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Insomnia and sleep paralysis

SoFarAwaySSoFarAway Posts: 17
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:49 AM in Pain Medications
Hey all, I'm kind of at a loss for what to do about pain medication due to terrible side effects. I don't take pain meds everyday, but when I do take either oxycodone or hydrocodone, I get insomnia and then sleep paralysis. Always. The sleep paralysis is worse than the pain because it's so terrifying. The strange thing is, I can take a pill at 3pm and then experience the sleep paralysis at 11pm. I really don't know what I'm supposed to do to achieve some sort of pain relief because I'm almost getting to the point where I need to take pain medication more often than not. This hasn't been going on forever, only in the last year did I start to experience these side effects. Anyone have any advice? Anyone experience similar side effects?

Thanks for reading :)


  • Hi SoFarAway. I feel your pain. Sorry I can't really offer any advice. All I know is that I can't sleep without pain. Have not found a sleep position that works the whole night. Getting out of bed is excruciating.

    Exactly what is sleep paralysis? I think I have it too, if you mean that it feels like being the Tin Man. Can't move without pain.

    Are you considering surgery yet? I am probably getting it in March. I see the surgeon Wednesday, after my MRI, and we're setting the date then. Don't know how I'll be able to endure two more months of this agony.

    What conditions do you have? I hope you find relief, a medication that doesn't give you bad side effects.
  • Hi maryelleninnj, thanks for your reply. Sorry you're experiencing so much pain. :( I hope your appointment goes well.

    Sleep paralysis is a sleep condition where your body is "asleep" but you're still conscious. When we drift into REM sleep the body releases hormones that paralyze us so that we don't harm ourselves while we're sleeping. I end up being paralyzed while I'm still awake, which is just awful. You have to concentrate really hard on getting a potion of your body to move to snap you out of it, like a finger, for example. Don't know why these pain meds keep doing this too me, but if I DO have surgery I fear that I'll have major problems with the recovery.

    I have herniated discs at L4-L5, L5-S1 and mild spinal stenosis and facet hypertrophy. My S1 nerve is being "lifted up" because my herniation is apparently 11mm =\ I also has grade 1 retrolisthesis. Trying to figure out what to do about surgery at the moment.
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  • Hi SoFarAway,

    I also suffered from sleep paralysis during my late teen years (long ago). They are absolutely terrifying. At the time I had no idea there was such a thing and attributed it to my "recreational" drug use. My episodes usually included flying, I feel for you.

    Anyway, a couple months ago I happened upon a medical show and they were talking about SP. Holy cow! Other people had it too, I had no idea. I did some research on the web and recall that sleeping on the back was the worst position to be in. That was the position I was always in when I had an episode.

    I hope you find some help. Take care,

  • I used to have sleep paralysis when I was younger and working nights. Next time it happened I prayed to keep me safe and nothing bad would happen to me and fell back asleep since there's not much you can do when you're in this state. Maybe slow release pain meds may help you better or review your meds with your Dr. and maybe he/she can help. I hope you overcome this it certainly is a scary thing. Take care. Charry
    DDD of lumbar spine with sciatica to left hip,leg and foot. L4-L5 posterior disc bulge with prominent facets, L5-S1 prominent facets with a posterior osteocartilaginous bar. Mild bilateral foraminal narrowing c-spine c4-c7 RN
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