I am adhd supposedly, I have severe insomnia and have 4 day bouts of no sleep. I wont drive on day 3. I am on so many meds that I feel like there must be just one that can do what this huge regiment is trying to do..I currently take: adderall, ambien, zyprexa, sertraline, propranolol, lamictal, and clonazepam. One of those is for my slightly high bp. but my god look at all of those meds. My life has been ruined by the adhd since when I was young they didnt have adhd - in the 3rd grade my parents took me to a child psychiatrist who said I was hyperactive..I would have "episodes" of so much energy that I begged my parents to kill me. Recently I had a 4 day no sleep episode(theyre usually only 2 day's) - I called my doctor to see about getting some triazolam since it use to work fairly well. She told me that I should go to the hospital since she has been trying to help me with this for 6 years. I went and while talking to the receptionist I said "i havent slept in 4 days and I was so miserable I'd rather be dead". (Its just a manor of speaking, I wasnt seriously wishing to be dead)..anyway - they took me to an in patient mental hospital with guards! I was there for a week, seeing a psychiatrist. I told him that I really just can never sleep. He gave me ambien, which totally did nothing for me. So he added ?? trazadone?? I think it was called to help the ambien "kick in". It was a dud. Here is the big question... is there anything that in ONE pill that can keep me calmed down during the day. ANd a sleeping pill that is a guaranteed sleep? I feel like im taking placebo's all of the time, or that my doctor is afraid of giving me a major drug for sleep. I am use to living on zero sleep, but damn I wish I could. My adhd and insomnia have cost me my marriage of 18 years, and soon my bussiness of 26 years I fear is going to collapse due to the fact that I cant organize and sort and keep on top of soo many important things. I feel like Ive lost my marbles... Is there any one out there who has any suggestions? What the heck is wrong with me? I am only happy when im at work, I do have pretty bad depression and a few weeks ago actually experimented with taking my life... I dont know what to do and I have no people in my life to point me in the right direction. This story could go on for pages, but I hope the point gets through. Thank you for any suggestions or help any of you can offer. Sincerely fallentim
Hello fallentim. I can relate to you in regards to the insomnia. I suggest either Remeron or Seroquel. Both will help you on an emotional level and will certainly help you to sleep. Both are usually taken at some point during the evening or just before bed time. So, either one will certainly help you in fighting your depression and getting a sound nights sleep. Regards, pledge
Hi! I was reading you post & can relate to almost everything you wrote. I also had been diagnosed with just about the same things, minus the high bp. Also I am a medical asst., plebotomist, pharmacy tech. & caregiver so I do have plenty of experience with medications & how they work ect., but you still should consult your doctor before you, stop or start taking ANY medications. So I'm going to make this as short as possible.
1.) YOUR LIFE IS WORTH LIVING!! YOU JUST NEED THE WRIYE MEDS & EVERYTHING WILL FALL BACK IN PLACE.
2.) I know how you feel & you not alone!
3.) The way you explained how your having trouble organizing, sounds like it could be a slight case of OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder) & if so, you wouldn't need an extra medication to take because a medication that helps this really good, also helps; ADHD, OCD, Anxiety, Depression & Insomnia. Plus much more other things.
4.) So the solution to you problem seems to be a medication called:
5.) After running this by your Doctor, you will be able to take 2-3 pills a day & not be a zombie :) & they are...
ADDERAL - Best for:
SEROQUEL - Best for:
PROPRANOLOL Best for:
• HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE
I hope this helps, well I know the meds will help but I hope this response helps ease ur mind
Hello fallentim - Welcome to DC and I hope you find what you are looking for here. If it is support and understanding, there are plenty of people who have walked in similar shoes. If you have questions regarding medications... lots of us have been down the path of feeling like a guinea pig in treatment. Then of course there are plenty of people who are knowledgeable about meds and who can steer you in a better direction.
I can so relate to the inability to sleep. I used to be awake for days on end before crashing! And, I don't mean crashing into bed to sleep. I mean getting hysterical, argumentative, confrontational and I would get wound up so tight that I would have to call my psychiatrist and get me "professionally" dosed up to sleep for many, many hours and then to do nothing the next day after getting up. The best med I have found for good, quality sleep without feeling hungover the next day is Ativan.
It is only 1mg but that little pill can make you drift off into slumber land and keep you asleep for between 7-9 hours and wake up feeling refreshed instead of dopey.
I want to add here too that "adhd" doesn't necessarily follow you for the rest of your life. Have you been evaluated lately to see if that diagnosis still applies? You might be on meds that you don't need any more and it could be time to clean out your system and start all over. I have had to do that one a few times as well. That is usually done in the hospital under psychiatric supervision.
It has also been shown that having a hypo or hyper thyroid can lead to symptoms that end up getting treated as separate illnesses instead of treating the thyroid. I am thinking your thyroid is way off here. A baseline test won't show the right results and your adrenals are probably off, too. For that, you need an endocrinologist so that the results can be PROPERLY evaluated and translated into a treatment plan.
