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Is it time for me to breakup with benzos? by Eugene Bevingled - Thu, 12 Jul 2018 22:51:17 EST ID:/aJT+A0o No.142226 Ignore Report Quick Reply
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I'll try to keep this short and sweet. I've been prescribed benzos at various doses and in combinations with other drugs since i was 15. I am now 26 and still have crippling anxiety which causes me to leave the house only like 6 times a year, i haven't spoken to any family other than my mom in 5 years and of course i have no friends. It is not a happy life. I am diagnosed with severe generalized anxiety disorder and social anxiety disorder and depression.

I've been on higher doses of benzos like 6mg lorazepam a day and 4mg clonazepam a day but over the last 3 years I've gotten myself down to currently 10mg diazepam twice a day. It is once again starting to not work as well, i'm getting more anxious especially between doses. It is common for a benzo to need to be increased or switched for it to continue working for me after 8-12 months.

Instead of increasing my diazepam i am thinking about tapering off of it completely. There is substantial research to suggest that benzos may in fact make anxiety worse when used long term, much the same way taking opiates long term can make pain worse. I know there is debate about that in the medical field and I want your opinions on it.

So what should i do? Go through hell and taper off of diazepam to try to only take benzos as needed, not daily. If after 11 years benzos aren't managing my anxiety i dont think they ever will. I'm going to ask my psychiatrist to be put on buspirone first and hopefully that will make it a bit easier to come off the benzos. What do you think folks?
>>
Martin Hunnersene - Fri, 13 Jul 2018 02:13:36 EST ID:AYXKiYst No.142229 Ignore Report Quick Reply
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Daily benzo use is not a good band aid for any kind of anxiety disorder imo/ime and will only cripple any coping mechanisms you can cultivate through more benign means such as CBT or another form of therapy.

It's perfectly fine and even beneficial to take a benzo to perform optimally in situations you need to be at your best and not an anxious wreck like at a good paying job or a first date, but relying on them for every stressful life event will cripple you and leave you without any healthy long term coping mechanisms for the times in life you need to to adapt to some uncomfortable situations even people with no anxiety disorders would get a case of the jitters from.

What you need to do imo is set up a hard rule for when an event surpasses your natural coping mechanisms and makes you spiral into a panic attack or throws you into serious flight or fight response and draw a line in the sand allowing those moments to be softened by medications. It might take a lot of trial and error to draw a line in the sand to determine what's manageable with the power of your own mind and what is beyond your current level of endurance.

As an example, doing banking or doing grocery shopping shouldn't warrant you popping a benzo unless your anxiety is so bad that you're agoraphobic and can't get out the door without dosing. You should try and incorporate other things like CBT, DBT, meditation and guided imagery as extra tools in your arsenal rather than having a pill bottle be your go-to 100% of the time. Think of the consequences of going to a bank anxious or buying groceries in an anxious state , it's all mental. You won't suffer any repercussions even if you come across as a meak human being while going about those activities. On the other hand job interviews or some other personal events might warrant you taking a benzo to maintain your composure and make a good impression. It's all about categorizing
when being calm and collected will benefit you the most and when being calm and collected or not would be of no consequence to your personal life and social standing.

Choose wisely and think deeply every time you reach for a benzo. You might look like a jittery mess in certain situations without having a benzo to lower your inhibitions, but if coming across as such doesn't raise many consequences you should try getting comfortable with coming off as a bit awkward in meaningless situations. Your bank clerk sin't going to care if you come off as a jittery, anxious mess, neither will the girl running the till at your grocery store, your co-workers and bosses might be a different story.
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Eugene Bevingled - Fri, 13 Jul 2018 17:02:10 EST ID:/aJT+A0o No.142232 Ignore Report Quick Reply
>>142229
Thanks that's sound advise.

Has anyone here gone off of benzos after taking them long term? How did it effect your anxiety?
>>
Nathaniel Bardford - Fri, 13 Jul 2018 21:34:16 EST ID:AYXKiYst No.142234 Ignore Report Quick Reply
>>142232

From personal experience, if you've been taking benzos near daily and want to come off of them CT or something, it will definitely effect your competence in important situations for a prolonged period of time as your endogenous GABA receptors will have been effectively thrust into a state of no action potential after becoming down regulated and lazy after getting used to a benzo doing all the work for it without having to expend any energy creating and firing off GABA(the brains chief endogenous tranquilizing neurotransmitter).

I stupidly decided to CT off of a daily Rx'd habit of 2 mg clonazepam basically out of peer pressure because "you should be strong enough to white knuckle through the withdrawals". Well, I still to this day wish I had done a proper taper and not had to endure escalating panic and anxiety and bouts of agoraphobia for half a year before I felt more or less functional again, but with added deficits. I already had PTSD before going through half a year of PAWS and the CT withdrawal made everything worse and I still feel like I've caused some irreversible brain damage as a result of that glutamate excitation that tends to occur.

