Who has developed drug induced stress and insomnia?

I’ve been on the same meds for 14 years, but 7 years in something strange happened. I was no longer able to sleep without taking my drug. Like I would literally sleep 0 hours without it.

Also I developed a kind of stress where I was unable to rest my mind in the daytime. I can’t nap. I mean, I can lie on a sofa and close my eyes, but my brain won’t wind down. I almost never yawn anymore either.

It’s like my gaba-system is totally dysfunctional.

Anyone else get like this?


I too can’t sleep unless I am on my med’s. I might grab an hour of sleep during the day, but mostly I am awake.

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I took myself off zyprexa tonight. I know you might say don’t without doctor knowing but it’s just for sleep. I’ve already taken my other ap tonight and my diazepam and propanol. I wanted to write because I took myself off zyprexa because I am way too tired all day. Now I’ll go to the other extreme and not sleep enough. So I’m in your boat.

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When I quit Olanzapine I couldn’t sleep, at all, not a wink, night after night, I just lay there with my eyes closed. I became really miserable and felt like sh*t… I had to take other meds to sleep. Eventually I went back on Olanzapine, it has destroyed my brains ability to sleep by itself. There are hundreds, possibly thousands of stories online about people who can’t sleep after quitting Olanzapine, there is even a Facebook group for it.

I am down to 2.5mg of Olanzapine. I want to get off it completely, in fact i am going to try in a few weeks, but to sleep I need other meds. I’m thinking a combo between Doxylamine Succinate and Trazodone might be able to replace Olanzapine.

I use to sleep amazing on Olanzapine, but after quitting, even with sleep meds or re-instituting Olanzapine I don’t sleep that well anymore. It has destroyed the ability of my brain to sleep.

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We have the same faith. I also take olanzapine.

I think the problem with olanzapine is that it destroys the gaba-system in the body after a while.

I took gaba supplement recently and I was able to relax something that resembled how it was before meds. But the problem is that if you try to revive the gaba system you might develop dyskinea. After a few days taking gaba supplement I got involuntary movement in my left hand, so I had to quit, and luckily after a few days the tremors stopped. These meds are like a strait jacket.

I’m going to ask my doc about trying trilafon, because it’s not supposed to affect the gaba system. But it only has a half life of about 10 hours, meaning I probably would have to take it in two doses a day, morning and night. And I’m working part time so that might be a problem.

Anyway I will post if I get a breakthrough.

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When I take a hypnotic or benzo, which both work on GABA receptors I sleep pretty good. I also sleep when I take an antihistamine.

From what I read Olanzapine binds with high affinity to several receptors in the brain including histamine receptors, so maybe it’s antihistamine withdrawal causing the sleep problems. I also feel like sh*t when I go off Olanzapine completely but when I take an antihistamine like Doxylamine Succinate or Benadryl I start feeling a lot better within about an hour which tells me part of the problem is antihistamine withdrawal.

Olanzapine binds weakly to GABAA so I don’t know if that affects the sleep problems, I haven’t researched it much, but who knows. Olanzapine is a powerful drug that affects numerous receptors in the brain. The combo withdrawal from all those receptors could be causing the problem too.

I really don’t know what causes the sleep problems and I haven’t found a solution. All I have found is many many stories online of people with the same problem. There are people who have quit for 10 months and still can’t sleep. For now I take antihistamines, sometimes benzos and sometimes hypnotics to sleep.

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Yeah, it’s difficult to know for sure what is causing the insomnia. Olanzapine works on 17 receptors, which is amongst the most of any ap I think. And they might also affect people differently.

I have experimented a lot with supplements, and there are some that help. Like for instance if I take a combo of melatonin, magnesium and fish oil a hour before bed I sleep better.

I have tried a lot of antioxidants and anti-histamines, they haven’t done anything for me personally when it comes to sleep, although I might get more cognitive clarity, but like I said, olanzapine might affect people a little different, so I would just keep testing.

Taking gaba supplement is the only thing that has had a profound result when it comes to feeling more relaxed. I was able to take a nap in the daytime and actually relax, which I haven’t done in ages. But olanzapine is a gaba antagonist so that’sa problem. I read that gaba supplement might cause tardive dyskinea when combined with olanzapine. Right now I’m testing out lavendel flower which is supposed to be a very mild gaba agonist to see if it can do something without getting signs of dyskinea.

I was unable to sleep after stopping olanzapine and they gave my trazodone. After a couple months I stopped the trazodone and I slept fine. But then I started hearing things a lot and started risperidone. I was also unable to sleep when stopping risperidone.

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Yeah. It’s probably very unhealthy when the innate functions in our bodies get modulated by a drug.

Don’t get me wrong. The drugs do the job for me managing psychosis. If I was able to sleep normally and rest instead of feeling stressed all the time it would be no problem.

I can’t quit without making a switch to another drug. I know I most likely will relapse if I do.

You are right about being affected differently. I can’t take magnesium or fish oil, I have adverse reactions to both, I don’t know how to describe how I feel with magnesium but its torture, fish oil makes my body feel like it is burning up, melatonin gives me such intense dreams that I wake up. So I stay away from all three.

