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I suffer with fibromyalgia, anxiety, depression, asthma, IBS and have hiatus hernia. I have been ill for several years now. I can’t sleep. I sweat so much my clothes, bed and hair are soaking. The pain is really bad. I currently take amitriptaline but it doesn’t help. Is there anything I can take?

Amitriptaline is often prescribed for certain types of pain, depression and to help sleep.

However, its side effects do include anxiety, disturbed sleep and excessive sweating.

You'll have to trawl back through your memories to decide if those 3 symptoms came about or became worse after you started on the medicine or not.

If so, you may have to have a chat with your doctor if its other benefits (eg pain relief) are not strong enough to outweigh the side effects.

We don't much like the principle of adding another medicine simply to counter the side effects of another as it never gets to the root of the problem but for the sake of a simple life you might want to consider trying our Sage tablets (rated 88% on Feefo) as they are licensed for excessive sweating.

Alternatively, try or our Sage tincture (rated 91%). Menopausal ladies use Sage for that very reason.

You can take sage safely with your medication. Its effects build over a 4-6 week period but the worse the sweats the greater the benefit.

Regarding the sleep and anxiety (both of which will contribute to your IBS and lower your pain threshold), I'm afraid none of our appropriate herbal remedies can be taken alongside your medicine, however I believe an amino acid called L-Theanine might be ok.

L-Theanine is not a sedative but increases the brains alpha waves - those associated with a calm state of mind. It has not been found to increase brain theta waves - those associated with dozing sleep which is why it might be ok with your amitriptaline. I have found 200-300mg is wonderfully relaxing day or night but if you decide to try it, please ask the manufacturers advice line for confirmation it is ok with your medication.

I can recommend Higher Nature and Lamberts for the combination of quality and value for money.

Please visit the fibromyalgia and menopause pages on our website for detailed advice (I'm not assuming you are menopausal but the advice is from writers and contributors who deal with hot sweats daily) but the key points to remember in term of dietary changes are:
  -  Avoid caffeine entirely
  -  Cut down on spicy foods
  -  Reduce anxiety (cutting out the caffeine will help this)
  -  Drink colourless spirits instead of wine or lager (the latter two are full of histamine)
  -  Reduce sugar

Hope that all helps. I'm confident that finding a way to improve your sleep and reducing your anxiety will benefit your broader symptoms, so please regard that as the priority.

Best wishes


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