Your guide to Trimipramine for insomnia: Tricyclic antidepressants for sleep
When counting sheep and drinking a hot mug of lavender tea before bed doesn’t help you fall asleep, there are some alternative treatments doctors can consider.
Though most medical professionals will prefer to avoid medication for insomnia where possible, exercise, and meditation as natural solutions for relaxation aren’t always enough. Since sleep is a crucial part of keeping your body and mind healthy, sometimes it’s safer to take medication than it is to try and get by without adequate rest.
Tricyclic antidepressants are just one of the forms of medication that your doctor may prescribe to help you sleep. A tricyclic antidepressant is a much older form of antidepressant than many of the common options available today.
However, they can be useful for people with insomnia, as modern treatments for depression don’t cause any drowsiness.
Tricyclic medications promote drowsiness, rather than perpetuating sleeping problems. One example of a less common tricyclic antidepressant medication for sleep is Trimipramine.
Here’s everything you need to know about Trimipramine for insomnia.
Medication for sleep: What is Trimipramine?
Trimipramine maleate is a kind of tricyclic antidepressant, used for the treatment of depression and insomnia. One of the earliest antidepressants created, these medications are often effective at treating depression.
However, they work in a very different way to many modern antidepressants. Trimipramine and similar medications can cause more side effects than newer antidepressants, which is why they’re not as commonly used for mild to moderate mood disorders anymore.
Fortunately, one of the side effects of Trimipramine could actually be beneficial to people with trouble sleeping. This substance causes drowsiness and has a sedative effect that helps to reduce agitation and discomfort. The medication works by enhancing the activity of specific neurotransmitters in the brain (noradrenaline and serotonin).
By preventing the reabsorption of crucial substances like serotonin and noradrenaline, Trimipramine helps you to maintain your mood and can reduce feelings of anxiety. Aside from being an effective treatment for insomnia, Trimipramine can also be useful for bipolar disorder, major depressive disorder, and dysthymia.
Using Trimipramine for sleep
Like other anti-depressant medications, Trimipramine will not change your personality or instantly make you feel happy. It also won’t target the underlying causes of any sleep disorders that you may have.
Because of this, if your doctor recommends this medication for insomnia, they will likely also recommend a form of psychological therapy. Cognitive behavioural therapy and other strategies can help you to understand why you’re having trouble with your sleep.
Medications like Trimipramine for insomnia are usually prescribed when sleep studies have already been conducted to ensure that there aren’t any underlying issues responsible for your sleep problems. For instance, if you have sleep apnea, then your doctor might not prescribe Trimipramine.
Once you begin taking this medication, it will begin to work quite quickly. If you’re taking the substance only for the management of sleeping problems, you will usually still need to take it every day. This will help the medicine to build up in your system and have a more consistent effect on your sleeping patterns. Your doctor will often advice taking one pill before bedtime.
While the Trimipramine dosage for insomnia can vary, most doctors will start by giving you a very low dose of the medication to see how your body reacts to it. Even if you’re not sure whether Trimipramine for insomnia is right for you, once you begin taking it, you’ll need to continue taking the medication according to your doctor’s instructions.
Although this substance isn’t addictive, like other medications for sleep, it can cause severe withdrawal symptoms.
If you stop taking Trimipramine suddenly, without the approval of a medical professional, then you might encounter issues like sickness, shivering, difficulty sleeping, irritability, anxiety, sweating, or anxiousness.
Stopping Trimipramine gradually over a series of weeks or months can help to reduce your risk of withdrawal.
Medication for sleep: Is Trimipramine a good choice?
Whenever considering treatment for insomnia, your doctor will need to consider the pros and cons of each potential pill. Medication for sleep disorders can come with a lot of side effects to address, including daytime drowsiness and dependency. That’s why most experts will ask you to use natural remedies for sleep problems first.
If, after an extensive study, your doctor decides that Trimipramine is the right treatment for you, then there are positives and negatives to consider. For instance, Trimipramine doesn’t cause addiction, like benzodiazepine medication for sleep disorders.
However, it can cause feelings of drowsiness and dizziness that persist throughout the day. Taking this medication each night can make it difficult for you to concentrate at work. Additionally, Trimipramine can cause dry mouth, which can heighten your risk of tooth decay when it’s taken for long periods of time.
This particular medication for sleep disorders also has a habit of making the skin more sensitive to sunlight than usual. Because of this, it’s important to avoid using sunlamps and sun-beds until you know how the medication will affect you.
You won’t be advised to take Trimipramine for insomnia if:
You are pregnant or breastfeeding;
You have certain heart disorders;
You have issues with the way that your liver works;
You have problems with constipation;
You have issues with passing urine, or prostate trouble;
You have diabetes or epilepsy;
You have a tumor on your adrenal gland;
You’re taking other medications that may interact with Trimipramine;
You are allergic to any of the ingredients
Is Trimipramine the best medication for sleep disorders?
There’s no one-size-fits-all treatment for sleep disorders.
When choosing an appropriate treatment, your doctor will conduct a number of tests to consider which solution is right for you. This might include asking you to keep a sleep journal. You might also be asked to try some strategies to improve your sleep hygiene before you begin using a medication. If your doctor does end up prescribing Trimipramine, they will perform blood tests and an ECG.
Whenever possible, doctors and sleep professionals will prefer to avoid giving medication for sleep disorders — particularly if the issue is a long-term problem. That’s because although some drugs are better for your sleep disorders than others, all medications for sleep can cause side effects.
Common ones for Trimipramine are relatively subtle, such as drowsiness and dry mouth.
However, you can also experience:
Sexual problems, like reduced libido;
Confusion and dizziness;
Sweating and shaking;
Difficulty passing urine;
Increased pressure in the eyes;
Irregular heart rate.
In rare cases, people taking Trimipramine may also suffer from problems with their liver, such as inflammation or jaundice. It’s also possible that you may begin to produce reduced numbers of red or white blood cells, which can affect how your body reacts to illness and infection.
Some people taking Trimipramine for insomnia also encounter a reduction in the amount of sodium in their blood. When this happens, convulsions and muscle twitching can become an issue.
Is medicating yourself the only way to sleep?
Used correctly, medication can be an effective and excellent treatment for insomnia and other sleep disorders. You might need to try several different drugs to find the right one for you. Some medications will have to be used on a daily basis, where as others can be taken on occasion.
However, just like many other treatments, it’s not without its downsides. Different medication for sleep, like Trimipramine, can come with a wide range of side effects. Many of these will pass after a short while using the medication.
Additionally, any medication prescribed for sleep can cause a number of unpleasant withdrawal symptoms. You should only ever stay on sleep medications for the necessary period of time.
More often than not, your doctor will recommend a range of other alternatives which could help you tackle your sleep disorder, before suggesting taking a pill. This might include using psychological therapy to come to terms with the problems that are causing your inability to sleep.
Your doctor could also give you advice on how to improve your sleep hygiene which might increase your chances of falling asleep naturally. For instance, going to bed and getting up at the same time every day, can work wonders for both depression and insomnia at the same time. Regular exercise and a good diet are also key factors in getting your much needed sleep.
As well as prescribing medication your doctor will ensure you have a long-term strategy for overcoming your issues with sleep. After all medications will not cure the underlying problem responsible for your insomnia. The only way to overcome sleep disorders for good, is to try and find out what is causing them.
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