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NEED ROBERT_325 PLEASE!! Ativan TAPER?
  1. #1
    cnote5000 is offline New Member
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    Default NEED ROBERT_325 PLEASE!! Ativan TAPER?

    Hello I'm 28 Years old. Been on Ativan for anxiety for about 3 years!
    I was supposed to take it as needed. My Dr. failed to tell me that it should not be used more than a few weeks.

    I saw him today about getting off of it.
    Good thing I have been keeping journals about my anxiety etc. b/c I logged when I would take an ativan or 2. etc.

    I have been using ativan on and off, but more ON than off for almost 4 years. Since 10-30-07.

    I was taking .5mg at the beginning.. then would wean off slowly etc. then I'd be back on .5mg again.

    Soon I was on 1mg a day for weeks at a time... etc. etc.

    I dont think I went over 1mg too many times, but there were some days I did take 2mg when anxiety was really bad.

    My point is, after going over my journals, I would have "strange" symptoms or sensations... my Dr. would say "That's just anxiety" take your ativan. So I would and I would chill and eventually the issue would leave. The symptoms were giving me anxiety.

    About a month ago, I was having some strange symptoms... even while taking a little ativan at night.

    I was having tingles in my fingers, and in my lips... then anxiety... my Dr. assured me it was just anxiety and to take my ativan when needed.

    Then came this 2 week period of lightheadedness (constant) and an overwhelming OFF BALANCE sensation. Even sensations I am walking and falling under the floor. Scary stuff. He told me it was inner ear probably... and said nothing serious.

    I was having terrible anxiety at this time, and kept taking 2 ativan before bed 1mg. The ativan was NOT relaxing me ONE BIT!

    I finally asked my Dr. if I could temporarily switch over to Clonazepam, he said no problem, he didnt worry about me getting addicted to it. So I switched, and stopped the ativan.

    When I took half a klonopin one night... ALMOST INSTANTLY my off balance feeling was GONE!

    I was still a little lightheaded at times but NOTHING like that.

    Soon after taking .5mg Klonopin before bed, I was getting shocks in my sleep right before falling asleep... then i also had breathing issues it felt like... followed by an overwhelming feeling all over my body. Like I was so numb felt like I wasnt even in my body? NEVER had anything like this before.

    My Dr. said it was all anxiety and said He'd like for me to cut my .5mg KL to .25mg before bed. So I did.

    Then the insomnia happend. and other strange sensations... static jolts or something through my body that would feel like a 2 second panic attack. Disconnected feelings... like I was in my body but looking through a glass seeing everyone else around me. SCARY STUFF.

    I Finally broke down and cried calling my Dr. at this point my back was feeling achy too like I had the flu? But no flu.

    He said to relax, I'll get through this and he said to take 2 ativan. I told him that I think I'm having ativan tolerance... I said 2 ativan dont do ANYTHING for me really anymore! He said well take more.

    I replied, "Dr. I love you, but I think these pills are doing me more harm than good."

    I called him again last Sunday after getting NO sleep and pacing around like CRAZY. I was crying telling him how I think I need to get off of it. He argued kind of saying "why do you want to? you have anxiety. you need it." I said, "I think it's causing a mirror effect..."

    Today we set up an appointment and he is weaning me off the Lorazepam (Ativan)

    He said he'd do it SLOWLY... since I've been taking it quite a bit for 4 years.
    I told him about the Ashton Manual, and brought it in to show him how to properly taper while introducing diazapam. He said he would not do that b/c he doesnt think it makes sense to add another pill for me to get possibly addicted to. I was kind of upset, but at the same time he was willing to help me Taper as long as I needed.

    He said for me to take 2mg of Ativan a day and stop the Klonopin.
    He said it would be alright to do the following:

    1. For 2 weeks take 2mg of ativan daily. .5mg in the morning, .5mg in the afternoon, .5mg in the evening, and .5mg at bedtime.

    2. After those 2 weeks, he's going to cut me down to 1.5mg, and stay on 1.5mg for a whole month.

    After that... I HAVE NO IDEA what he's going to cut me down to, probably 1mg, for a month, then .5mg for a month, then .25mg for a month, then .125 for a month, then every other day?

    I've seen you have kicked lots of benzos in your life. Any suggestions how to do it properly? Should I trust my Dr. ? Is this going to be a pretty easy slow taper?

