My story starts with a trip to the ER for what were some dizzy, lightheaded symptoms I was having. I remember the day clearly, I had been painting our bedroom and although I had had episodes like this before, this time it was much worse. All the tests were normal and my doctor told me it was a middle ear issue and sent me to an ENT. Unfortunately the doctor was very busy and spent little time with me. He gave me a prescription for Ativan and said that the condition I had would just go away. After 6 weeks of taking Ativan I was dependent but didn’t know it, in fact I didn’t even know what a benzo was, because I’m stupid and have lived under a rock for the past 50 years. I was told to stop it, since it was a very low dose, for a vestibular wellness test, and that’s when I became very ill. Little did I know that I was going through withdrawal. My doctor said it wasn’t the Ativan because I had stopped it 2 weeks before. All the many medical tests came back normal. I was indeed anxious at this point and having so many scary symptoms, rather than keep trying the many sample meds my doctor gave me, which also made me ill, I decided to see a psychiatrist.
After being diagnosed as severely mentally ill, I was put on clonazepam and many antidepressants and other medications that my sensitive system could not tolerate. I began to feel sicker still and went for more tests and procedures. Around this time I started to research my medications, and asked my doctor many times about the safety of taking the clonazepam long term. My psychiatrist was on the right route, he just took a wrong turn. He’s stupid. He had my hormones tested as well as my thyroid because he didn’t see a psychological reason for the anxiety and other symptoms. After changing doctors once again, both my new doctor and I decided the medications were making me ill. I came across the Ashton Manual and we used it for a cross over to Valium since I was finding it difficult to taper from the clonazepam.
I found BenzoBuddies after I finished my taper and as with many here I so wish I had found it earlier. This has been the hardest thing I have ever done, but the most important. I am so much more proactive about my health and knowledgeable thanks to the people here at BenzoBuddies. They provided me a safe, kind and caring place to come whenever I needed encouragement or validation that what I felt was normal for withdrawal. This is a community of believers, believing that recovery will happen, that healing will occur, that Ashton and Colin are our gurus. Never lose sight of the goal to be benzo free, every day is a step in the right direction. I am happier than ever before even though I am not completely healed and I am so happy to be able to give back to those who have helped me so much.
« on: January 30, 2018, 01:58:23 pm »
I went to see the psychiatrist just after Christmas. I have intrusive thoughts and she wanted to change my antidepressant to help this. So I had to come off 100mg Nortriptyline and she gave me six weeks to do that. My dose was made up of 4x25mg tablets per day. So I cut down to 75mg. I felt okay and was optimistic. However, ten days after I’d gone down to 75mg I felt worse than ever and my intrusive thoughts were completely out of control. Now I am barely functioning. I have talked to the psychiatrist and we agreed to go back to 100mg. I am seeing her again next Wednesday. But now I am stuck in bed and the situation is much worse. I don’t know what to do. Any ideas? Thanks.
Re: How do we know if it's withdrawal and not an underlying condition?
« Reply #2 on: December 29, 2017, 03:17:04 pm »
Quote from: [Buddie] on December 29, 2017, 03:01:02 pm
I’ve been on benzos for about 11 years. Not slowly taper to 2MG Valium. I had severe reaction when I tapered too quick to 0- panic attacks, brain fog, insomnia, total chaos as we’ve all experienced or read about here.
I kept thinking it was withdrawal from going too fast. But now that I am back stable at 2MG I had this though that the symptoms I experience when off benzos are exactly what I experienced when I got on them in the first place. Was in a rough transition patch in life in my 30’s and had panic attacks, surreal feelings, insomnia, etc- that’s why I started to taking K and it helped.
It’s sort of a scary thought to think about- that I may have some underlying condition that requires these meds as opposed to it being only withdrawal. That is scarier to me than the thought of battling my way down from 2MG to 0.
I know people don’t like to consider this but it’s got me a bit twisted lately. After battling so hard for so long to get off I am wondering if I just need a low dose for rest of my life– which would really suck. Rock and a hard place- on them I feel lethargic and apathetic, off them is absolute hell and chaos that I can’t do for more than a few weeks.
Anyone ever consider this?
Well, I guess you should be diagnosed by at least 10 different sensible pdocs, to know if you have a chronic condition. In other words, dual diagnosis. By good pdocs, not by quacks. There’s nothing worse than a wrong diagnosis. It’s like a stigma. You keep asking yourself: “what if I have it?”, “maybe I have it?” The worse is when you start thinking and acting as though you had it. And pdocs often tend to misdiagnose ppl. There is always DSM-5 to check if your symptoms correspond to the diagnosis. A must-have. But I suggest first undergoing a thorough psychiatric evaluation before even opening this book. Ever heard of medical students who diagnose themselves with every possible condition? Actually, it’s possible to download this stuff online. I was recently diagnosed with bipolar by an “eminent” pdoc 🙂 How lovely. No one has diagnosed me with bipolar before. How come I can function without APs, mood stabilizers and have never had a single manic episode in my whole entire life? I wish I had just one… To feel really good for a day…
« Last Edit: December 29, 2017, 03:28:01 pm by [Buddie] »