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    Ive been taking them every night for about a fortnight now. I don't want to rely on them to get to sleep, but is it doing me any harm? I don't really know what to do about it. I take them due to a phobia of spiders which means I can't sleep due to anxiety because I fear they are in my room.

    I haven't taken any tonight because I'm trying to stop but it's 4 am now and I can't stoP turning my light on and looking around the room. I've got a really itchy arm so now my screwed up mind has convinced myself it's a spider bite.

    I only take OTC antihistamines that have a sedative effect. They knock me out like a light.

    What can I do about this? If I don't take them I don't sleep. I have looked into hypnotherapy for my problem but it's too expensive, I just can't afford it. I feel like I'll never be able to sleep without pills again
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    Have you tried Valerian root?
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    (Original post by Anonymous)
    Ive been taking them every night for about a fortnight now. I don't want to rely on them to get to sleep, but is it doing me any harm? I don't really know what to do about it. I take them due to a phobia of spiders which means I can't sleep due to anxiety because I fear they are in my room.

    I haven't taken any tonight because I'm trying to stop but it's 4 am now and I can't stoP turning my light on and looking around the room. I've got a really itchy arm so now my screwed up mind has convinced myself it's a spider bite.

    I only take OTC antihistamines that have a sedative effect. They knock me out like a light.

    What can I do about this? If I don't take them I don't sleep. I have looked into hypnotherapy for my problem but it's too expensive, I just can't afford it. I feel like I'll never be able to sleep without pills again
    You could try rotating medications. You've used Diphenhydramine/Benadryl, now give Mogadon (prescription only) a try for a week or two, then you can go back on the Benadryl.
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    (Original post by Anonymous)
    Ive been taking them every night for about a fortnight now. I don't want to rely on them to get to sleep, but is it doing me any harm? I don't really know what to do about it. I take them due to a phobia of spiders which means I can't sleep due to anxiety because I fear they are in my room.

    I haven't taken any tonight because I'm trying to stop but it's 4 am now and I can't stoP turning my light on and looking around the room. I've got a really itchy arm so now my screwed up mind has convinced myself it's a spider bite.

    I only take OTC antihistamines that have a sedative effect. They knock me out like a light.

    What can I do about this? If I don't take them I don't sleep. I have looked into hypnotherapy for my problem but it's too expensive, I just can't afford it. I feel like I'll never be able to sleep without pills again
    If the antihistamines you take are supposedly okay for daily use over a long period (check the packet but I imagine they will be) then there's not much to worry about when using them to sleep instead. If you were actually on sleeping pills then it would be slightly more worrying, though again it would depend on the drug and how long it's supposed to be used with/without a doctor's guidance.

    You might want to see someone (maybe via your GP) to help with your phobia though. You shouldn't have to rely on something to allow you to sleep. Are you getting enough exercise and making sure you're not having caffeine/sugar/alcohol within a few hours of bedtime (or ideally much at all)? If you're tireder when you go to bed, you should be able to think less about imaginary spiders and just go to sleep.
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    I can kinda relate to your fear.
    My spider phobia is pretty bad, like if I see one in the shower, I'll refuse to go into it and even when the spiders dead and gone, I still won't go in for fear of there being one there, even though the one that was, is dead.
    I had a few sessions with a psychiatrist a few years ago, and we sort of just slowly built up my tolerance towards spiders (first looking at images, then touching images, then she brought in a small dead one in a jar, and finally I think I touched the dead one from outside the jar haha).
    If I kept with it and practised looking at the slideshow of images she gave me, I know my fear would be much less now. However, I pretty much gave up because I came to the conclusion that it didn't really stop my day to day activities so I didn't want to spend time doing the spider practices. What I'm getting at here, is that your phobia is stopping you from sleeping and the only way you'll probably feel better is if you try to overcome that fear. You can PM me if you want to.
    As for the pills, I don't think it's a good idea to rely on sleeping pills to help you sleep over a long time
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    (Original post by Anonymous)
    Ive been taking them every night for about a fortnight now. I don't want to rely on them to get to sleep, but is it doing me any harm? I don't really know what to do about it. I take them due to a phobia of spiders which means I can't sleep due to anxiety because I fear they are in my room.

    I haven't taken any tonight because I'm trying to stop but it's 4 am now and I can't stoP turning my light on and looking around the room. I've got a really itchy arm so now my screwed up mind has convinced myself it's a spider bite.

    I only take OTC antihistamines that have a sedative effect. They knock me out like a light.

    What can I do about this? If I don't take them I don't sleep. I have looked into hypnotherapy for my problem but it's too expensive, I just can't afford it. I feel like I'll never be able to sleep without pills again
    I will say the exact same thing as I say to all of these things; go and talk to your doctor. That's what they are there for. That's what they are trained to do.
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    Is a spider phobia really something I can see my gp for? I always figured I'd have to pay for hypnotherapy on my own.
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    If you were talking about actual sleeping pills you might be right that addiction could be a problem, but antihistamines are non-addictive and doctors much prefer people to take them over, for instance, the Z-drugs. So I wouldn't worry about that. However, the fact you're needing these pills to sleep is a problem, I'd recommend going to your GP and telling him about your phobia. It's having a huge impact on your life which sounds like, to me at least, something should be done about it (though I wouldn't be overly surprised if the NHS did refuse you :rolleyes: ).
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    (Original post by Anonymous)
    Is a spider phobia really something I can see my gp for? I always figured I'd have to pay for hypnotherapy on my own.
    It can't hurt to ask (and explain how much it's affecting your normal functioning... like being able to go to sleep in your room).

