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Hello. I have been taking Librium for 25 years on an as needed basis- so not every day but often enough. I started taking it for anxiety.  It has worked fine for a long time.Recently, I moved to another state. I went to a new doctor and he went crazy about my benzo use- which I told him it averages about 2x a week. I wasn't sure but that sounded about right.

 

My actual prescription is 25mg 3x a day. I have never taken it as prescribed except on extremely stressful days such as my ex-husband committing suicide, my dad dying suddenly, my mother getting cancer, well you get the picture. Otherwise I have taken it as needed and really haven't paid attention to how often until lately. I have always had plenty of pills left over since I don't take it every day.

 

So, he gave me Lexapro which was horrible then Zoloft a few weeks later. I had a very bad reaction to both drugs. At this time, I also stopped taking Librium cold turkey. I didn't think I would have withdrawal because many times over the years I have stopped taking it for various reasons. Sometimes a month at a time. So I thought this time would be no different. I was wrong.

 

I didn't take anything for a month. The next day after my last pill, my entire body began to vibrate.  The vibrations were horrible. Week 1 was the worst because not only did I vibrate inside but I was very emotional and scared. Week 2 was slightly better but still vibrating. Week 3 the same with no change. Week 4 I returned back to this doctor and asked him if he thought it could be withdrawal and he said no, it should be out of your system by now. You are experiencing anxiety and need medication.

 

To make a long story short, me and this doctor have a difference of opinion. I wound up making an appointment with a Nurse Practitioner at a Psychiatrist office.  I haven't gone yet.

 

Anyway, the vibrations got so bad- they build in intensity to the point I can hear my heart beating in my ears. It gets very loud.  I couldn't take it no more and thinking this was anxiety, I started taking Librium again. The vibrations stopped for a week. When they came back, I took another pill again thinking it was probably just anxiety. It didn't get rid of it that time so I took another pill. It finally stopped for 3 days. However, on day 4 they came back so I took another one to try to stabilize myself because these vibrations are horrible. One pill didn't do it so I had to take another one. Currently, I am still vibrating. My eye twitches also. My vision blurs on and off but maybe I am just tired. I don't know what is going on to be honest.

 

However, after searching the internet I am thinking I might be experiencing tolerance withdrawal and need to stop taking it. So, I have split up what I believe to be my weekly dosage in some water and plan to cut back some every week. Not very scientific but I feel like I need to do something. I can't do this without support and I am scared about what the future holds. I hope this is not to much information for this introduction.

 

 

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Hi Annie50 :hug: Welcome to Benzobuddies

 

We are glad you found us.  I am so sorry to read of the loss of both your husband and your dad.  It must have been a very traumatic time for you.  We usually recommend to those who have been taking an erratic dose to stabilise at a set daily dose. A dose that they feel reasonably comfortable with, before starting their taper.   

 

Tapering slow can help to minimize withdrawal effects.  It is generally recommended to taper no more than 5-10% every 10-14 days.  This is a guideline and it is ok to adjust this schedule for your own comfort.

 

We have a very caring community, our members are knowledgeable and friendly people who understand this process.  I am sure they will be willing to share their experience with you.  Feel free to ask questions so that members can respond

 

Are you familiar with the  Ashton Manual , it is an excellent resource for information about these medications and gives a lot of information about withdrawal/tapering. 

 

Here are some helpful links:

 

The Ashton Manual

 

General Taper Plans

 

Withdrawal Support

 

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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Doctors often do not understand how these drugs work. They assume that once the benzo is "out of your system", the symptoms should fade. That's how it works for opiate addiction, but not for benzos.

 

Benzos literally alter the brain by causing changes in neuro-receptors. The brain requires time to heal and return to normal function. The drug may be long gone, but the brain remains funky.

 

Why doctors don't get this I haven't a clue.

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I don't know why doctors don't know this. My wonderful doctor even said if I had a seizure it would be no big deal. What a nice guy. Needless to say I won't be going back to him. I recently moved to a new state so he was a new doctor.

