Benzodiazepine Withdrawal

Discussion in 'Downers addiction' started by Apradavra, Mar 14, 2005.

  1. Apradavra

    Apradavra Newbie

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    I think have seizured from coming off of xanies, or at least, benzos, I had one right when i woke up one morning (i wouldnt even had known i seizured, it felt like a bad dream, i woke up very agitated though), my girl brought me to the hospital where i had anotherseizure right beforethey discharged me.Right after I took my papergown off and my street clothes back on, i dropped into a second seizureright in front of the nurse who told me i was having night terrors.This meant I had to stay the night without insurance, I owe thousands for MRI's, EKG's, CatScans, ect.... When i went in there, they drug tested me and found "large amounts of opiates and THC" in my urine. They checked my arms for tracks, but i dont really use needles. The night before i ate sevral hundred mg's of mscontin or OC, i dont remember. But no benzos, well, after my second seizure i woke up strapped to a bed freaking out, like i was ina bad trip, machines boring down over my head, lights all over every crevice of a single white room, AND I WAS STRAPPED TO A BED,(i hate being held down)SO,I broke free from the bed i was strapped to, tore the IV out of my arm, and thenappearently a female nurse tried to strap me back down, i fucking cold cocked her...[​IMG]...I remember none of this. I hate to fight, and i would never hit a female..it is just one thing i would never do. The way ifound outthis happendwas from eye witness accounts whichweretold to me after i regained consciences.The Dr's understood, they explained how guys get aggressive where women tend to get unresponsive from the disorientation after seizuring. It took four times the amount of Ativan (IV)to calm me down than it would have taken to knock out most men of my size, and i never lost conscienceness, i just mellowed a bit, the Docs couldnt figure out how my tolerance to benzos was so high....duh....They gave me one dose, it did nothing, gave me another, it did nothing, they then told my girl they were goin to sedate me, and the third "double dose" just calmed me. I was never told that the benzoscould ofpossibly beenthe cause of my seizures, although i never offered the info. Also, when i knew i had to go to the hospital, i grabbed several 10mg methadone i had around the house, that way i wasnt opiate withdrawling while in the hospital too...[​IMG] Either way, after all the ativan and anti-seizure meds, i didnt seizureany more in the hospital and haventsince then, and am still on Kepra (anti-siezure).I was initially put onDilantin, which is like the tylonol of siezure meds, it sucks, does not work well, but most people dont have adverse reactions and its cheap,as well asit lowers methadone levels worse thanmost any other meds on themarket. Glad I am nolonger on dilantinSo here i am, stilltakingKepra, it works really well, i cant feel it in my body, but it is pricey.($400 A MONTH!!!!)


    My question is I am still using opiates and benzos. I plan to ween off the opes with methadone, such as i have done many times, but to get off the xanax, what should i do. Switch to a longer acting benzo? (Valium) or a shorter acting one such as Ativan, i have supplies to both..Any info, experiences, ideas, anything at all would help,


    thanks much guys, this is the fourth time i had to write this, my comp wont let me copy it, and it doesnt want to be posted as a new thread, I hope it works this time...


    Apradavra
     
  2. Micklemouse

    Micklemouse Platinum Member & Advisor

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    DO NOT COLD TURKEY ON BENZO'S! Sorry for shouting, but this is important. Find a sympathetic doc, or better still an Addiction unit, and do it properly. Benzo's should be withdrawn gradually if they've been used regularly and at high doses - a reducing regime is the safest way to do it. It takes time, but if you're truly ready to kick it you will, but support is vital.

    I hear what you're saying about the 12 Steps Nooo, but there are many factors involved in the cycle of addiction and relapse, the main ones being the readiness of the individual to quit, the circumstances surrounding the withdrawal(if someones going to NA just as part of their probation or to get family off their back then there's a good chance that they'll relapse; if they're doing it to genuinely change then their chances of success are better); their general life and social circumstances(has the individual widened their circle of 'friends' to include non-users? has the individual addressed the issues that led to the addiction in the first place?); the list of variables goes on... For many people the support that comes with 12 Step programmes is vital to their recovery, and although I have a problem with some of the philosophy and the religious slant, if it works, it works!

