I first tried Ambien in 1991. As I was going out the door of the Rheumy who diagnosed me, he asked, "How is your sleep?" Of course the answer was, "What sleep?"
At first the Ambien worked great, but over the years I guess I have developed a tolerance for it. If I take it nightly, it only delivers about 2 hours of sleep. If I wait until I really need a full night's sleep, it works quite well.
The nerve blocks I get every 3 months for the arthritic changes in my spine at L-3 and L-4. They really hurt, but so does my back. If I come home and spend the rest of n. b. day in bed, they usually help for most of the 3 months. Without them, it hurts immediately if I stand. (Don't ask why, but I can walk with no spinal pain. I just cannot stand.) With the nerve blocks, it takes about 5 minutes for the pain at my waist level to start.
Please be on the alert for signs that you are moving about the house in the time between when you take your Ambien and when you fall asleep. You will actually be sleepwalking with no memory of what you did. Some patients actually DROVE with no knowledge of what they were doing. Scary!
None of us WANT to take drugs, but most of us HAVE to take drugs at least some of the time. The thing is, if you don't take the prescribed dosage of a drug and don't take it for about 6 weeks, you won't know if it is going to work for you.
We have all had drugs we just couldn't take. Sometimes we found out with the first pill. Sometimes it took a higher dose or a longer time to experience intolerable side effects. Naturally, you will not take those drugs again.
Do not be surprised if you wind up with a final dosage of 1800 mg. of gabapentin each day. That seems to be the normal full dosage. Once you have been at that dose for 4-6 weeks, you will know whether this medication is working for you.
I agree with Nancy about finding another doctor. See if you can find a neurologist who manages fibromyalgia in your area. Most of these specialists in the nervous system are well aware of all the problems you are dealing with. They know all about the things that can go wrong when your nerve fibers only want to register pain. I miss my friendly neuro immensely.
We have a lot of knowledge here. I hope you find the help and support you need. BetteView Thread
Have you checked into your state's Medicaid program? I know that in NY it's possible to get help if your medical costs pull your adjusted gross income down to the poverty level. Your costs sound like they'd fit the bill.
Other than that, you'll have to call each one of your medications' manufacturer to ask about some kind of subsidy. I know this is not what you wanted to hear, but the truth is what you need.
Believe me, if my husband passes away before I do, I'll be in exactly the same shape you are in now. It is frightening and definitely not something to help you live the stress-free life that could lower your fibro pain.
I'm sure there will be lots more ideas from our wonderful members. Gosh, we've got the best bunch of people here.
I was on everything possible in the past 40 years. Nothing really worked. The "experts" considered a 16 % improvement on the first trials (Elavil plus Flexeril) "significant." Well, I don't.
Right now, I'm doing fairly well with my nerve blocks every 3 months and trigger point injections every 3 weeks or so. I have Ambien to take once or twice a month for sleep, Voltarin gel for wrist/hand/knee arthritis, Lubriderm patches for spinal pain flares, flexeril for bodywide tense muscles, and I take a really good vitamin along with a calcium/magnesium/zinc/ vitamin D pill.
But I am totally off the Savella, Lyrica, Cymbalta, Elavil, the SSRIs, the Duragesic pain patches, and the Oxycontin. Talk about drugs that didn't work!
What it boils down to is that there will be times in your life with fibro when you need some pretty heavy stuff. Then there may be a time when you can be weaned off them at least for a while. You do what you have to when you have to.
See what happens with the increase in your Savella dosage. I hope you find something that works for you soon. Sometimes this whole searching for a solution thing can be worse than the fibro. Try to be patient.
It hit 80 here in WNY with high humidity. Just what we really needed. Part of our county had flash floods this evening, but we got nothing.
Yesterday we drove to Rochester to pick up our younger son. We had a few shopping stops while we were in the city. Then we tried out a new restaurant before we started home. The line was out the door, but since the guys had wanted so much to eat there I just kept mum. That pesky back started hurting in its usual 5 minutes. The wait was 25 minutes. Sheer agony. Then there was the 2 hour drive back home. Hubby is a nervous city driver so I do it.
Guess who spent another day in bed today. Well, of course, I had to be up for part of the day. It's just that since I overdid on Saturday, there was no 5 minutes of grace before the back started hurting. As soon as I stood up--or, to a lesser extent, sat up--the pain shot up to an 8. No one can cry constantly, but I sure felt like doing so.
But it is great having both sons at home. MiMi's right about the family meals. Even this darn spine couldn't keep me from sitting at the table tonight.
Cory, it's great that your back got better by evening. That's always a relief and a hope for a better workweek, too.
MiMi, those fears and regrets are natural, but do not let them intrude on the joy of having the grandkids with you now. You are truly blessed. And you had today with your family.
Here it is 2:13 a.m. One of us is still awake and typing (very inefficiently) at the keyboard.
Recent Canadian studies show that most of our problems--including anxiety, depression, pain, and fog--are directly related to a lack of sleep.
So, it looks like we both have to start doing all the sleep hygiene stuff every day. Go to bed and get up at the same time every day. Take that warm bath every night. Spend some time winding down. No caffeine after 3 p.m. (If you are still jittery at night, try cutting the coffee and cola even earlier.)
Hope that you do better this Sunday and all week, too.
MiMi's right about how you MUST go to work and stay there until you get a different ruling. If you just don't show up, your employer will consider that you have quit your job. That would really foul up the works.
Being in pain, being exhausted, being all fibrofogged up AND having to deal with insurance companies, insufferable medicos, and people who just don't have a clue how much your life is effected by this condition can make you feel awful.
Try to hang in there. Find a doctor who truly understands FM. Get what rest you can. Do relaxation techniques. And keep pushing for your disability insurance.
Shift changes must really mess with your fibro. Are you able to use some melatonin? If so, a little bit before you climb into your before-bed tub might help your body know that--for you at least--it's really bedtime.
Hope you soon get the comfort of your sweetie's companionship. It's amazing how much better you can feel just by being near the people you love! (But give him a day or two after the sale to catch up on his sleep. This way, you'll be seeing a warm, loving pussycat--not a snarling, stressed out Simba.)
Hope the flare subsides soon, too. Then you'll be less of a Simba, yourself.
Me, too. That sick feeling you get when it is hot and humid is like an instant fibrofog with a little nausea thrown in.
As you know, I'm a big believer in the power of a warm bath or shower. However, I've had too many episodes of coming out of the shower with my whole body sweating. Now it's slightly cooler showers and distinctly cooler shampoos. Not fair! But, as we all know, fibro is far from fair.