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  1. First of all, thanks for your wonderful site. I found a lot of info on here that really helps me. I am currently laying on my bed at my mums house and I don't know what to do. So i've started an account, maybe you guys can cheer me up. (I am crying while I am writing this) I am in a horrible state at the moment. I lost a lot of weight and muscle, I am feeling numb in my head and I am scared of everything. Scared of my own thoughts, my body, all pills and the future. It all started when in 2010 (I was 19 at the time) I was diagnosed with something, I don't even know what really, nobody told me. At that time I just dropped out of high school, was depressed and anxious. (I think i've been anxious most of my life) I even had thoughts about ending my life, but I never really wanted to. The doctor put me on Lexapro 10 mg and the next day after my first pill I had more energy and calmness, it was great. It didn't do anything about the anxiety but I just took them because I thought they helped me. I went on with my life for several years. I had a job and I had a few good friends and I was quite oke with it. My life didn't progress whatsoever but I could function and even had some great times. Over the years I became more anxious, stopped seeing friends more and more and stayed in my tiny apartment. This was the only place where I could really relax. I also started to have lots of pains and aches, I was sweating a lot more and I gained a lot of weight. In the beginning of 2015 I had more stress because my mind would not shut up. When I was finished with a days work I was still think about everything that happened that day and what I did wrong. It was like the whole day repeated in my head. Soon this over thinking of things was getting out of hand and my stress level rose. At the peak of it all, the tiredness, the stress, and the anxiety (Ive developed more and more anxiety for stupid things, like even going to work at one point made me anxious) I stopped Lexapro within four days. My Psych wanted me to go to venlafaxine but I never did. I stopped lexapro in November 2015. After stopping lexapro I had a few good weeks when suddenly everything hit me. Panic, insomnia, sweating, intrusive thoughts, restlessness, extra stress and tiredness. I became ashamed of myself and I was so in doubt with myself. This al cleared after a few weeks and I had a few great days where my mind was calm, I could sleep, I could laugh with friends and go out of the house without any anxiety. This window was even better than I could remember being it in all these years. After that I had a few **** days and a few good ones until now, May 2016. I've had al sorts of things happen to me. I've been using benzo's to get some sleep but most of the days I hardly get any. My mind is sometimes very blank and sometimes hyper, Ive had episodes of extreme suicidal tendencies, hot flushes, cold flushes, aches, pains, muscles weakness, depressive episodes, numbness, lots of severe panics, self doubt and shame. I hardly can go to work and go out of the house. What is happening to me? Currently ive been om Ativan 1,0 off and on, sometimes for a week at a time to sleep, sometimes only a few days per week since march 1st. I went to the doctor and he wanted me to reinstate Lexapro, but when I did that last night (5mg) I got super hyper and anxious, almost manic. I jumped around in my bed didn't sleep at all. This morning I took 1mg of lexapro but I got a bit hyper after taking it, that is now subsiding. Ive lost complete control over myself and I am scared for thing to come. For instance every night I am scared to go to bed. What if I don't sleep? Ive looked up info on the internet to the extremes and that isn't helping. After the ativan works out, I get a massive panicy intrusive thoughts shakiness. Or maybe it is just me, not the ativan. What should I do now? Carry on with reinstating lexapro? Stop the Ativan? Stop everything and see if i can do without all the pills? I am so tired now that I nearly don't want to go through this anymore. I am losing my social life, my job and everything. I used to have a lot of passions and enjoyed life. When do i get to my old self again? Who is my old self? Thanks for reading, Steve.