As for GABA supplements, how much do you take and how often? What brand? Thanks!

For now, for me, for sleep Hypnotic > Benzo > Antihistamine for sleep but I have found all of them helpful.

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Trazodone affects a bunch of receptors too, maybe Trazodone took over where Olanzapine left off, and allowed you to ease off Olanzapine and eventually sleep normally…just a theory but I am going to look into this. How much Olanzapine where you taking when you quit? How much Trazodone did you take? Thanks!

The ones I got were 750mg from swanson @ https://www.swansonvitamins.com/

I took one each day in the morning. Avoiding to take them at the same time as olanzapine.

You could try it. But be careful, if you get involuntary movements like I did, I would quit right away. It could develop to long lasting tardive dyskinea. Also maybe it would be safer to start at a lower dose. I know they have it as 500mg and 250mg. I might try it again with 250mg at some point.

I have previous tried to take supplements that boost serotonin and dopamine as well, but that made me relapse, so that was a dead end for me.

Thanks for the tip about hypnotics and benzos. If I ever try to quit I might give them a go.

Are you trying to get off all ap’s? You don’t get problems with relapse?

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I was only taking 2.5mg of olanzapine for sleep. I started with 50mg of trazodone and slept for about 4 hours and increased it to 100 and slept a little longer.

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Thanks to both of you for the replies.

I bought GABA a long time ago. I think I still have some GABA supplements here unless I threw them out. I didn’t notice much of an effect but I am going to give GABA a try again, and I’ll keep a look out for Tardive Dyskinesia.

I am currently on Lurasidone (Latuda) for schizophrenia and it works really well, I don’t want to get off that.

I am on a small maintenance dose of Olanzapine 2.5mg because when I go off it completely the results are not good, in terms of my sleep and anxiety, not psychosis. I am going to try and go off it again and see what happens. I would really like to get off Olanzapine. My pdoc wants me off it too because he worries about the side effects of being on 2 antipsychotics, but I struggle when I go off it. My struggles are not related to schizophrenia, just a withdrawal effect or discontinuation syndrome or whatever. Last time I quit Olanzapine it was from a higher dose, now I am slowly reducing it before quitting.

My 2 biggest problems when I quit Olanzapine are sleep and an intense anxiety like feeling. When I take an anti-histamine I feel better, that is why I think in my case it is antihistamine withdrawal I suffer from when quitting Olanzapine. I find Doxylamine Succinate is better than Benadryl because it has a longer half life. If I take 25mg of Doxylamine Succinate every 12 hours I feel fine. However, ExploringWalker says he has success with Trazodone so I may try that this time, when I quit.

I plan to be completely off Olanzapine in a few weeks, maybe a month.

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One time I switched from risperidone to paliperidone and had insomnia and the trazodone didn’t put me to sleep. Then they prescribed me zolpidem. After taking that for 15 days I was able to sleep without taking it.

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Yeah, it’s probably a good idea to get off. It messes too much with the brain. I tried to switch to abilify recently, but couldn’t tolerate that at all. Had to quit after day 1.

I too get problems at 2.5 with sleep. I can sleep acceptable with 3.75 which I get using a pill cutter. I’m doing about 5mg on average because I don’t always take the same dose. I vary between 3.75-7.5mg.

I must admit I have drank a lot of alcohol after starting olanzapine to take the edge off the stress it causes. You probably know that alcohol works on gaba receptors with a similar effect like gaba. Far from as good as the real thing, but I almost feel like I don’t have a choice. It’s a real hazzle drinking when on drugs. I can’t drink very much, and I have to quit early in the evening so it doesen’t crash with the meds later on. Desperate measures.

Hopefully I can give trilafon a go. Just got to hear what the doc says about it. Don’t know if it will help me out enough with sleep. Maybe I’ll suggest getting some of the meds you suggested to have for backup.

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Yeah, I’ve read about alcohol and GABA. Be careful mixing alcohol with meds. I don’t know a lot about it but I was told not to do that. I haven’t had a drink in over 15 years, I was always too scared.

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It’s ok for me as long as I don’t drink very much, but have to stop drinking maybe 3-4 hours minimum before I take meds. If the alcohol and meds metabolize at the same time there will be problems, so that’s what needs to be avoided.

But again we are all different, and my experience only pertains to olanzapine.

I wish I didn’t feel like I needed it. You are strong to stay sober for 15 years. Wow.

I found my GABA, I’m gonna take it tonight. I remember reading that there was some evidence that it helps with sleep. I also read some research and there may be a benefit to mixing GABA with l-arginine, apparently l-arginine increases Nitrous Oxide levels giving GABA the ability to cross the blood brain barrier and therefore the GABA is more effective. I also have some l-arginine, I am going to mix them with Unisom (Doxylamine Succinate = Antihistamine) tonight and see how I sleep.

I don’t think I should mix them with a hypnotic or benzo because those act on GABA receptors.

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Good plan. Hope it works out. Let us know how you get on.

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