LDN – End of Week 1

Today marks the first day of my second week on Low Dose Naltrexone.  Looking back over the past week I have noticed just how rough I have had it.

First off, I just want to say, I am not trying to scare anyone off of this med.  I knew of the side effects going in and still proceeded.  I knew I was going to have the problems I am having so it isn’t like they were unexpected.  Before anyone starts any med, you should do your research and learn all you can about it.

With that said, my main side effect right now is insomnia.  What is weird though, is that I can’t tell if I am sleeping or awake.  I feel like I am in an in between state at times.  I am conscious of the time, yet I am having some weird dreams that seem real (another side effect I had heard off).  I know I dream normally I just never remember them.  On this med though, I am very conscious of my dreams and they seem like just thoughts in my head.  Like today for example.  I dreamt that I was part of the gang on the TV show How I Met Your Mother.   Lily and Marshall had bought a restaurant in Bushwick, Brooklyn and it was failing.  I sat there with them after closing to offer my professional advice on why it was failing.  Everything seemed so real to me..but hello…it is a TV show.  They aren’t real.  It is so hard to describe the feelings on here.   Also, throughout the dream, I am conscious of tossing and turning and being up throughout the night.

So, that is by far the biggest and worst side effect that I have.  But, in turn, it is causing others that I don’t like.  I have noticed my personality has changed for the worse.  I am more irritable and nasty.  I have a low tolerance and seem to get pissed off very easily now.  I know this is caused from not sleeping well.  I try to catch myself when I get in the bad mood but it is so hard to do anything.  I am just so tired all the time that I am at the point of not caring about what I say or do.

I am a fighter.  I don’t give in to things easily.  This is just another challenge for me and I won’t give in to this either.  I know this is temporary.  In another couple of weeks, things should normalize and I should start sleeping again.  I know there is an end to this.  It is that hope that keeps me going.  This isn’t permanent.

So like I said in the beginning, I am not trying to scare anyone.  All of my symptoms right now are normal for the drug.  I wasn’t prepared for the reality of it but I move on.  I don’t let it stop me.  We IBDers….we are all fighters.  Many people have gone through worse situations.  Just know, that if any of you choose to go on LDN, it is a rough road in the beginning, but from what I am told, it is worth it.  I hope to find this out myself real soon.

Life on LDN – Week 1

Well, it has been 4 full days on Low Dose Naltrexone (LDN) and I thought I would give everyone an update. 

From what I was reading online I guess a lot of people build up to the normal dosing.  Sadly, since my GI didn’t know too much about the drug, I went right to the full dose of 4.5 mg.  I have had some side effects from it but nothing I can’t handle.

The first major side effect is insomnia.  The medicine kicks in around 3 in the morning and gets the endorphins jumping.  That is what wakes you up and keeps you up.  For 4 nights now I haven’t had much sleep.  Once my body gets used to the drug this should stop and I can not wait for that to occur.

Another side effect some people get on the 4.5 mg dose is a headache and I have had some on and off.  It isn’t so bad and I haven’t even thought about taking Tylenol for it.  Another side effect which I have read about are nausea and lack of appetite.  I get this later on in the day around late afternoon and night time.  Hopefully this too will go away.

Overall, I don’t feel normal right now.  I have been very irritable and agitated but I think this is due to the lack of sleep.  I am not my normal self and even my wife has noticed it, but more important is that I have noticed it.

As far as the Crohn’s go, I haven’t had it bad so I can’t say there is an improvement, but it hasn’t gotten worse.  I have had a little more gas but I don’t know if that is because I am getting better or worse.

So…..for the first week, I am having a rough time of it, but I won’t give up or give in.  I am a fighter and will keep going.  Hopefully week 2 will be better and I can get some rest.  The weekend is upon us so I can rest a little.