Before 9/11 I was on ambien. Back then, I got a new doctor who convinced me to get off of it because “drugs are bad”. Two months later, sleep deprived, I lost my job, lost my insurance, and couldn't go back to that lousy doctor who took me off the drug without any real supervision. Since then I've learned that insomnia isn't about weak-will (unemployed with a bad job market, I tried for about 3 years to overcome the insomnia problem). When I finally got a job, I used alcohol to sleep because I wasn't on insurance and I could at least function with the sleep alcohol provided. Things got better. My city's health care program helped me get back on ambien. I've been on ambien for about 5 years now and am making enough money to pay for insurance. The problem is this—my doctor's office has recently had a shake-up. My doctor left and it seems like the office no longer believes that I need ambien—they think I'm an addict. I've been through this before. They insist that insomnia is a real medical problem and yet they're no longer willing to prescribe ambien. They want to keep me as a patient but want the sleep specialist that I'm going to see to take-over the prescription. This drug has drastically improved the quality of my life. I'm just scared that I'm going to go back to long days and nights of sleep deprivation. Does anyone have any advice?
Doctor no longer willing to prescribe ambien?
Question posted by boldbear on 1 Jan 2012
Last updated on 1 February 2023 (8 weeks ago) by Gonzro3
Or you could post your address and see if any of the community members will donate some until you get this straightened out.
I know what it’s like to be denied ambien, It happened to me so I just switched to an urgent care and bam not a problem.
Running out is anxiety provoking not because you won’t sleep it’s because your body craves it, mine does too. 15 years on ambien now at 20mg to fall asleep.
HI boldbear , about 5 years ago i was on 50 mg of trazodone and 10 mg ambien for insomnia . New doctor stopped these scripts , because of my age and then started me on hydroxyzine 25 mg fo sleep and anxiety . Did not help much for sleep , but did okay for anxiety . I am now cutting a 5 mg tablet of melatonin in half every night for the last month and sleeping about 7 to 8 hours . Feel rested and not groggy during the day . Talk to your pharmacist , he helped me with this . Good Luck i hope this helps.
Just go to a psychiatrist they will prescribe anything as long as you present the right symptoms. Worst case you order from overseas at $3 a pill.
Location and age are a problem plus the medical restrictions listed by Med corporations. There was and may be the old problem of excessive use. No one needs more than 2.5mg to relax and sleep. This should only be taken once or twice per month due to stress. BCBS will not pay for the drug if in Michigan. I used to be able to purchase the 5mg oval which were easy to cut.
I too take (cut off) 1/3 mg. dose of a 10 mg. pill each night. Ambien has changed my life . I finally get to sleep and stay sleeping. This is a disorder I have suffered with my whole life…. Sleep deprivation is horrible and this little piece of pill is a gift from heaven….. I’m a healthy 65 yr old women, extremely active - gym work out 3 or 4 times a week, lap swimmer, and play golf every chance I get. Insomnia has plagued me my entire life……. Until Ambien. Taking ambien for 6 years now. Never felt better or more rested….
I’m now having a similar problem. I’ve been taking a half an Ambien at bedtime for a couple of years now. It’s the only thing that’s ever worked for me. If I wake up anytime before 3:00 am and can’t get back to sleep I take the other half. I’ve never had to take more and haven’t built up a resistance.
Unbeknownst to me my doctor suddenly only prescribed 20 pills every 30 days so now I’m going to be without anything for four days.
I’m afraid of the withdrawal symptoms and of course the sleepless nights ahead.
I’ve wanted to change doctors for a while simply because I think she’s a lazy doctor but don’t want to be accused of doctor shopping.
Any advice on any OTC sleep aids in the mean time would be appreciated.
It is not Dr shopping if you are not getting what you want. I have a pain management dr that does not prescribe ambien, pcp that stopped so i just went to another dr to get just my ambien, but benadryl works great for those nights.
Well now she lowered my prescription to only 15 pills a month so I'm having to cut them into 3rds in order to stretch them out. I found that a 3rd works just as good as a half.
I'm reluctant to tell my doctor about the lower dose I'm taking for fear she'll reduce the prescription even more or stop completely.
I feel she's more worried about herself than my well-being.
This is off topic but I had to see another doc in the practice for an urgent respiratory infection and he showed me my file which had some incorrect and private info right there on the top for all to see, including the front desk!
