How long does insomnia last after mirtazapine withdrawal?

As a BetterHelp affiliate, we may receive compensation from BetterHelp if you purchase products or services through the links provided

In this blog post, we are going to answer the question, “How long does insomnia last after mirtazapine withdrawal?”. Mirtazapine is an antidepressant which is used to treat a number of mental health related problems. 

However, it is not an easy medication when it comes to stopping it. Mirtazapine is associated with a number of withdrawal symptoms. This blog will cover the time taken by insomnia to go away after stopping mirtazapine. We will also discuss some tips that may help you fall asleep. 

How long does insomnia last after mirtazapine withdrawal? 

Insomnia associated with mirtazapine withdrawal usually begins to subside within a few weeks as your body adjusts to the absence of this antidepressant. This time period can vary from person to person and some people may take months to fall asleep peacefully again. 

This withdrawal symptom is found more prominent in people who were at higher doses for a longer duration of time. Several experts believe that insomnia following the mirtazapine withdrawal is simply because of the mechanism of action of this antidepressant. 

Mirtazapine is well known for producing sedation. It is, in fact, used for the treatment of insomnia at low doses. This is exactly why insomnia occurs when you stop using this medication. 

Even if you properly follow the taper schedule your doctor has suggested, you may still suffer from insomnia and other sleep disturbances. 

Even if you manage to fall asleep, you would still wake up in the middle of the night. This can result in irritability and anxiety the following day, as inadequate sleep really makes the day time difficult. 

Is there anything that can help you beat insomnia? 

There are a few ways to help you beat insomnia following the mirtazapine withdrawal. These include:

Slowly taper off mirtazapine 

If you’re in the middle of your mirtazapine withdrawal journey and you find falling asleep difficult, it’s best to prolong the withdrawal journey. 

This technique can significantly help your body adjust to the lower doses as sudden shifts may make your brain all confused and it starts to produce a number of effects like insomnia and mood disturbances. 

Make sure you inform your healthcare provider about your withdrawal symptoms and do not deviate from the suggested taper schedule. 

Take natural herbs that may help you fall asleep

There are some natural herbs and foods that can help induce sleep. Chamomile is well known for its relaxing properties. Chamomile tea has been used for decades now to regulate good night’s sleep. 

Studies suggest that chamomile possesses natural antidepressant and antianxiety properties and can help stabilise your mood. Lavender is a herb which is well known for its relaxing and calming fragrance. 

Studies show that lavender has antidepressant and antianxiety properties and can be used to help treat insomnia associated with disturbed mood and mental condition. 

Ashwagandha is a plant that’s used to make medicines. This medicinal plant is native to Africa and Asia, and is most commonly used by the Indian population. 

This plant is said to be an adaptogen, which can help you respond to daily life struggle, anxiety, stress and fatigue. In some Indian practices, it is also used to treat insomnia within 3 months of its use. It is also safe to take with your antidepressant. 

Passion flowers can also be used to enhance the quality of your sleep. Study suggests that this herb can help reduce the time taken for a person to fall asleep and also reduces the chances of waking up in the middle of the night. 

Few studies suggest that the sedative effects of passion flower can be enhanced when it is used with other herbs like valerian root, chamomile or lavender. 

Research suggests that turmeric acts as a mild tranquilliser. Its pain relieving and sedative effects have made it a big part of herbal treatment. Some studies suggest that drinking lukewarm milk with turmeric can really help you calm down and induce sleep. 

Create a peaceful sleeping environment

Always make sure your bedroom is peaceful when it’s time to sleep. Temperature, lighting and sound should be controlled as per your liking. 

Sleep on a comfortable bed

It is difficult to fall asleep on an uncomfortable bed. Make sure your bed makes you feel relaxed as you drift off to sleep.

Keep your sleeping hours constant

Make sure you keep your sleeping hours constant by going to bed and getting up at the same time, everyday. This helps you to maintain the number of hours you sleep. 

In this way, your brain is programmed in such a way that you automatically start feeling sleepy at your ‘go to bed’ hour.

Stay active 

Regular exercise releases tension from your muscles and makes you feel relaxed. Exercise at least 3 to 4 times a week. It is not recommended to do a high intensity workout before bedtime, as it will make it difficult to fall asleep. 

Lower your caffeine intake

Do not consume caffeine in the evening. The half life of caffeine is 2 to 12 hours, so make sure you do not consume it in the evening, as it might remain in your system till bedtime. Instead, have a warm cup of milk or herbal tea.

Do not overeat before bed

Do not consume high amounts of food or alcohol before bedtime. You don’t need to keep your digestive system working while you sleep. It’s already not preferred to lie down right after eating. It will not only ruin your sleep quality but it will also keep you bloated throughout the next day. 

