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Hey all..... 

I jumped off Valium (crossover from Clonazepam) about 4 weeks ago after almost three years of tapering. 

 

I was planning to slide off night-time Oxazepam (15 yr. use) fairly quickly.  Yes - I was hooked on two benzos at the same time.

 

It didn't turn out like I had hoped.  I haven't posted much in the last 4 weeks because I've been hanging on by my fingernails! I honestly haven't been well enough to type!  About the time I jumped,  I got a flu (Covid?) and I have spent the last month dealing with what I thought was horrendous w/d, until I got the tight chest, a cough and a fever.  So I'm feeling pretty battered.  I felt like I was dying for sure, for weeks.

 

I've beat the flu back, (just) - no fever for 3 days now, no more cough, but I am in a world of fubar.  My joints and muscles ache, on top of sweating and vibrating, I am weak, have terrible head and ear and neck pain, screaming tinnitus, air hunger, heart palps, light and sound sensitivity..... yadda yadda you guys know the drill.

 

The first few hours after I wake up are bad, but do-able.    At 2 pm, everything disintegrates.  I finally realized today that it is the night time Oxazepam wearing off.  Oxazepam has a 9 hour half life.  So it is well and truly gone by early afternoon.  I hate that I am on it.  For some reason, I thought that it was a 'light duty' benzo.  One that would be a breeze to taper off.    One that wouldn't interfere with my main taper. 

 

So I begin again.  I have just cut from 15mg to 12.5mg.    15mg Oxazepam = 7.5mg Valium.  So it isn't as potent as it sounds.  Last night, I cut to 12.5mg.  I'll hold here for awhile.  I know enough now to let my body tell me when to cut. 

 

For all you veterans out there...... should I switch over to Valium so I don't have the horrific pendulum swing in the afternoon?  And please.... someone tell me I'm not dying!!!

 

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I'm so sorry you have been so ill along with what goes with benzo withdrawal.  Hopefully, you'll be much better soon and the fubar will be a distant memory.  Unfortunately, getting off the meds is not an easy feat, but it's all worth it.

 

My story, too, is oxazepam and it hasn't been easy, but I'm getting there as you can see by my signature.  You will, too, in time.

 

I was going to do the valium crossover as I liked the longer half-life idea but after one pill, I knew it wasn't for me.  I was in a fog like I've never been in before, way too sedating, but it might be a good choice for you. 

 

Have you thought about a daily liquid micro taper )DLMT), just dropping small mgs every single day? It has been a godsend for me.  If you'd like to check it out, here is the link.  Be sure to read the Readme section.  Keep in mind that with you dropping 2.5 mg of the oxazepam, that is quite a bit at 16.67%.  On the DLMT, it is recommended only 5% to 10% every 7-10 days.

 

http://benzo.alwaysdata.net/titration/titrationForm.php

 

And, no, since you survived what might have been COVID-19, you ARE NOT dying.  :)  We will all get through this together.  And, not that it matters, but I'm 71 and I'm going to beat this thing if it's the last thing I do on earth.

 

All the best...

 

 

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O CAgirl!  Thanks so much.  I am so excited to get your news. It seems that few people are dealing with Oxazepam.  And I can see that you are tapering off it slowly.  Congratulations.  Do you have medical support?  Someone that has experience?  Are you sleeping?  I am so encouraged to hear how strong your resolve is.  I'm 66 and some days feel 100 some days. 

 

I will most definitely check out your liquid titration link.  My problem is that we are a very remote location with a tiny pharmacy.  I had to dry taper, the first taper, because liquid anything wasn't available. 

 

Our pharmacy has an abysmal supplier.  I'm pretty sure I will have to stay the course with pill cutting.  That said, thanks so much for taking the time to figure out my cut percent.  I had no idea it was 16%.  It does matter!  I am/was continually amazed at how my body could even recognize each 1/2mg Valium cut.  It did!!!  Each cut towards the end of my 1st taper was about 3 weeks of hard hard time fizzling out to just feeling baseline crappy enough to cut again.

 

The pills are 10mg.  They are so tiny.  I do't think I can get much smaller than shaving 2.5mg each time.  I appreciate your feedback on your Valium attempt.  I am reluctant to switch over this time because I figure the withdrawal symptoms I'm having due to the shorter half-life will prompt healing.  Maybe there will be less hell to pay when I jump, because my body is fighting hard to find balance every afternoon and night.  Another thing I realize is that I am still in a world of w/d as my jump from my other benzo is not quite 4 weeks.

 

I am very excited to hear from you and will watch your progress.  Last night I had 3 choppy hours of sleep.  I am really down this morning.  My headache and tinnitis are off the charts.  Thanks again so much.  :smitten:

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You don’t need a pharmacy to liquid taper. You make it yourself.

Ppl on here can help you do that if you de die to do that.

 

 

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I'm so happy I could help a little. 

 

Actually, I'm doing better than I thought I would with, hopefully, only 5 months to go.  I've had some really rough days during the taper and had to updose several times, but I kept on truckin'. There were times I actually though I'd die and kind of wanted to, but it's so much better now.  I had many sleepless nights but, that too, is getting better.  My main daily symptoms still are tinnitus and muscle spasms and tightness as well as head pressure.  But, they're all tolerable.  I hope one day they will all disappear but it's said that even when the taper ends, symptoms can hang on for years.  One day at a time.  :)

 

Yes, oxazepam (serax) isn't used so much nowadays.

