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roadbump in taper, has anyone kept working full-time during their taper


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I went from about 4.25mg of valium to 3.25 over about 10 days.  Thought I was doing okay.  A little more insomnia and maybe a little more anxious.  Then boom yesterday, panic set in.  I started getting confused and feeling closed in.  I took a little bit of valium 1/8mg in the morning and 1/4mg in the evening and then 3.5 mg at bed.  I feel better today, but was afraid I might lose it yesterday. 

 

I was tapering .25mg every two to three days.  This has just been pure hell, this whole tapering thing.  It is still worth it, isn't it.  Has anybody done this and kept working full time.  Thanks, Steve.

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Hi Steve:

 

Yes I have worked through two different tapers.  I can't always say I was very productive in fact I know I was not.  However I am convinced in the long run that working was better for me.

 

It is possible for some and soon you will be off. 

 

juleswife

 

 

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Do you just learn how to work on two or three hours of sleep and whatever rest you get from laying there.  It is not easy for me, but I have been doing it.  Working does give me a reason to get out of bed in the morning and to keep on going.  You would think that pure exhaustion would set in at some point and you would sleep forever. 

 

The other night I was thinking that people that were in the holocaust or in prisoner of war camps and such have had things way worse than I have, so I should count my blessings.  Thanks, Steve.

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Your welcome Steve.

 

I have done two tapers.  This time I have been practicing meditation and found it really really helpful, even when I think it is not.  I often find the next day that the meditation is sustaining me through out the day.

 

Here's a link.  I had to try several different ones but the fullbodyscan by M. cullen and even her sitting meditation is good.  It can be done sitting at your desk, looking for all the world like your working.

 

http://www.archive.org/search.php?query=meditation%20AND%20mediatype%3Aaudio

 

I found I really had to use a bit of discipline and sometimes I didn't feel like I settled down at all, but it paid huge dividends for me to do it regularly.  Maybe it is worth a try for you.

 

My pattern was not to sleep at all and about every 3rd night I would sleep.  I have just had 3 consecutive nights sleep though.  yeahhhhhhhhhhhh

 

juleswife

 

juleswife

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My pattern was not to sleep at all and about every 3rd night I would sleep.  I have just had 3 consecutive nights sleep though.  yeahhhhhhhhhhhh

 

I hope this will happen for me soon.  This has been going on for 26 days now. :crazy:  It's absolutely awful.

 

Sandy

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Hmm, if you were dropping .25 every two to three days... wow, that's really fast.  Maybe too fast. You might want to slow down, give your body a chance to catch up to your cuts. Your fast cutting might be a factor in your insomnia.

 

rufus

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I'm homebound but still work...somehow. I normally go out for a walk (20-30 mins), have a nice breakfast, and then do deep breathing when I'm getting anxious/panicky.

 

It's not easy even from home as I have time to "cheat" and not do any work at all on bad days.

 

I agree that you're tapering way too fast...I can tell you from recent personal experience that my fast tapering did catch up with me and I'm still suffering the consequences 30 days later.

 

Jarocho

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SC,

 

I have to agree with rufus and Jarocho - slow down!

 

I am also working full time.  My goal is to get off the benzos without feeling like in hell all the time. And hopefully not to continue to suffer from w/d after I am off. So, I truly believe in a slow taper unless there is a medical reason to get off fast.

 

Yes, you sometimes just accept that you are sooo tired from lack of sleep or other symptoms, but go to work anyway. Every once in awhile I take a day off. Then, vacation for little longer, if possible.

 

If you go slow enough I think you can probably manage to hold a job and taper off your medicine.  :thumbsup:

 

tanya

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I'm not working, but if I were going at my current rate and felt like I do, I think I could. Things got very complicated there for a while, but same as everyone else, I would strongly urge you to reduce your rate of tapering. I was tapering 0.5 mg every 10 days from 5 down, and I hit a big wall at 3.5. I had to stabilize before I began tapering again. I found that 0.1 mg every 2 days worked from there, and I changed to 0.1 every 3 days below 2 mg. I have very few, if any w/d s/x at this pace. If you can get liquid V I would recommend that pace highly. But first please do try and get stabilized for your own sake, ok?  :thumbsup:

 

Tony

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Tony do you take the doxepin to sleep.  If so, does it work for more than a day or two. 

 

I am going to slow down, but if you slow down too much it stretches out this hell even longer.  Don't you become tolerant to the valium the longer you take it, thus if you stay on it long enough, even if you slow down, you are going to get withdrawal symptoms.  Maybe it doesn't work that way.  Please tell me your experience. 

 

I hate to say this, but when you are laying there night after night in insomnia, don't you ever think about just doing yourself in to just get over the agony. 

 

Thanks for all of your support.  Steve

 

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Hi Steve,

 

I take the Doxepin for sleep yes, and it has seemed to help a lot. Or... maybe I am just not in withdrawal and I'm sleeping better because of that? But I was sure it was the Doxepin. You've given me food for thought.

