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I went to my doctor today to tell him that I was tapering off the klonopin. He said that I didn't need to and that I could just take it "as needed". I told him I was afraid of becoming addicted and going through withdrawal and he told me that it won't happen to me because I am on such a low dose and I am so conscious about it that I won't let it happen to myself. He said even if I need it daily addiction will not set in and he will know if it has if I ask to up my dose, but by then wouldn't it be too late? Makes no sense to me. And ever since I went down to .125mg and today no pill at all I have felt bad. I told him this and he said that it's just in my head and that I will be fine. Now I have no idea what to do :( The real kicker is that he is HEAD of psychology for a whole hospital!
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It's so frustrating isn't it?  When you say you don't know what to do ... what does that mean?  Do you have enough pills to finish a taper?
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I went to my doctor today to tell him that I was tapering off the klonopin. He said that I didn't need to and that I could just take it "as needed". I told him I was afraid of becoming addicted and going through withdrawal and he told me that it won't happen to me because I am on such a low dose and I am so conscious about it that I won't let it happen to myself. He said even if I need it daily addiction will not set in and he will know if it has if I ask to up my dose, but by then wouldn't it be too late? Makes no sense to me. And ever since I went down to .125mg and today no pill at all I have felt bad. I told him this and he said that it's just in my head and that I will be fine. Now I have no idea what to do :( The real kicker is that he is HEAD of psychology for a whole hospital!

 

You make sense.  On the other hand, your doctor does not.

 

How do you feel about finding another doctor?  You don't mention how many tablets you have left.  Perhaps you have enough to taper off?  Please write back.  You matter.  We care.  :) Hugs, Laurie

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You've been on 0.5 mg a day for about a month.

 

One usually does not get very dependent on a low/moderate dose for such a short timeframe, physically.

 

Your taper was a bit fast.

 

But you'll probably feel 'bad' no matter how you withdraw.

Those endless tapers can be a real agony.

It is possible to taper too slowly.

 

A long taper is probably not a good idea if you've taken it for a month. You could become even more dependent on the drug.

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I have enough to taper, but I have been feeling awful lately. I feel like I did before I went on the klonopin, which was pretty bad. I don't know if what I am feeling is withdrawal or if it's my anxiety just coming back full force. Whatever it is, it's difficult to get through the work day and my regular activities. When this first happened, before the klonopin, I took 2 weeks off work because it was so bad and I had no idea what was wrong with me so missing more work isn't really going to be something that I can do right now. I don't know what to do. Should I continue tapering off? Or should I continue to just take it when I need it? According to the doc, I can take it when I need it and not become addicted to it. But according to everyone here, that is not the case. I have only been on it a short time but is it enough to become addicted? I don't mind changing doctors, but it took me a month just to get in to see this guy, so I'm sure the wait for another doctor will be long. I'm just feeling so lost.
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It is difficult to say how long it will take for each individual to become dependent on a benzo. 

 

I believe I became dependent somewhere around the 2 week mark.  I never knew I was dependent

until I tried to stop taking benzos.  It's almost 12 years later.

 

I am sorry that you are suffering right now.  I truly am.  You make sense.

 

I traded a temporary problem (anxiety) for a very long term problem (benzo dependency and withdrawal).

 

If I could have a "redo", I would have gone to cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and learned how to address my

automatic negative thoughts that were causing my anxiety and associated depression. 

 

Anxiety is not a "disease", it is a problem with thought distortion and can be successfully treated without medication.

 

You are in a unique position of having knowledge of the problems associated with benzo dependency and withdrawal.

 

Until recently, I never knew that benzos had been making me very ill for a very long time.

 

Perhaps you can continue with your benzos and give CBT a minimum of 12 sessions.  This would give you some tools

in your toolbox.

 

What I wish for you is wellness.  I would never wish what I am going through on my worst enemy.  It is cruel.

 

(((((((((((((((((Hugs)))))))))))))), Laurie

 

 

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Thank you Klonkers :)

 

I am sorry that you suffering. I hope things get better for you. Living with anxiety is horrible, I know. And had I not found this site I wouldn't of ever known that benzos, while they do help me immensely, will eventually do more harm than good. My problem is dealing with my anxiety without them...

 

What exactly is CBT therapy? And where can I find a place that does it? I have never heard of it.

 

Thank you again for your reply.

 

 

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' I feel like I did before I went on the klonopin, which was pretty bad.'

 

That suggests it's not withdrawal, but the condition you were in before you started taking Klonopin/clonazepam.

But I'm not sure.

 

There may be some confusion about the meaning of 'addiction'.

For some people it stands for the urge to continue to take it, usually in increasing doses to achieve some kind of 'high'.

But if you continue to take this drug daily you will probably develop some physical dependency.

Even if you take it a few times a week you will develop some dependency because the drug has a very long half life.

 

Hey, I started at a low dose too.

 

For the record, if you take antidepressants or antipsychotics you'll get dependent on those drugs too.

