Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

As anyone lived through the withdrawals of Clonazepam?

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

    As anyone lived through the withdrawals of Clonazepam?

    Hi everyone,

    I changed family doctor as mine was no longer working at my clinic. My familly doctor is always a Young médicine resident. Sometimes they remain at the clinic and practice there but I have been changing résidents every 2 years.

    So this time I was 12 days without the clonazepam medication. OUCH... it boosted up my anxiety, had a permanent tense jaw, palpitations, barely slepted with all the side effects.

    Thank God she finally reknewed my prescription yesterday... I was a mess, just felt like sleeping it off but could not fall asleep. What hell it is when withdrawing from this medication. Have any others experienced this? and is there a similar med that would ease the anxiety while not being so addictive?

    #2
    Here's an article on benzodiazepine withdrawal. A long acting benzodiazepine such as Diazepam can be prescribed to replace a shorter acting benzo like clonazepam. (Clonazepam is classified as intermediate acting.) The Diazepam dose is slowly reduced and then stopped.

    http://patient.info/health/stopping-...es-and-z-drugs

    Stopping a benzodiazepine that has been used daily for long term would definitely bring on withdrawal symptoms. I'm sorry to hear that you had to go through that. There are antidepressants with antianxiety properties that can be helpful for some. I don't know if you've been on any of them. While they are not addictive in the same sense, you do get withdrawal symptoms if stopped abruptly.

    I think that benzodiazepines have their place in therapy but they are best used short term on an as needed basis. I know that is not an easy thing to do when the relief given can be so helpful.
    AJ

    Humans punish themselves endlessly
    for not being what they believe they should be.
    -Don Miguel Ruiz-

    Comment


      #3
      Thanks AJ.

      Yes, there must be Betty meds to reduice anxiety out there. I would not mind weaning off of if properly but what other med should I take. I like to be informed when I see my doctor.

      Comment


        #4
        That's a good question to ask your pharmacist. Perhaps there are also non drug things you could do as well to help cope with your anxiety. Are ther particular triggers? Are there any strategies that have helped in past?

        I for instance get really anxious when traveling. I find that if I allow myself lots of extra time, like getting to the airport really early, my stress and anxiety are more manageable. I avoid shopping during peak times to avoid large crowds. When I have to socialize I limit the time I'm there. I usually go early and leave early. I don't answer the phone unless I'm up for it. Returning calls when I'm ready to helps. Those kinds of things make my anxiety easier to manage.
        AJ

        Humans punish themselves endlessly
        for not being what they believe they should be.
        -Don Miguel Ruiz-

        Comment


          #5
          Hello Pinkviolet. As AJ has said there are a lot of ways to reduce the amount of medication we take. Clonazepam is a medication that I tend to hate as docs tend to prescribe it on a continual basis. Ie. take daily or worse yet take 2X daily. Almost a sure fired way to get a person addicted.

          The same with lorazepam when a doc sez take 1 mg 3X daily, again almost a sure fired way to become addicted. When we become addicted, the medication tends to stop working as well over time and thus we are stuck with a situation where the meds don't help as much , but we have to keep taking them.

          I happen to use both clonzepam and lorazepam and there is nothing wrong with either one, provided they are prescribed properly. I take lorazepam(short acting) on the days where I have a situation where I know I need a little help getting through a meeting or when I need a bit of help getting to sleep. I use clonazepam only when I know that I'm going to need a longer lasting medication.

          I use a very small amount (1mg ) of lorazepam almost daily and about once or twice a mth I'll take some 1 tab(2mg) of clonazepam.

          Very little chance of getting addicted that way. However as AJ has said once your addicted the accepted method is to try something like diazepam and slowly reduce it. Once over your addiction you can then try lorazepam or clonazepam for anxieties in more irregular doses or some form of antipyschotic (take enough seroquel and you'll feel like a zombie, but you won't have anxieties). Some good results (and some bad ones) have came from combo drugs like cipralex which is an antidepressant and an anti anxiety drug combined into one.

          I mentioned in another thread about CBT , which can be really helpful and is drug free or at least a person can get by with less medication. Good Luck and Take Care. Paul M
          "Alone we can do so little;
          Together we can do so much"
          Helen Keller

          Comment


            #6
            Hi Paul, I am new to this forum. I would like to ask you a question about Ativan and clonazepam. I think that my body currently needs it to avoid those burning anxious feelings. I don't take much, but I feel so much better when I take the 1 mg of Ativan. I went to stop needing it. I take Zoloft 75 and quetiapine at night. 150 .. the Dr wants me to take more, but I don't want to. do you have any suggestions as to how to get off the Ativan?