 

No one except my husband believes I can be having withdrawal. They all say but you didn't take it every day. No, I didn't but in the past 3 years I have taken it about 3x a week. I think I have been having mini withdrawals between doses for a long time and didn't realize it. I kept telling people, I don't have anxiety just some nervousness. I know what anxiety feels like as I had it really bad when I was younger. I won't go into the details of my life- could be boring- but this isn't what that is.

 

I quit these pills cold turkey on September 1st thinking as others in my life that I didn't take them every day so I could just stop. ::)

 

Every day since then my entire insides vibrated, then my heart started pounding in my ears (found out recently that is called Tinnitus), stomach upset, diarrhea, insomnia. Then as if that wasn't enough, the fear set in because I had no idea what was happening to me. Heart palpitations, heart feels like it flips over, races for no reason. These things start in my stomach and spread. The vibrations are the worse for me though.  :tickedoff:

 

I know my withdrawal probably sounds like a walk in the park compared to some but it drives me crazy. I have tried some other things - natural remedies to no avail. Nothing makes them stop. I am not looking forward to the taper. Hopefully that will be better than the cold turkey I tried and of course I failed.  :-[

 

I do doubt myself sometimes and think: Am I truly having withdrawal? I took a pill after one month and all of it stopped. I felt normal again. When it started back up a week later, I took a pill, nothing, I took another one it stopped for 3 days. When it started again, I took another pill, this time it hasn't completely stopped. I have had reprieves but it is still there lurking. Seems the pills are not working like before. Or at least I guess that is what is happening. :-\

 

If anyone thinks this is something else feel free to chime in. I have had a complete wellness check, heart checked and blood pressure checked. All was normal. Doctor says it is anxiety, but I have never had it like this before. I have no fear when this happens. Nothing mental. Just aggravation from the relentless vibrations and other symptoms.

 

Next stop: Get stable and taper off this horrible drug. Regardless of what is causing it, I believe I need to get off the Librium.

 

This Friday: Buy some Magnesium Chloride, Epsom salts and some electrolytes to try to help tone down those vibrations. At least I am a "little" more prepared this time. Maybe. LOL. Hard to say. I guess I need to check into tapering. My pills come in capsules. I don't have a running prescription right now so I would have to use what I have which is around 100 pills. Yeah I hoarded them in the past.  :-[

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Hello Annie,

 

I concur with what others have said above. It does sound like you have reached tolerance and probably have been experiencing inter-dose withdrawal. Librium has a pretty short half-life of 5-20 hours, which makes IDWD a real possibility. Many of the symptoms you described are typical of that. I had the vibrations for a few months, very strange and unsettling for sure.

 

So you have 100 25mg capsules left? Which is equivalent to 10mg of Valium. I say that because Valium is real good for tapering and once a day dosing as it has a super long half-life of 20-100 hours. If possible and a doctor would agree I think that that would be a great way to go.

 

In case you cannot get a doctor on board, you will have to taper with the 100 pills that you still have. A daily taper of .1mg per day would have you tapering 3.5% per week which is within the range for a smooth taper. At that rate you would run out of capsules in about 150 days and be jumping off at 8.5mg, that may be rough, but may be doable.

 

This Librium taper would be accomplished with a daily liquid micro taper. This is not that difficult to do and is the only way to accurately reduce the dose daily. You will be mixing up daily until you get lower and then 1 capsule mix will serve 2 or more doses.

 

Again I feel that a valium crossover would be far easier and would all but eliminate IDWD and you could go all the way to almost zero with hopefully minor issues along the way.

 

Whatever you decide, good luck, many here will help you all the way. :thumbsup:

 

Best of healing,  :hug:

 

 

Wilson

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Thanks Buddy for answering. Much appreciated. How would I go about tapering as you suggested. That actually sounds very doable.

 

I am not real confident I can get a doctor on board due to where I live. This area has seen a huge influx of people so doctors that are taking new patients are very rare. I am new here so I am not established.

