Zopiclone - how often can you use it without risk of dependency?

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I know this is a question without one fixed answer, but I wondered what people's thoughts were on how often you can take zopiclone without risk of physical dependency. Would 2 or 3 times a week on non-consecutive days be safe, if it was only for a short period, say a month or 6 weeks? 

I'm really struggling to get any decent sleep due to side effects of Sertraline that I've recently started, and would like to use zopiclone to help, but I am worried about addiction or getting rebound symptoms, so any advice would be great smile

Thanks!

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  • Posted

    This is from google hope it helos...Zopiclone (brand names Zimovane and Imovane) is a nonbenzodiazepine hypnotic agent used in the treatment of insomnia. It is a cyclopyrrolone, which increases the normal transmission of the neurotransmitter gamma-Aminobutyric acid in the central nervous system, as benzodiazepines do, but in a different way.

    As zopiclone is sedating, it is marketed as a sleeping pill. It works by causing a depression or tranquilization of the central nervous system. After prolonged use, the body can become accustomed to the effects of zopiclone. When the dose is then reduced or the drug is abruptly stopped, withdrawal symptoms may result. These can include a range of symptoms similar to those of benzodiazepine withdrawal. Although withdrawal from therapeutic doses of zopiclone and its isomers (i.e. eszopiclone) do not typically present with convulsions and are therefore not considered life-threatening, patients may experience such significant agitation and/or anxiety that they seek emergency medical attention.

    In the United States, zopiclone is not commercially available,[2] although its active stereoisomer, eszopiclone, is sold under the name Lunesta. Zopiclone is a controlled substance in the United States, Japan, Brazil, and some European countries, and may be illegal to possess without a prescription. However, it is readily available in other countries where it is marketed under the brand name Imovane, and is not a controlled substance in its available 7.5 mg, 5 mg, and 3.75 mg oral tablet formulations.

    Zopiclone is known colloquially as a "Z-drug". Other Z-drugs include zaleplon (Sonata) and zolpidem (Ambien and AmbienCR) and were initially thought to be less addictive and/or habit-forming than benzodiazepines. However, this appraisal has shifted somewhat in the last few years as cases of addiction and habituation have been presented. Zopiclone is recommended to be taken on a short-term basis, usually a week or less.[3] Daily or continuous use of the drug is not usually advised.[4]

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    • Posted

      Not a problem anytime. I dnt like looking up pills but when i need to know something i go to google, here, or webmd them places help alot, but am happy to help anyone i do have a big knowledge on meds and medical stuff being sick over 20 yrs. So i think i have a good experience on advice, i also like to give the proper information so copy n paste are my best results then ppl can see and read the medical information. Im a yapper so if i do all the writting it can get confusing so i add it the facts but only whats needed ty..
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  • Posted

    Hey Dom, I had a really bad experience with zopiclone without even realising so be really careful. I took it about 4/5 times a week for a couple of months and then wow the withdrawals I got (while I was still,taking it!) lasted ages and I thought I was losing my mind. So take it for a couple of nights I would say, have a couple of nights off etc. BUT don't take it for more than a month please! Also maybe try weaning off after a few weeks (smaller doses) a lot of people probably fine with this drug for longer but I wouldn't want you to go through what I did it was hell!

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    • Posted

      Hi Lee, thanks so much for the reply. I'm sorry you went through such a bad time with Zopiclone. I'll definitely be very careful then. I think I won't take it more than a couple of times a week, and not on consecutive days. I'm caught between craving some decent sleep and the worry of causing myself issues if I get addicted or have withdrawal. Thanks again for the helpful reply!

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    • Posted

      Just don't let the worry keep you up at night : )

      From my partner's experience, I would say not more than 3x per week, never take it in the day for anxiety, and try not to use it for more than a month. The thing is, if you are going to take Sertraline long-term, you are going to need to learn to sleep witout aids (for your health). Taking one drug to combat the effects of another can lead to all sorts of unwanted problems. 

      How long have you been on Sertraline? Perhaps the insomnia is a side effect that will wear off as you become more accustomed to it? This happens with most drugs, but who knows. However, I worry that the use of Zop may keep your body from naturally learning to overcome the associated insomia, so you may need to re-learn, or learn from scratch, when you decide enough is enough.

      Good luck!

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    • Posted

      This is from google...Hope this helps...

      Zopiclone is indicated for the short-term treatment of insomnia where sleep initiation or sleep maintenance are prominent symptoms. Long-term use is not recommended, as tolerance, dependence, and addiction can occur with prolonged use.

      Zopiclone is indicated for the short-term treatment of insomnia where sleep initiation or sleep maintenance are prominent symptoms. Long-term use is not recommended, as tolerance, dependence, and addiction can occur with prolonged use.

      Jan 21, 2015 - Imovane is one drug that alleviates sleepiness...

      The marketing stance for the commercial rollout of Zopiclone (sold as Lunesta) in the United States is that Zopiclone is not addictive .

      Zopiclone has the potential for being an agent of abuse and addiction. While many have suggested that the addictive ...

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    • Posted

      Hi Judi,

      Thanks for your reply!

      I have only been on Sertraline about 5 and a half weeks, and only 4 weeks at my current dose. The insomnia is definitely a side effect of the Sertraline, and hopefully one which will pass. I was intending to use zopiclone only over the period when the side effects were at their worst. The sertraline has caused this real jitteryness and anxiety which has really interfered with sleep.

      You're right that I need to let my body deal with the issue naturally. I won't use zopiclone more than twice a week then, and make sure I don't use it for more than 4 weeks in a row. I didn't use it at all last week as I was feeling a bit better, but have used it twice this week as my side effects have flared up again.

      Thanks for your helpful reply smile

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  • Posted

    My Doc that first perscribed me Zolpidem said 2 days on, iday off- I have subsequently gone on Zoplicone and followed the same formula. I don't take anything but melatonin occasionally, but will take one of the z's if I'm upset about something and know I won't sleep, or if I'm taking a long haul flight.

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    • Posted

      Thanks for the reply! I don't want to use zopiclone that often, so I think 2 days on is the max I would do. I have been using herbal sleeping tablets sometimes too but haven't got any melatonin, so I should try that as well. Thanks!

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  • Posted

    I would bcareful of the Lunesta i had a very bad experience with it. It did not agree with me or my other meds. I ended up not eatting for a long period of time. Loosing all my muscles & couldnt walk or remember anything that had happened to me as well now i get every sezuire you can get or imagine. Just be very careful with that drug i dnt want anyone to go threw what i did and still am. Now i gotta take Depakote for sezuires not cool, so scared of having another big 1. I had fallen & sezed so bad that I was bruised from my toes to my kneck so watch yourself & at the first feeling of not being you contact your doctor or get to the ER fast as possible...

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    • Posted

      Thanks for the information. I seem to be OK on it as I've taken it a few times with no obvious side effects. I'll keep an eye on things if I take it again though. Thanks!

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  • Posted

    If you are going to take a sleeping pill starting with Z, throw away the Zopiclone, they are often innefective and many people report bad side effects. Instead, ask the doctor for Zolpidem 10mg, they work better and have very few side effects, Zopiclone is cheaper, that's why it;s prescribed.

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