite a few old people living in the street. And, if somebody has a party, there is a curfew at 11:00p.m. and people are notified. Well, for some people just too boring, but I love my peace and quiet.
    Dyserel or Trazadone is an older antidepressant and the only one which is addressing the sleep centre in our brain. Therefore, if it helps, it is a great. Many on this board are taking it also and have found great relief, but some had problems with it as well.
    It does not hurt getting a small prescription for it (it is not habit forming as far as I know), and find out if you can tolerate it and above all get a good night's sleep which in my case are from 7 to 9 hrs. uninterrupted!!!
    And I am sure you'll find a description of this med in the Library as well.
    So, you did go out for a little while. How nice to see an old friend and spend some time with her. Hopefully you will be able to do it more often. So, you better drink your tea and do all the other right things to feel better. If you would get better sleep, I am positive that some of your pain would not be that severe either.
    Enjoy your Sunday, Lucky
  5. Jen F

    Jen F New Member

    That drug HAS come up in conversation recently, incl with my doc. I will look into this in the future. thanks for the heads up.

    Sorry you are feeling ill today, I know this weather affects many FMers. It hardly ever affects me, I am lucky. I can survive living in Vancouver, lol!

    Yes, I am drinking the horrible tea. Tiny tiny sips. taking me ages...and I hate the way it makes my kitchen smell. Makes me a little sick to my stomach. I don't think I can do this for 3 months, so I hope Chinese doc comes up with some other ideas REAL soon. but, at least the pain, my main concern at the time has been addressed. I am not looking forward to my acu appointment tomorrow, I think I will try asking him to ease up a little so not so painful.

    I hope you perk up soon. Unfortunately, CP24 is calling for rain every day from now til Wednesday.

    Good night, Lucky!

  6. lucky

    lucky New Member

    When you see your doctor the next time, ask him what he thinks about Trazadone for your sleep problems. If it helps and you get better sleep, I am positive that a lot of your symptoms will not be as severe, above all the pain.
    I believe that's probably why my pain is tolerable most of the time because I get many hours of uninterrupted sleep.
    With all that rain, we also had other plans for the weekend, however, may be with my tiredness it was not meant to be. The weather right now plays a big role in it, but I believe that I have an infection in my colon again (diverticulitis) which drags me down so much. Will wait and see, otherwise back to the doctor.
    I cannot handle the humidity very well, no matter where I am, so you are lucky if it does not affect you greatly.
    I do not blame you for not wanting to see Dr. Rona. Very frankly, as mentioned, I was not impressed what my daughter's friend told me and how she looked etc. seeing this doctor for many years and believe that his treatments would not be for me. But they might be good for somebody else.
    Hope, tomorrow the sun will be shining. Although it looked so grim today, I had a lovely walk with friends on the shores of the lake in Oakville today which was great.
    Take care, Lucky