January 26, 2023

If you experience the symptoms of poor sleep or sleeplessness that often accompany people with Lyme disease, fibromyalgia, and other chronic illnesses, you’re probably desperate for some help. Can medications like low-dose naltrexone (LDN) and low-dose gabapentin provide relief for those wired but tired nights? Watch as Dr. Bill Rawls discusses the use of LDN and low-dose gabapentin and the ways in which they might be of benefit to you.

And uh and our next question here is asking about ldn um i heard that low dose as well as low dose gabapentin for helping with better sleep have you heard anything about that dr ells um well they’re two different things of course low dose naltrexone is an opioid blocker and gabapentin is a drug that mimics gaba in the brain um so low-dose naltrexone was a drug

Developed back in the 70s i believe for to help um opioid um uh heroin addicts get off heroin so it blocks opioid receptors in the body so if you’re taking heroin or a narcotic you just don’t feel any of the effects it didn’t work out very well because it didn’t have any effects for controlling pain or other kinds of things so it just people just wouldn’t take

It um but somebody along the way found that if you use 10 of the dose then it had this interesting effect of very briefly blocking opioid receptors and the body responded by making lots of endorphins and so we’ve been using that for some years it has to be compounded so they have to take the drug and drop the dose down to uh 1.5 to 4.5 milligrams and which is

A fraction 10 about ten percent of the normal prescribed dose that you would use for uh narcotic addiction um and so it really doesn’t have that much in the way of side effects in most people and a lot of people do get a boost of endorphins so it can be very valuable i used it in my practice i found that it was about 50 50 honestly about 50 of people noticed

A significant difference about 50 percent of people got nothing from it and at either end of the spectrum i had some people with terrible side effects and other people that it just was a wonder drug so i think it’s worth trying the safety profile with it is very high it is not habituating it does not have any opioid effects whatsoever and it will not really it

Directly in itself help with pain you cannot be on any kind of narcotic and use it so it you have to be off of all narcotics to use it and it can be it can be valuable for decreasing pain some people actually do sleep better on it so it is worth trying um though cbd does some of those things cbd boost endorphins also and you can’t use them together because they

Work completely differently it’s fine to use cbd and low-dose naltrexone together gabapentin is another drug that affects gaba receptors and it does cross over into the brain a bit but it’s more affecting the peripheral nervous system so you have different types of gaba receptors all through your nervous system in your brain and in your peripheral nervous system

So gabapentin it was better more designed for paresthesias and irritated nerves peripherally but some people find that they do get a central gaba effect from it it does help with sleep a little bit um they will tell you or at least they told that you know the the thing with the drug is they said it’s not directly metabolized by the liver and and it’s not crossing

Into the brain so it’s not habituating at all and it turned out that that was completely false it’s not as habituating as a benzodiazepine but it is habituating so the longer you take it the more of it you’ll need and sometimes you do have withdrawal symptoms getting off of it when you decide you want to get off of it so it can be a drug that is valuable it can

Work something like a sleeping pill it’s not quite as addictive as a sleeping pill but it’s still habituating you’re you’re you’re still going to pay some price with it problem with these things though is that once you get habituated to it you need more and more of a dose and eventually you get a dose that it just doesn’t work anymore and then you have to go to

A stronger drug to sleep and that’s the issue with the drugs

Transcribed from video
Can Low-Dose Naltrexone or Gabapentin Improve Sleep? | Webinar Shorts By Rawls MD