    THANKS SO MUCH! PLEASE RESPOND!

  2. #2
    cnote5000 is offline New Member
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    He also told me to seek therapy while going through this. Which I am do help with my anxiety.

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    cnote5000 is offline New Member
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    Robert when will you see this? Will he? Am I posting this correctly?? I'm SO SCARED of the withdrawal I will have of 4 years of use. Like I said I DIDNT ABUSE IT. I took it as needed... mostly .5mg to 1mg on average... some days 2mg if anxiety was severe. Please help me have peace of mind of getting off these. I can manage my anxiety through therapy after I get clean! I know I can! How long will these withdrawals, if I get any last you think after 4 years of usage? GOD BLESS YOU! I HOPE YOU WRITE ME!

  4. #4
    Robert_325 is offline Diamond Elite
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    Quote Originally Posted by cnote5000 View Post
    Robert when will you see this? Will he? Am I posting this correctly?? I'm SO SCARED of the withdrawal I will have of 4 years of use. Like I said I DIDNT ABUSE IT. I took it as needed... mostly .5mg to 1mg on average... some days 2mg if anxiety was severe. Please help me have peace of mind of getting off these. I can manage my anxiety through therapy after I get clean! I know I can! How long will these withdrawals, if I get any last you think after 4 years of usage? GOD BLESS YOU! I HOPE YOU WRITE ME!



    cnote .... I've been at the dr all day, have a surgery coming up.

    You don't taper off klonopin with ativan. That is ass backwards! Ativan has the shortest half life of all benzos except for xanax. Klonopin has the second longest half life next to valium that Dr Ashton suggests using in the Ashton Manual. If you're going to taper you want to use the klonopin.

    Think about this. Ativan lasts just about six hours and it wears off. So you then start having anxiety. Klonopin lasts up to about 36 hours, so you can more easily taper similarly to the Ashton method with the klonopin. Valium that Dr Ashton suggests using has a half life of up to 100 hours or longer. But next to valium using the klonopin is your best option. Do you have any klonopin left? That is what you should be using if not the valium, What are you going to do about your anxiety problems or do they think they are induced by your dependence to the benzos which is a good possibliity? God bless.

  5. #5
    HenryNCBA is offline Senior Member
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    Cnote,
    First take a deep breath and try to relax. Robert is a pretty busy guy not just with this forum but his Church and many other things and he is also taking care of his health too. He will be along when he gets a chance.
    Several things about benzos.
    1. First and foremost is since you have been taking it for a length of time, meaning anytime past a few weeks, is that you do NOT STOP ABRUPTLY! This can be VERY harmful and I don't want to scare you but it can be fatal. Benzos MUST BE TAPERED OFF OF SO PLEASE DO NOT STOP ABRUPTLY NO MATTER WHAT!
    2. Regardless of what dosage you took or whether you abused or just followed directions it doesn't matter. Fact is once you are hooked you are hooked. Be it taking it because of an addictive personality or just following a doctors recommendations and being chemically dependant the results are the same. You develop a dependency on the drug.
    3. The electrical jolts type of symptoms can happen with benzos. Usually when a person tapers too fast or stops abruptly. Taking more will not remedy this.
    4. Certain benzos should not be mixed with other benzos and it is not advisable to bounce around. Benzos are designed to calm and help sooth not to completely cut out symptoms. They do help but if a person is super anxious the type of benzo one takes may or may not work.
    5. You may want to confront your doctor or go to another one that specializes in behavior therapy as you don't want to keep seeing a doctor that just keeps saying you have anxiety and take a benzo then when you call for help they just keep saying take another benzo and if that doesn't work then to take more. The answer is not to take more drugs but rather to treat and hopefully cure the underlying cause not to keep taking more drugs.

