Going cold turkey with zopiclone

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Has anyone just stopped taking zopiclone. My gp retired and new gp won't give me any more, have been trying to gradually wean myself off, only take 1/4 tablet now but getting awful anxiety with the withdrawal. She said I'm taking so little should just be able to stop, did manage to get 1 packet of diazepam to help with the anxiety but won't give me any more. Been told will have to go on citilapram if have sleep, anxiety issues in the future. I do want to come off them but feel would be better to continue decreasing them slowly as I've been on them 11 years, and don't want to be given an anti-depressant and then have similar problems in the future when trying to stop it.. 

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  • Posted

    thats so nieave of your gp. can you make a complaint, saying how she doesnt appreciate how difficult it is to come off a benzo, when you are just taking a benzo alone? its easier comimg off them when you are taking an anti depressant, but not soley on a benzo. surely your dependancy and history would force her to have to come up with a tapered plan? you could ask her for a pyschiatric referral, which might get her to change her mind, so she doesnt appear to be incompetant?. if you feel that you can do a taper off a benzo, then dont start an anti depressant, you dont know whether it will work for you, and you could end up in a worse situation, especially as you will not have any benzos, and your anxiety is likely to go up for first 4 weeks on an anti depressant. try looking at 5htp as a supplement, no side effects, increases seratonin production. cant take it with an anti depressant, but fine if you dont. often helps with withdrawal. go back to her with a tapered plan of coming off zopicline, and insist she allows you to do it? surely your history entitles you to at taper?
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    • Posted

      thanks for the info I'll try the 5htp I'm taking Passion flower at the moment. I'll try tapering off as don't want to take an anti depressant as it's just something else to then try and come off. Just get very cross these z drugs were freely given out few years ago and I was told they were non addictive. But gp's now turning round and telling people you can't have any more. Everywhere says swapping to diazapam makes it easier to wean off but my surgery will only give me 1 packet but happy to put me on an anti depressant that can also be addictive. I'll try the 5htp any advice helpful as got no help from my surgery as to tapering off. She did say about cbt but tried few sessions but didn't help me.

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    • Posted

      The GP who put me on zopiclone has just retired, he was very understanding as also suffered sleep problems, would always prescribe them, but now have a new GP with completely different attitude. Unfortunately they are now regarded as "very bad" and seems others in same position as me. Find it very contradictory that I can't have any more zopiclone in order to wean off, but can freely have anti depressants that are just as addictive. Do wonder if they will be regarded as being given out too freely in the future as well! Some gap's seem oblivious as to how hard it is to come off them and the solution is not always to stick people on more drugs!

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  • Posted

    Hi Lemar,

    11yearsbis a long time to be taking it and getting down to a 1/4 every night is great news - well done! Please do persevere and consider an antidepressant to combat the underlying issue as to why you can’t sleep. I was addicted to Z after surgery and turned into a complete mess. They are so addictive and I became psychologically dependent on them quickly but the withdrawal symptoms were the worst. I was encouraged to take sertraline which I resisted thinking it would be a similar story. I weaned Z to 1/2 tablet but still felt awful during day and my weight plummeted. If you’ve been on it 11years you must be tiny?! It is a horrific drug, please swap to something else.

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    • Posted

      Hi Caz

      I will persevere just don't want to go down the anti depressant route if I can avoid it. My friend been on the ones she suggested for 5 years which doesn't bode well! I popped into my chemist and she said swapping to diazapam would be best option then wean off that, but gp won't prescribe it apart from 1 packet. I've only ever had 3 or 4 packets max a year but had bad year couple years ago when husband had heart attack and ended up taking them most nights. I'll go to Holland & Barrett and ask about the 5htp does seem it's OK to take if you aren't on anti depressants. Just feel very angry I've been told it's easy to come off if you're on low dose they have no idea!!! How long did it take you to come off the zopiclone?

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    • Posted

      lemar, when you were taking 1/4 of a tablet, before you were told you wouldnt be getting any more, how did you feel, were you content, or did you have anxiety or depression, ie did you feel okay? btw, im on anti depressants so i cant try it, but i would really have liked to have given 5htp a go. it seems the most credible alternative. google it, theres loads about it on you tube as well.
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    • Posted

      Do feel the gp could be more sympathetic as I am actually trying to decrease the dose. You can buy zopiclone on line so will have to do that if I end up running out. Went in Holland &Barrett they advised against taking 5htp while still on zopiclone as said could make me feel worse as both affect your serotonin. Seems nothing available to temporarily ease the withdrawal symptoms which is all I'm after . Don't feel depressed just cross that I'm getting no help from the NHS , I think gp's need re educating as to how difficult it is to come off these drugs rather than sticking you on yet more addictive medication.

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    • Posted

      do some research on taking 5htp and a benzo. a handb assistant isnt going to know what they are talking about. benzos have minimal effect on seratonin, and your dose is minimal. you an take anti depressants with benzos, and they have a large effect on seratonin. myself, i would have any issues in taking 5htp with an extremely low benzo dose. general consensus its fine, particularly with a very low dose. i took 5htp once, when taking a high dose of anti depressant, was scary, and didnt do it again.
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    • Posted

      Hi Lemar,

      If you’re only having few packets a year then it sounds like you have it under control. I was having it every night and felt I couldn’t live without it. I tried several times to come off it but just took other things. Eventually I went onto the antidepressant and it was worse at first so I felt like nothin could help. Then I took Clonazepam for a week and that helped me come off Z. Now just on small dose or Sertraljne and can’t begin to te you how much better I feel. I sleep like a baby every night (before that I was on sleeping meds on and off for years).....

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    • Posted

      My gp would always prescribe them for me but has just retired and other gp in the practice told me I can't have any more. Also have hit and run OCD as result of having to visit my husband in hospital hours drive away after he nearly died after a heart attack, so find driving difficult, was improving but got really bad again after cutting down on the zopiclone. Even though I've never taken very many still ended up addicted had real craving for tablets when first tried stooping them some nights. Well done to you, I'm 2 months into trying to wean off them how long did it take you? I'll do bit research into 5 http that Nigel mentioned as well. 

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    • Posted

      hey Nigel, i was reading you comments and you seem quite knowledgeable so I have a couple questions for you if you dont mind because my doctor kind of caused this problem i think is not so helpful. I would gratefuk for your opinion. I was taken Zopiclone for a little while 7.5mg for little while, and then my doc said just quit cold turkey, I said isnt that dangerous, he said I'll be fine and gave 50mg of trazadone just in case. This is almost 2 months ago now, I just quit cold turkey not knowing or researching this like a fool. I was having all kinds of side effects past couple months not knowing what could be causing this. It has greaty effected my breathing, I cant even walk a block and all sort of lovely symptoms making me gong to see specialists etc. So I kind of weaned off the trazadone to quarter pill FAST over the past couple weeks and this week i as soon as i took nothing, i could take a walk long, but now I am getting tension headaches and head is popping an cracking, blood pressure rising pretty high, dizziness lights effecting me a bit. Despite all this I have clearer head and breath better, i am wondering what you think i should because i kind of worried how bad these withdrawls with get from trazadone, it's been about 3 days since i had any and only had quarter pill this week almost..any suggestions i would VERY grateful

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  • Posted

    u feel your pain and i am sure you will get through it. i was curious did you get respiratory problems from zoplicone?

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  • Posted

    u feel your pain and i am sure you will get through it. i was curious did you get respiratory problems from zoplicone?

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