Your baseline level of anxiety if you do a drawn out taper should revert back to what it was previously before dabbling with benzos. If you CT it you might permanently increase your level of anxiety to levels beyond what it would have been before ever taking a benzo because your brain can fry itself from glutamate over excitation. I had a very high IQ before going through CT benzo withdrawal and now it's about 25% worse and I don't expect my intellect to ever recover from that idiotic CT withdrawal I stubbornly endured.


If your'e using them daily for more than two weeks and decide to come off of them please heed my advice and opt for a long and drawn out taper if you wish to return to your natural baseline and don't want to make your baseline worse. Look into the Ashton Manual and tailor it to your individual comfort level(meaning if you need to do a year of slow tapering and you have the proper amount of pills to do so you should decide to do that). Never take the tough mans stance when it comes to withdrawing off of benzos as it will cause you much more suffering than stepping off of your benzo at a slow and calculated rate. You don't want this class of drugs to make your baseline any worse which they very well could do if you get impatient and decide to jump off of them without tapering.

I hope this gives you some idea of how to proceed in order to minimize any permanent psychological damage.
>>
Martha Fonningbedging - Sat, 14 Jul 2018 16:28:33 EST ID:/aJT+A0o No.142243 Ignore Report Quick Reply
>>142234
Thanks. A decrease of 2mg diazepam every 2 weeks should be safe and slow enough right?
>>
Brain - Sat, 14 Jul 2018 17:12:23 EST ID:c/UafPZm No.142244 Ignore Report Quick Reply
>>142243
> If your'e using them daily for more than two weeks and decide to come off of them please heed my advice and opt for a long and drawn out taper if you wish to return to your natural baseline and don't want to make your baseline worse. Look into the Ashton Manual and tailor it to your individual comfort level(meaning if you need to do a year of slow tapering and you have the proper amount of pills to do so you should decide to do that). Never take the tough mans stance when it comes to withdrawing off of benzos as it will cause you much more suffering than stepping off of your benzo at a slow and calculated rate.

Personally I’d go even slower man but I’m neitther or the ones that originally posted help
>>
Dr. Katz !KqgSR25gAQ - Mon, 16 Jul 2018 01:34:04 EST ID:t8lReBf3 No.142255 Ignore Report Quick Reply
>>142243
That decrease definitely sounds safe. One of the most prominent benefits of being on diazepam is the amount that you are actually able to reduce your dosage during a taper without having any difficulty obtaining lower dosed pills.

A safe rapid taper would be a 10% dosage decrease a week for 10 weeks. So really, you would be medically safe dropping down 2mg every week if you wanted to taper off faster.
>>
Jack Fonnerlig - Sat, 11 Aug 2018 10:44:30 EST ID:PNAWXDgA No.142672 Ignore Report Quick Reply
>>142234

Sorry, I don't mean to hijack this thread, and I suppose I don't think I am. What I'm about to post is relatively on-topic. My experiences, I suppose.

First. Wow, informative post. Thank you for it.

That sounds very much like what happened to me, but perhaps for different reasons.

I had been on Benzos since 2009, originally prescribed for Social Anxiety Disorder/General Anxiety Disorder. I don't think I really NEEDED them, but at the time I was okay getting them, because I was a young kid, wanting drugs.

FF 9 years later. I have been off Benzos since January 2018. It took my 3rd DUI to get me off them.

I'm MUCH more anxious now than I was in my late teens and early 20s (I am now 29 years old). I used to have issues maybe talking with females, asking for things (I fear rejection terribly), asking for help, for job interviews, etc.

Now, I can barely function. It's depressing. I had to do a cold turkey because I had Day Report and random drug testing.

I withdrew for nearly 3 months, and am over the physical parts for the most part. I went through hot flashes, cold sweats, my bones were in constant pain, I could not sleep. I could not eat. I would vomit. I was bed ridden for nearly one month. My head felt as though it was a balloon, always "floating" dissociated from my body. It was like my brain could not tell my body what to do. It was hard getting out of bed each day, I lost my job, A job I had worked HARD to get. I was so upset. It's all gone. My hard work. I never had a seizure (or if I did, I didn't realize it, or it was a minor one). But 9 years of regular benzo use, with periods of ABuse. Hell, it was all abuse.

I had gotten 120 days for the OWI. 90 with good time, and I worked off 40 or so days in jail doing trustee work.

>f you CT it you might permanently increase your level of anxiety to levels beyond what it would have been before ever taking a benzo because your brain can fry itself from glutamate over excitation. I had a very high IQ before going through CT benzo withdrawal and now it's about 25% worse and I don't expect my intellect to ever recover from that idiotic CT withdrawal I stubbornly endured.

