Schizophrenia.com

Weaning antypsychotics

Hi,
Since January 2013 I’m weaning antypsychotic drug Flupentixol. Since January until August I was on 1 mg, since September I’m on 0.5 mg. About 2 weeks ago I started having problems with sleeping. I’m not psychotic I’m with close contact with psychiatrist. To have good night sleep I need to take some sleeping pills bought over the counter in the pharmacy or have some alcohol.
I don’t know what to do the psychiatrist told me to still reducing meds and sleeping pattern will be back but I’m exhausted. Overall I fell very good. Is anybody here who had the same problem?

Alcohol worsens sleep.

I know but when I have small amount it helps me. I just wish I can fall asleep on my own without any stimulants. I don’t drink everyday only occasionally.

Try listening to white noise or binaural sounds when you get to sleep, they work great as they force your brain to produce alpha waves and get to a very deep sleep. You can find a few collections of such sounds on youtube.

Some meditation techniques are also useful, but there’s a lot of garbage in that area (fake meditation techniques, fake meditation music, etc. ) so I don’t know what to say there. You can try different routines for going to bed, just try constantly something that can help you immediately, in a few months you’ll get back on track.

However, I’d try to avoid replacing the initial medication with alcohol. I’m not saying to avoid it entirely, the hop in beer for example is very good at relaxing your muscles and preparing you to sleep, so if you find a brand of beer that is rich in hop and low in alcohol you can certainly benefit from it, I tend to do that myself as I avoid, if I can, taking benzodiazepines to get my sleep . Needless to say however, you’re at a high risk of getting an addictive behaviour if you rely on alcohol and alcohol only to go to sleep, especially as it replaces a prescription drug you’re addicted to for getting your sleep and so on.

I also use a Valeriana extract I buy locally. That s**t stinks, but it has hell of an effect on relaxing my body, so the brain gets relaxed and prepares for sleep in a few minutes after. It’s very efficient. :smiley:

Hope this helps.

Love,

Zupa

Thank you Zupa,
I have valeriana extract and melatonin. Sometimes I sleep but the quality of that sleep is not good is very shallow I’ll wake up with strange feeling that I didn’t actually sleep.
Jo

Yes, that sensation is the result of the fact that you slept without entering the R.E.M. phase of your sleep (the one where your eyes move rapidly, you dream, your brain processes what info it got during the day) so you are forced to do all of that in your awake state.

Try binaural sounds on top of melatonin and valeriana. From my experience Valeriana calms only the body, Melatonin is the hormone that your brain needs to simply get drowsy and enter the sleep mode, but the binaural sounds might help you keep the R.E.M. state and wake up rested.

A good meditation technique might also get the heavy load off your shoulders before going to sleep so you can get to the R.E.M., but I’m not able to reccomend any, it’s up to you to search for one maybe. :smiley:

Also, don’t dispair, it’s just a passing phase, it will only last for a few months until you shake off the addiction to the antipsychotic. One necessary evil if you ask me, seems scary right now but I promise you you’ll be able to sleep by yourself in no time.

Keep us posted on how it goes, will you? :smiley:

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I had already some techniques recommended by my psychologist from the guardian but I can’t post the link

I know, I use alcohol as a relaxant too, but I drink responsibly. I see no harm in that, I don’t have an addictive personality from all I know.

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Click on my name and PM me with the link. use [dot] instead of dots if it still doesn’t work. I’m very curious about this.

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Ok I will try theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/audio/2011/jan/28/headspace-sleeping put before www. it will work

why your nickname is ‘zupa’ in my country that mean soup

Thank you for the link, I bookmarked it and look at it later, I’m on a server here and don’t have a soundcard to play it on.

My puppy dog’s name is Zupi and I made a derivation from it simply 'cause I needed a name and I love my little dog. So, you are Polish, aren’t you? :smile:

How do you feel about the medical help available in the area? I am East-European too btw., I thought I recognized something about the attitude towards the illness and the process itself but couldn’t put my finger on it.

Yes I’m Polish but I live 9 years in UK.
I think I have good care in UK ‘early intervention in psychosis team’ I can’t compare with Polish because I never use it.
Where do you live ?

In Romania. Can I ask you - what nationality is your doctor? Is she/he British?

He is Hindu but born in UK. Very good specialist.

What is “Early intervention in psychosys team” ? Is it a progamme with a university, or with a hospital, or simply a name you’ve given yourself to the therapy?

could you check this website cnwl.nhs.uk/services/mental-health-services/community-recovery/early-intervention/
put www.

and here from wikipedia en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Early_intervention_in_psychosis

Thank you so much. I wish there were such a service where I live, but it will take a few decades until someone gets it running.

That is - if I don’t find a way to get it running myself - I majored in Psychology and after a few years of practice and a bit of effort from my part I might be able to talk some pdocs into such a movement, locally.

While I’m reading the resources you gave me I’m thinking if I could do that. Could you please tell me a bit of your story with them - how yougot in touch with them, what services they offered you - anything you find rellevant - so I can see if it’s applicable here?

This might get big for me if you gave me some hints :smiley:

I don’t know how they find me but they came when I was discharging from the hospital. The hospital experience were traumatic for me plus experience of psychosis. I was taken away from my children and I couldn’t cope with it.
Since beginning I’ve got a social worker. She is in close contact with me and wherever I need any help: talk, financial, medication, illness I can call her and she’ll come to help me. At the beginning she was in my house 2-3 times per week. Now I just sometimes call her. Some of People have community psychiatric nurse.
They also have weekly meetings ‘all team’ where they probably talk about my situation and progress.
I also after leaving the hospital have a psychiatrist. At the beginning I saw him often maybe once per 2 weeks. Now I just making an appointments when I’m concern about some things but I can do this through my SW and she speak with him and calling me back with his answers.
I have psychologist he is also working with them.
They show me what are my early symptoms. I also spoke with them about me sleeping problems and they think that I’m panicking at night because obviously sleepless nights are dangerous for us, they think sleeping disturbances caused by withdrawal from meds.
Last 2 night I slept very well.