I also want you to know that I am a survivor of multiple suicide attempts and I am stronger now than I have ever been. If you want help and support, I am happy to private message with you as well. If you want, why not read through my bio... that you can get a sense of who I am, okay? Be well and take good care of you... I would love to support you the best way I know how because I have been there and back...
Stop experimenting like that because you have to be alive to feel the changes happening. It isn't too late to get better, either.
P.S. Posting questions as "conversational" help because we can interact with you. Posting as "direct" only gives us one shot.
Please don't try suicide. I've been a hopeless insomniac for years, until last week. And I'm on more meds than you for most of my life. I finallly got sleep from trazodone. I think you just didn't take enough. My psychiatrist put me on 300 mgs to take before bedtime. I slept like a large rock. I take the same meds as you do except the anti-depressants and Adderall. I just recently dropped the anti-depressants because after I started lamotrigine or lamictal, wasn't depressed any longer.
I take 600 mgs of gabapentin or Neurontin, 40 mgs propranolol, 400 mgs lamotrigine, omeprazole, 4 mgs clonazepam or Klonopin and finally suboxone 8/2 to times a day.
So my suggestion would be talk to my psychiatrist about changing Adderall, amphetamine salts, to Ritalin or methyphenidate. Also ask about increasing the trazadone to 200 or 300 mgs at bedtime.
I didn't sleep at all when I was in grad school, that was 4 years and I could barely think. It was awful, my A+'s dropped to C's and my psychiatrist tried everything, all the benzos, all the barbiturates, even chloral hydrate. Nothing. For 35 years, I got barely enough sleeping to work in SICU. That's scary, but I was really good at work because after a 12 hour shift turned in 14 hours including the drive, I could sleep 4-5 hours. Yippie. Just a glimpse of my insomniac life. Like I said before, trazodone did the trick, thank you God. Tim, it's possible. If YOU get those bad feelings again, go to the nearest ER. They will help you. Tell them what you are thinking, they WILL HELP YOU
I've done that too.
Wishing peace for you,
I hope you've found your answer by now but if not then I hope this helps! (Also disclaimer: I am not a doctor - I've researched all of this extensively but I am by no means professionally qualified.)
Firstly regarding the one pill thing... the short answer is it doesn't exist. To me it sounds like you have an anxiety/depression disorder in addition to (or exacerbated by) the AD/HD and insomnia. Or at least it seems that way with the prescriptions you're on - you have an anti-anxiety (clonazepam), a mood stabilizer (lamictal), an anti-psychotic (zyprexa) and an antidepressant (sertraline) in there to complement your ambien, trazadone (also an antidepressant; prescribed off-label for insomnia), adderall and propranolol (lowers blood pressure and possibly anxiety, though it didn't work for me). The issue is that you have three separate conditions here: AD/HD, high blood pressure, and insomnia (four if you're counting the depression/anxiety).
The high blood pressure and insomnia COULD be caused by the same underlying factor of anxiety (the insomnia could even be causing some of the anxiety), but if you have persistent high blood pressure then it's likely not caused by anxiety and is a separate condition. The AD/HD could be a major part of, or a trigger for, your anxiety - unfortunately, for many people anxiety/depression/OCD and AD/HD are comorbid conditions (instead of one causing another) so you need two-four separate treatments or a pill that treats separate conditions simultaneously... and if you have all four of those conditions independently of one another then you will, by necessity, at least have to take something for the mental disorders in addition to a blood pressure medication. So ABSOLUTE minimum would be two. Ever. And that's stretching credulity.
If you found the right medication you could conceivably treat the anxiety/depression with one pill, the AD/HD with another pill, and the insomnia with another, unless your insomnia is primarily caused by the anxiety/depression which means you could possibly not be medicated for that. Though, again, treatments will differ based on what condition is exacerbating which. I'm not a doctor, but I don't think you'd ever find one that would recommend less than three medications (one for AD/HD, one for anxiety/depression/insomnia which are the most likely to be linked, and one for blood pressure) for the conditions you described, especially given how severe they are - suicidal thoughts are definitely a red flag here.
Adderall, like most drugs used to treat AD/HD, is a short-acting CNS, or Central Nervous System, stimulant (it's basically speed) and can ONLY be used to treat the symptoms - there's no way to treat the disorder itself. AD/HD is found with another mental disorder so often that it is more likely to find AD/HD with another disorder than by itself. In order to effectively treat your conditions you may want to try treating either the depression/anxiety or the AD/HD first before switching to the other. For me the humiliation I felt at not being able to keep up with conversations or remembering acquaintances I'd recently met was a huge factor in my anxiety and depression, and treating the ADD has given me the chance to wean off some of my antidepressants - it can work the opposite way as well, or you may want to stick with treating both at once. You can also try taking a non-stimulant AD/HD medication like Strattera or Intuniv but I don't know much about their efficacy (seems like something you might look into, though, given your severe insomnia.)
Like you, I've similarly been bouncing back and forth between medications and while I'm still working at it I have some advice:
Remeron (as pledge said) is something that I'm on that seems to be working well. I have severe anxiety AND depression (with some OCD and ADD thrown in for the hell of it) so taking only an antidepressant triggered my anxiety like crazy to the point I couldn't even leave my apartment - so it was pretty bad. But taking only an anti-psychotic medication (like Seroquel XR) made me a zombie throughout the day. Remeron is an antidepressant but it's unique in that when you take it in the evening it makes you drowsy and then the next morning it actually wakes you up. For this drug I've heard (but not confirmed myself) that unlike other medications this effect is stronger when taking LESS of it, though I imagine it would probably lower the effect of the actual antidepression aspect.
