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Need help. Trying to find method for scaling back on Ativan
  1. #1
    Bonnechance is offline New Member
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    Dec 2015
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    Default Need help. Trying to find method for scaling back on Ativan

    I was prescribed ativan/lorazepam about 2 years ago (1mg, 2x a day) for PTSD and anxiety. I’m now taking an antidepressant and it is marginally helping with the anxiety issues. In addition, I started therapy again and am working on coping techniques.
    I want to taper back on the atavan. Hopefully down to .5mg 2x a day and then move to an as needed basis. I’ve tried skipping a dose and holding out but that didn’t work well. I am now trying to cut the tablets and go with .75mg 2x a day. This seems to be working ok but wondering if there is a better method that others have used. Thought about breaking it up into .25mg tablets and trying to space them out. Has this method worked for anyone?
    Also, any alternative coping methods/ideas would be appreciated.

  2. #2
    Catrina is offline Diamond Member
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    Bonnie,

    You are doing the exact right thing to taper. The goal is to take just a little less a little at a time. Cutting each dose instead of eliminating one is a good choice, I think. Your post raised one question for me. You mentioned cutting the doses to even smaller amounts and taking them more frequently. My question is, does taking it more frequently help you in terms of being able to take something as opposed to needing to? I'm not sure how to word this so that you understand my question and what I'm trying to get at so I'll use myself as the example. For some time after I was done taking (in my case it was opiates) I found that I was reaching for Excedrin or most anything over the counter and I realized it was simply to satisfy my need to take something. This is just a point for you to consider and to be aware of.

    The bottom line is that so long as you remain taking the same dose or you are reducing, then I don't think it really matters. At some point, it will be easier and more natural to just eliminate a dose (or more if you're taking the smaller amounts each time). My one concern of frequent dosing of very small amounts is that you just might have a bit of trouble mentally to eliminate one. Does this make sense? I'm having trouble trying to explain my train of thought.

    Good luck.

    Peace,

    Cat

  3. #3
    Bonnechance is offline New Member
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    Thanks, the stepping down from 1mg to .75mg twice a day seems to be working well. I’m going to try cutting a bit more off next week and take it slowly. It is a little messy breaking the tablets apart with my nails.

  4. #4
    Ehm n Ehms is offline Member
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    Bonne,

    In the same boat as you, not sure if you're still around here or not, but I'm a Marine, served 10 years, first in an MEU(SOC) and then the rest doesn't really matter because we all saw and did too much anyway.

    My point is this though, If this if what you want to do and the anti depressants are helping and you think you cut back or get rid of the benzo great! I just got off my SSRI a little over 12 weeks ago, next to go is the Benzo. But as you know bento withdraw is really (along with alcohol withdrawal) the one that can kill you, and put you at severe risk of seizures, amongst the other fun mental aspects of Benzo WD, and even if you're cutting back the way you are you SHOULD tell your prescribing Dr you'd like to taper so he can put you on an anti-seizure medication. That is what is normally done in a situation like ours with getting off our benzo's when we feel we don't need that crutch anymore.

    I don't mean to sound like a therapist (No disrespect to you PhDs here) but have you ever tried meditation for your PTSD and anxiety. Granted it was quite difficult for me in the beginning. I'm a Marine my father is a Marine and was a Drill Instructor at Parris Island, so needless to say I'm not good with the touchy feely stuff. But in regards to my Anxiety and PTSD to an extent "Guided Meditations" really helped me get out of my head for a little and really relax without taking an ativan. Non guided are what I started with but there was too much anxiety and noise in my head, my thoughts kept wandering, it's a bit difficult at first and that's why the guided meditations are so nice, they keep you focused, and your mind off the anxiety.

    Anyway, if you're still on the boards I would advise your prescribing Dr, so you can take the safest and correct measures

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