Cutting Amitriptyline back to 5 mg per night

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I was put on Amitriptyline last December to help with IBS and insomnia at 10 mg.   I was on that for 2 months when the doctor then increased it to 20 mg to help more with insomnia.   I found it a bit sedating at 10 mg through the day and while it knocked me out at first when taking it at bedtime I would still wake up a couple of times in the night.  After being on the 20 mg dosage for a month I found that I was way too sleepy during the day.  The doctor said I could cut it down to 10 mg but I went to 5 mg instead.   Has anyone ever stayed on 5 mg and been just fine with it?

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  • Posted

    Did you say you take your dosage during the day. If so go back to your GP & ask about taking your dosage in the evening due to its ability to make you sleepy. I take mine for headaches, sleep problems & IBS but take my doasge at 7pm each evening or later if i finish work at 10pm like at 8 - 8.30pm. I too am on 20mg (since oct '14).
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    • Posted

      I take it every evening before bedtime but still am sleepy during the day.  I read you should take it about 3 hours before you go to bed but I find that within 5 minutes of taking the med, I'm out like a light.  I'm one that can't sleep realistically for more than 6 hours.  If I take it at say 8 pm I will be asleep within 5 minutes and then would be awake several times through the night.  It's somewhat kind of hard to explain.  My body seems to react in opposite ways to meds than what is normal.  In the past I was taking Vicodin for teeth problems.   While it would take the pain away and make me feel sleepy, I couldn't sleep or nap because I would be wired from it.  How odd is that
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    • Posted

      I've heard that some people feel tired straight after their dosage, but i suggest to take it 3 hours before bedtime & try & fight the tiredness. Thats what i did when i first started taking them. Speak to your GP though first & see what he/she suggests
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    • Posted

      I forgot to add that sometimes but not all the time, i can feel tired within 15 - 30 mins of taking my tablets, but i either fight it like i posted earlier or it just wears off me until bedtime.

      I have recently started taking mine at 7pm - following advice from another patient on here (8 - 8.30 if in work until 10) & go to bed between 10.15 - 10.30 (if not in work) & after a bit of night time reading am usually crashed out within 15 - 20 mins. I wake the next day at 7am.

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    • Posted

      I know the one big mistake I make and that is lying down when watching tv in bed.   Time to smarten up and sit up in bed which should help to fight the urge to sleep until it is time to sleep.  Thanks for sharing your experience.  Glad to read it is working out for you.
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    • Posted

      To be honest once i had got used to my amitriptyline & it started to kick in, i had a spell only a few months ago where i was tired & lethargic the next day plus a return to headaches. It was only the lovely people on here who advised me to take it slightly earlier than what i was doing & what a big difference it has made.

      Good luck to you & keep posting to see how you get on.

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    • Posted

      I took the med about 3 hours before my usual bedtime and made sure I sat up in bed to watch tv...ha ha.  I had no problem then with wanting to sleep after taking the med.  But what really ticked me off was then I kept waking up through the night even though I was sleepy....grrr.  I will keep taking it early and see how it goes.  I will definitely post and update.  Thanks!
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  • Posted

    I have taken it for nearly 30 years now, at first i was on too much 50..

    I was like a zombie all day so i was cut back to 25..years later

    I cut it down myself to 10 mm dont ask me why, lol, then 5 but

    unfortunately it was not doing anything at all, so to cut a long story

    short ive been on 25 for the last 20 years, i only take it at night

    about 6. I go to bed 9-10.it works excellant for me, its not medication

    thats used through the day..i get a pain free sleep..i am still woken

    up every morning but that sleep is soooo needed to deal with

    whatever fibro throws at me the next da, .be blessed Iidawmn,

    have a lovely day, do hope you get some answers that will help

    you, together we do have lots of knowledge on here through our

    experiences..i really empathise with you Ldawmn...😘😘😘

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    • Posted

      Thanks christine for your advice re: taking my amitriptyline slightly earlier than what i was doing. It has made a huge difference.
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    • Posted

      So happy you have found what works for uou.we are all so different,

      it is all trial and error isnt ot.,thats why i love this blog soooo

      much..be blessed stephen..have a lovely day😚😚

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    • Posted

      Thank you for sharing your experience.  I have taken the med earlier the past two nights and it seems to be working out better when it comes to that daytime sleepiness.  I will however post back in say a month and update.  Thanks again.
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  • Posted

    I was a complete zombie at 10mg non functional during day. Dropped to 5mg last night still zombie omg.
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    • Posted

      I have now made the decision to take myself off the Amitriptyline.  I had been taking it even earlier in the evening than I had before and I'm still sleepy from it the next day and during the day.  This after cutting from 10mg to 5 mg.  I feel like I'm not operating with a clear mind throughout the day.   I'm finding myself waking up a few times in the night now just like I did before getting on this med.  This med was initially prescribed for stomach issues.  Sometimes my stomach will act up but for the most part it doesn't.   I will see how it goes with not being on it.  
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    • Posted

      Hi ldawmn. Did you start on 10mg, then dropped it down to 5mg. Did you do this yourself or from the advice of your GP.