 

I've been on benzos for nigh on 20 years, so the idea that the w/d s/x are worse the longer you're on them seems not to apply to me.  :thumbsup: :thumbsup: Seriously, at this pace, I ain't getting any.

 

No I never thought of suicide, but I did want to die. I know how you feel. There is hope bro! I thought it would never be light again, but it is. I didn't believe it when people told me but they were right. It'll get better, just take your time please.

 

If you need any help with figuring out a slower taper, just let us know, ok?

 

T

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Tony, other things I have tried to help me sleep work for a few days and then stop.  Were things different with Doxepin.  What dosage of valium were you on when you started taking the doxepin.  I took 10mg one night and it didn't seem to do too much.  I don't want to take to much since it can make you feel a bit gorked out the next day.  Thanks, Steve.
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Tony, other things I have tried to help me sleep work for a few days and then stop.  Were things different with Doxepin.  What dosage of valium were you on when you started taking the doxepin.  I took 10mg one night and it didn't seem to do too much.  I don't want to take to much since it can make you feel a bit gorked out the next day.  Thanks, Steve.

 

Yeah Maybe I did feel "gorked" (LOL) for a while, but now I sleep about 7 hours restfully just about every night. Don't remember how much benzo I was on when I first started. It was a lot though. Yeah - 10 mg is low. I believe you have to take like 100 mg for it to be effective bas an anti depressant so 50 would be reasonable. I'll be sure and verify the dosage when I go to bed and post it tomorrow so I don;t mislead you. Oh yeah, I don't feel "gorked" in the morning, though I dread the thought of having to do anything at night. the "gorkiness" usually comes in the afternoon for me: benzo fatigue I guess they call it.

 

Sleep well.

 

T

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[e0...]

Hi Steve:

 

I have had insomnia off and on for most of my adult life, largely because of a chronic condition which requires my taking prednisone every day. I have taken 5 mg. valium as needed for the last 25 years. My chronic condition worsened last year to the point I was having severe insomnia, among other symptoms, and tried a variety of other sleeping pills, to no avail. I even had to quit the great job I had found after one year of searching because of my symptoms.

 

Then, I went to a new specialist for my chronic condition, who upped my dose of prednisone. This helped a variety of my symptoms, including the insomnia, but then I started a new job just a month ago. Unfortunately, the insomnia has returned to some degree and I am trying to manage it, but probably in not the most effective manner. I have started using valium again more regularly but am finding that, as I get accustomed to the new job, my need for the valium is lessening.

 

I am starting to accept the fact that, in addition to simply getting older, I have to take medication that affects my sleep. Stress affects me differently now that I am 52 than when I was 22. So, just today, I was thinking that perhaps it is time to try something different like meditation or yoga. So, thanks, Jules Wife, for reinforcing that idea.

 

I like my new job and honestly, I would rather endure the sleeplessness and next day fatigue on the job than the stress of not having a job.

 

Just my two cents......

 

Kristin

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I hate to say this, but when you are laying there night after night in insomnia, don't you ever think about just doing yourself in to just get over the agony. 

 

Thanks for all of your support.  Steve

 

 

Yes Steve, I felt like that last year. As weird as it sounds, it seemed like the only way to get "rest"! I was that desparate. I didn't attempt, but boy, it was there in my mind. Very scarey.

ALWAYS remember though. This will pass. But death won't. Dead is dead.

Suicide is a permanant solution to a temporary problem.

Have you tried anything like otc antihistamines? Benadryl? Unisom? If you have and they didn't seem to work well, you can try combining them with a small amount of melatonin. The only thing about taking stuff is if you take them everynight (as tempting as that may be) they don't work well. If you can take it only every three nights or so, they will maintain their effectiveness much better.

sometimes just getting a night or two of good sleep will kickstart your own sleep mechanism.

 

AS for slowing down your taper you are actually not prolonging the agony. You are reducing the agony. wd too fast is not like ripping off a band aid. It won't hurt big and then go away. It will hurt big and continue to hurt. Slow down at least half the rate you are going, if not more. You will sleep better, function better, and have less wd sx once you are off.

Slow down!!! :muscle::laugh:

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AS for slowing down your taper you are actually not prolonging the agony. You are reducing the agony. wd too fast is not like ripping off a band aid. It won't hurt big and then go away. It will hurt big and continue to hurt. Slow down at least half the rate you are going, if not more. You will sleep better, function better, and have less wd sx once you are off.

Slow down!!! :muscle::laugh:

 

Good point Linda! http://content.sweetim.com/sim/cpie/emoticons/00020165.gif

 

T

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I will slow down.  I was feeling some pressure from my doctor because I was going slower than his expectations.  Of course that makes it a little hard since you rely upon them for your medication.  I guess I could approach another physician about the taper and show them the Ashton manual.    I was due for a refill of my 2mg tablets that he hasn't renewed after a couple of days.  Fortunately, I have some 10mg tablets that I quarter into 2.5mg on hand. 