 

I do have an appointment with a Nurse Practitioner who works in a Psychiatrist office and I plan to talk to her about all this. I am hoping she will give me Valium for the taper. I won't know that until October 28th. So I don't want to take any more pills until I taper since my supply is limited and I can't count on her being helpful. Most likely she won't even believe I am in withdrawal. But who knows maybe I will get lucky.

 

I have read about tapering using a 100ml bottle which I don't own. I have a syringe that goes up to 10ml. I know 100ml is about 3.5 oz. I am not good at metric measurements. I live in ounces LOL. So, let me see .1 mg a day would be .7 grams a week. I guess I would split per day? So, how does this work? I think you mean 1 mg a day? That would take 150 weeks.

 

Do you know how I would go about doing this? I know I can dissolve the pills in water, then take out 1 mg a day. So, say I put 25 mg in 4 ounces just to make this simple. Each ounce would hold 6.25 mg. To get to about 1 I would take out 1/6 of an ounce. So, 2 TBSP = 1 ounce. Each TBSP holds 3.125 mg. So I would take out 1/3 of a Tablespoon to get to about 1 mg.

 

Okay so my syringe measures things in teaspoons. So, 3 teaspoons = 1 TBSP. So 1 teaspoon would be 1/3 of a TBSP.

 

Sounds doable. I think I now have a taper plan. Thank you!! The only thing is, I have to take one pill a day for the first week right. I need to go count my pills again. I think I have enough to do that. The 100 was strictly for the taper.

 

If I am wrong in my calculations let me know.

 

 

 

 

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Thanks Buddy for answering. Much appreciated. How would I go about tapering as you suggested. That actually sounds very doable.

 

I am not real confident I can get a doctor on board due to where I live. This area has seen a huge influx of people so doctors that are taking new patients are very rare. I am new here so I am not established.

 

I do have an appointment with a Nurse Practitioner who works in a Psychiatrist office and I plan to talk to her about all this. I am hoping she will give me Valium for the taper. I won't know that until October 28th. So I don't want to take any more pills until I taper since my supply is limited and I can't count on her being helpful. Most likely she won't even believe I am in withdrawal. But who knows maybe I will get lucky.

 

I have read about tapering using a 100ml bottle which I don't own. I have a syringe that goes up to 10ml. I know 100ml is about 3.5 oz. I am not good at metric measurements. I live in ounces LOL. So, let me see .1 mg a day would be .7 grams a week. I guess I would split per day? So, how does this work? I think you mean 1 mg a day? That would take 150 weeks.

 

Do you know how I would go about doing this? I know I can dissolve the pills in water, then take out 1 mg a day. So, say I put 25 mg in 4 ounces just to make this simple. Each ounce would hold 6.25 mg. To get to about 1 I would take out 1/6 of an ounce. So, 2 TBSP = 1 ounce. Each TBSP holds 3.125 mg. So I would take out 1/3 of a Tablespoon to get to about 1 mg.

 

Okay so my syringe measures things in teaspoons. So, 3 teaspoons = 1 TBSP. So 1 teaspoon would be 1/3 of a TBSP.

 

Sounds doable. I think I now have a taper plan. Thank you!! The only thing is, I have to take one pill a day for the first week right. I need to go count my pills again. I think I have enough to do that. The 100 was strictly for the taper.

 

If I am wrong in my calculations let me know.

 

Annie,

 

Whoa did I read you correctly when you said  "So I don't want to take any more pills until I taper since my supply is limited." Are you stable? How are you going without your dose?

 

Anyway it's good that you are willing to at least try a liquid daily taper. Good attitude helps. You have the basic idea of how to do it and as we get closer we can come up with an exact process for you once we know how many pills you have at the start and what point you want to jump.

 

Hopefully your PA will help you crossover to valium. Maybe bring a few quotes from The Ashton Manual with you for them to read to help get them up to speed.

 

All the Best, :mybuddy:

 

 

Wilson

 

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Welcome. I had a similar experience. Stopped over the years and never seemed to be a problem, but somehow started up again. 

 

This last time with taper and then jump, things were diffferent for me. I also came off a TON of AD meds at the same time so my story is different than yours. 

