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Is it possible to become addicted to Benzos almost immediately?
  1. #1
    stilletto is offline New Member
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    Default Is it possible to become addicted to Benzos almost immediately?

    Hi all. I am in pretty bad shape and wanted to bounce this off some of you before I go to the Doc. Bear with me, you may need the back story to figure this one out.

    Years ago (around 1997) I stupidly began taking Xanax. Not every day, merely .5 mg once every 2 to 3 weeks for about 2 months.
    Then Stopped. Not long after I started experiencing what I called dizzy spells, mixed with a bit of brief derealization. At the time I had no idea what was happening, was prescribed decongestant, antibiotics, etc....docs were stupid about these things then. All I knew is that one .5 mg tablet would stop it cold in about 20 min. That's when it hit me that it was withdrawal. And I was hooked for 7 years. I averaged about .75mg a day.

    Finally I convinced the Doc to help me taper down and eventually switch to Klonopin, and slowly taper off around 2006. I have been free of benzos ever since.

    However....not free of the residual frayed nerves that would plague me, but nothing I couldn't handle on my own.

    Enter 6 months ago.....I was under extreme stress in my life and had about seven .5 mg tablets of Klonopin on hand.
    I would break them in half, sometimes in quarters and take them occasionally over the course of 3 or 4 months. That is practically nothing at all, right? I also started taking GABA supplements, which quite honestly had no discernible effect at all.

    However, about 1 month after taking the last of the Klonopin, I began having derealization again. And SEVERE panic.
    At least I think that's what it is. It feels exactly what I used to experience many years ago in withdrawal from xanax.
    It has progressed to a near untolerable state. Here are my current symptoms:

    Dizzyness, derealization, muscle jerks (like my stomach growling makes me jump as in a reflex type way), rubber legs, afraid of walking to the car without falling, feeling trapped at red lights, disturbing thoughts....kind of like I think of something and it becomes crystal clear but it's not my own thought...and it feels wrong...does that make sense? Brief feelings like I am going to black out but never do...waiting in line at the store is unbearable, I am afraid I am going to collapse before I get through it. The list goes on and on.
    Here is the kicker.....If I take .25 of Klonopin, I fell calmer but not on the very inside, if you know what I mean. However,
    If I take a 2 MG Xanax Tablet and gently scrape it with a knife to get some shavings, approximately the size of half a grain of rice.....I feel almost completely normal again. It would take me a week to get through one 2mg tablet this way.

    Is it even possible to become addicted so quickly off so little as the Klonopin and Xanax? Sounds impossible,I know.
    Would my history of Xanax addiction make this possible? After so long? I know what my withdrawal feels like and this seems to be it, unless there was something more serious wrong with me this time. I can't figure this out and I don't really know what to say to the Doc on Monday....I have switched doctors and he isn't going to know my history....I feel pretty lost.....

    Sorry for the wall of text but it's hard to put this in smaller words.

    If anybody could give advice I would appreciate it!

  2. #2
    Catrina is offline Diamond Member
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    May I ask? How long have you been taking the benzos again on a daily basis? Can you also guess what the total mgs you are taking every day? The answers to these questions will help us better understand how much and how long you've been taking it.

    It doesn't take long to develop dependence of benzos but if I'm reading your post correctly, these symptoms started when you were only taking .25 once in a while. The symptoms you describe sound more like severe anxiety attacks. It would make perfect sense then that you responded to the xanex. Can't rule out benzo withdrawal though until you answer those two questions.

    I'll check on you later or in the morning.

    Peace,

    Cat

  3. #3
    stilletto is offline New Member
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    Thank you so much for your reply.

    I have only been taking .25mg Klonopin and estimated <0.10 xanax for about three days now because I just can't function without.
    But I have been waiting until i can hardly walk to take it, because I really don't want to. This is probably not smart.

    Before, leading up to this mess, I was taking about .25mg Klonopin about 3 days a month thereabouts.

    Do you think it's possible that I am having rebound anxiety more so than withdrawals?

