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Lorazepam withdrawel


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Hi, I am an alcoholic in recovery for 30 beautiful year in Sept. of 2020. I knew better. Four years ago I had to leave my husband of 25 years because he just would not leave the narcotics alone. I tried for way too long to help him. I was, of course, super traumatized at the actual event. So , when my family doctor suggested I try this teeny, tiny little dose of Xanax .5 mg. to make me feel better, I reluctantly agreed. I knew better. Six months later, he said 1 mg. would be so much better for me and that Lorazepam would be better , too. I let him. Shame on me. Four years later, I am into a weaning program (self decided but with my neurologists knowledge) and I need support. Be my friend. I am scared to go to the NA meetings where I know so many people. I bought the hype that it was Dr. prescribed but......you know  the rest.
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Hello Super senior, Welcome to BenzoBuddies!

 

I'm glad to hear you're already tapering your dose, can you tell us how you're doing it?  We usually suggest cutting 5-10% of your dose every couple of weeks depending on your symptoms, it's important to remain functional.  Are you dealing with symptoms at the moment? 

 

I'd like you to take a look at our Planning your Taper board, these are the methods we support but tapers are very personal and each of us is different, so we'll support whatever works for you. 

 

You'll probably want to connect with others feeling as you are, so when you're ready, you can start a thread on the  Withdrawal Support (during your taper) board.

 

Please don't beat yourself up, I had 14 years sobriety when I took my first benzo and I knew better too, so no worries about judgement here.  And I doubt NA or AA would be of much help with this since benzo withdrawal is a totally different animal than other drugs and alcohol, it's takes a long time to heal from this, months and sometimes years and not many get this.  Heck, even many of our medical professionals don't get it, but we do.

 

We're glad you're here, let us know how we can help you.

 

Pamster

 

 

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Thanks for the kind words and concerns. I am a retired R.N. and it is amazing how long it took me to care enough to realize and admit that this shit must not be good for me. Duhhhh. I googled all over the place and found a 16 week taper to get off Lorazepam 1 mg. a day usually taken close to bed time. I am in week 6 which is a full week of .5 mg. every day. So was last week. Before that, I was going back and forth between .5 and 1 mg. for the other 4 weeks. Next week I start alternating .5 and .25 for 2 weeks. Only a couple of days of the smaller dose. By the 16th week, it ends up being .25 mg. alternated with nothing....YIKES. Anyway, it must be done. In week three, I had about a half hour of shakes, headache and nausea and dizziness all at once. Prayed it away and went to bed. Otherwise,nothing much. This week (week 6) I have had about 3 days of headache, muscle aches and tunnel vision off and on. Mostly less definite little feelings of hyper-emotionalism (tears) or queasiness. Overall, not really too terribly bad. Four years of Benzos. Yeah, there seems to come a point when a person is in with drawel more than they are under the influence of the drug, doesn't it? That's some super tolerance.      Gerry

 

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Hi, I am an alcoholic in recovery for 30 beautiful year in Sept. of 2020. I knew better. Four years ago I had to leave my husband of 25 years because he just would not leave the narcotics alone. I tried for way too long to help him. I was, of course, super traumatized at the actual event. So , when my family doctor suggested I try this teeny, tiny little dose of Xanax .5 mg. to make me feel better, I reluctantly agreed. I knew better. Six months later, he said 1 mg. would be so much better for me and that Lorazepam would be better , too. I let him. Shame on me. Four years later, I am into a weaning program (self decided but with my neurologists knowledge) and I need support. Be my friend. I am scared to go to the NA meetings where I know so many people. I bought the hype that it was Dr. prescribed but......you know  the rest.

SuperSenior! Welcome to BenzoBuddies!

Your doctors should have known better. Do not blame yourself making choices based on advice coming from professionals who you trust to make decision on your behalf. They should have known better. Benzodiazepines are known over 40 years and there is mounting scientific evidence against long term use, still, new generation of sufferers are created by well meaning but careless, misinformed, burned out professionals. Difficult to find excuse for them, but do not for you. Great that you made the decision the wean yourself, also great that you have a neurologist on your team. If anyone is qualified to understand withdrawal from benzodiazepines a neurologist certainly the first on the list based on their education and background. Understanding benzodiazepines and the withdrawal from them is important part of the journey toward recovery.

The Ashton Manual is a great source of reliable, professional source to look into. It helps to prepare yourself what to expect and make a plan how to move forward. Please ask questions and share you thoughts with your BenzoBuddies!

