Amitriptilyne making me sleep too much - Fibromyalgia Acti...

Fibromyalgia Action UK
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Amitriptilyne making me sleep too much


Hello, one of the things the Dr changed for me on Friday was to introduce amitriptilyne at night to try and beat the insomnia. I'm taking 20mg along with my usual meds, and have been disappointed when I've still been awake at 1am. However, much to my parents disgust, I have slept past 1pm both yesterday and today, and it's been the sleep of the dead. Normally I'd be up at 8am each day if not earlier.

Can anyone tell me if this is normal? Is it something the body takes time to get used to or does it not agree with me? I've had medication before that I've been told will make me sleep well into the day for the first couple of weeks but that it stops as you get accustomed to it, and I wonder if it's the same for this? Thanks xxx

20 Replies

I've not had that problem myself, but what time do you take your amitriptyline? Is it just as you go to bed? Maybe try taking it an hour or two earlier and see if it helps.

Hidden in reply to Lucyhobbit

Thanks, good idea! I have taken it at bedtime along with everything else so perhaps tonight I will try a few hours earlier x

fenbadger in reply to Hidden

Hi Alex. Are you in the process of increasing the dose? Your GP might agree to that. Lucy's on heaps and doesn't get the hangover! Unfair. There's evidence that AMI gives you a "hangover" ie makes you sleep longer so it may be worth experimenting with the timing I take mine between 6 and 8 - when I remember :( I'm on 40mg and may crank it up a bit more, but don't do it without Dr's advice. , There's evidence it's working life is limited, so presumably your GP will keep monitoring progress and changing things as necessary and keep an eye on interactions between meds.

Do you have any other strategies for sleep? There are many that may or may not help. Emma might be able to point you to some. I keep forgetting sources :( I'm not entirely sure which actually does the trick. Milky drinks especially chocolate if that's your tipple, a banana just before bed time and after you've wound down. Can't remember the reasoning behind that. Think it's trace elements. I do Progressive Muscle Relaxation - not just at bed time and have just started tai chi which feels a lot like mobile yoga if that makes sense.

PMR feels like a yoga posture, too, maybe there's something in that eastern ethos, both tai chi and yoga are centuries old.

Now for the silly bit:- Do you want me to read you a story? :P :P :P

Whether or not I'll send over some gentle hugs. x

Hidden in reply to fenbadger

Oh a story would be lovely thanks! :D

I'm not too worried about over sleeping right now but obviously the Rentals are up in arms having already expressed disbelief at limiting the symptoms of Fibro. It's a constant battle!

I shall try taking them at around 6 today and see if that stops an almighty row tomorrow xxx

fenbadger in reply to Hidden

Oh, it's like beating you head on a brick wall sometimes, explaining to someone with fixated ideas

When I tried to explain to mine she wanted me in a mobility scooter - as if I could do my work on one! I'm not yet that crippled. Just done basic tai chi followed by PMR and feeling quietly energetic - funny, not wildly energetic. Great.

Hope your new timing works. Give it a few days before changing.

There was a brilliant post about fibro on FB many moons ago. I wish every non sufferer would read it.

Now, any story except "The Very Hungry Caterpillar". We'll tuck you in with a lavender pillow surrounded by fluffies. :P :P

I am also on amitriptyline and I have to take it 3-4 hours before going to bed or I cannot get wakened the next day. It does become less effective over time but only increase or decrease what you are taking with your doctor's consent. It isn't a nice one to stop using suddenly.


Hi Alex,

I take Amitryptiline 50mgs at night & I find it very good. When I first started taking it, it made me very hungover the next day, & I had a really dry mouth. My Dr. told me to try & persevere & I did, & I'm glad I did. Everyone is unique in their response to medication & what works for one may not work for another. It also depends on what other meds that you take & how they all interact. Your Dr. hopefully should be taking that into


What Lucyhobbit says about what time you take it is also important. I go to bed at around 10.30pm & I read for about an hour, & I get up at 7am. I take mine along with my Tramadol slow release 200mg. at 9.30pm & by around 11pm I feel relaxed, & by 11.30pm I'm dropping the book on my nose! I usually waken up around 5am, but am able to go back to sleep until 7am, but its not a deep sleep, but I figure that it's probably as good as its going to get with Fibro pain.

I read somewhere on our main website about sleep hygiene, I can't remember it all, but one thing I do remember is that you should have a bedtime routine & stick to it. Also you should try & go to bed at the same time each night, & get up at the same time each morning(tricky one).

Sorry for the long post, & I hope it is of some help to you, as it really is not nice when you can't sleep, & equally not nice when you can't stay awake!

I know from your other posts that you're Dr. isn't the best, but arm yourself with info on Fibro, there's plenty of it on our website, and maybe your Dr will not be so quick to fob you off.

I hope that with all the helpful advice that you get on here, and with a tweek here & there with your meds, you will get a good refreshing nights sleep soon.