  2. I'm a new member here and am looking for support and community while I continue to taper from Paxil and Ativan. My story is a rather long one, but I will try and keep it short. In 2001 I went to my doctor for advice on quitting smoking. I specifically asked for Zyban, as I had friends who used it and it worked. I was 24 years old. My doctor gave me the prescription and off I went. I took the medication for 3-4 months and stopped c/t. I had no idea that Zyban was actually Wellbutrin and that you aren't suppose to just stop taking an antidepressant. Of course I did realize this until many years later. So the c/t left me with panic attacks, high anxiety, agoraphobia and depersonalization. I obviously thought I had some kind of psychotic break. My parents and fiancé were quite worried. I lost my job be ause i couldn't leave the house and I was worried that we would lose the house we just bought (we didn't). My parents took me to a psychiatrist who "diagnosed" me with Panic, Generalized Anxiety and OCD. That appointment would set me up for 14 years of medication. The psychiatrist prescribed 10mg of Paxil and sent me on my way. I never saw him again. My GP fulfilled my prescription for the next 14 years. After about 6 weeks on Paxil all the awful symptoms go away and I'm so relieved that I actually believed that I did in fact have a chemical imbalance that the medication had/was correcting. Looking back, Paxil just masked/fixed the cold turkey SNRI withdrawal. Fast forward to 2007, I am married and I have 2 beautiful children. I "feel" like I'm happy but at a distance. I feel flat, I've gained a lot of weight (which I attributed to pregnancy), I'm tired/lethargic (chalked up to having young kids) and not overly interested in much at all. At this point I've been telling my doctor for years about these symptoms, along with restless legs/GI distress/headaches, and the dose was continually raised. At one point I was on 60mg (for about 6 months) but mostly spent the years at about 40mg. In 2008 I left my husband. I was a wreck but knew it was the right thing to do. I also had decided I wanted off Paxil to go with my fresh start. I believed the weight gain and lethargy was from the Paxil and was ready to dump it. Over the course of 2 years I "tapered" as per doctors instructions, which always proved to fast. My slowest taper was 6 months. I always had intense symptoms which my doctor told me was my original "condition". Late 2011 I found PaxilProgress and realized what was happening. I was relieved, scared, angry and for te first time in years.....hopeful. Unfortunately, I had just made a large drop from 40mg to 20mg. So I updosed to 30mg and held for 6 months to stabilize. Stabilization eventually happened but it took awhile. By this time I had found a new doctor who supported my new taper plan (10% every 4-6 weeks using a compounding pharmacy). The unfortunate part was that he prescribed me Ativan, as needed, while I was stabilizing. As educated as I had become in AD's I had no clue what benzodiazepines were For two years I took Ativan PRN (2-3x per week) while tapering Paxil. In 15 months I was down to 15mg and functioning relatively well. I was able to continue working, continue all my sports (hockey, yoga), actively engage in parenting, and get married. I was however experiencing a lot of anxiety again, increase in GI upset, blurry vision, dizzy spells, existential thoughts, depression, etc. I figured it was just the natural course of Paxil withdrawal. I figured it was getting harder the lower I got in dose. Hindsight is 20/20 though because I now firmly believe I was having interdose w/d from the Ativan. In Jan 2014 I was hospitalized for a leg injury and prescribed 2mg Ativan DAILY as a (leg) muscle relaxer and to sleep. The day after my discharge I experienced the most horrific w/d. For me, Paxil w/d was a walk in the park compared to being cold turkeyed off a benzo. I was flooded with suicide ideation, I couldn't stop crying, heavy DP/DR, incredible muscle tension, migraines, vibrations, tremors, undulating, sweats, agoraphobia, panic attacks....the list is endless. My doctor immediately told me to start taking my Ativan everyday like the hospital had done. In his defence, he was afraid for me, and didn't know what to do. He wanted me to go back up to 30mg on my Paxil and I refused. So here I am.....a year later. I stabilized back on the Ativan, found BenzoBuddies and I've tapered from 2mg to .37mg of Ativan and it's been a much bigger challenge than my Paxil taper ever was. I feel weary, battle fatigued and plain old worn out. My Paxil taper has been on hold for the last year so I am still at 15mg. I'm terrified of what my future holds. Suffering is getting really tiring. I guess I shouldn't have tried to quit smoking!!! Lol.