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I'm concerned about your taper, we recommend a slow, gradual reduction of your dose.  Your brain is craving consistency and alternating doses or going up and down isn't giving it this.  I hope you'll take a look at what we've found works for our members and re-think your taper, we want you to have a smooth withdrawal and recovery.
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Well, you have a good point about my taper plan. But I hadn't found you when I started it. I am midway through the sixth week which ironically enough is two straight weeks of .5 Lorazepam just like Benzobuddies would reccomend!! Now next week they would have me take .50 on M, W,Th, Sat, and Sun and .25 on Tu and Fri.  That is for 2 weeks. I guess it would be better to take .40 instead. How can I ever cut that amount??????
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What mg are your pills?  We have some very creative members when it comes to reducing their doses, they use a metal nail file to shave the pills, they crush and weigh them, they crush and mix with liquid, or they ask their Dr's for the liquid version of the pills or use a compounding pharmacy.

 

Many members have to slow down towards the end of their tapers, the symptoms become unmanageable so these options are life savers.  What do you think you'd like to do?

 

 

Bob7 Benzo Dry Taper Method 

 

Titration FAQs

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[4b...]

Super senior, Pamster is right.  Slowing down at the end of a taper was necessary for me.  I resisted the idea of a liquid taper because it seemed like a lot of trouble but never say never!  Sigh ...  I switched to a liquid taper when I got to the end because my benzo dose is so small now.  I crush and mix a 0.5mg tab in 50ml warm water so that I get 0.01mg per each 1 ml of water.  I stir it very well and then draw off the amount I want to toss to make the correct dose and keep the rest.  For example, tonight I will be taking 0.26mg of Klonopin so I discarded 24ml of the 50ml prep to get the correct dose.  I make up several days at a time and put them in the frig.  Walmart gave me a 10ml syringe free.  I now call the kitchen my lab :-))

 

Best,

 

Kate    :smitten:

 

 

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OK, a little something I failed to mention was that I am on some other drugs. I really have gotten foggy in my thinking. I am not deceptively withholding information, it's just that the whole story doesn't come to me at once any more.  About two months ago,  I woke up one morning and said to myself," How is it that I ended up on 4 different psychotropic medications at this point in my life?" I started on an antidepressant (Celexa) I would say, maybe, 25 or so years ago. Never stopped. It was changed to Lexapro when that came out. Nothing else till 4 years ago when I left my addict husband and got first Xanax and then ATivan 1 mg. instead for anxiety added to the antidepressant when that marriage could no longer go on.

 

A year ago, I suddenly developed excruciating adult onset migraine headaches and was prescribed Topamax 50 mg. tablets twice a day as a preventive for the migraines. That medication manipulate your brain. And finally, Trazadone 100mg. at bedtime for sleep. Trazadone is an old antidepressant which isn't very good at anti-depressing but has great side effects of drowsiness. So, there you have it. Four medications fighting to see which one can twist my brain around first. Who am I other than a 72 year old woman who is probably a little more demented than the next one.

 

Anyway. I am down 50% off the Ativan in my taper so I am happy about that. I figure those other rx's will probably help to minimize the Ativan withdrawels. We shall see. So far , it hasn't been too bad. Just a little off balance, sleepy, queasy and confused. No death wishes. LOL. Any comments, friends?

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Funny, I do wake up 5 or 6 times a night but don't really have lingering insomnia. I guess it's just sprinkling now and pretty soon, a hard rains-a-gonna-fall as Mr. Dylan would say. That's for those of you who are old enough to remember him.
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Hi Super senior,

 

This is your taper and we're here to support you, I'm glad to hear things aren't too horrible but as we've mentioned, if they do begin to be too much for you, you have the option to slow it down. 

 

I'm not sure if anyone has mentioned that when the drug has finally been eliminated from your body, there will still be healing taking place.  This means that the pain and discomfort you're feeling now will likely continue for some time.  This is because your brain and central nervous system still have repair work to do after the drug is gone.  This is why we tell members to take it slow to minimize their discomfort with a taper because once you're off of the drug, you won't have any control over your symptoms.

 

No worries on not disclosing your other medications, many of our members are poly drugged.  It may actually be beneficial you're on the Lexepro as depression is a big component of withdrawal and the Trazadone may be helping with sleep but I didn't helpful for benzo induced insomnia.  I'm sorry to hear about your migraines, I wonder if the benzo may have been contributing to this condition, I've seen many members mention migraines when they reach tolerance.  Who knows, you may not need it anymore once you're off of and recovered from the Ativan. 

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30 years booze free? mad respect for that  :thumbsup: :thumbsup: :thumbsup:

 

many people ended up here trusting their doctor and werent aware of side effects until they were in the thick of things or wanted to quit

 

cool thing is you will recover and bounce back and youre not alone. there are survivors, people going through it, and people about to go through it.