    On a side note, sorry to hear about the dystonia - sucks, doesn't it? The prescription of old school antipsychotics in a non-clinical setting and without access to an anti-cholinergic such as Procyclidine or Benxhexol is such bad practice, especially if the patient is new to antipsychotics - EPSE's are extremely uncomfortable, and potentially very dangerous. The maxim 'Know your drug' stands equally with pharms, and there is a dual responsibility between the doctor and patient to check the suitability of the med to the patient, and potential 'side-effects' and how to deal with them. Make your doctor do his/her job properly!
     
    1. 5/5,
      A stellar addition to this thread. Passionate, direct, caring, safety-driven, educational and heartfelt.
      Jul 4, 2017
  3. purplehaze

    purplehaze Gold Member

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    I know for a fact that coming off xanex can cause seizures my mother has them all the time she needs to either stay on them or off and she has been to the hospital and they tryed to say shes eptileptic or whatever i know shes not because when they wrote her phenobarbital she took it and totally triped out and if u were eptileptic (sp?) it would just fix the amount of something in your brain. forgot what its called. anyways, payce.
     
  4. Gahaba22

    Gahaba22 Gold Member

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    Micklemouse said it correctly. If you feel you can't go to an addiction doctor, then the best way to wean yourself off xanax (mid-acting) benzo is to switch to valium (long-acting) benzo. The same principle that is used for heroin (short) and methadone (long). I would suggest seeing a doctor for the correct stepdown dosages

    geeb
     
  5. Apradavra

    Apradavra Newbie

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    thanks Gahaba22,


    I am switching to Valuim, and as i said, i am on an anti-seizure med, I dont want to cross tolerance myself, so i am not taking any Valium until I am out of the Xanies. Its sad i just cant quit til theyre all gone, but i guess accepting addiction is step number one to ending it. But the 12 step program is a bit to religious based for myself as well. Religion is a great and powerful part of millions of people's lifes, but its just not for me, not at this moment in my life, maybe sometime, not now...who knows? I never thought i would be addicted to benzos and Opiates three years ago...life sure is teaching myself a few reality lessons.....


    Micklemouse,


    Your commentsare taken very seriouslyby myself, you have large amounts of knowledge to share, and i thank you for your willing to share of thisknowledge. Would Ativan be of any help, i just feel as though Xanax has the worst DW's for me, and they seem to build tolerance more quickly than any other benzo. But damn i love Aprozolam with my Opiates....man i suck.... Either way, my weaining period will be in several days, I will first lower my Xanies dose, til they are gone, then switch to valium, i have cold turkeyed of huge amounts of valium before, and didnt have many side effects (I didnt seizure) So i think that is my best plan. I cant go to inpatient, or outpatient, I am still in the clostet pretty well, and coming out wuoldnt be to good of an idea as of now, if i can do this without many people knowing i had been/am addicted, the better....any more info would be much much appreciated....


    thanks so much guys, you literally are life savers.....


    Apradavra
     
  6. Benzhead

    Benzhead Titanium Member

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    Yeah, cold turkey off benzos is definitely dangerous.


    If I was in your position, I'd find a sympathetic p-doc(psychiatrist). P-docs are often the reason people get addicted/dependent on benzos..it's called 'iatrogenic addiction' when a member of the medical establishment provides the chemicalmeansfor the addiction. Now that in and of itself isn't very helpful, but a good P-doc should be able to assess your particular needs better than any other clinician. In my case, a merely therapeutic dose turned into the benzo monkey currently hitching a ride. *sigh*


    I'm honest with myself....I definitely have a habituation/dependency/addiction issue. This is due to the prescribing of Clonazepam for long term therapy in a 'contra-indicated' person(I have a prediliction for addiction which was known over a decade ago) *rolls eyes*


    Nevertheless, I was put on Clonazepam for panic - along with Sertraline(Zoloft) for recurrent major-depression. My particular situation was one where I only achieved minimal relief from my anxiety disorder form an SSRI. I only offer this as historical data.


    A psychiatrist that treats concomittant addiction with an underlying condition - should one be found to exist - could be your best hope.


    If you think that this is a direction you may want to consider, try and get a referral.....This makes the initial 'feeling out' process a lot easier.


    I have to run. I'll check back in a day or two.


    (given my history, I knowp-docs aren't a cure-all, but they can be helpful when other medical practitioners are overwhelmed..If you find a good one)


    Best of success!