    On the topic of the antihistamines and Z-drugs as Sabertooth just mentioned, I just so happen to have been prescribed a Z-drug a week ago last Friday, which didn't help me sleep on any of the ~6 days I took it, but on two of those days it caused me to hallucinate and become convinced I was somewhere other than my bedroom, and worse, made me unable to recognise my fiancé - I thought it was mostly the lack of light on the first occasion so on the second I got him to turn on the light - and he still had a different face, and a different complexion. Perhaps due to having taken... unusual substances... before, I wasn't as freaked out by this as I could have been, but it was certainly unpleasant. I wasn't supposed to take any more than 10 pills in total anyway so never mind.

    I went back today and asked for something else since I'm having trouble sleeping again, so I have in fact been prescribed - you guessed it - an antihistamine, called Phenergan here at least, and the drug name is promethazine. The smallest amount he could give me was 112 tablets. So yeah, I don't think there's likely to be anything to worry about with you taking an antihistamine to sleep over a long period of time.
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    (Original post by Meliss)
    I can kinda relate to your fear.
    My spider phobia is pretty bad, like if I see one in the shower, I'll refuse to go into it and even when the spiders dead and gone, I still won't go in for fear of there being one there, even though the one that was, is dead.
    I had a few sessions with a psychiatrist a few years ago, and we sort of just slowly built up my tolerance towards spiders (first looking at images, then touching images, then she brought in a small dead one in a jar, and finally I think I touched the dead one from outside the jar haha).
    If I kept with it and practised looking at the slideshow of images she gave me, I know my fear would be much less now. However, I pretty much gave up because I came to the conclusion that it didn't really stop my day to day activities so I didn't want to spend time doing the spider practices. What I'm getting at here, is that your phobia is stopping you from sleeping and the only way you'll probably feel better is if you try to overcome that fear. You can PM me if you want to.
    As for the pills, I don't think it's a good idea to rely on sleeping pills to help you sleep over a long time
    Thanks for your reply. The sessions you had were what I had in mind. I think they would really help me. How did you get your sessions? I mean, did you pay for them or did you go via your GP? I read about the friendly spider programme at London Zoo and I'm really interested in it, but they are booked up until next year

    (Original post by Ronove)
    It can't hurt to ask (and explain how much it's affecting your normal functioning... like being able to go to sleep in your room).

    On the topic of the antihistamines and Z-drugs as Sabertooth just mentioned, I just so happen to have been prescribed a Z-drug a week ago last Friday, which didn't help me sleep on any of the ~6 days I took it, but on two of those days it caused me to hallucinate and become convinced I was somewhere other than my bedroom, and worse, made me unable to recognise my fiancé - I thought it was mostly the lack of light on the first occasion so on the second I got him to turn on the light - and he still had a different face, and a different complexion. Perhaps due to having taken... unusual substances... before, I wasn't as freaked out by this as I could have been, but it was certainly unpleasant. I wasn't supposed to take any more than 10 pills in total anyway so never mind.

    I went back today and asked for something else since I'm having trouble sleeping again, so I have in fact been prescribed - you guessed it - an antihistamine, called Phenergan here at least, and the drug name is promethazine. The smallest amount he could give me was 112 tablets. So yeah, I don't think there's likely to be anything to worry about with you taking an antihistamine to sleep over a long period of time.
    Phenergan is what I've always used, after reading about it on here a few years back. I have found that many pharmacies refuse to sell it me though, and I don't know why. They ask what I'm using it for, and I've given a variety of reasons to see if there is a specific one they say no to, but they always say no, even if I say allergies/travel sickness which is it's main use. Weird. So I order it online now.

    I'll be interested to hear how you find them. For me, they make me groggy the next day. I can't win. I either take the tablets and have a good nights sleep but feel drowsy the next day because they are still there, or I don't take them and get no sleep so I am tired due to that. I take them as early as I possibly can with the hope that they will have more chance of wearing off but it never makes a difference, even if I take them at 6!
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    This is less to do with the sleep angle but if part of your issue is anxiety about the possible presence of spiders in your room then it may help...I have a fairly extreme spider phobia too which became a bigger problem in my daily life than ever a few months ago when I split from my ex and had to live on my own for the first time. In the past I've always had family, housemates or my ex to help me if a spider was found in my home but now I'm alone I don't have that support and it's a massive problem if I come across one. My Mum is a vet and gave me an extremely strong flea spray (I think it's called Acclaim but I haven't got a can on me right now to check...). Basically, you treat your whole home with it (particularly concentrating on places like doors and window frames) then go out for a while, come back and open the windows to ventillate your house for a bit. It will kill every insect/arachnid in the place and it keeps working for months. If you keep doing this every few months then you'll virtually never come across one again! One word of warning though, make sure you have someone around to 'protect' you on the first day you do it as, obviously, they don't like it much and initially it can sort of 'flush out' one or two. But it really does work amazingly well and it makes me much more relaxed as I can feel confident I'm not going to find a spider in my flat! Maybe if you did something like this you'd sleep better because you'd feel sure there weren't any in your room?
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    (Original post by Anonymous)
    Thanks for your reply. The sessions you had were what I had in mind. I think they would really help me. How did you get your sessions? I mean, did you pay for them or did you go via your GP? I read about the friendly spider programme at London Zoo and I'm really interested in it, but they are booked up until next year
    I went via my GP. Explained about my situation, and she referred to a psychiatrist and we had sessions every week for 5 weeks. By the end of the 5 weeks, my phobia had improved (as in, I could tolerate pictures slightly better) and the best part is I didn't do any of the exercises she set me, and still managed to come out better than I was at the start! I bet if you did all the spider exercises everyday or something, and kept it up for several months, your phobia may possibly be gone
    Also, the first thing we did was actually evaluate what part of the spider scared me, and why I was scared of them. Sometimes, people grow certain fears because of past events, e.g. scared of travelling or something because of a car crash. So yeah, you're welcome! Hope I helped
 
 
 
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