 

I use milk for my taper and many use alcohol, propylene glycol, SyrSpend® or Ora-Plus®.  The milk just seemed better for me albeit some of the benzos don't suspend properly in milk (I think suspend is the proper term), but oxazepam does.  All this is detailed in the Readme section of the link I sent.

 

My pills now are 10 mg, but they're capsules.  So, I just empty the powder into the correct amount of milk and I'm set for several days with each batch.  You can also get a scale if you stay on the dry tapering which will help you to be a little more accurate.  I considered it, but it seemed too complicated for me.

 

No, I don't have any medical support at all, but I have benzo buddies and those people with experience.  Builder and wavesontheshore were awesome in helping me get started.  I was so clueless and learned by trial and error; I'm so glad I'm where I am today. 

 

You will eventually stabilize, but there may be more bumps in the road, but those too shall pass.  You'll get there and you're very welcome.

 

 

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O CAgirl and Ajusta thanks -  I am reluctant to try the liquid mixing.  Maybe because the pharmacy tried that here, but it was a disaster.  I ended up  with two vials, meant to last two weeks.  The first week, the solution tasted very bitter.  I felt very good and thought "wow!  this is really going to work".  The second week, the solution tasted sugary and I was in a harsh withdrawal.  I don't trust myself to mix and measure right now.

 

How could I ever feel happy to hear that you thought you were going to die?  (but I was!)  Just to hear that you are better and gaining ground eases my fear.  Today has been one of my worst.  I felt like I was dying all afternoon.  My symptoms feel life threatening and I thought of going into emerg.  But with Covid, I just can't.  Also the medical team would not be able to sort out what is w/d, what might be flu, and what could be Lyme remission.  They know nothing about Lyme.  Or withdrawal.  I am finding it so hard to be positive.  I am having air hunger and leg weakness, digestion issues and headache.  Real bad tinitus.  Backache deep in the joints and knee pain.  Muscle spasms for sure.  I'm afraid to bend over or twist a lid off anything,  I am not balancing right.  I wouldn't call it dizziness.... its just this head pressure and off feeling like I'm looking in a funhouse mirror.  I'm trying to remember if I've been this bad before and I think I was at day 10 of my jump.  Its hard to remember.  I keep thinking that this is the hardest time and there will be improvements soon,  but that is not realistic.  This is my third wave of worst day ever.

 

So I'm scared and alone.  Just had a wee cry.  Hope I can level off soon.  So good to hear from you both, who know this road.

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Yes, janiceh, when one feels that badly, dying seems pretty nice in comparison.  It is a time to be fearful, but just know it will get better.  I am also alone and sometimes I think it would be better if I weren't but then again, it's probably a blessing in disguise unless one really knows what the 'patient' is going through.

 

When I dropped 5 mg back in February of 2019 (big mistake, but I didn't know what I was doing), I nearly called 911 thinking I was having a heart attack or pulmonary embolism. But, I refrained from doing so as I'm sure they just would have given me a benzo to relax, and I didn't want that.  I could barely breathe due to the pain being so excruciating. It was rough, a terrible muscle spasm in my back.  I still get them, but not to that extent.  Leg weakness seem to go with the withdrawing, too, as do the digestive issues and everything you mentioned, actually.  Some others that I've had are the feeling of pins and needles, numb feet, confusion, becoming unhinged with high anxiety, brain zaps, palpitations, itching, the feeling of burning skin, chest pressure, akathisia, chills and sweats, and panic attacks.  No that doesn't sound pleasant and it wasn't, so much easier to take a pill, I guess, but I had made up my mind that 'this too shall pass' and even though they all haven't, I'm able to function pretty well.  I don't think I could have handled this while I was still working; therefore, 6 months after retiring, my goal to be benzo-free began.

 

That over 16% was too much for your central nervous system.  Really, the measuring is easy once you get the hang of it.  I was petrified in the beginning but after one does it a while, it becomes second nature.  But, do what you feel comfortable with and do it nice and slow to win the race.

 

 

 

 

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CAgirl..... I want to hold on tight to your words!  You give me such reassurance. 

 

And I can see that your taper journey so far has been very steady, with a few curve balls (surgery last year) thrown in...  I see that you were at (12.5) at Xmastime.  This is where I'm at now.  Because Oxazepam is one of the least used benzos I hope to stay in touch.  Do you dose at night or in the morning?  Once or twice a day?  Do you feel interdose withdrawal?  Your current symptoms are all on my list....  Congratulations for coming so far, and thanks for being here. 

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janiceh ...  Thank you! 

 

I didn't start the DLMT until I was at 30 mg.  Three doses a day were taken, but the first dose was the liquid and the other two were capsules.  The first dose gradually tapered down until I was nearly at 0.  All the doses were 10 mg but, of course, the liquid mg was going down a little each day.

 

The next leg was two doses a day with the morning dose of liquid and the pm dose as a capsule.

 

Then and still, I am down to one dose a day of liquid and I take that about 10 pm.  My dose tonight was 4.9306.  So, it will take 5 more months to get to the recommended quit dose of 1 mg.  Very slow at the end of the line, but that's okay.

 

I used to have interdose withdrawals but for some reason, and I'm not complaining, I don't anymore.  I'm still having issues, but they're tolerable.

 

Yes, we will stay in touch and it will be great when we're both free!!  :thumbsup: 

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