  4. #4
    Ricky71 is offline Platinum Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by stilletto View Post
    Hi all. I am in pretty bad shape and wanted to bounce this off some of you before I go to the Doc. Bear with me, you may need the back story to figure this one out.

    Years ago (around 1997) I stupidly began taking Xanax. Not every day, merely .5 mg once every 2 to 3 weeks for about 2 months.
    Then Stopped. Not long after I started experiencing what I called dizzy spells, mixed with a bit of brief derealization. At the time I had no idea what was happening, was prescribed decongestant, antibiotics, etc....docs were stupid about these things then. All I knew is that one .5 mg tablet would stop it cold in about 20 min. That's when it hit me that it was withdrawal. And I was hooked for 7 years. I averaged about .75mg a day.

    Finally I convinced the Doc to help me taper down and eventually switch to Klonopin, and slowly taper off around 2006. I have been free of benzos ever since.

    However....not free of the residual frayed nerves that would plague me, but nothing I couldn't handle on my own.

    Enter 6 months ago.....I was under extreme stress in my life and had about seven .5 mg tablets of Klonopin on hand.
    I would break them in half, sometimes in quarters and take them occasionally over the course of 3 or 4 months. That is practically nothing at all, right? I also started taking GABA supplements, which quite honestly had no discernible effect at all.

    However, about 1 month after taking the last of the Klonopin, I began having derealization again. And SEVERE panic.
    At least I think that's what it is. It feels exactly what I used to experience many years ago in withdrawal from xanax.
    It has progressed to a near untolerable state. Here are my current symptoms:

    Dizzyness, derealization, muscle jerks (like my stomach growling makes me jump as in a reflex type way), rubber legs, afraid of walking to the car without falling, feeling trapped at red lights, disturbing thoughts....kind of like I think of something and it becomes crystal clear but it's not my own thought...and it feels wrong...does that make sense? Brief feelings like I am going to black out but never do...waiting in line at the store is unbearable, I am afraid I am going to collapse before I get through it. The list goes on and on.
    Here is the kicker.....If I take .25 of Klonopin, I fell calmer but not on the very inside, if you know what I mean. However,
    If I take a 2 MG Xanax Tablet and gently scrape it with a knife to get some shavings, approximately the size of half a grain of rice.....I feel almost completely normal again. It would take me a week to get through one 2mg tablet this way.

    Is it even possible to become addicted so quickly off so little as the Klonopin and Xanax? Sounds impossible,I know.
    Would my history of Xanax addiction make this possible? After so long? I know what my withdrawal feels like and this seems to be it, unless there was something more serious wrong with me this time. I can't figure this out and I don't really know what to say to the Doc on Monday....I have switched doctors and he isn't going to know my history....I feel pretty lost.....

    Sorry for the wall of text but it's hard to put this in smaller words.

    If anybody could give advice I would appreciate it!
    Hello and welcome to the forum. First off let's start off by saying that you definitely do not have a Benzo addiction and I'm going to go further and say I don't think you have a benzo dependence either, there is difference between the two just so you know!

    Your history with benzos is so minimal in dosage and frequency of use that there is something else going on in my opinion?

    Keep in mind that klonopin is slow acting with a very long half-life and xanax is fast acting with a very short half-life. Because of this the xanax is stronger and will take away anxiety and/or panic attacks much quicker than the klonopin would!

    And you just started feeling this way after a month from your last benzo (klonopin) dose, makes no sense? If it was directly related to the benzos then these symptoms would start alot sooner! You might want to consider dropping the Gaba supplements to see if there is any difference? You may also want to try an otc supplement made by Hyland's called Nerve Tonic instead of the benzos? What do you think? Update when you can? God bless us all!

  5. #5
    stilletto is offline New Member
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    After digesting what you all have said so far, I am starting to get a picture of what might be happening.
    My system is VERY sensitive to anything altering my brain at all. That's one reason I won't touch pot, which is possibly what started my nervousness in the very beginning as a teenager.