    A benzo taper takes much longer than an opiate taper and must be controlled diligently. The symptoms of a benzo withdrawal are also much worse than those of an opiate taper and also take much longer. Even after being clean symptoms can last for many months. That said there is no need to despair or be discouraged. You just need be patient and follow the taper plan the best you can. Taking more is also not the answer as tolerance and dependency builds quickly. I personally hate that doctors just seem to toss benzos out like candy as it is no easy thing to get clean and free from. I am no expert on benzos although I have helped a few get off of them Robert is the best on this. I do know the does and don’t about them so will be watching and cheering you on. Stay focused and remain committed to getting off of these things. Therapy also during won’t hurt. For anxiety that manifest itself as panic attacks Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is VERY successful and helpful. It is straight forward and uses fundamental logic and reasoning to help one see the error of their ways. When we become anxious things become magnified and we all have a tendency to exaggerate and blow things out of proportion. That and we start to generalize and key in on all the “what if’s”. Our rationalization is gone and everything feeds off each other and becomes magnified and askew. Ever feel like running down the street for no reason screaming in the middle of the night? When all is quite and it is night time and everyone is asleep ever get that fear that just wells up inside of you to the point you contemplate going to ER? Buzzing, pins and needles usually in your hands, feet, neck, fuzzies in the back of your neck, cold sweats, trembling and a feeling of impending doom? Ever try to sit and focus and try to slow your breathing to slow and deep only to feel flushed and possibly nauseous? How about feeling so tired that you really feel exhausted but just can’t relax and when you finally feel like you are drifting off to sleep suddenly a surge of adrenaline just MASSIVELY JOLTS you awake? You kick and thump your legs and arms down onto the bed and panic sets in along with tears. Benzos help quiet all this but in reality it just masks it. It does help calm things down but the cause is still there. These are all things that need behavior modification along with changes in ways of thinking. Cognitive therapy will help deal with all this.
    Have you been clinically diagnosed with an anxiety disorder? Is your doctor a specialist in this field or a General Practitioner or an Internal Medical Doctor? Everything ties in together hand in hand on this so attending therapy while tapering will help. If you just do a taper then the underlying issue is still there and will need to be addressed at one time or another later on and the chances of success are less. It can be done and it has been done but what I am saying is it would help to do something about the root cause while you are tapering off benzos.
    Robert should be along although I haven’t seen him on other communications we correspond on daily so he may be tied up with personal issues. He is good about getting back to folks. I have you flagged also and will follow up for you from my side as well.
    Hang in there. Remember don’t stop abruptly. Don’t take more than absolutely necessary which means do not exaggerate on dosages. Anxiety will not kill you although you may feel like it, it won’t. Even without medications the anxiety will pass if given enough time as naturally as your mind and body tires down it winds down naturally. Yes benzos can cause your symptoms so don’t panic. Yes you can be clean from benzos but must taper in a controlled and progressive manner that is not too fast. Rushing a benzo taper is a very bad thing. Slow and steady will win this race. It can be done and done very successfully so no fears okay?
    Keep posting and even if you feel that you are whining you are not. You are merely stating how you feel at any given moment. You also will have this as a historical journal that you can review later down the road and can see markedly a progression towards being clean from these medications. Once clean and free you can look back at your writings with a smile and shake your head and wonder if that person that wrote all this was even you.
    You will be just fine.
    Stay focused and we are here for you.

    Henry
    Robert_325 likes this.

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    cnote5000 is offline New Member
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    God bless you for writing! Can I wean like this without any substitute like klonopin? I've only been on klonopin for a month Maybe and weaning fast. I am getting off that now. But does my des taper schedule sound good to you? How many months should I wean? Id love for Robert to help me with a weaning regiment. Ill count how many klonopin I have left at home and post that info tonight. Maybe Robert wont think ill have to wean for 6a months. Maybe 3? I got intact with my church today and they have celebrate recovery. Its for people like me who hgotten dependent. This is not my fault. I don't crave them. Im not addicted im dependent. Im also seeking my old CBT. Therapist. DOES THIS WEANING REGIMENT SOUND RIGHT? Just slowly decrease decreasing the dosage? Thank you so much! GOD IS GOING TO HELP ME GET THROUGH THIS!!!

  7. #7
    cnote5000 is offline New Member
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    Henry could you give me a call? Just one phone call is all I need. About 9:30pm? My email is Canotechris@hotmail.com email me your number or ill email you mine. Im only 28 I have a wonderful job. A beautiful loving christian wife. A beautiful 4 year old daughter. And a 1call year old baby boy. Please 1 phone call. Thank you! GOD BLESS!

  8. #8
    cnote5000 is offline New Member
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    1st and for most, I want to apologize about my post. What was happening lastnight is that I WAS LETTING MY ANXIETY get the BEST OF ME. I'm not even going through any withdrawal right now. JUST ANXIETY.

