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mild benzodiazepine user


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Took Effexor 2004-2006 Switched to paxil to jitteriness and increased anxiety on Effexor On paxil 20 mg for 2006-June 2015. Had no problems on it, slept well, functioned well for ten years. Starting in Summer of 2015 starting having insomnia, increased anxiety. Exercised and took otc sleep aids but these had all kinds of side effects, dry mouth, etc. Saw a psychiatrist in Nov 2015, was put on Zoloft low dose. took 2 mg of Zoloft in addition to paxil 20 mg for 3 months, did really well, sleep and anxiety normalized. Suddenly anxiety returned, sleep worsened. Increased Zoloft to 12.5 mg and then 25 mg while tapering paxil down to 15 mg slowly. Did well on this combination for 3-4 months and then suddenly anxiety returned, withdrawal worsened with light sensitivity, sensitivity to sounds, anxiety, etc. Now stabilizing on 16 mg paxil but having anxiety and trouble sleeping so am taking 0.5 mg Ativan PRN. Have taken it for about 2-3 weeks now and would like to taper off it. Also have taken lunesta 0.75 mg for about 3-4 months before that. Also intermittently taken ambien 2.5 mg. Would like to come off of all 3.
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Hi orangecountycaguy :hug:

 

Welcome to BenzoBuddies!  you will get plenty of support here.  Benzodiazepines are meant for short term use,  that is, 2 or 3 weeks.  You seem to fit right into that timeline, while stopping them could cause some temporary effects,  I don’t think you have taken the drug long enough to develop a dependency. 

 

You might choose to do a quick taper off,  people taking benzos a few months or more, the rule of thumb is to reduce by between 5-10% every 10-14 days, you could  taper much quicker than this. 

 

I have had no experience with Ambien or Lunesta,  I am aware they both need to be tapered the same as benzodiazepines.  While not technically a benzodiazepine, the "z" drugs do target the same receptors as benzos. 

 

When you are ready, you might like to post here for Z drug support

 

Z-DRUG SUPPORT GROUP (Lunesta, Imovane, Zimovane, Ambien, Sonata, Zopiclone)

 

I will give you some information to read,  The Ashton Manual is an excellent resource and was written by an expert in the field.

 

Professor Ashtons Manual

 

I'll leave you a few links:

 

Withdrawal Support

 

General Taper Plans

 

If you would be so kind as to add a signature (history of meds/doses etc) it will help members give you relevant advice this link will show you how to ”Create a signature”

 

Welcome aboard

 

Magrita

 

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