    I look back to 1997 and wonder if I should have sought other means of dealing with the "perceived withdrawals" other than years of benzos.

    Anyhoo, I imagine if I had not taken the Klonopin at the begging of this recent ordeal that I would be better off right now.

    So maybe I am not in withdrawal, but in hyper anxiety (rebound) because of the benzos.

    Should I continue for a while longer on the Klonopin I wonder? Currently, I cannot seem to function at work without it.

    Does the Nerve Tonic help greatly? I have in it my cart now at Amazon.....

  6. #6
    Ricky71 is offline Platinum Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by stilletto View Post
    After digesting what you all have said so far, I am starting to get a picture of what might be happening.
    My system is VERY sensitive to anything altering my brain at all. That's one reason I won't touch pot, which is possibly what started my nervousness in the very beginning as a teenager.

    I look back to 1997 and wonder if I should have sought other means of dealing with the "perceived withdrawals" other than years of benzos.

    Anyhoo, I imagine if I had not taken the Klonopin at the begging of this recent ordeal that I would be better off right now.

    So maybe I am not in withdrawal, but in hyper anxiety (rebound) because of the benzos.

    Should I continue for a while longer on the Klonopin I wonder? Currently, I cannot seem to function at work without it.

    Does the Nerve Tonic help greatly? I have in it my cart now at Amazon.....
    The Nerve Tonic does have a calming effect, for me a least. It's not going to work anything like a benzo! The Nerve Tonic can be purchased at Walmart and most drugstores as well as online.

    If you continue to take the klonopin I would only take the lowest effective dose and try not to take it too often or you will develop an dependence. It would also be advisable to see a doctor who is "benzo wise", a doctor that has a strong background and understanding of benzodiazepines? You also should do some research on natural remedies for your symptoms, alot of times you may have deficiencies in certain vitamins, minerals, etc. that can cause anxiety, panic attacks, depression, etc...? I hope you find some answers and relief soon? Keep us posted? Take care... God bless us all!

  7. #7
    Rockbottombounce is offline Junior Member
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    It sounds like you may just be dealing with supreme levels of anxiety. This happens to me once in a while especially when thinking about high stress situations and things of that nature. I feel as if I'm about to pass out, my legs turn to jelly, I can't breathe. Idk much about benzos but it really sounds like that may not be the problem at all and you're just dealing with high levels of anxiety.

  8. #8
    Charmcity22 is offline New Member
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    I've been taking ativan 0.5 and 1mg for 7 weeks as needed for severe anxiety and am scared that I have built a tolerance myself,I've never used benzo' s in the past and am scared,I hope you get the answers needed as this site is great.i like how the meds help with crushing anxiety but don't like how they are addictive.

  9. #9
    Anonymous Guest

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    I appreciate going through withdrawals after regularly taking .5 mg of klonopin three times a day for years. It took weeks to sort things out, particularly not thinking clearly at all. I’d space out with the sensation of being lost in my apartment, or out driving. I’ve pulled off the road, feeling very out of control. I felt like I would get a DWI, not due to active drugs, but just the fierce withdrawals. It eventually all passed through. It took about two months before I felt normal, or at least mostly functional. I don’t know how it would affect others, but I imagine the PAWS-type sensations would last at least a month, maybe longer. Good luck with it all, benzo withdrawal is not easy to deal with. I ended up in the hospital, delusional and nearly psychotic, it wasn’t fun that first week.

  10. #10
    eazzye is offline Member
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    it’s definitely possible. i’ve been on klonopin for about 5 years now (i have severe anxiety and it allows me to live a normal life) and this past month my prescription was stolen. i filed a police report and everything and luckily my doctor decided to write me an emergency script, that will last until i can see him again.

    the two weeks i went without it were pure HELL, i couldn’t sleep for more than 30 minutes at a time. i’d wake up at 5 in the morning every single day and then the dry heaving would begin, my body felt like jolts of electricity were going through it.

    so YES, you can most definitely get addicted and FAST. if you don’t truly need the medication, please don’t take it.

    i know i am new here, but that’s just my experience.

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