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Coming off Xanax/Gerax after roughly 8 years
  1. #1
    keepthefaithalive is offline New Member
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    Default Coming off Xanax/Gerax after roughly 8 years

    Hi guys, first off I want to say thanks to all that contribute to the forums, I read some excellent posts!!

    What I want to ask you is, basically I went on Gerax/Xanax about 8 years ago because I had some trouble sleeping after our house was burgled and somehow I've stayed on them.

    I was prescribed 1 x .5mg at night, so I was/am on just tab at night time, and have been for the past 8 years. I just decided yesterday that I wanted off them so I went to my doctor and he said fine, he cut my dose down from a .5mg at night to a 250 micrograms tab at night. Basically just halved my dose.

    I just started this last night and had trouble sleeping last night, woke up a few times and could'nt go back asleep, but eventually drifted off.
    Then today, felt light headed, pains in tummy, the odd pain in chest area and felt irriated, but as the day has went on I feel a slight bit better, and it's getting close to my time to take my tab now.

    Doctor told me to take the .25 for 1 month and then half of that for 1 more month and then thats it I'm done with them.

    From reading the forums, it seems my dose over the years is not too high but already I feel terrible after first day of cutting down.

    Do you reckon my cutting down process is sound ? and I know everyone is different but as in my dose, is it right to be feeling like this just after cutting down, and when I finish up completely, should I be expecting worse withdrawls ?

    cheers and thanks in advance

  2. #2
    iloerose is offline Platinum Member
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    Hi! Xanax is one of the harder benzos to detox as it has such a short half life, however, you've been on a low dose, but for a long period of time. The symptoms you were experiencing are very typical w/d symptoms from the drop in xanax. Your drop is 50% and I wouldn't drop that fast. I'd have taken the .50mg. split into quarters and taken three quarters for 10-14 days and then slipped to .25mg. for 10-14, from their split the .25 or you have the .25mg. split that into quarters and take three quarters and go down slowly from there. You may be just fine, but any, any, symptoms that trouble you call the doctor or go to ER, not trying to make this sound scary, but you know your own body. Keep track of your symptoms: those symptoms can dog you for awhile. With benzos slow and steady wins this race.

    Peace,

    Iloerose

  3. #3
    keepthefaithalive is offline New Member
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    Hi and thanks for the reply!

    Yes I'm not sure what to do to be honest, it's like my mind is sharp as usual, but slower at spitting out my words and feel groggy and pains every now and then in my arms/hands... Really didn't expect this to be honest, and like countless others if I would have known what I was in for, no way would I have started on them. It's even been a total hassle having to make sure to get my prescription all these years and just want clean of it now.
    The sleep bothers me, bothers me a lot. I got a great sleep over the years taking the xanax and last night was my first restless night in a long time, and I didn't like it at all.

    The doc gave me a 3 month prescription to give into the pharmacy which I did so I run out in 2 months time. Do you reckon I should break the .25 into halves and take 3 halves rather than just the 2 ?
    I thought the 50% drop was a bit steep to be honest but the doc thought nothing of it and as I said, take the .25 for 1 month and then half of that for another month and that's it....

    Thanks for the reply by the way, much appreciated

  4. #4
    keepthefaithalive is offline New Member
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    Just want confirmation that I'm doing my maths right here before I do anything else... I was on .5mg per night, I now have a packet of 30tabs of 250micrograms of xanax, the doc cut me in half so to take 1 of the 250micrograms per night... I'm feeling pretty >>>>>>.... so I could take 1 x 250micrograms, and half of another for say 2 weeks, then down to 250micrograms, then down to half that after 2 weeks for the remaining month and leave it at that.... Am I correct in that ? Sorry if I'm being confusing here... or should I just grin and bear it... and solder on ?

    Cheers

  5. #5
    iloerose is offline Platinum Member
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    That's what I'd do. Exactly what you are saying. That gives your body and brain time to adjust, I'd try it to see if the w/d effects go down. I can tell you right now, sleep may be an issue, but perhaps not as bad if you don't taper too fast and do not stress about the insomnia. If you can't sleep, simply relax, try some meditation, just don't fight it. Make sure you get plenty of exercise, that seems to help. Whatever you do: try NOT to stress. Yeah, benzos downright suck and many doctors just do not know the symptoms and consequences of long term benzo use. You will make this though.

    Peace,

    Iloerose

  6. #6
    keepthefaithalive is offline New Member
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    Thank you for your kind words and advice, very much appreciated. Right now I'm just about to go bed and before I saw your post I'd just gone and taken the .25 and so far I feel ok, compared to last night. I'm going to give it this one night and if I feel yukky in the morning then tomorrow night I will break the .25's up and take 3 halves.