  3. Hi there - I've been lurking on the site for weeks now, but decided it was a good time to go ahead and start my own thread. My background is that I went in for plastic surgery and was given a mix of meds that made me go nuts. I was given high doses of prednisone for 5 days (which is known to cause mental issues) and wasn't tapered. The doctor had given me ativan to use as needed and I only took 7 pills over a 10 day timeframe before realizing how bad they were. I still wasn't sleeping so I was given ambien but only used it for 5 days due to the addictive nature. I didn't sleep for 3 days and freaked out and went to my first psychiatrist appointment ever. She prescribed me gabapentin to use as needed between 300-1200mg/day and doxepin at 10mg. I took this cocktail for a week and still only ever slept for 5 hours at a time, so she added Remeron. I took Remeron at 15mg for 5 days and at 7.5mg for another week. It really screwed with my brain even more. I couldn't concentrate at work and was all over the map and I felt really mentally slowed. I started having really scary urges, so my family brought me back to my home town and I stopped taking everything. The first 5 days was okay - I was able to sleep for 5 hours every night and then the next week all hell broke loose. I wanted to reinstate but since the meds never helped a bit I decided that it wasn't worth it. It's now 6 weeks after and I'm still having a really rough time. I'm very OCD and I'm afraid that I'm never going to heal. I went a good week sleeping about 7 or 8 hours a night but now panic and sheer anxiety have set in and I'm just obsessed over the idea that I'll never be the same. I've been taking OTC medication to help me sleep, and for a while I didn't have to take anything at all. I've been getting twitches all over and right now the back of my skull is tingling. I feel scared. I feel like such a fool - I never asked for this and it's scary as hell. I'm trying to go to work and be productive, but it's insanely hard without sleep and I just feel like I'm coming unglued. I know that I've been getting better. I can see the progress, but I'm so scared of more stuff coming in the future. My sleep is all over the place mostly because I'm super anxious and afraid that I'm dying and I feel compelled to contact another psychiatrist (one recommended on this site) but I don't know what they would do with me. They would just offer more drugs which I don't want to take. So, I feel stuck between a rock and a hard place. The biggest thing for me is sleep - which hasn't been good ever since the surgery. I don't know what to do about that. Everything gets worse when I don't sleep and I'm so scared of not sleeping for a week!
  4. Hi all, I'm so happy I found this site! After experiencing absolutely horrible anxiety/OCD and extreme insomnia (literally didn't sleep a second for more than a week), I was put on Paxil 5mg and Trazodone + Ativan to help me sleep. I was able to get off the Ativan quite quickly and weaned the Trazodone down to the lowest dose (50). After a few months on that, I decided with my psychiatrist that it was time to wean off the Paxil. I did a month at .25 mg and had no problems so I thought it'd be easy to go completely off. Not the case at all! It's been 5.5 weeks now and all of my anxiety/OCD and insomnia are back. I'm feeling so hurt, disappointed, confused, and just plain sad. My psych OKed going back on the Ativan + 150mg of the Trazodone. I have an appointment with her Monday to discuss going back on an SSRI. I would love some advice on this. How long to ride this low wave before going back on something? Since I'm off, is it best to stay off? The Paxil really did help but I'm proud of myself for being off, so should I ride this low wave? How long do these symptoms last, in everyone's opinion? Just looking for support and encouragement. I'm so thankful this site and you all exist!
  5. Hummingbird

    Hummingbird's Hello

    Hello, I am in the process of an ativan taper. I started on Ativan at 1 mg and about 10 years later I was on 2.5 mg. In 2011, my dose was raised very drastically to 6 mg A. Then I was switched to 6 mg K. Took 6 mg K for 6 months, but that drug was just too powerful for me and was causing many problems. Was also put on Lamactil at that time. Was on lamactil for about 3 months and got off it. Very bad withdrawal from Lamactil. Had so much trouble and so dysfunctional that in desparation I found a new doctor, who returned to me to ativan at 8 mgs. Caused very severe withdrawal for about 6-10 months. That whole time I was still tapering. I am now on .875 mg Ativan. Would just like to be here for support as my withdrawals started in March 2012 and I have been tapering ever since. I have been on many drugs, mainly for short periods of time, with the exception of ativan and zoloft. I was on a low dose of zoloft for the past year but c/t it in June of 2013. I am only on Ativan now. Hello, and I look forward to being here.
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