a natural alternative to xanax?

Hello everyone. I wondered if anyone has experimented with sleep aids and parkinsons. I have absolutely no problem falling asleep; my problem begins when I get up around 3-4 a.m. for a potty break. Before parkinsons, I could get up, get to the bathroom, and get back into bed - all without ever opening my eyes. Now with the parkinsoins, I have to "think" about my balance, etc., so that by the time I get back into bed, I am quite awake. Then my brain won't turn off, so I often get up about 430 or so, which makes for an extremely long day. I have used xanax, .5 mg, occasionally (once every week or 2 - sometimes only half a pill) and I sleep wonderfully, but I'm reluctant to use it regularly because isn't xanax a narcotic? Does anyone else have the same middle of the night issues? Does anyone else use herbs or natural sleep aids?

Thank you so much for your time.

14 Replies

  • welcome to my world, this has been going on with me for the last several years and nothing seems to help

  • I use a supplement called 5-HTP. You have to be careful about taking it with certain medications, so you better check with your doctor or pharmacist first. I usually get it from my GP who is an integrative Medical Doctor. She orders it from a place called Neuro-Science

    If you can't order it there you can find it in most health food stores. It really helps me to sleep well and for longer intervals. Hope this helps. Blessings.


  • thank you.

  • Have you tried valerian root? . Even though I have t o get up to use the restroom about 3 or 4 times a night, I generally fall right back asleep,---unless it is already 6:3AM

  • yes I have been reading up on valerian and it seems like it might be a good thing for me to try. What dosage or amount do you take?

  • My never fail sleeping tonic is a combination of melatonin, vit B, Tylenol PM and Clonopin for restless legs. My doctor thought it was imperative that I get more sleep than I was able to manage at the time - 2 years ago.

  • I also use a preparation using valerian root and hops which I buy in a Health Food Shop. It comes either in a liquid or tablet form. I also eat a kiwi fruit about 1 hour before bed. I am getting more sleep. I also take half a Sinemet CR at night, but don't miss this if I forget to take it. You should check with your Dr before taking anything new. My nurse suggested I try a herbal medicine.

  • I think many of us on here have the same problems, all be it that we wake up at different times in the night, but we all seem to be in the same boat i.e. problems having a decent nights sleep.

    I think all you can do is find something that works for you, or put up with it .

    last thing i am going to do is take more medication, my best solution is a book we can all find something to help just a matter of finding it.

  • I have same challenge and take a different approach. First I am grateful that I wake up. Next I do not fight it, I accept it. Enjoy the sunrise. I go to bed earlier than I prefer when I am tired, but accept it and enjoy the quiet time when I awake at 3 or 4 or 5. Answer these posts and share your challenges and successes. Understand we all react differently to different drugs and remedies. Have you tried pot? Do not rule out the power of prayer. Try praying before you fall asleep. Suggested prayer would be, " I am grateful for the restful sleep I am about to have" GOD bless & good health.

  • Hello VLRoark,

    Consistent, refreshing sleep appears to be something too many PwP fail to achieve. I personally have gone three days without any sleep and it felt like torture as you would imagine. I have tried many herbal sleep aids one of which was Valerian and sorry to say none worked for me, but I have read that they do for some people. I have also taken melatonin up to 5mg and had mixed results and then only for a couple of hours or so.

    Where I did have success was with Zopiclone, Amitriptyline and phenegan, but do not want to be dependant on them for the rest of my life.

    So, I am carrying out a trial in my own home of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and shall do so for one month after which time I will write a blog on this forum setting down my experiences. If anybody is interested, then keep an eye open in the blog column at around the middle of January 2013.

    Kind regards


  • I take 7.5mg of Zopiclone to help me get some sleep but i still wake up in the night and find it difficult to get back to sleep. If i am luck and i sleep until 5-6am then i get up and dressed as it wouldn't be possible to sleep after that. I sleep on average 5 hours if i take the Zopiclone and i am afraid that i have been on it for 4 years now and cannot get any sleep at all without it.

  • I tried drinking less throughout the evening (cut out coffee for sure) and going to bed slightly later. I didn't want more meds and so far it has worked but on the downside I sometimes have nightmares that wake me up!

  • Avoid xanax at all costs, it is extremely dangerous. It should be a one time thing under a emergency situation like a very bad panic attack or so. It was destroying my life

    Valerian Root

    Passion Flour Extract



    Kava Kava

    To get you started, google more, there are some great videos

    Good luck and God bless

    Cosmic Simon

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