    T


    On Edit: With me, my situation was pretty out of control until I received decent medical care. Ihave walkedmuch ofthe pathyou now find yourself walking. Edited by: benzhead
     
  7. skitz0frantic

    skitz0frantic Silver Member

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    [​IMG]
     
  8. skitz0frantic

    skitz0frantic Silver Member

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    LIST OF WITHDRAWAL SYMPTOMS FROM BENZOS


    DOUBLE VISION


    TIRED EYES


    BLURRED VISION


    SCREWING UP OF THE EYES


    TENSION BETWEEN THE EYES


    RAPID BLINKING OF THE EYES


    DIZZINESS


    AGITATED SIGHT-LOSS OF CONTROL OF THE MOVEMENT OF THE EYES


    PUPILS IN THE EYES BECOME MINUTE


    IRIS IN THE EYES CHANGE COLORS


    WAVES, SPARKS AND FLASHES OF LIGHT


    HYPERSENITIVITY TO LIGHT AND
    SOUND AND SMELL


    SEEING SPOTS


    TOTAL LOSS OF CONFIDENCE


    FEAR OF BEING ALONE


    THOUGHTS AND FEELINGS THAT YOU ARE DYING


    RAPID MOOD CHANGES


    INSOMNIA


    LOSS OF CONCENTRATION


    LOSS OF INTEREST IN PEOPLE AND THINGS


    INABILITY TO READ


    DYSPHORIA


    FEELING OF VULNERABILITY


    REPETITIVE THOUGHTS


    A FEAR OF INSANITY


    A FEELING OF IMPENDING DOOM


    DEMENTED AND MURDEROUS THOUGHTS


    IRRATIONAL RAGE


    LOSS OF SELF RESPECT


    DEPRESSION


    ANXIETY


    PARANOIA


    UNUSUALLY DISTURBED AND SENSITIVE


    PHOBIAS


    FEAR OF LOSING CONTROL


    DE-REALISATION


    SPEECH DIFFICULTIES


    DIFFICULTY IN WRITING SLOWLY


    INABILITY TO WRITE


    DISORIENTATION


    INABILITY TO COMPHREHEND THE SIMPLEST OF THINGS


    OBSESSIVE BEHAVIOUR


    FEAR OF WATER


    HYSTERICAL AND INNAPPROPRIATE LAUGHTER


    NIGHTMARES


    LOSS OF MEMORY


    FEELINGS OF THE SPIRIT BEING OUT OF SYNCHRONISATION WITH THE BODY


    SUICIDAL FEELINGS


    AGORAPHOBIA


    DEPERSONALISATION


    BRAIN MOVING WITHIN THE SKULL


    INABILITY TO COPE WITH A LOT OF INFORMATION


    HALLUCINATIONS


    VERTIGO


    TIREDNESS


    LEGS, ARMS and HEAD VERY HEAVY


    PARESTHESIA


    EXERCISE INTOLERANCE


    SEVERE MUSCULAR RIGIDITY ALL OVER


    MUSCULAR WEAKNESS


    MUSCLE WASTAGE


    ACHING JOINTS AND MUSCLES


    RESTLESSNESS


    RESTLESS LEGS IN BED AT NIGHT


    SEVERE CRAMPING IN THE STOMACH


    ELECTRIC SHOCK AND MUSCULAR SPASMS


    UNABLE TO WALK


    ARMS AND LEGS FEEL DETACHED FROM BODY


    GRINDING TEETH


    INTENSE JAW PAIN


    JAWS CLAMPED TOGETHER


    NEURALGIA


    PAINS IN THE NECK TO THE SHOULDER BLADES


    TICKLING AND ITCHING FEELING OVER THE WHOLE BODY


    NUMBNESS, PAIN, PINS AND NEEDLES


    SHARP THROBBING PAIN IN THE WRISTS


    CLUMSINESS


    LACK OF CO-ORDINATION


    BUILDINGS APPEAR TO BE LEANING


    LEGS FEEL LIKE JELLY


    SWEATING


    FEELING OF EXTREME COLD


    NAUSEA


    FLU-LIKE SYMPTOMS


    TIGHT BAND AROUND THE HEAD


    INTENSE FUZZY FEELING IN THE HEAD


    TINNITUS


    EARACHE


    SINUS PROBLEMS


    TWITCHING OF THE HEAD


    FEELINGS OF WORMS UNDER THE SCALP


    SEIZURES


    PAINS IN THE TEMPLE


    SEVERE HEADACHES


    EXTREMELY NERVOUS AND JUMPY


    HYPERACTIVITY


    PANIC ATTACKS


    FEELINGS OF SHAKING INSIDE AND OUT


    HEAVY POUNDING OF THE HEART WHEN CLIMBING STAIRS


    BREATHLESSNESS


    OVER BREATHING


    HEARTBURN


    PAINS IN THE LUNGS


    MISSED HEARTBEATS


    MILD HYPERTENSION


    PAINS IN THE CHEST


    IMPOTENCY


    HAIR LOSS


    PROBLEMS OF DECAYING TEETH AND GUMS


    CRACKED AND SORE LIPS


    ALLERGIES TO FOOD


    SENSITIVE TO CHEMICALS AND ODOURS


