VALIUM FOREVER!

Update - My Dr. told me I would have to stay on Valium forever - I'm not kidding
« on: October 27, 2020, 10:35:35 pm »

[Buddie]

Well, let’s just say my appointment did not go well. Now that I am done crying I wanted to share with you all what happened.

This was the appointment where I asked her if she would help set me up with a compounded liquid Valium taper. I said that I know I’m on a very small dose (2mg) but that when I tried to go to 1.5mg I had severe anxiety & insomnia. So I wanted to taper very gradually with liquid.

She said NO. She said she had talked to her supervising Dr. and that they both agreed, given my history with anxiety and getting off and on benzos, that . . . WAIT FOR IT . . . I need to accept that I will have to take it forever.

I could not believe my ears. I wish I was making this up. This is an actual licensed medical provider in the US.

I tried to respectfully make my case that I did not want to be on benzos forever, that they were not healthy to be on forever, etc. and that I just wanted her help to get off. And that I didn’t want to add on additional meds to help (she has prescribed hydroxyzine & trazodone). The hydroxyzine doesn’t really work and I’m too scared to do Trazodone for fear that I will become dependent on it. She said it’s not possible to become dependent on Trazodone.

I was in tears and by the end of that horrible call I just agreed to do what she said. Not really of course but just to end the call.

I already have another appt with a different Dr. set up for tomorrow. They originally couldn’t see me till 11/11 but called and said they had a cancellation for tomorrow. I pray this new one can help me.

“Many, many people living long, productive and happy lives while being dependent upon and using benzos as prescribed”

Re: Watch "This is Life" With Lisa Ling
« Reply #96 on: September 29, 2019, 02:21:11 am »

[Buddie]

Quote from: [Buddie] on September 29, 2019, 01:53:48 am
Quote from: [Buddie] on September 29, 2019, 12:47:21 am
Quote from: [Buddie] on September 29, 2019, 12:40:35 am
Quote from: [Buddie] on September 29, 2019, 12:36:04 am
I’m curious: Does this piece with Lisa Ling address at all, people who live long, productive & happy lives while using long-term benzodiazepines as prescribed?

No it does not. That’s a different show.

Thanks for the quick response. Do you mean Lisa Ling will be doing a different show that reflects the lives of real people who are benzo dependent and continue living long, productive & happy lives? Or do you mean there is no show that you are aware of which reflects this reality that does exist? Thanks in advance.

I’m sure those people exist. Our aim is to let people know the risks, as they will not receive it in the doctors office and are being rapidly tapered. Many people doing well on benzodiazepines became harmed by trying or being forced to stop. And many don’t. This episode is a warning about the drug, not an ode to the drug. I’m unsure if such an ode exists.

You’ve answered my questions and for that I’m appreciative. I will resist the urge to question in detail any motive(s) in you choosing to use the word “ode” to describe the reality of many, many people living long, productive and happy lives while being dependent upon and using benzos as prescribed. I will continue to extend my best wishes.
« Last Edit: September 29, 2019, 02:27:07 am by [Buddie] »

Benzo Buddies member goes back on benzos after brutal Ashton taper fails and is doing great!

a lifetime of decisions, and a long weird path back towards reinstatement
« on: July 17, 2019, 06:37:35 pm »

[Buddie]

Hello,

I had initially kept this post to a handful of staff members, but was encouraged to feel free to make a more public post.

Put simply, I am back on benzodiazepines after an extended period off, and while I have deep reservations about this, after eight months it does not yet seem to have been a mistake.

Abbreviated backstory: I was on benzos for a number of years in late adolescence / early adulthood for anxiety based reasons. I had mild tinnitus at that time (possibly attributable to many things, including a distant history of childhood ear infections). Tapering was brutal and took me 14 months, and I wrapped that up sometime in 2005. I don’t recall tinnitus ever being a problem, except briefly during parts of the taper.

In 2010, an acoustic trauma did some significant damage to my auditory system, the tinnitus turned into a wailing monster, and I used benzos again for about a year before tapering again. I spent 2011-2015 basically miserable, highly functional but chronically consumed with the violent, often painful, extremely high pitched noise in my skull. I tried all kinds of things; if there is a supplement, drug, medical practice, massage practice, alternative medicine practice that someone on Google says helped their tinnitus, I probably tried it. I also tried doing “nothing”; I learned to meditate. I learned to sleep with earplugs in spite of the noise. I spent a lot of money; I spent $10,000 to be a lab rat in one clinical trial alone (lots of travel involved).

I remain hopeful about the tinnitus treatments that are in the pipeline, but a little voice continued to say “I need to do something now”, as my life sort of passed before my eyes. I achieved significant professional success. I was able to relocate out the city to a pristine, quiet area in 2016. This did all make me feel better in some ways, but still the noise.

In late 2015, unrelated medical circumstances forced me to consider short-term PRN use of Valium, and, of course, I discovered that it still “worked” as far as taking my mind off the tinnitus. From early 2016 until November of last year, I used Valium PRN; when the tinnitus would become absolutely intolerable, I would take enough to knock it way back (usually 10-20mg over 24-36hrs), and then try to not do that again for 3-4 weeks. I became a parent over this time period, and I realized that the times I was the most medicated were also the times I felt the most joy and connection with my child. By July of 2018, I was agonizing over the idea of reinstatement, but I wasn’t sure.