 

It took a couple of weeks to crossover from restoril to valium and figure out the dosage.  I was able to go quickly from 7.5mg to 5mg.  From 5mg I went down to 3.25 over one month, but I went from 4.25 to 3.25 over 10 days.  1mg over 10 days didn't seem out of line with the Ashton manual.  I was going to stay at 3.25 for a few days also.  I think part of it was taking some prednisone for my eye problem which I am going through in the midst of all of this.  That really seemed to set off the anxiety button. 

 

Hopefully, my physician will continue to work with me.  So maybe I can only taper.25 or .5mg per week at most.  The liquid might be interesting so you could taper by smaller increments. 

 

As far as spreading out the agony by tapering so slow, I just thought that the longer you stayed on benzos the more likely you were to develope tolerance and thus more withdrawal symptoms. 

 

Finally, the million dollar question for me is about something to help me sleep now.  I hear ejay when she says she can only take something every third night to sleep or it stops working.  I was really digging on Tony's experience where he was able to continue taking doxepin at sleep well.  My experience with calms forte and benadryl is that they only work for a night or two, but I slept five hours last night taking 10mg of doxepin.  I actually feel a little groggy and I am not at work where constant input wakes me up all day.  I am trying to decide whether to try to take it every night and increase the dosage over time if I need to. 

 

You guys are really great and helpful, I dont' know what I would do without having your input.  Thanks, Steve.

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So after three days of 3.25mg and a crash I took 4mg the next day and then 3.5mg last night.  I was thinking about 3.25mg tonite, but should I stay at 3.5 mg for a few days.  I guess this is where the liquid could really help because I could cut by .1mg or so.  This is where you guys can help me.  Thanks, Steve.
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My suggestion is stay at 3.5 until you stabilize. I did that (for a month!), and then I resumed my taper at 0.1 mg every 2 days. I got liquid Diazepam and mixed it 4 parts water with 1 part Diazepam liquid, so that 1mg = 1 ml. Then I used 2 mg tabs and liquid. So, when I was at 3.4, I took 1.5 * 2 mg tabs plus 0.4 liquid, and so on down. Never had to take more than 0.9 mg liquid Diazepam.

 

Does any of this make sense? http://content.sweetim.com/sim/cpie/emoticons/00020146.gif

 

Tony

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Yes, it does.  I can alway make my own concoction from some of my bigger pills.  I think stabilizing at 3.5 for at least a few days and then tapering .1mg every two or three days sounds good.  I wrote Colin too to ask his advice.  This is all very helpful, hopefully my doctor will go along with it.  Thanks, SC
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Yes, it does.  I can alway make my own concoction from some of my bigger pills.  I think stabilizing at 3.5 for at least a few days and then tapering .1mg every two or three days sounds good.  I wrote Colin too to ask his advice.  This is all very helpful, hopefully my doctor will go along with it.  Thanks, SC

 

Pleasure old bean! http://www.freedominmessiah.com/curtsey.gif

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Hi,

 

I'm tapering, and still working. May I add that my boss is crazy demanding and a micromanager. I had a really bad cut on February 9, so bad that I haven't cut since then. Between the withdrawal symptoms, my boss screaming at me and a general feeling of inadequacy, I've been weeping in a toilet stall and composing a new and improved resignation letter.

 

BUT. For better or for worse I'm still there. I cannot quit. I cannot quit. I have my sister to take care of and we're all alone. I spend the whole day listening to the Beatheasy mp3s. I do go to the toilet and have a good cry when I need to. I cry on the way home when it's dark out and no one can see. I cry myself to sleep at night. What else can we do in this situation?

 

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Leia,

 

Sounds like you certainly have a lot on your plate!!  When I was in withdrawal, I didn't think I could do it anymore.  I thought surely I would die..but everyday...there I was again..still breathing...still suffering.  But finally...the day came when I felt a little better..and then a little better still.  Now I am fully healed and doing great.  That day will come for you my friend...I promise.  Hang around and accept the support from these fine people.  It truly helps to talk to people who fully understand what you are going through.  and go ahead and cry whenever you need to...it's very cleansing.  ;)

 

Love,

 

Jen

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Jen,

 

It feels so good to be here!!! I've been on this board for 3 hours now! Thanks so much for your words of hope.

 

-Leia

 

Hi Leia,

 

Would you like to stat a blog of you own? We'd be more than delighted to talk to you there too. :thumbsup: Just go to Member Blogs and click on "New Topic". 

 

So happy to have you here.

 

Tony

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I'll check it out, Tony. I've already started a blog on my personal site to chronicle all of this but it's still tiny. I could port it over.

 

- Leia

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