Love & gentle hugs. GJ. XX

Hi Lipbalmaddict

I sincerely hope that you are feeling as well as you possibly can be today? I am so sorry to read that you are having this problem with Amitripityline.

I have a derivative called Nortriyptaline as this has no sedative included as I have serious problems with anything of this nature. I do not know if this would be worth discussing with your GP? As you were given this because of your insomnia?

I have pasted the FibroAction website link for you as you may find some useful information on here to help:

I sincerely hope that you can find some resolution and relief to this issue as soon as possible.

All my hopes and dreams for you.

Ken x


When I was first put on amitriptoline I tried to take half a 10 mg tablet but it would wipe me out for a whole weekend, eventually I was able to take a half 10mg without being wiped out. Now I have built up to 50 mg and it does not always work.

When I was in a pain management course the 'tablet' nurse advised to take them 12 hours before getting up, for example if you have to get up at 08.00 take the tablets at 20.00 the night before.

Take care and kindest regards


Stick with it. Honest for me it was the best thing ever. Take one day at a time for now. You should feel a whole lot better. I take two now my pattern of sleeping is now normal. As long as I don't overdo it. Take care hugs

I've been on 50mgs amit. for years, & it helps me get thru the night. Docs have tried other meds, one even said amit was old fashioned & to try a new anti depressant, but it didnt help u sleep, but so what, once no longer depressed, i would sleep better! Dont think my body has got used to it, but p'raps thats just me, the way my body works! Julie xxx

I also take 50mg early evenin + plus 2x30mg of Zapain (Co-codamol just before bed - this works for me. Take care. Flossy xx

Hi lip!! This happened to me and I was only taking 10mg!!! I felt like my head was nailed to the pillow in the morning and I promptly fell asleep as soon as I got dressed and in my armchair!! I even broke the tablets in half but the same thing happened!! XX

Hidden in reply to sue32

Heehee! That's a very good description of how I felt yesterday! Xx

Oh I hated Amityiptaline. I slept nearly 2 months of my life away. I had to come off them. My daughter in law takes it and she swears by it. I just stick to tramadol and paracetamol BUT it doesn't work completely. Im thinking of asking for morphine patches instead. That way there wont be so many peeks and troughs in pain levels. ... I hope! Good luck finding suitable meds x

MdaisyAdministrator in reply to Flips

Hello Flips,

I wondered if you might consider asking for Tramadol Sustained Release instead of Morphine Patches as in actual fact Morphine is not recommended in the treatment of Fibro. Please see quote and link to website below;

Simple analgesics, such as paracetamol, and mild opiates, such as codeine and the atypical opiate Tramadol, are recommended for the treatment of pain in Fibro patients.Research has suggested that opioid medications do not work as efficiently in Fibro patients as in healthy people because of a lack of available opioid receptors in the brain of Fibro patients. According to the EULAR Guidelines for the Management of Fibro, strong opioids - e.g. morphine - are not recommended for Fibro (Lindsey Middlemiss, Founder of FibroAction 2009)

You may also consider downloading our factsheets to print as you can also take them with you if necessary to discuss your treatment plan with your GP. I take Pregabalin as well as Tramadol sustained release (SR) which I find really helps. Your GP may decide to prescribe you either Gabapentin or Pregabalin.

Here's the link to the factsheets, you'll find about Gabapentin and Pregabalin in the 'Other Medications' section;

May I also provide you with some information from about this medications which may be interest;

I hope this helps

Best Wishes

Emma :)

FibroAction Administrator

My doc told me to take round 8 oclock evening to stop me being hungover next day im on 50mg but pain manage putting them up to 100mg and giving tablets that people who have fits cant think how you spell it brain fog going on sorry epper something in always up early but it take 4-5 even longer to get my head together most of the time i dont

I always take amytr.3 hours before bed and then iam able to wake 8-9 am, I am on75mg

fenbadger in reply to achey

That sounds reasonable, but as I say we're all different. I assume you don't want to take it much earlier or you'll be "dopey" in the evening?

Have you looked at Emma's links? :)

unfortunately this is very normal for amitryptiline and a major downside of the drug is the unfortunate "hangover" effect of being massively sleepy even when u officially awake. One thing my GP recommended to help which did, but depends on your routine and other commitments, is to take it as early as poss in the evening, even around teatime if u using it for pain relief as altho u be sleepy then u wont have the all morning sleepiness recovery time to battle, which from personal experience is the time u need to be most awake. I say this as for example my morning carers "complained" that i was literally falling back asleep as they were trying to do my morning routine and mentally i couldnt give them any instructions coherently at all.

Also to diminish after effect, it may help if they are right sort of tablets ie not capsules, to split them in two so that u space the actual dose apart by only taking half every two hours or whatever rather than one at a specific time but its still close enough together for it to have the desired effect

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