See, I never knew this, but it makes so much sense when you type it. I KNEW there was a science behind it, but didn't know what or how. I also feel not only VERY much more anxiety than I ever had (even prior to ever being put on benzos), as well as feeling less intelligent. I don't know if I actually am less intelligent, I just feel that way. That may be because when I am thinking or speaking, I'm much more anxious, so I stumble with what I want to say, I have to practice conversations in my head before I begin them, or I will trail off and lose track of what I was saying. It's rough.

The WDs were pure hell. The CT was pure hell. Now I'm an anxious wreck, and I fear that I will not be able to find employment again. I don't think I could go back to school, either, because of the new anxiety and decreased brain function or activity. I was originally going to school for Sports Journalism, because my writing ability was quite good. Typing this has been a burden and hassle, because I feel as what skill I once had is utterly diminished and nearly completely destroyed.

I'm collecting disability now and that's my only means of income. I have held jobs, but never for much more than one year. So finding work is hard, because my spotty resume. Now with jail thrown in there, it's worse.

I'd be okay just working at a fast food joint or something, but even the hiring process for those is far more stringent.

The worst part of all of this? I'm considering going back to benzos now that I'm off Day Report. Hell.

I am trying to rationalize it by telling myelf it was not that I had a problem with benzos, but a problem with alcohol. Now that I cannot drive, I also am rationalizing it by saying "If I can't drive, well I can't catch an OWI".

I'm an addict. I know I should simply not allow these substances (any substance, even marijuana is abused by me). Even caffeine and nicotine.

I'm constantly in worry and depression.

OP, I hope things work out for you. If you can get out get out.
>>
Lydia Pedgeford - Sun, 12 Aug 2018 20:22:05 EST ID:/aJT+A0o No.142688 Ignore Report Quick Reply
OP here, I'm almost 1 month into doing the diazepam taper. I've been decreasing my dose by 2 mg every week. I've run into no issues. I was expecting this to be pure hell from when i tapered off of clonazepam but so far i feel no change in anxiety levels.

I did however start taking 40mg buspirone a day when i started the taper and I think it has helped me immensely. I get sweaty, tired and almost weak about 45 mins after taking the buspirone, I don't know why but I'm not that anxious so I'm not complaining.

>>142672
You may need to take benzos as needed to give yourself a break from the symptoms once in a while. Just don't take them daily long term again. My plan is to use 1-2mg lorazepam as needed, probably 3-4 times a week once i finish my diazepam taper.
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Martin Puzzleherk - Tue, 14 Aug 2018 21:12:45 EST ID:zRwXtKcR No.142710 Ignore Report Quick Reply
>>142226
Diazepam isnt very good at all for relieving anxiety. Lorazepam is the best for anxiety relief IMO
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Dr. Katz !KqgSR25gAQ - Thu, 16 Aug 2018 18:18:15 EST ID:NULsF1Kc No.142734 Ignore Report Quick Reply
>>142710
It’s all subjective. Specific benzos are better suited for different situations and different anxiety disorders than other benzos. A lot of people really love diazepam and hate lorazepam. Some people think alprazolam is the gold standard for a fast acting benzo.
>>
Charlotte Ponkinforth - Fri, 17 Aug 2018 01:53:28 EST ID:3BYYPEUs No.142745 Ignore Report Quick Reply
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damn so i became a literal bartard???
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Priscilla Madgestire - Sun, 19 Aug 2018 10:59:17 EST ID:/aJT+A0o No.142783 Ignore Report Quick Reply
>>142710
The advantage to the diazepam is it's long half life which builds up in your body and it is good for constant worry like generalized anxiety disorder. It's not a great benzo to take for a panic attack, then you want some lorazepam or alprazolam.
>>
Dr. Katz !KqgSR25gAQ - Wed, 22 Aug 2018 20:06:56 EST ID:t8lReBf3 No.142832 Ignore Report Quick Reply
>>142783
The advantage is for tapering purposes and avoiding daily dosing. However, the disadvantage is that diazepam can be rather harsh on the body as it sticks around so long with other active metabolites.
That said, I fucking love diazepam.
>>
David Pupperbut - Wed, 22 Aug 2018 22:00:21 EST ID:n8XObTu/ No.142836 Ignore Report Quick Reply
>>142832

I thought diazepam was one of the more benign benzos?

To the topic at hand: benzos suck when taken daily long term (like mostly all drugs). If you have anxiety follow the advice of others here and only use them when you actually need it.

I tapered from 50mg a day diazepam (I swapped over from mixed benzo dosing; eti, alp, diclaz, and diaz) over 2 weeks and had no issues. But from what I've read it's like a coin flip if you get bad withdraws or not.
>>
David Pupperbut - Wed, 22 Aug 2018 22:02:25 EST ID:n8XObTu/ No.142837 Ignore Report Quick Reply
>>142836

Forgot to mention this was only like almost 2 years of daily dosing, you were dosing while your brain was developing so that's proba gonna make it harder.

Also, last 5 MG was the hardest to stop cause I was dosing it at night to help sleep.

I also avoided alcohol during the taper entirely.


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