Im looking for advice my dear wife (52 ) is and has been suffering really bad insomnia. She was put on zopiclone 7.5 mg. Which did help but they decided that they were addictive this after leaving her on them for i reckon about a year or two ! Im angry with the doctor for stopping them without much in the way of help to support her and no proper support ! her sleeping is very poor she works nights in a nursing home her shifts are all over the place one day on two off 3 on and its telling on her she finishes her shift at 8am but cant sleep and goes out for another shift at 9pm that night ! Im at a loss of how to help her any advice who be most helpful. David x

11 Replies

  • Am no expert as I have insomnia unmedicated .. I would suggest that if she could maybe change her shifts so they are less scatty. In the meantime could you maybe massage her after her shifts to help her wind down using essential oils and running a warm bath with radox sleep therapy as that promotes sleep .. I use baths to relax with oils and I have muscle massage machines as I have no partner which helps me wind down .. When I awaken I go on my phone til I drop off again and use the meditations on YouTube alot to help me doze back off using headphones

  • Hi satsuma thank you for you reply to my post ! I used to use the radox sleep therapy loved the smell and yes it does make you sleepy ! I would use massage as if it worked i would. Feel great ! The meditation music is great the only thing is i embrace anything that helps me my wife is sceptical of trying different things but hope fully things get better soon. Thank you god bless david

  • Shift work really messes up sleep. Diphenhydramine is the standard over the counter product. Also do the "sleep hygiene ".

  • Hi goldfish been along time how are you ? Thank you for replying to my post ! Yes shift work does mess up your body clock i think night -shift is the worst shift to do i done night shift security and it definitely gets to you ! Im not familiar with the meds you talk about but i will look it up ! Again thank you for your reply god bless

  • It's nytol or sleepeaze

  • Hi David, I know what your talking about I too work in a care home, I'm 54 and did my stint of nights!! I don't do them anymore though. It is such hard work too, can she ask to go into days? There are lots of jobs to cover on days too. I've done care for 25 years but I've now moved onto domestic, and I work every Saturday in laundry. It often depends on what the manager is like and if they actually care about the staff!! She needs to talk to the manager, Coming off nights would be her best bet, having set days to work. You get messed about less on the other jobs.i will still take a good while to get back into a normal sleeping pattern.she could also try NHS website and register. If you put your cv on it alerts you when a job comes up. Night work messes everyone up. Don't get me wrong people have to do it to fit in with family responsibilities and some people love them but it's not healthy. Also you can get free hypnotherapy apps to help you relax and sleep it's worth trying. Some are better than others so it's a case of trying till you find what works for you.

  • Hi angep thank you for replying to my post i. Dont think i wouldnt make much of a difference as shes being doing nights for donkeys years weve discussed her leaving and going elsewhere but shes thinking of asking for shorter hours as im unable to work due to health reasons and thats why shes worrying about leaving her job unless thinks get worse ! She is my rock and hope she gets well soon !

  • She should not have been on them for that long only 4 weeks the doctor should of known this.ask her to try phenagan anti hist they are also used for insomnia you can buy them over that counter.hope this helps.

  • I can empathise with your wife since I, too, suffer from insomnia and have done so for the best (or worst) part of my adult life. At the age of fourteen my GP prescribed lorazepam (Ativan). The dosage grew and grew and, as with all benzodiazepines, the effects require larger and larger amounts of them. When I first went to University during Freshers week I was explaining this to a friend and he suggested I would sleep were I to have a drink or two. My father who died at the age of 48 through years and years of heavy drinking and who became violent when inebriated made me promise never to abuse alcohol as he did. I kept that promise until Freshers week. I quickly learned that the effects of alcohol were not for me. I was then given nitrazepam by the GP at the University Health Service which quickly became useless. Your wife with zopiclone will probably be in the same situation I find, and find, myself in. There is a medication called melatonin which supposedly resets the circadian rhythms in the brain. They might be useful. Insomnia is the most awful thing to live with and doctors need to be reminded that lack of decent sleep leads to all sorts of problems such as your mental health. In small doses, and for two weeks only, diazepam may be useful also. That is Valium by the way. Pester your GP if you have to. Insomnia is something that no human being should have to endure.

  • I suffered from insomnia all my life plus worked nights for years and I think it's awful the GP has taken your wife off the tabs suddenly like that. She needs to have been weaned off slowly after so long on them eg a smaller dose. I'm no doctor of course but I've been taking these for 20 years, if that counts for anything! Hope she's coping right now. If she depends on them for a livelihood eg for sleeping in the day then I think she should explain this to the GP (or another) and prove that she doesn't abuse them. This is what I've had to show over the years and get my prescriptions renewed with no problem. There's nothing worse than insomnia and the pressure of having to get a good sleep for work makes everything worse so I do feel for your wife and hope she gets something sorted to suit her. Sleeping during the day isn't 'natural' which is where I need the help. Sleeping at night is another matter but I've done my best not to take meds then as I know that it would be a slippery slope.

    Can she change her shifts so she gets a block of shifts together eg 3 on 4 off or however many nights she works. Her current shift pattern is really bad and wouldn't be any good for me either. Can she get together with other night staff to review the rota to get something more tolerable rather than have to give up altogether. Best of luck from another night owl.

  • Hello,

    I am suffering with insomnia...I am taking one 5 mg tablet of Zolpidem before bed as needed and it usually puts me to sleep within thirty minutes. It helps me sleep for 7-8 hours without any hangover effect. Its unfortunate that it is abused so much and so hard to get a doctor to prescribe it. That is why I order my pills online via ...ships really fast and no prescription required.

    Good luck to all !

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