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    Ambien and Alprazolam
    lilike00 posted:
    I take ambien 10 mg to help me sleep. In the last year it has not worked as well as it had. I also am prescribed Alprazolam .05 mg that I very seldom take. Would it be OK to take one of each at bedtime.
    steadygoing responded:
    Ambien's not working anymore because your body brain chemistry has grown tolerant of it. It was never meant for such a long time. As for .5 mg of xanax, I would strongly urge you not to begin taking this for sleep since it is so strongly addicting. Getting off of it can be terrible. You don't mention your past history but you should first have an overnight sleep study done to see if there's any physical reasons you've always had poor sleep.
    Aatif M Husain, MD responded:
    Dear lilike00,

    Sorry to hear about your problems with night time sleep. The short answer to your question is that you should NOT combine the two medications unless your doctor specifically approves it. The long answer is this: insomnia is a symptom, not a diagnosis. It is like saying that you have a stomach ache. If you had a stomach ache you would probably take something over the counter for it; you might continue this for a week or two. But if the pain did not go away, you would want to know what is causing it. Once that was determined you would take medication for the problem rather than the over the counter medication you initially used. The same is true for insomnia. You should try to find out what is causing it, and then try to fix that problem. Ambien and other drugs are not meant to be taken for months and years. They are short term drugs for a short term insomnia. Many doctors are in the habit of prescribing Ambien like drugs since it is much easier to do than to find out what is causing the insomnia. Many insomnia sufferers can use behavioral therapy prescribed by a physician or psychologist to treat their insomnia and not need medicines. Consider talking with your physician, a sleep doctor, or best of all, an insomnia expert about your problem to see if you might be able to get a more lasting solution.


    Aatif Husain

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    For more information, visit the Duke Health Sleep Disorders Center