Get up, if you can’t fall asleep

If you can’t fall asleep, get up. Do something that makes you feel relaxed until you feel sleepy again. 

Try to calm yourself before you go to bed. 

Try to relax before you get to bed. Take a warm bath, light some soft scented candles, listen to some soft music or do some yoga to relax your mind and induce sleep.

Do not smoke

People who smoke fall asleep later than the normal individuals. Nicotine is a stimulant. As long as it remains in your system, it keeps you awake.

What are the additional symptoms associated with mirtazapine withdrawal? 

Abrupt withdrawal of mirtazapine leads to withdrawal or discontinuation syndrome. When you start taking antidepressant, it increases the amount of serotonin in your body. 

Over time, your body gets used to this increased amount of serotonin. When you suddenly stop using it, it creates an unannounced serotonin deficiency, to which your body reacts in a negative way. You may suffer from the following symptoms:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhoea
  • Abdominal pain
  • Nightmares
  • Excessive dizziness
  • Confusion
  • Delirium
  • Emotional stress
  • Impaired motor coordination
  • Intrusive thoughts

These symptoms may vary from person to person, depending on the dose. This is why it is recommended to never stop your mirtazapine abruptly because these withdrawal symptoms may become much worse than the side effects your antidepressant was giving you. 

Make sure you never stop mirtazapine abruptly. Antidepressants are meant to be used for a longer period of time and if yours is making you sick or causing an allergic reaction, then it’s not worth using it. If you’re suffering from mild side effects like nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, insomnia, drowsiness or muscle pain, don’t worry. 

These side effects are not good enough reasons to stop your mirtazapine as they will begin to fade away within a few weeks, when your body will become adjusted to it. 

Conclusion 

In this blog post, we have discussed the time taken by mirtazapine withdrawal insomnia to go away. It usually begins to subside within a few weeks as your body adjusts to the absence of this antidepressant. 

This time period can vary from person to person and some people may take months to fall asleep peacefully again. This can result in irritability and anxiety the following day, as inadequate sleep really makes the day time difficult. 

This withdrawal symptom is found more prominent in people who were at higher doses for a longer duration of time. Make sure you inform your healthcare provider about your withdrawal symptoms and do not deviate from the suggested taper schedule. 

FAQs: mirtazapine withdrawal insomnia how long

Can stopping mirtazapine cause insomnia?

Yes, mirtazapine withdrawal can cause insomnia. Several experts believe that insomnia following the mirtazapine withdrawal is simply because of the mechanism of action of this antidepressant. Mirtazapine is well known for producing sedation. It is, in fact, used for the treatment of insomnia at low doses. This is exactly why insomnia occurs when you stop using this medication.

When does mirtazapine withdrawal insomnia go away? 

Insomnia associated with mirtazapine withdrawal usually begins to subside within a few weeks as your body adjusts to the absence of this antidepressant. This time period can vary from person to person and some people may take months to fall asleep peacefully again.

Is it hard to withdraw from mirtazapine?

Yes, mirtazapine withdrawal can be hard. mirtazapine alters the amounts of excitatory chemicals in your brain, both serotonin and norepinephrine. 

Now, if you take away such meds rapidly, the availability of serotonin and norepinephrine reduces. This results in the receptors craving these excitatory neurotransmitters as they have been receiving them for quite a while now, and you start experiencing withdrawal symptoms. 

This deficiency is responsible for producing withdrawal symptoms. In order to prevent such a situation, your healthcare provider simply just reduces the dose of your antidepressant. 

What happens when you come off mirtazapine?

Abrupt withdrawal of mirtazapine leads to withdrawal or discontinuation syndrome. When you start taking antidepressant, it increases the amount of serotonin in your body. 

Over time, your body gets used to this increased amount of serotonin. When you suddenly stop using it, it creates an unannounced serotonin deficiency, to which your body reacts in a negative way. You may suffer from the following symptoms:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhoea
  • Abdominal pain
  • Nightmares
  • Excessive dizziness
  • Confusion
  • Delirium
  • Emotional stress
  • Impaired motor coordination
  • Intrusive thoughts

How long does it take for mirtazapine to leave your system?

Mirtazapine is a long acting antidepressant with a half life of about 20-40 hours. It means that the concentration of the drug is reduced to half after this time period. The remaining amount is further reduced to half in the next  20-40 hours. This process keeps on ongoing until the drug is completely washed out from your body. 

References 

What was missing from this post which could have made it better?

[Sassy_Social_Share type="standard"]