    After the withdrawls eventually do go away, will sleep pattern return to 'normal' or does it leave permanent sleep abnormality ?

    Again, thanks for the info and support

  7. #7
    iloerose is offline Platinum Member
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    Everyone is different as far as w/d's go. If your current dose is going to work for you, that would be good. So far, all your symptoms are pretty typical. The symptoms will go away in time. Sleep patterns will re-establish, if you cannot sleep try some sleepy time tea and after you are off, melatonin, which is a natural sleep aid. Sleep will return although it may take awhile. Benzo's effect the production of gaba (you also have receptors in your gastric tract, stomach). It takes longer for these receptors to start producing on their own. If you need to, and feel those feelings of not being able to form words, numbness in your hands, I'd go ahead and take that little piece tomorrow whenever, I don't think it will make you sleepy, but may take away those symptoms. If those symptoms are worse tomorrow and concern you: get to your doctor or ER. I won't lie to you about that, benzo w/d can cause seizures. I don't think you will need to do this, however. Just keep track of your symptoms. The feeling like you have a rapid heartbeat, spaciness (not dizziness), mental slowness, insomnia, all go with the territory: slurred speech (different from being slow to form words), numbness, feeling like you're going to faint, vision problems(double vision, seeing stars): Doc ASAP or ER. Being on a low dose is a plus for you, but takes time to heal.

    Peace,

    Iloerose

  8. #8
    keepthefaithalive is offline New Member
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    Hi guys, I just want to update this thread for the benefit of others for future ref.

    In just under 2 months I've kicked xanax/gerax, it was only a .5mg but I was on it for roughly 9 years.
    It's been 3 days since I took my last tab and I reckon that's it for me, I won't take another one.

    I dropped from .5mg to .25 on doctors advice and it was hell to say the least. What I think was worst about it was not knowing how long I'd feel the way I did. All in all I had 3 days of hell and then it subsided bit by bit.
    After 3 weeks I went down to half of .25mg, and after another 3 weeks I'm off them completely.

    I know I was on a relatively small dosage compared to some threads I've read but I think if this is done slowly like I did it's doable for anyone to do.
    If someone asked me how I feel now.... well I feel the same as I was on them, nothing more nothing less but just glad I don't have the hassel of taking them at night anymore.
    I've been taking them - xanax for 9 years and never could miss one and now its strange I don't take tabs at night, I feel a certain pressure has been lifted or something like that.

    Anyway, thanks to all who posted in my thread, the support was very much appreciated, and it was very much needed when I started out on my journey to come of these tabs.

    Good luck to everyone in the future who wants to come off these, yes it can be a little hard, but a little effort and perseverance and you WILL get off those tabs!

    Iwantoff2013 and iloerose like this.

  9. #9
    Stuckinthemud is offline New Member
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    Hey I'm glad you've kicked off 2015 Xanax free. I've done alprazolam before short term for a month but 3 to 4 mg nightly, stupid hey but as a benzo it's highly addictive and withdrawal hellish. Thank god that although you took it for 9 years or so it was only 0.5mg daily. So well done and I hope any anxiety in quitting this stuff is now lifting a month or two now down the track..
    iloerose likes this.

  10. #10
    swalt2493 is offline New Member
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    I have been taking 1 gram as a sleep aid for 10 years. I just found out that in 18 months when I turn 65 and go on Medicare, Xanax is NOT on the Medicare formulary and doctors are forbidden from prescribing it. So I have to go off it. My doctor simply gave me the news and offered NO advice on how to go off it. I figured I would have some sleepless nights, but I never dreamed things would get so bad so fast. I cut the dose from 1 gram to .75 for 5 nights. I didn't sleep well, but at least I did sleep. By the 5th day I slept about 6 hours, so I figured it was time to cut it to .5 and things went to hell. No sleep, and by the start of the 3rd day at .5, I began to have anxiety attacks and they were pretty strong. So that's when I started to use the internet and found this forum. It may have (I HOPE) saved me a lot of pain and anguish. I upped the dose back .75 and will stay there for 2 weeks, then I may drop it to .66 (the pills are pretty small, but I will do the best I can) and keep it there for 2 weeks, then to .5, and so on and so on, until I can get off them completely. Anyone have any more advice for me? Thanks in advance.
    Last edited by Anonymous; 06-03-2015 at 04:40 PM.

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