 

the only group i was able to find outside this board was NA but thats not really the most appropriate place. my therpaist told me about pills anonymous (PA) the other day. i havent checked it out though.

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Hi super

 

Welcome to BB.  Lots of people here are senior age, me included.  Many have been medicated for years.  There was basically no helpful advice back in the day.  I was actually told that these were not addictive. 

 

But here we are.  Time to self empower.  Time to heal.  It’s definitely not too late to feel amazing. 

 

Waking up is pretty common in this age group.  Add benzo withdrawal to that.  And anxiety in general.  So, check out natural ways to fall and stay asleep. 

 

Tapering various meds at once isn’t great.  You won’t know what’s happening when you get symptoms.  Taper the benzo first.  Get free of that beast.  Then take it from there.  Trazadone isn’t too bad.  I doubt that will give you any issues.  Once you clear the benzos, everything else will seem easy.

 

In many cases, the after effects of benzo use and finally tapering can feel ok.  I once tapered clonazepam years ago.  After 9 years use.  I had absolutely no acute effects.  I took my last pill and I was good.  So, you may or may not feel that.  Anyway, it was so easy that I was deceived and took them again starting 3 years ago.  Not so easy this go around, but I’m still ok. 

 

You will be, too.  You’re well on the way!

 

 

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Pam, I have wondered about a link with the migraines to the Ativan. It's gonna take a while to find out. First a long time of Ativan in the rear view mirror and then, a scarey period of daring myself to work with the Topamax. I think my neurologist knows what he is doing. The pain was absolutely immobilizing from the headaches for weeks until I titrated up to the dose for prevention of the migrain. It worked a charm the minute I got to a therapeutic level. Topamax is an interesting drug. In the smallest amount it is a Migraine prophylaxis, in the moderate amount , it prevents seizures from epilepsy and it it's largest dosages, it treats schizophrenia. Amazing, right. I feel scared just talking about it. Seems like that sure as hell ought to tell that benzo to "sit in the corner".
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Wow, I didn't know about the therapeutic doses of Topamax and the different issues it works on, I'm pleased you got relief from the migraines.  I hope you won't need it once you're off the Ativan and healed from it's effects.  The only trouble with that is in order to know if you don't need the Topamax anymore, you would have to taper off possibly setting yourself up for a return of the migraines.  :(
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Yes, so true. I am grateful to have a neurologist in the picture. I relate a lot to you,Pamster, because of the R.N., alcoholism and the benzo foolishness. Have to tell you this if you don't already know. There is a female cardiologist on Youtube who is a Benzo survivor. She goes by the name of " Benzo Brains" on You Tube. She interviews other professionals who either have been addicted or know a lot about drugs. I watched an hour long interview with a pharmacologist today and fairly recently , it has been identified that there are benzo diazepine receptors in the mitochondria and immune cells ALL OVER THE  BODY. And that is why withdrawel has such incredibly diverse symptoms. It is kind of crazy that the withdrawel symptoms have effects on every single body system, isn't it? Can't really think of any other drugs that do that. Sure demystifies a lot of the complaints heard here. If you want to hear her interviews, just go on You Tube and search for Benzo Brains.
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FYI ...

 

The Benzo Brains YouTuber is Jocelyn Pedersen, a benzodiazepine survivor and advisory board member for the Alliance for Benzodiazepine Best Practices.

 

To my knowledge, Jocelyn is not a cardiologist (she describes herself as a teacher, publicist, and videographer on the Alliance website). However, she did interview a cardiologist, Christy Huff, MD.  Christy is also a benzodiazepine survivor and the director of the Benzodiazepine Information Coalition.

 

Here is the video featuring the pharmacologist, Robert B. Raffa, Ph.D.:

 

Why is benzo syndrome so bad?

 

Here is the video featuring the cardiologist:

 

Dr. Christy Huff, benzo survivor and activist.

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Thanks, Libertas. Can you tell I am still tapering? Anyway, that is a fascinating interview with him, isn't it? It sounds like a new finding about the mitochondria and the immune cells, doesn't it? That means that the Benzos affect everything in our bodies. That must have been a PET scan he was showing to illuminate the sites, don't you think? It's a wonder the drug ever leaves our bodies, huh?
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You’re most welcome, Super senior!  I was impressed you found and viewed Dr. Raffa’s video and wanted to make sure others could find it as well.  The information and scan he shared are indeed fascinating.
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Are you in the medical field, also?  Don't you think the miyochondria and immune cell receptors are pretty new findings? I'll  bet most M.D.'s don't know that. They think the action is all in the brain. Blood->Neuron->muscle and tissue and round and round she goes???????
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