 

CBT= cognitive behavioral therapy

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Well, I really don't want to take it at all but I don't know what else to do in regards to the way I am feeling. I can't really figure out where the feelings are coming from. Are they from being off the pill, or from anxiety? I really don't feel "anxious", but I mentally feel foggy/dizzy/not myself. I have horrible headaches. I feel like if I don't lay down, I will just pass out. It doesn't feel like anxiety, although it never did. But that's what I was diagnosed with.
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sunkisd, so sorry you are having problems with your health. Most doctors can write scripts but don't have a clue about withdrawal. you really have to look at cui bono (who benefits). It has been "my" experience that whatever you took a benzo for in the first place will be 10x worse after taking it. Maybe before you get in too deep you should just sit tight for awhile since you don't know if your anxiety is from a previous condition or the klonopin. Klonopin is such a powerful drug and builds up in your system. It's really a catch 22 with these drugs in they will calm your anxiety but give it right back to you ten fold. very confusing I  know. I believe you said you were taking the klonopin for a month. That is probably more than enough time to start feeling weird coming off it. Laurie said she only took it two weeks and is still dealing with it after twelve years. As far as a taper, scott is probably right in it may do more harm than good,rstud
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Well, I really don't want to take it at all but I don't know what else to do in regards to the way I am feeling. I can't really figure out where the feelings are coming from. Are they from being off the pill, or from anxiety? I really don't feel "anxious", but I mentally feel foggy/dizzy/not myself. I have horrible headaches. I feel like if I don't lay down, I will just pass out. It doesn't feel like anxiety, although it never did. But that's what I was diagnosed with.

 

Perhaps the focus shouldn't be in the first place on Klonopin/clonazepam.

 

'Anxiety' can be a catch-all diagnosis if the doctor just doesn't know what's going on.

Is fear not a prominent feature ?

 

Foggy/dizzy/not myself. Horrible headaches. Could that perhaps be something seizure/migraine/epilepsy-like ?

'foggy/dizzy/not myself' could point to derealization/depersonalization, dissociation, past trauma ? Chronic high stress ?

Perhaps a somatic disease that was not recognized ?

I hate to sound like a doctor, but if you don't feel anxiety I wonder about the diagnosis.

 

Get a second opinion ?

 

Are you taking or have you been taking any other (prescription) drugs ? That could be relevant.

 

In any case, if you continue to take Klonopin daily you'll develop most likely some physical dependence.

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hi sunkisd :), this is a hard one to call. you will have to weigh your options. I can only talk of my own experience and at first the benzo helped me but after awhile no matter how much I took I still felt worse than before I was taking them.

 

when you say

"I can't really figure out where the feelings are coming from. Are they from being off the pill, or from anxiety? I really don't feel "anxious", but I mentally feel foggy/dizzy/not myself. I have horrible headaches. I feel like if I don't lay down, I will just pass out.. ".

this sounds to me like withdrawral symptoms.

 

and when you say

"It doesn't feel like anxiety, although it never did"

I want to ask

What were the conditions of your original diagnosis?

I mean, why did you go to the doctor originally?

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Hi Sunkisd,

I'm of the belief that if you don't feel anxious (or stressed), it's not anxiety. I think doctors use this as a catch all, as someone said before. That doesn't help you though when you're feeling so bad. Obviously we're not in a place to offer real advise about what it might be, and you should have your doctor run tests, but could it possibly be allergies? A lot of what you're describing could be common with allergies. Have you moved recently? The seasons are changing, the air is dry, and people's allergies are acting up. Definitely keep yourself hydrated. Also consider a possible food trigger, say aspartame or something like that. Watch your diet and see if maybe something's effecting you there. Have you added any supplements or medications that could have triggered this? I personally don't think you should accept "anxiety" as a diagnosis. I did for a while and unfortunately that was wrong, it was allergies (to benzos, ha :)).

 

Hope you feel better soon.

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Laurie said she only took it two weeks and is still dealing with it after twelve years.

 

Sunkised,

 

I wish I only took K for 2 weeks :( 

 

I believe my physical/psychological dependency began very soon after I started taking benzos in 2000 - probably a few weeks.  I "woke up" to discover that almost 12 years had passed and I was still taking them even though the original indication (anxiety from an anti-depressant) was long gone. 

 

But, what is, is. 

 

A great book to find out about Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is "Feeling Good" by Dr. David Burns.  It takes a commitment and willingness to do the exercises, but you will be more than rewarded by doing them by being able to get rid of anxiety for good without being dependent on medication.  Another great book is "Hope and Help for your Nerves" by Claire Weekes. She teaches how to get rid of anxiety without drugs.

 

Once you understand that you can control your symptoms of anxiety, you will never feel the need to take medication. 

 

:) Hugs, Laurie

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I would also recommend Clair Week's book.  It has been invaluable to me.

 

The physician's assistant that prescribed and got me hooked on klonopin diagnosed me with an anxiety disorder, although my only symptom was insomnia.  After 8 years, and several increases, I switched doctors and started tapering.  My current doctor doesn't believe that my symptoms are from withdrawal, but he is no longer pressuring me to quit (I gave him a copy of the Ashton Manual).  I would recommend that you get another opinion.  Perhaps some counseling with a psychologist who can work with you on some relaxation techniques would be helpful (it helped me).  I would stay away from long-term benzos though.

 

I hope it all works out for you.

GMLB 

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