            Comment


              #7
              Welcome to the forum Suzieq.
              AJ

              Humans punish themselves endlessly
              for not being what they believe they should be.
              -Don Miguel Ruiz-

              Comment


                #8
                Thanks a.j. any thoughts on my question?

                Comment


                  #9
                  I'm not sure if you read my post above, but there is a link worth checking out. The drug used to get off clonazepam and or lorazepam is a long acting benzodiazepine called diazepam (brand name which is not available anymore, was called Valium). A therapeutically equivalent dosage of diazepam is given. For example, 1mg of lorazepam, or 0.25mg of clonazepam are approximately equivalent to 5mg of diazepam. The dosage of diazepam is slowly reduced over time until it is discontinued. The principle being that gradual reduction of the diazepam dose is easier to tolerate than a reduction of a shorter acting benzodiazepine. (Diazepam comes in 2,5, and 10mg tablets). This process should always be done under a doctors supervision.

                  Does that answer your question? I also mentioned above some non drug strategies that have helped me to reduce my anxiety level. Paul has also given you some good information.

                  Which drug does the doctor want you to take more of?
                  AJ

                  Humans punish themselves endlessly
                  for not being what they believe they should be.
                  -Don Miguel Ruiz-

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Thank you aj. He wants me to increase the quitiapine which I take at night. I take 150 mg for sleep because I also had a problem with sleep. I did not have this level of nervousness when I was on another antidepressant drug called noritriptyline, but they took me off that due to other side effects. Can't win! thank you for the info as I will bring this up with the Dr. Tomorrow.also, I am going to cbt, but it's a real physical feeling I get when I feel I need the Ativan, I try not to take it, but then I do.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Let us know how you make out at your doctor's appt. tomorrow.
                      AJ

                      Humans punish themselves endlessly
                      for not being what they believe they should be.
                      -Don Miguel Ruiz-

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Hello Suzieq and welcome. Sorry for the delay in answering, but I've spent most of the day on Tylenol3 and as I never take that sort of medication it left me to loopy to provide an answer. However I'm between doses and I'll give it a shot.

                        You may have already know the following but in case you haven't. First there are many antidepressants(A/D's) on the market and you may have to try a variety until you get one that works for you. Secondly , as Determined has said sometimes it's a matter of waiting for a while for the side effects to disappear. Third Nortriptyline and Zoloft are very old A/D's and while they work very well for some people, for some they are loaded with side effects and a newer generation of A/D's may work better.(may work worse too unfortunately.

                        In regards to Seroquel. When I took seroquel I found it much easier on my thought patterns and thinking abilities to take a few weaker doses during the day and a larger one at night. For example 100mg at night 50 mg in mid morning and 50 mg in mid to late afternoon.

                        I would also, with my docs approval, sometimes take some extended release at night and some immediate release during the day so that I could have more control over how I felt at various times frames.

                        In regards to not taking lorazepam. As AJ has said you can try cutting down by substitution of diazepam, however if you are only taking 1mg day you can also try cutting down by starting with only 1/2 mg a day as they are easily dividable. I can , on most days even divide a 1mg tablet in 3 pieces if I want.

                        There are also a variety of Cognitive Behavioural Therapies around that you can try to help reduce your anxieties. I can provide a more complete list therapis if you like. Take Care. paul m
                        "Alone we can do so little;
                        Together we can do so much"
                        Helen Keller

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Thank you Paul. The information is very much appreciated.
                          Suzieq

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Hi Pinkviolet,

                            I know how you feel, and had the same experience. I had difficulty getting my clonazepam prescription refilled as my Dr was on vacation, effectively going cold turkey. It was 7 days of pure hell. It felt like all the anxiety that clonazepam had suppressed over the years had suddenly been unleashed. I became irrational, scared my tires on the car were going blow while driving on the highway. I couldn't sleep for more than 2 hours a night. It felt like my body was full of electric charge. I suffered dry mouth and nausea. I knew there were withdrawal symptoms but I had no idea how bad they could get. I can only describe it as 7 days of hell, and I'm critical of my Doctor for not giving me a clear picture of what withdrawal would look like.

                            I advise anyone to be extra diligent in informing themselves about clonazepam before making the decision to take it. I learned that the longer you take it, and the higher the dosage, the more severe withdrawal can be. It can last months or years. I was only on a medium dose of 2mg a day and had been taking it for a year. After 7 days I was a basket case and needed immediate attention. It has a long half life, thus the severity and longevity of withdrawal. I'm not a doctor, but from first hand experience, I feel this drug is dangerous after the harrowing experience I went through.

                            Comment


                              #15
                              I have been on clonazepam for quite some time -then I had to get off it for ECT treatments. It was bloody hell I have been very anxious and agitated. Doing this cold turkey is not a good idea.....

                              Gruss Boris

                              Comment

                              Working...
                              X