    METALLIC TASTE IN MOUTH


    EXTREME THIRST


    SWALLOWING DIFFICULTIES


    DRY MOUTH


    FEELING BLOATED


    DIAHORREA


    CONSTIPATION



    RASHES,BLOTCHES AND BURNING SENSATIONS ON THE SKIN


    TOE AND FINGERNAILS CHANGE COLOUR FROM PINK TO GREY


    SALIVA RUNNING FROM MOUTH WHILE SLEEPING


    CUTS AND ABRASIONS TAKE WEEKS TO HEAL


    SPEECH APPEARS TO BE TWO FEET IN FRONT OF YOU WHEN SPEAKING


    FLASHBACKS


    BURNING SPINE

     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 11, 2009
    1. 5/5,
      Nice list, thanks
      Jan 6, 2008
  9. Nicaine

    Nicaine Titanium Member

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    Dunno, benzobusters [EDIT - the now defunct web-site from which the list of withdrawal symptoms above was taken - Dickon] looks like one of those hysterical, paranoid anti-benzo sites, that make benzos sound worse than the sludge inside a nuclear power plant.

    Bunch of crap if you ask me, all it takes to get off benzos (even in worst-case addictions) is caution, logical/rational thinking and maybe another substance. Opiates may help, and their withdrawal symptoms are unpleasant but rarely dangerous. Or an anti-seizure med like Tegretol or Neurontin. There are always ways to sanely kick any substance.

    Keep in mind most people on benzos have severe anxiety disorders. That sure is obvious from most of those anti-benzo websites floating around. Very long on fear-mongering and short on rationality.

    When used wisely, benzos are good things. They prevent a lot of misery/suffering and help a lot of people live better and happier lives. From personal experience, I'd say abusing 'em is a bad idea though.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 11, 2009
  10. daveman

    daveman Silver Member

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    from what ive read about phenobarb the withdraws can cause siezures,
    but who knows people are so biased when they post things sometimes.
     
  11. mark_v

    mark_v Newbie

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    I took Lorazepam for about 5 months daily at dosages from 2.5 up to 10 mg.

    But then i ran out of them and couldn't find or buy anymore, so i had to go cold turkey.

    Pure hell, i tell ya ! [​IMG]



    After a week i felt that sic, i went to see a doctor and confessed him my selfmedication. Best thing I ever did.

    So now i'm on a low dose of Valium and Dolmatil, and every 2 weeks my doctor lowers the dose.



    I never thought i'd fall so deep and got addicted to those 'happy pills', but noone to blame but my own.



    All i take now are my prescribed meds and sometimes a Zopiclone or some tramadol...
     
  12. Yeahsme

    Yeahsme Newbie

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    People beware: Benzodiazepine withdrawal

    I've been on benzo's daily for the past 5 or 6 months and I can take 12mg(thats right 12mg) of xanax in about 5 or 6 hours or so and not feel a thing except further anxiety. I was taking 6mg of clonazepam every 4 hours about a week ago and somehow its fucked up my brain to this point. It was a very quick progression. It is a living nightmare and it seems like just yesterday that I was taking them once or twice a week. I'm telling you guys these drugs are from the devil himself...........Please don't move this thread to detox and recovery cause people need to know who are in active use.

    Also in spring of '04 I had a grand mal seizure, quit breathing for 2 minutes, and almost had brain damage from about a 8mg a day habit of xanax. It took me hours after it happened to remember my name.