 

My doctors told me the same thing, it's out of your system and I needed more meds. I'm several weeks out now from jump and I'm glad I didn't take any more meds.

 

You can make it through this with time and you will heal.

 

I found these 2 links when I first joined. They help to understand the healing process and took the crazy making stuff out of it.

 

What is happening to us:

http://www.benzobuddies.org/forum/index.php?topic=66397.0

 

Layman's Guide

http://www.benzobuddies.org/forum/index.php?topic=77803.msg1026651#msg1026651

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Am I stable? Depends on what you consider stable. Not exactly but I am not wanting to pull my hair out YET. I am taking them a couple of times a week right now because I have exactly 105 pills - counted them last night. I vibrate on a semi-regular basis but as long as I keep taking the pills off and on, it is manageable. I don't know what it would take to make me stable at this point. Maybe taking them daily? I hate to do that since I plan to taper and get off of them. So, do you really think I should be taking them every day and plan to start the taper next week or wait until I see the Psychiatrist hoping for some support?

 

This week has been pretty decent. I have taken 2 and have one in liquid. I took out a teaspoon earlier this week-( because I wanted to start the taper but that was before I found you all and it was suggested I take them daily to stabilize)- and plan to split it over the next couple of days. One shot glass is an ounce LOL. So 2 shot glasses should give me about 10 mg. Hopefully, that will get me through until Sunday. I plan to take one ever other day to hopefully get more stable. After next week I will HAVE to start this taper. Luckily, my psychiatrist appointment is next Friday so these 5 extra pills should get me to the appointment. I will then talk to them about helping me get off these drugs and see if I can get any support. If not, I will have to start tapering stable or not on Monday. November 1st.

 

I want to mention that I did take Lexapro on August 26th and it was a very horrible experience. I quit taking it the next day but that is when these vibrations started. Of course it is also when I quit taking Librium for an entire month and vibrated the whole time among other things. Thought I was going to lose my mind but I held it together. However, feeling like crap prompted me to try Lexapro again on September 18th. This time I took half a dose (5mg). It was great the first day, vibrations stopped and I felt totally normal. I took another 5mg the next day and all hell broke lose. So, naturally I stopped.

 

On September 30th I went back to this guy who calls himself a doctor. I told him my story. He said it was anxiety and no way was I have withdrawals. So, he gave me Zoloft 50mg. I like a fool took it. It was hell on earth for 24 hours. Of course, I stopped. I tried to get this doctor to help me taper off Librium explaining that it is dangerous to stop taking a benzo cold turkey and thanks to him I could have had a seizure. His response was: Oh well it wouldn't have killed you. He then sent me to a clinic for an assessment to start a program of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy to help me cope with my anxiety. Turns out it was hospital for people who suffer from Severe Depression that have Suicidal Ideation issues. These people are barely functioning adults. Being there freaked me out because for a while there I thought this doctor was trying to have me committed. One of my worst fears by the way. I went through with the assessment and the woman said I have mild anxiety and probably just need a mild medication to help me deal with it. She suggested some therapy because she said everyone in the world needed therapy. Well, I looked into that and can't afford a therapist.

 

I then decided my nerves were shot and was so sick of feeling like crap with the constant vibrating, diarrhea, insomnia etc. that I took a Librium. Well, my vibrating and everything else stopped. It was awesome. I felt normal for 6 days. Then you know the rest of the story. Oh and I also called around to find a Psychiatrist since this doctor would not recommend one. I think the least he could have done was help me get off the drug but no, he just sent me to this place. The woman there said she couldn't figure out why this doctor would send me there. She told me to find another doctor. I concur.

 

Doing all kinds of research into these horrible vibrations led me here and thinking about this could be withdrawal since I have slacked up on taking it due to being worried about running out of pills. Never a problem in the past. Now it is so here I am.

 

Sorry if this is repetitive but it feels good to just tell someone this story who might believe me.

 

Thank you Next for the links and sharing your story. It helps to not feel alone and to know those vibrations will stop some day. I was seriously worried it would go on forever. I will read your links too.