    I called my Dr. lastnight crying. He told me that it's my anxiety and he told me to stay off the internet and I'm in good hands. He said I wasnt taking that much for 4 years. Anywhere from .25mg to .5mg to 1mg. and maybe a hand full of times 2mg, but those were on really really bad days.

    He said he doesnt over prescribe, and hates handing out these types of pills. He said that anything he has gaven me has been MINIMAL, and would NOT allow me to abuse them. He said if he thought I was abbusing them, he wouldn't be giving me them and put me on an SSRI. He said the only withdrawal symptoms I MAY have is ANXIETY. That's it.

    He said he will wean me slowly til I'm comfortable, but he said I need to seek therapy for my anxiety. He agreed ativan has just been a band-aid. But he said to stay off the internet, b/c I have done NOTHING but scared the ???? out of myself... thinking NEGATIVE and thinking CONSTANTLY about how I'm gonna be throwing up, quivering, shaking, vomiting etc. etc.

    My Dr. said if I do have any of those symptoms... it will be b/c of my Anxiety that's it. lol.

    He said CBT is where I need to be to get to the ROOT of the problem.

    You do NOT need to call me HENRY_NCBA. Sorry guys. I will make it through this. The most important thing is that I need to maintain my COOL. B/c I bet you the anxiety I'm having right now (just from thinking about weaning) is WORSE than what my withdrawal will even be. lol. =)

    GOD BLESS YOU. After a good sleep lastnight and some RATIONAL thinking... I'm going to be OKAY.

    =)

    GOD BLESS YOU AGAIN! AND THANK YOU FOR CARING AND RESPONDING SO QUICKLY!