That was the last straw. I'm looking for a new doc but of course I'm afraid the new one won't prescribe Ambien at all.
1st you should have your chart corrected asap. Then call your insurance company and see what dr that will prescribe you ambien.
Unfortunately with the new strict Laws many people are getting flagged for Doctor shopping.
Even if you wanted Panadol Extra from a different Doctor they can easily red flag you.
It’s crazy but true
I know what you're going through. The doctors don't really know what it is like to TRY to sleep. To stare at a dark ceiling wondering when sleep will come. Sleep should not be a chore. The thought of that alone is enough to prevent you from being able to relax and just sleep. Ambien works. period.. It is a powerful drug, and the people who take it need to know how powerful it is so they don't overdose, but it can be used responsibly. Find a sleep specialist who understands. They will want you to have a sleep study done where they hook you up to all kinds of electrodes and watch you sleep. (how relaxing is that?) They will say you have sleep Apnea even if you don't. It makes me want to call their homes in the middle of the night so they can be woken up and feel my frustration. Enough said. I hope you can find a good doctor who will understand. You should NEVER drive after taking Ambien.
I understand your pain.. I have been on ambien for 6 years.. I was abused all my childhood and lived in fear stayed up all night to scared to sleep and fell asleep in class. I go to a university hospital and they have residents. One day a get a new resident and the first thing he says to me. Your not getting anymore ambien because it's not good for post traumatic stress. I freaked out. I have tried everything under the sun to sleep..ambien was the only thing that worked. Talk about suffering. Then he puts in my chart. Do not give ambien..omg.. I cannot sleep literally. .I lost every job because of this problem. What do I do now. Doesn't your chart go everywhere with u.
The best dr to keep you on ambien is a psychiatrist... regular doctors want do it...
Request and insist to be referred to a specialist that has experience in treating sleep disorders. If Ambien works for you, share that experience with the specialist and let him assess you for addiction if necessary.
That is horrible. Ambien works GREAT on the people on whom it works great for. It can make the difference between function and dysfunction. I don't get the doctors' fear of it?? God bless the doctors who prescribe it and aren't afraid.
Print out what you've written here, and hand it to a new doc! If that new doc doesn't put you on Ambien straight away, walk out !!
Find a decent doc that is understanding and you will have your sleep med.
Ask friends if they can recommend a doc, ONE THAT LISTENS!!
I wish you good ZZZ's and a great doc!
It sound like you Really need a NEW doctors office. Even though you are seeing a new dr. in that group they still have your chart with your old dr. notes in them. Usually sleep specialist Do Not prescribe meds. They let your dr. know the results but your primary dr. will have to prescribe. Also I used to take Ambien but did not like the ' hang over' effects. I have been on Lunesta for about 8 years & it works great. And if your new job does not have insurance look into the manufacture patient assistance to possibly help you out with the cost. Hope you get some Good sleep soon & get some meds that help you out soon.
On Ambien for 6 years n having many side effects. Did u have memory loss,breathing problems and trouble concentrating on it? Looking to switch n u don't feel tired or dizzy during the day on Lunesta?
I found the main difference between Ambien & Lunesta is that Lunesta does not make you dizzy & cause any memory loss. For some reason the Ambien gives you like a "hang over" effect the next day. That was the main reason I switched and i have not had any side effects from the Lunesta. Maybe you can ask your doctor for some samples? Also if you go onto the Lunesta website they have card you can print out. Lunesta pays for up to $50 of your copay for the medication so depending on your insurance you might be able to get it for free for a year & then you just sign up again next year at it is an ongoing program. I hope your Dr. will let you try it and you get some good sleep.
i have been on ambi3en for probably ten years.. at the time of dads death, the insomnia got so bad,and being a nurse, i had to get my sleep... i have never had a hangover, nor dizziness, nor memory. when my spouse died four year ago, they increased it to ten mg... at the same time i had three back surgeries, and chronic pain... so now, the rules must have change, they have classified this med as a narcotic, and wont give it me, without me seeing a shrink... i recently relocated, and this is a nightmare, each doctor is passing it off to the next... i just need to be able to function... what is happening when the doctors dont care about the patient's needs, just the government regulations.
ambien, insomnia, sleep disorders, sleep, doctor, insurance
- Ambien uses and safety info
- Ambien information for Healthcare Professionals (includes dosage details)
- Side effects of Ambien (detailed)
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