 

Thanks for listening. One last question. Assuming you started taking these drugs for anxiety, how do you manage it now? This worries me a great deal.

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Hi Annie,

 

First of all yes it sounds like the anxiety and even the vibrations are most likely a result of interdose withdrawal. You said that when you dose most of it goes away, bingo. So you are rationing your remaining doses and waiting to taper. At least you have a plan and seem to be managing alright. You may be one of the lucky ones but things might get worse, be prepared.

 

You asked about what I do for anxiety. Mine is mostly gone by now since I started tapering last December and jumped in May. But believe it or not I still have vibrations from time to time and low grade anxiety flares up every few days.  I never had anxiety before so I know that it is still a result of benzo use and cessation. All symptoms are much less severe now than they were when tapering. When anxiety starts up now I know what it is and I just breathe through it. I calmly talk to myself and remind me what it is and that it will soon pass, it always does. I find that 200mg of Suntheanine all but knocks it out completely within 20 minutes and I am left mellow for the duration of the day. I also take Calms "nerve tonic" tablets sometimes. They just dissolve under the tongue and start working within 2 or 3 minutes.

 

So you have an appointment next Friday. It would be really helpful if your doctor understood what is going on with interdose withdrawal and is willing to help you with a slow and steady taper, Ideally with a longer acting benzo like Valium. You may want to bring your spouse or a family member to this appointment for support. Be sure to be prepared to explain a few things, maybe bring some pertinent pages from The Ashton manual with you.

 

Only you know if you should start taking the last few pills everyday depending upon the severity of your symptoms. Doing so would probably help with the IDWD but Librium is pretty fast acting anyway so who knows.

 

At this point it is probably best to wait and see what happens at the next appointment. if you get the crossover valium prescription in ample supply we can plan a steady daily taper accordingly. If not we can do the same with your remaining Librium capsules and do the best we can with the remaining doses.

 

There are a few supplements that actually help upregulate your gaba receptors that are NOT gaba receptor agonists and will not set back your healing. Taking these in the meantime might be very helpful. True and complete healing will only truly begin once you are off of all benzos for a while. Some healing takes place during taper but not much. Look into Bacopa Monnieri, Relora, Rhodiola Rosea and again Theanine. I especially like Bacopa.  :thumbsup:

 

So good luck Annie. Stay positive. You will heal and be fine in time. Try to stay away from anything that works on the brain, AD's included. Don't worry about all of the horror stories, your taper and jump may be fairly smooth and not that bad, mine was manageable after 14 years of Xanax. You do not need a psych ward, CBT may help, can't hurt. You will need to learn how to manage stressors and all that life throws your way. Good philosophies, perspective and trust in God and faith will really help. This is indeed a battle, most of us win in the end.  8)

 

Best of Healing,  :angel:

 

 

Wilson  :hug:

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Thanks for the recommendations. I will most definitely be looking into what you suggested. Will any of that stuff hurt my recovery? I am assuming not since you are taking it.

 

I have been doing so much reading. I am now trying to find out what not to take so my brain will heal. I am both scared and excited about starting this process. The more I read the more I want these things out of my body.

 

Recently, I have found mindfulness meditation and it seems to help me to feel calmer.

 

I am thinking I need to put the Valerian Root away. It touches the GABA receptors much like a benzo.

 

Did you find anything that helped the vibrations? I have heard that magnesium chloride might help it and epsom salt baths. Okay well off to read some more. Maybe I will find out what not to take during my healing.

 

Just knowing I will be healing maybe the withdrawal won't be so bad. Not knowing what was happening was pretty scary.

 

Can you link me to the tablets you buy? I am in the United States and am not finding Calms..I did find Hyland Nerve Tonic tablets and Hylands Calms Nerve Tension Tablets on Amazon  but I don't think those are the same as what you are talking about. There are Kalms also but can't find nerve tonic.

 

Kalms has Valerian Root and Hops and some other thing in it. Whereas Hylands Calms has some other stuff in it I didn't recognize.

 

I can't find much information about what herbs to avoid during withdrawal but I would think Valerian Root might be one to avoid since it works similar to a benzo.

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