    And I started in '04 taking .5mg of xanax once in a blue moon. These drugs(like all controlled substances) sneak up on you and take over your life. THEY ARE NOT CONTROLLED FOR NOTHING. And I'm a 28 year old man, and was not naive to the facts of what could happen if I used these drugs too often...............
     
    1. 3/5,
      great post
      Mar 27, 2006
  13. Pinkavvy

    Pinkavvy Platinum Member & Advisor

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    this is an example of why people need to do their research and learn the safe way to use and not abuse certain substances. Research, knowledge, moderation is the key to successful and safe drug use.
     
  14. sands of time

    sands of time Gold Member

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    I agree with both of you guys. I would rather be addicted to heroin than xanax. A benzo addiction is especially bad because is can lead to further psychological problems.
     
  15. Richard_smoker

    Richard_smoker Gold Member

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    Yeah, I agree with Sands when he said that he would rather be addicted to heroin than benzos. Why? Well, for one thing, there is one tiny little difference between heroin addiction and benzo addiction. a VERY significant little difference.

    You can die from benzo withdrawal
    (seizures-->death), whereas with heroin, you will only wish you were dead. So, take your pick: cold shakes and the flu-symptoms vs. death.

    In case anyone was wondering what other drugs cause death from withdrawal. The answer is.......... alcohol.
     
  16. sands of time

    sands of time Gold Member

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    I wonder if taking one of those GABA supplements woud help with benzo/alcohol withdrawals...
     
  17. jduba

    jduba Gold Member

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    MUCH RATHER BE ADDICTED TO HARRY!!! Ive been through both H, Temazepam rehab visits as well as a meth/ crack stay... H sux only b/c 6 months later i tried to kick methadone and thats a BITCh but nothing like benzo addiction and withdrawl. I was put in a room where your just watched and they take your "vitals" 1000 times a day to make sure your not dead...YET. At times death is more of an option... funny thing is ive only drank like twice but like what was mentioned i hope i learned my lesson this last time on my 28 day vaca and just keep away from sub. yet i cant get away from the foums
     
  18. bewilderment

    bewilderment Drug Geek Extraordinaire Platinum Member & Advisor

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    Did you have the seizure during withdrawals?

    I used to have such a high tolerance to valium that I would have to take 120 mgs per dose in order to feel the typical effect. I'm curious about the seizure because I also had a grand mal seizure but I know that during that time period I was not taking valium regularly and it had been awhile since I had. This was about five years ago and I didn't know that valium withdrawal and seizures were linked...I can't remember, but I believe that I had either been taking a bit of valium or xanax that particular week, but I hadn't used excessively that week so any kind of withdrawal would be unexpected especially since I don't recall any major withdrawal symptoms when I initially quit taking valium. It's so strange to think that valium could've been the cause of it because that's what they put into the IV when I was in the ambulance.
     
  19. calmascanbe

    calmascanbe Newbie

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    Back in 1993 when I had to go through a detox after a 20 year addiction to valium ,I would on occation feel like I was hit in the head with a baseball bat. I can't tell you what I would feel like today if I never had taken valium , but my life has not returned to any normalcy even after 10 years of being clean. Now I just self medicate because all a doctor will sugest is anti-depressants.
    It also took 4 years before I could get any restfull sleep.I can tell you benzo's ruined my life ,even after a bad head injury.I hope I made some sense and worn people of the consequences of benzo's. I'm a lifer now and wish I wasn't.
     
  20. bewilderment

    bewilderment Drug Geek Extraordinaire Platinum Member & Advisor

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    ^^

    What sort of long term effects to you attribute to the valium? I took various benzos (almost soley valium, but also some xanax and ativan...ativan has caused quite a few blackouts as I hear it has a reputation for it) and painkillers heavily for 3-4 years, a small amount of time compared to 20 but still enough I feel. I remember having insomnia even as a kid, but I know that when I got off of the pills my insomnia worsened to where I would get about 7 hours of sleep a week. I also attribute this to antidepressants though because those always interfere with my sleep to the point where I want to quit taking them...and I have quit taken them at the moment for similar reasons although I'm trying to find safer OTC supplements to substitute but I highly doubt that they will be effective weapons against my illness. I figure it can't hurt to at least try. I'm over my addiction to pills since I no longer crave them and I can safely take them recreationally once every 3 months or so and it does not make me want to begin using them regularly once again. But, I do rely on cannabis for sleep as well as a mood lift but I believe this to be a MUCH safer alternative.