View Full Version : do Drs blame sleep issues on meds?

Confused Mind
10-13-14, 10:04 AM
I'm currently prescribed dex plus strattera. Although not a miracle cure, as I read on here, help hugely.

I still sleep very poorly. Poor sleep pre-dates my diagnosis ( in fact bad sleep led to an old Dr diagnosing depression, which in turn took me to adult diagnosis for ADHD).

its bit chicken and egg: - less sleep = worse ADHD = Late nights etc.

I struggle with getting to bed as feel wired late evening, I also so struggle about 50% to get to sleep, often awake all night. I have a bad hip which means my legs struggle to get comfortable. (Starting to think restless leg).

My blood pressure is typically 123/94.

Is it a typical reaction for Dr's to remove meds? Or is it worth raising issue & ask for something to help with sleep - if so what?

Guess same for BP

In UK.


10-13-14, 10:29 AM
How long have you been on Dex?
What is the time of your latest dose?

Confused Mind
10-13-14, 12:32 PM
My plan is normally!
0800 20mg dex/ 100mg strattera
1200 15mg dex
1600 10 mg dex

Perscription is for up t o 3 x 20mg. I tend to very just below this

10-13-14, 12:45 PM
It depends a lot on how knowledgeable the doctor is, and whether or not changes in meds have exacerbated the problem.

As Pilgrim hinted, it may be that changing the timing of your last dose, or switching to a different formulation of it (not sure what's available in the UK) could help.

If your sleep has gotten worse since starting meds, that's definitely worth looking into.

Also, if the meds contribute to anxiety for you, as they do for some people, learning techniques to deal with that and/or lowering the dose of meds might help.

If your sleep problems are basically the same as they always were (since you mentioned that sleep issues pre-dated your ADHD dx), it's possible that changing/reducing the meds won't do much.

In that case, there are other things you might try.

Sleep hygiene is a big one -- establishing a routine to wind down at the end of the day. Much easier said than done for those of us with ADHD, though!

Stretches and/or medications and/or strategically-placed pillows to alleviate hip pain might be beneficial if physically getting comfortable is preventing your from sleeping.

Finally, for some people with ADHD who've had sleep problems since well before starting meds, adding an evening dose of medications can sometimes help. A lot of doctors stay away from this, but some who have experience treating ADHD will try it. I seem to be someone who sleeps better (and gets into bed sooner) if I take meds in the evening (by prescription, of course).

For me, melatonin (over the counter, taken a few hours before bedtime) can help induce sleepiness (which otherwise eludes me sometimes, even without meds). Clonidine, which I take for blood pressure and ADHD and tic-like issues, has had a bonus "side effect" of reducing my restless legs (which I attribute to hyperactivity, though it probably could be called restless legs syndrome) and talkativeness when I'm tired.

Hopefully your doctor will be a good listener and work with you to find out whether the meds are contributing to the problem or not, and also will help you find ways to get some sleep.

Best wishes for sweet dreams... :)

Confused Mind
10-13-14, 05:31 PM
Quick post - thanks for replies, will read properly later....

10-13-14, 05:36 PM
Just my 2 cents. All the advice of Namazu is very good. That ' wired feeling' is a sign that your dose is to high. Over medication can hurt.
Try taking afternoon dose earlier. Not past 2 pm.
In time you will get use to the medication more and it won't be such a problem.
Not sure about how your hip affects you though.
I hope your doctor is a good listener to.

11-14-14, 10:42 PM
If your sleep issues are unchanged from before you were on your current medication regime, your doctor should not remove medications if he knows what he is doing. If he says to take off a med, find a new doc.

Try an evening dose. Your add meds are stimulants, but only in the sense that they are raising your naturally below normal dopamine/norepinephrine levels to what they should be, which treats insomnia.

If that does not help, your sleep issues sound like you are not completely fixed. You might want to keep looking through medications, depending on whether or not you have tried literally everything. I measured efficacy of medications against my absolutely brutal insomnia, which is now absolutely, completely gone, with a mix of low doses of hydrocodone, xanex, and clonidine (I'm an extremely rare case though, my insomnia was so bad I slept about 5 hours per week and would stay awake through two ambien, stoned out of my mind)

Clonidine is, as I've seen more and more, helping a lot of fidgeters in bed, like myself. It's a safe, dirt cheap alpha blocker with no notable side effects or tolerance at the levels we need.

Confused Mind
11-18-14, 03:28 PM
Last night , total sleep = 0 :(

I have tweaked my dex dose and timings, taking less than prescribed but symptoms seem OK so far, also think less wired. (Does anyone else find it really hard to decide what's working well when giving feedback to Dr?)

Been on meds about two years but insomnia predates that. I went to Dr to complain of lack of sleep due to injured hip and was diagnosed depression. This may have been right, but was more insomnia + undiagnosed ADHD. However, this led me on a path which led to diagnosis.

Before ADHD diag I was prescribed amitriptyline for sleep,it did help.

I think I need to go back to Dr and hope he prescribes something for sleep :(

Hear, certainly in UK than guidelines for sleep meds is a week??!! Is that all people get?

Hopefully they won't mess with dex dose.