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lusia (@lusia)

Weaning off zolpidem (Ambien)

Sleep Health | Last Active: Nov 25 4:04pm | Replies (340)

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I always had difficulty falling asleep because being deaf, I was afraid I would miss something. I was sent to schools for the deaf where there was much abuse going on. After having been abused, I would keep my eyes open to be sure no one would slap me. So I became a full-fledged insomniac. This continued until I became a mother when my insomnia worsened because I was afraid I would not wake up if our babies cried. I took nothing until 1989 when the big earthquake in San Francisco took place. I started Zolpidem then, and it was wonderful. My mood was very good. The downside is that when I am especially tense or very worried or panicky about something, then i take half a tablet in addition. I want to quit just so to get the leash off my neck. I don't like being allowed only 30 pills per 30 days. Sometimes I cannot even go out of town because I have to be home so I can pick up the pills. So it is for this reason I would love to quit taking Zolpidem = then I would be free to travel anytime and anywhere.

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Replies to "I always had difficulty falling asleep because being deaf, I was afraid I would miss something...."

Hello, @kahill1918 – welcome to Mayo Clinic Connect. Although I've never been in your situation, I can imagine that you might be afraid to miss something due to being deaf, and have difficulty falling asleep.

I'm so very sorry about the abuse you endured at a school for the deaf. That is heartbreaking. It makes sense you'd want to keep your eyes open and on the lookout.

I would like to introduce you to some of the members in this discussion, like @128128terry11t @bernese53 @lpole @arachel @robbinr @parus @mickie75 @blazytracy and others. Hoping they will have some input on quitting zolpidem (Ambien) and working with the worries that have made sleep really hard. I'd also like you to meet @contentandwell @suecreader and @hopeful33250, who may also have some thoughts for you.

I also wanted to mention, @kahill1918, that Mayo Clinic Connect just opened a new group on hearing loss you may be interested in checking out https://connect.mayoclinic.org/group/hearing-loss/

Have you talked to your doctor, @kahill1918, about the possibility of tapering off of the zolpidem (Ambien)? Are you thinking of another prescription, potentially, or using other strategies to manage insomnia?

Hello @kahill1918

I would also like to welcome you to Connect. I am so sorry to hear of the things you have experienced in your life. Abuse like you mention does make you hypervigilant, doesn't it? It is hard to relax and trust that you won't be hurt and it becomes difficult to feel safe. All of these factors can make for sleepless nights.

There are many anti-depressant medications that will help with sleep that are non-addictive. Trazodone is one as is Remeron. Have you talked with your doctor about using one of these as a substitute for the Zolpidem? This might be helpful. You probably need a little more medication help at this point.

Have you had an opportunity to meet with a therapist who could help you deal with the abuse issues? Do you use ASL to communicate with other deaf individuals? I think you could probably find interpreters who could accompany you to counseling sessions. Have you ever considered that?

I hope to hear from you again. Will you post updates?