  9. #9
    HenryNCBA is offline Senior Member
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    Hey Cnote,
    Apologize for the delayed response. This job I have has critical moments what command 100% attention not to mention a ton of time.
    The main reason doctors don't like their patients on the internet is because many of the things out there are garbage but on the flip side of that many truths are also unfolded. Doctors spent years in medical school with text book studies not to mention spending a fortune in student loans and such so they have much invested in their profession. I can understand the not wanting to listen to garbage part but what about truth? We all have to remember that doctors lean in classroom and book studies. They do their internship at hospitals. They listen to the pharmaceutical folks about drugs. They receive regular updates about various things. Memos come in daily. They have to recertify every so often. The list goes on and one but where in this vast variety of things is there anything about practical first hand knowledge of addiction, drug abuse, mental health conditions? Have they ever been an addict? Have they ever abused drugs either willingly or just following doctor’s directions? Have they ever had anxiety and or depression that stays with them to this day and affects every aspect of their daily lives? The answer to all those is “I think not”. Basically in a nut shell what they are telling you is to stay off the internet because they are afraid. They are afraid it will make things more complex for THEM! They will try to convince you that you can’t learn anything positive from the internet because everything that does not come from them is dumb. Well if the internet is so dumb and untruthful why do they have their own web sites on there? Why do they shop for things on there? Why do they communicate on there? Why do they send scripts to pharmacies on there? Why do they even research their PDR references on there? For that matter why do they even look things up on there that relates to illnesses? Sounds hypocritical doesn’t it? We on this forum would never tell you to never listen to your doctor. That would be foolish. Remember doctors are human and they don’t know everything. They are trained to never say “I don’t know” but to rather give you something that is somewhat harmless and send you on your way only to have you come back in a few weeks for a check up. The vast majority of health issues that patients go into doctors offices for are resolved by itself given enough time. The ones that are not are obvious and can be handled accordingly. Nuff said on that.
    The reason you needed to talk to someone was to hear a voice from someone that knows what you are going through because something I said hit a key note. Something triggered a response in you that said “yeah that is exactly what I am talking about and I told my doctor but my doc just doesn’t get it”. So you reach out trying to grasp back control of your psychological profile and emotions and it intensifies because the anxiety turns to fear. Ativan is a good med. Short acting but good. You would want to use any benzo only when and if needed. A trick is to ask yourself before you take that benzo is “do I REALLY need this right now or do I THINK I need it because I am in a panic state?” Take a deep breath and find a quite place and close your eyes and slow down your breathing. Right about the time before you start this you should be feeling a tingling sort of feeling on the back of your neck and you may or may not have a cold clammy feeling. This is because of a hyper dump of adrenaline into your system because your mind is running out of control and your natural defenses kick in with that fight or flight syndrome and since you have this massive amount of stimulant in your system and it has no where to go, meaning burn off, the rapidly firing nerve impulses start to magnify and collide with each other and everywhere which in turn starts your heart pounding, breathing quickens and becomes shallow, your digestive system shuts down and your muscles tense up as your blood pressure spikes. So finding a quite place take note of all this and slow your breathing consciously. Talk out loud to yourself if you have to and verbally say “STOP!” Imagine a red light, stop sign a police officer with their hand up commanding “stop”. FORCE YOURSELF TO SIT STILL AND SLOW YOUR BREATHING YOU ARE NOT DYING!!! You will break out into a sweat and feel super restless. You will want to jump up and go running down the street screaming at the top of your lungs. You will instinctively reach for that benzo but DON’T DO IT! YOU ARE NOT DYING AND THERE IS NOTHING WRONG YOU ARE JUST FEELING THE RESULTS OF AN UNCONTROLLED RESPONSE TO A STIMULUS THAT IS NOT BLOCKED OFF IS ALL. Force yourself to stay for at least 3 to 5 minutes. At the end of that if you still feel the URGENT need to take the Ativan then that is your call but at that point you should be calm enough to be able to think whether you REALLY REALLY need that Ativan or you THINK you need it. If at this point you “think” you need it you really don’t and are only reacting in a self trained manner because that is what you are used to doing. We humans are creatures of habit and we find comfort in doing things the same way. Think about that what you do the same way all the time and you will realize you do everything the same way. Try changing it once in a while if anything just for the heck of it. You may even find it fun and funny at how uncoordinated you can be. You have to be able to laugh at yourself for if you can not then what is the point?
    Getting back to doctors. Have you ever seen a doctor say “I don’t know let me ask the expert/specialist?” I think not. Have you ever heard a doctor admit they have no clue or do not feel confident enough to help and refer you to a specialist? I think not. They will not admit they don’t know and just refer you anyway without explanation. That lack of explanation is because there is none. Here on this forum you have many with real world experience and first hand knowledge of addiction and various medications/drugs. What to do, how to properly taper and such. I will admit I am no expert on benzo tapers although I have helped a couple people off of them Robert325 is the best for that. I am better at sub/opiate detoxing but will do what I can to help. Use your judgement when it comes to a doctor saying don’t listen to anyone on the internet or stay away from the internet. There has been a vast amount of people, thousands and I am not kidding about the number, that have been helped combating their addiction and coming clean off this site than what doctors have done. Subs and tapers they have no clue for the most part what they are talking about and it is a sad thing when a medical professional goes by word of mouth and the propaganda the pharmicuitical companies put out that they deem as truth and most beneficial for people. We know better and soon so will you. A doctor may tell you that internet folks have nothing to lose but I beg to differ. Doctors may lose their license, their business, their home, their reputation and what have you. We would lost the something far more important that can never be replaced and that is you. You are one of us when means to harm you would be killing ourselves. We can not allow that to happen. If we don’t know we will admit it. If we think it better you talk to your doctor we will always push you to do that. We would never ask you nor want you to do anything harmful. If something is questionable we do not go there and refer you to your medical specialist. This isn’t about me or the others here. This is about you.
    If you are sincere we will try to help you. You have the entire world of people here on this site. Folks from every corner of the globe come here. Many have walked away clean and free.
    First step is to find your underlying cause of your anxiety. The medications are just a band aide but the issue still exists. Without correcting the base cause then a band aide will always be needed and life shouldn’t have to be about worrying about band aides.

    Henry
    Last edited by Anonymous; 02-15-2015 at 04:35 AM.

  10. #10
    Better2gether is offline New Member
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    Cnote5000 you may have reactive hypoglycemia which will trigger really bad anxiety. The care for that if so is smaller meals proteins complex carbs every 3 hours no caffeine and absolutely no high fructose corn syrup corn syrup agave syrup honey polyols basically avoid sugars as much as possible limit potatoes white rice and breads stay away from Ezekiel bread hey grow there flour on HFCs. God bless fellow Christian try it anxiety may end

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