Sleeping pills/thyroid anxiety/stress

Does anyone have any information on stress, insomnia, taking sleeping pills and related thyroid issues? I am feeling better since having 10mg T3 added daily to 125mg Levo, which is going to be reduced to 100 in a couple of weeks. It was 150. I am Hypothyroid along with Hypoparathyroidism since TT last Feb. my anxiety has been so high along with insomnia that I was put on Zopiclone 3.75 mg and manage to cope with half to three quarters of a tablet in order to get 5/6 hours sleep. Without that sleep I am rubbish. Just can't get to sleep. Considering hypnotism. Last night decided not to take a pill, awake all night, and this morning, all anxiety and stress/hypo symptoms are back. Fortunately I am retired and have very supportive husband. Both he and my two daughters tell me to carry on with sleeping pills until I am optimised on all meds (under a private Endo who is marvellous), stress is reduced, and then worry about coming off the Zopiclone slowly.

Any thoughts and experiences of this would be appreciated. I have been on them fir about 6 weeks and know if you take them longer than 4 weeks you are likely to become dependant on them.

So is the answer, feel weel first, deal with anxiety/stress and leave coming off sleeping tablets to the last. I worried about other dangers of being on these pills but fel it is better than anti depressants which my GP is offering me.

I am age 68. I know a family member who is taking 10mg Zopiclone daily, been on them 2 years, same age as me. And another friend with auto immune issues on 7.5mg daily.

Any experiences anyone? Bern advised not to go cold turkey so maybe last night of no pill was a bad idea.

17 Replies

  • I would suggest weaning yourself off the zopiclone, and using melatonin instead. Melatonin isn't available over the counter in the UK, but you can buy it online from sites like iherb in the US. It doesn't cost much. Don't buy very high dose ones. I bought 3mg tablets and I had to break them into quarters. One quarter gets me to sleep.

    Alternatively you could ask your doctor to prescribe it for you. It is available as a prescription drug. Sadly, just like T3, it is one of those drugs that the NHS is charged a lot for compared to its normal price online.

    Here's the page about Zopiclone in the BNF :

    And here's the page about Melatonin :

  • Flower, I've been taking 7.5 mg zopiclone since 2001. I'm still alive and functioning. There's a difference between addiction and dependency. Addiction means requiring more and more to get the same effect (whatever that is). It works for me at the same dose I started with. It's better to not suffer. We suffer enough. For me these things have been a life saver. I don't care if I'm dependent. I'm dependent on oxygen, water and food too. ;)

  • Thank you gabkad. You have made me feel a whole lot better! That's a long time to take them. Obviously you must be a great deal younger than me as I'm not allowed that bigger dose. I need them to get me to sleep, ok once I'm over the edge. It's to block out the thumping of my heart that I can't block out due to the anxiety. I'm going to try hypnotherapy next week just to see if it helps. I've had all tests & my heart is fine so I know it's anxiety mainly due to lack of sleep & all the other thyroid issues.

    Thank you too human bean. A friend in America told me about Melatonin, she gives low dose to her children when they are ill. I will see if I can get some or maybe get her to bring some with her as she travels regularly.

    Thanks folks x

  • Flowerpower, I agree with your husband, daughters and Gabkad. Take the Zopiclone to help you sleep until you are thyroid replacement is optimal when you may find you no longer need it. 3.75mcg is the lowest dose prescribed. My GP wouldn't prescribe more than 7 per month but it's been sufficient and I haven't needed to ask for more.

  • Clutter, you gotta come over to the 'dark side'....mwahahahaha!

    I tried 3.75 after being on 7.5 forever and nope, doesn't cut it. I"m a dependent. I think minimal effective dose is the best way to go, just I got started on the bigger one and I think if I want to wean off it'll be a lot of sleepless nights. Maybe when I retire. Can't afford to walk around like a zombie although, must admit, while hypo, I felt like one.

  • I will be taking a double dose to get through the smear test, Gabkad. Hopefully I won't be too zonked to walk there.

  • I thought you already did this.

  • You are a fountain of wisdom Clutter, you have been a life saver for me, thanks. I think my GP will prescribe them for me until I am optimised on other meds. If not, I know my Endocrinologist will. Thank you

  • I'm pleased now that I can manage with half to three quarters of a 3.75 tablet. I realise now that it's minimal. I occasionally take a whole one but not often, usually when my husband thinks I need the extra rest. Thanks again, what a wonderful site this is.

  • Hi flower, I just wondered if you have tried anything else for your anxiety? I am having a bad phase myself at the moment but only at night, when my mind starts racing, so I can't sleep, then I get totally worked up and end up having a panic attack. Beta blockers normally do the trick for me, they stop my heart thumping which enables me to calm down enough to sleep. Maybe worth a try?

    Emma x

  • Beta blockers aren't really recommended for hypos, you know. Best avoid them if you can.

  • I thought they were ok if you didn't take them near to medication? Please can you explain a bit more? Thanks x

  • Mountaingoat, I would love to, but I really don't have the time at the moment. I'm going away for a week, but I'll get back to you when I get back. OK? Sorry!

    Hugs, Grey

  • No problem, I'll do some googling. They're the only thing that slows my pounding heart though whether it's a panic attack or overmedication. Have a good week away x

  • I've heard about the Beta Blockers. I will ask my Endo about it at my next app. I am taking 5mg Amloditine for mild HBP. I didn't think you could take both but interesting to know if it's possible.

    I'm Hypo with hypo symptoms but don't have a thyroid.

    I took 3/4 Tablet of Zopiclone last night. 7 hours sleep. Marvellous!

    Thanks all for thoughts & info.

    Some blood test results today:

    serum TSH 1.83. (0.27 - 4.20mlU/L

    serum Calcium (corrected) 2.36

    (2.20 - 2.60 mmol/L

    Serum folate 13.9ng/ml. (4.60 - 18.7ng/ml

    All these 3 marked as normal

    Any comments on Folate? Should it be higher?

    Serum vitamin B12

    This one concerns me but it says abnormal but no action required:

    2000pg/ml. (191 - 693 pg/ml

    I know we like B12 to be nearer to 1000 but 2000?!!!!

    Should I reduce or cut out my B12 supplement???

    2000 seems excessively high!!


  • If you've been taking B12 for months now, you can cut back. Are you taking it in the morning? Some people find it a bit too energizing if they take it late in the day.

  • Yes been asking it for 6 months. I take it at lunchtime. I will cut back now. Thank you

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