      TBH the dosages you are on won't touch the sides as my grandma would say. I have been on 20mg for 18 months now which i take for IBS as well as insomnia & headaches i was experiencing which i am not now.

      You say you still have the odd bout of stomach trouble. This is perhaps because you have taken yourself off your amitriptyline.

      My advice would be to go back to your GP, explain your symptoms & take it from there. But IMO the dosage you are taking is perhaps doing nothing & that is why you are probably feeling the way you are.

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    • Posted

      I am similiar to you. I am an absolute zombie during the day on 10 mg . I am a little better on 5mg.but of course now not sleeping as well. It doesnt matter how late or early in evening i take it... next day always the same..so what to do..... take 10mg get 7 hrs sleep and wake up like i had none and be in a drunk stupor all day.. or take 5mg and get mayb 5hrs sleep and still b a little drunk doing day. Neither seems like a great option. See dr in a week . B oth these doses are v low but my history shows that any mood meds i on i only ever show the side effects and i am super sensitive.
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    • Posted

      Quick message to both theg & Idawmn. What time do you both take your amitriptyline, what time do you go to bed & what time do you wake up. Im only asking these questions as i was experiencing similar problems. Previously i was taking my tablets at 7.30 (or 8.30 if i was working until 10pm), waking at 7am the next day & feeling like a drunken zombie. It was worse if i woke up later.

      It was thanks to a lovely lady on this forum named christine who advised me to take it earlier than what i was doing & to wake up at the same time each day. I now take my 20mg at 7pm, go to bed between 10 - 10.30pm & wake at 7am the next day - even on my days off from work. I find that works for me. Tonight though (2nd april) i will be taking my tablets at 7.45pm as i am on work until 10pm - meaning i wont get to bed until 11pm & i'll probably wake between 7.30 - 8am. Good luck to the 2 of you.

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    • Posted

      Hi stephen.have been taking endep at 730 still not sleeping until about mid night despite going to bed at 10ish.wake about 8. Still v tired once awake .and just continue to b more zombified as day goes on... yes i was advised to take earlier too..... i am that out of it cant even work....have trouble dojng basic stuff....yet i do get a few hrs sleep. The waking hrs appear to be just hazy.. its very odd. I on such a v low dose.....
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    • Posted

      Personally i believe your on that low a dosage its probably doing nothing for you. My advice would be to go back to your GP, explain all of your symptoms & see what he/she advises you.
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    • Posted

      Yes i think i am too. Too low of a dose to be of any benifit. However as i said when on the 10mg i was like a zombie....all day....its odd. I go to dr next fri ...will b interesting to see what he says.. will let you know....
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    • Posted

      Good luck to you.  I will keep tabs on this posting here to see how it all goes with everyone who posts.
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    • Posted

      It's like we are in the same boat.  I'm just going to get off of it altogether.  I posted more in detail of what was going on and I feel I will be fine.  The sleep issues will probably still continue but I figure it's age for me.  I have friends that have the same sleep issues.   I will be waiting to hear how you made out at the doctor.  Good luck.
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    • Posted

      Thanks.  I think no more meds for me.   I will focus more on eating healthier, exercising and what will be will.  
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    • Posted

      Good on you... sometimes meds are needed. However sometimes they are given out as a first line answer or because drs can not work out what is wrong with people so their diagnosis then becomes ' its anxiety depression etc' then people can b put on a cycle of mood changing drugs that can change and ruin a persons life . All these meds can have nasty side effects take a long time to work or not work. Can b v addictive and have devastating wirhdrawal symptoms.......
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    • Posted

      Thanks Theg.  Yeah it was weird about the stomach thing because I was due to fly out to Canada from the U.S. and it was like my stomach just blew up out of nowhere.  I had never had that problem before.  I hate flying and would get anxious about it but in the past I would just sit on that plane and through the flight would just reasurre myself that all would be fine until we landed.  I never ever had a bad flight and I have flown at least 15 times now.   I had to cancel my flight a second time because of this stomach cramping.   After having specialists ruling out certain things I got really annoyed and went to E.R.  The E.R. doctor ran tests - blood, CT Scan and said he was baffled, couldn't find a thing and yet while I was lying there my stomach was cramping away.  He gave me something to help with the pain, I was good for a week and then it flared up again.  It was then after that a gastro doctor prescribed the Amitrptyline.  I think I'm a medical mystery.  My son interestingly enough gained stomach issues 6 weeks after me (end of October).  He kept having pangs of jolting pain on and off throughout the day, constant diarrhea but could eat fine, no fever and he went to work as usual.  Tests run and nothing.  Six weeks later the pain stopped, diarrhea cleared up and he has had no problem since.   He said other people at work had been complaining about the same type stomach issue.  Very, very odd.  All the best to you Theg.  I would be interested in hearing what your doctor had to say when you go back.
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