I made a list of every possible tinnitus remedy that seemed reasonably attested which had not yet been attempted. It was a pretty short list which included some out there ideas like “cervical chiropracty” and “microdose psilocyban”. None the less, I crossed these items off my list as I tried them. Finally, in late November of last year, well supported by a medical team (including a prescribing doctor who is deeply aware of the hazards of benzos and necessity of a slow withdrawal), I elected to resume daily benzo use. After 2 weeks at 25% of the dose I’d previously been on long term, things felt very bad; more or less, I felt like I was in withdrawal, and I almost aborted the experiment then and there. One of my medical team persuaded me to at least attempt my full prior dose for some period of time; I also elected to supplement it with gabapentin based on some research into the combination for tinnitus specifically (and the general observation that gabapentin is much less scary than benzos, so if it can be used to supplement a benzo dose and reduce benzo consumption, that’s probably a win).

More or less I had a one month “honeymoon” where life seemed too good to be true, and as expected, that faded as tolerance became obvious and peripheral side effects also vanished. However, what I am left with, so far, is a life which is much more manageable. It’s hard to put numbers on things, but the tinnitus is more distant, it’s generally less disturbing when it does get my attention, and I’ve been able to make significant progress in my family life, in my professional life, and in therapy, which had been blocked by the state of utter discomfort, misery and despair that my tinnitus had thrown me into. The general observation of my spouse is that I am easier to talk to, more likely to listen to them, less likely to snap, and more likely to be sympathetic and caring in general.

To make a few things clear:
This was my choice and I would not encourage anyone else to do the same thing. No one’s circumstances are identical. For all I know, my use of benzos during developmental years caused problems that couldn’t self-fix, and if not for that I might not be in this situation at all. Likewise, if I had taken better care of my ears, or had better genetics around hearing, tinnitus and anxiety, I might not be in this situation. But, that doesn’t matter: the way things are, is the way things are.

I do not know the long term results of this (and neither do you) – I waited more than six months before posting this because I wanted to be sure a beneficial effect that outweighed my reservations about benzo use, would persist for some period of time after obvious tolerance had set in. It’s entirely possible that this will “stop working” at some point, and I will be left with my generally terrifying tinnitus on top of having to do another taper. But, it’s also possible that won’t happen (one of my family members has taken Klonopin with no loss of efficiency for more than 15 years) – and it’s further possible that some of the tinnitus treatments which are currently in the experimental or early marketing phase will turn out to be extremely effective, at which point attempting another taper might seem very rational to me.

I agonized over this decision more than you can possibly imagine over a five year period; eight months in, it’s given me eight of the best months of the last 10 years of my life. I am happy to answer any reasonable questions, but I ask that you respect my right to autonomy and decision making over my own body.

Gratitude for psychiatry

IN PRAISE OF VALIUM

Medical uses

Diazepam tablets (2, 5, and 10 mg)

Diazepam is mainly used to treat anxiety, insomnia, panic attacks and symptoms of acute alcohol withdrawal. It is also used as a premedication for inducing sedation, anxiolysis, or amnesia before certain medical procedures (e.g., endoscopy).[11][12] Diazepam is the drug of choice for treating benzodiazepine dependence with its long half-life allowing easier dose reduction. Benzodiazepines have a relatively low toxicity in overdose.[7]

Diazepam has a number of uses including:

Dosages should be determined on an individual basis, depending on the condition being treated, severity of symptoms, patient body weight, and any other conditions the person may have.[18]

Seizures

Intravenous diazepam or lorazepam are first-line treatments for status epilepticus.[7][20] However, intravenous lorazepam has advantages over intravenous diazepam, including a higher rate of terminating seizures and a more prolonged anticonvulsant effect. Diazepam gel was better than placebo gel in reducing the risk of non-cessation of seizures.[21] Diazepam is rarely used for the long-term treatment of epilepsy because tolerance to its anticonvulsant effects usually develops within six to 12 months of treatment, effectively rendering it useless for that purpose.[18][22]

The anticonvulsant effects of diazepam can help in the treatment of seizures due to a drug overdose or chemical toxicity as a result of exposure to sarin, VX, or soman (or other organophosphatepoisons), lindane, chloroquine, physostigmine, or pyrethroids.[18][23]

It is sometimes used intermittently for the prevention of febrile seizures that may occur in children under five years of age.[7] This use, however, is not typically recommended as the benefits are small and side effects are common.[24] Long-term use of diazepam for the management of epilepsy is not recommended; however, a subgroup of individuals with treatment-resistant epilepsy benefit from long-term benzodiazepines, and for such individuals, clorazepate has been recommended due to its slower onset of tolerance to the anticonvulsant effects.[7]

Other

Diazepam is used for the emergency treatment of eclampsia, when IV magnesium sulfate and blood-pressure control measures have failed.[25][26] Benzodiazepines do not have any pain-relieving properties themselves, and are generally recommended to avoid in individuals with pain.[27] However, benzodiazepines such as diazepam can be used for their muscle-relaxant properties to alleviate pain caused by muscle spasms and various dystonias, including blepharospasm.[28][29] Tolerance often develops to the muscle relaxant effects of benzodiazepines such as diazepam.[30]Baclofen[31] or tizanidine is sometimes used as an alternative to diazepam.

Availability

Diazepam is marketed in over 500 brands throughout the world.[32] It is supplied in oral, injectable, inhalation, and rectal forms.[18][33][34]

The United States military employs a specialized diazepam preparation known as Convulsive Antidote, Nerve Agent (CANA), which contains diazepam. One CANA kit is typically issued to service members, along with three Mark I NAAK kits, when operating in circumstances where chemical weapons in the form of nerve agents are considered a potential hazard. Both of these kits deliver drugs using autoinjectors. They are intended for use in “buddy aid” or “self aid” administration of the drugs in the field prior to decontamination and delivery of the patient to definitive medical care.[35]