Also like you I'm taking Lamictal. I don't have bipolar disorder but since my anxiety/depression swings back and forth pretty easily the Lamictal, acting the same way it does for bipolars, is a mood stabilizer. In order to increase the effect of the Lamictal I take Seroquel. Seroquel is frequently used in conjunction with other antidepressants and mood stabilizers because it helps to increase the effects of these other medications - personally I take a smaller amount because Seroquel makes me really drowsy the next day and I don't want to be a zombie, but a higher dose might help you out with your insomnia (and you can maybe try the extended released version.)
My best advice would be to try antidepressants with less stimulating effects since those - like Wellbutrin, Prozac, Zoloft, and Celexa - can keep you awake at night and they can trigger really bad anxiety like they do for me (and I'm talking about the kind of anxiety that presents as paranoia, not the kind that you feel before an important test that makes you nervous and your heart race.) If you feel these medications work better for you then I would recommend taking these stimulating drugs ONLY in the morning and in as small of an amount as possible so their effects hopefully wear off before bedtime (including Lamictal! It has a minor stimulating effect! as do some supplements like vitamin D!)
There are many kinds of antidepressants so you should look at those types to see if you haven't tried a certain class: look at the antidepressant page on wikipedia under 'Types' for more info. And don't forget that antidepressants aren't your only option - you're already taking Lamictal which is a mood stabilizer, not an antidepressant, and other drugs that may possibly be effective are anti-psychotics (like Seroquel) and anti-anxiety ones (like Xanax and Valium - by the way there are huge differences in how long these last, and for example I know Xanax is short acting but for some people Ativan lasts a LONG time which may also benefit your sleep schedule, though benzodiazepenes like these have a serious risk of addiction and abuse).
The important thing to remember is that antidepressants are really a coin toss. There are many different kinds and some just don't work for some people even if they produce great effects for another person. For example, Wellbutrin makes me absolutely freak out but in my dad it's almost completely treated his depression.
You also need to take a multi-pronged approach here. Therapy can really help you in discovering what triggers you and giving you the ability to develop coping mechanisms to hopefully reduce your drug dependency. Unfortunately many, many therapists don't believe that drugs are a viable method of treatment, especially in the long term, and they will try to take you off of them. I'm all for reducing the amount of drugs you take by as much as possible but frankly for some people these are just lifelong disorders and medication is necessary. Not sure if that sentiment holds true with psychologists as well. It would probably also benefit you to see a psychiatrist if you're not seeing one already as medication is an ongoing problem for you. General physicians, psychologists and therapists really don't have the necessary training to tweak or make suggestions in medications like this so I wouldn't trust them to do it for anything more complicated than a short term depression or anxiety problem. As a general note, when researching things online or fact-checking your doctor you should reference the Mayo Clinic website as they're a not-for-profit hospital and are therefore more likely to suggest the most effective treatments as opposed to the ones which would make money for the hospital like many other treatment centers do.
Finally, if you haven't been to a sleep clinic then you need to go. There are many reasons that we can have difficulty sleeping and identifying the exact cause can help devise an effective treatment plan.
I know I posted... a lot, but I feel that I can give you this advice because my experience is similar to yours. It's so incredibly frustrating to figure these things out because the literature is changing all the time and even experts who are paid to know this stuff either aren't up to date or will treat patients based on their own limited experience of past patients without trying new methods. I hope you've already found the help you needed but if not then this info might be of use to you.
Please PM me if you have more questions! And here's my meds list for reference - I'm in the process of reducing the amount I'm taking but the combination seems to work well, at least for me:
MORNING: Lamictal 150mg, Seroquel 25mg, Adderall XR 20mg
EVENING: Lamictal 150mg, Seroquel 50mg, Remeron 15mg
AS NEEDED: Adderall (instant release) 20mg
These are treating: Agitated depression (aka depression with anxiety), OCD, and ADHD primary inattentive type.
I understand the sleeplessness side effects. With stimulant medications, it's very important to stay away from caffeine. Caffeine is very difficult to regulate in the body and often even one cup taken late morning can add to the sleeplessness already triggered by ADHD. Relaxation methods may be helpful as well as herbal teas to help calm you. Good sleep hygiene is important: avoiding bright lights within a couple of hours before bedtime as well as staying away from screens (TV, video games, computers, cell phones, etc.) for at least an hour before bedtime is crucial to help the body calm and relax.
Hi, I also will go several days without sleep. The medicine that works for me is Amitriptyline. 75 MG About 2 hrs before I need to be asleep. When I first started using it I took it with several other meds, one was Zolpidem. Talk to your psychiatrist it works really well for me. Good luck.
- Adderall Information for Consumers
- Adderall Information for Healthcare Professionals (includes dosage details)
- Side Effects of Adderall (detailed)
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