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roverds: Advice needed


roverds

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hello everybody,

 

i am a 43 yr old male.  Over the last 8 months i have been suffering from debilitating anxiety and panic attacks which has debilitated me to an extent that i can't get out of the house nor take care of myself. My bout of anxiety and panic attacks started after I stopped drinking alcohol coldturkey in January. Ever since then i have been experiencing severe anxiety and panic attacks. My blood pressure spikes to 180/110 and pulse to 130 during a panic episode.  I met a psychiatrist today and  he has put me on Paxil 12.5 mg and etilozam 0.25 mg as a rescue dose for panic attacks. He has told I might need to take it for about an year or so.  I needed advice from the group should i start taking paxil and will it be safe to continue it for an year. I am looking for advice and suggestions from  the group. Considering my current situation, that  I am completely home-bound and have severe panic  attacks, i feel it might  help me to get to my feet and start becoming functional, but again the  thoughts of getting hooked to it and the difficulties later is making me very anxious and more tensed now. So looking forward to any advice from the group.

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  • ChessieCat changed the title to roverds: Advice needed
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Hi, Roverds.

 

Welcome to Surviving Antidepressants.

 

I'm very glad you are researching these drugs before starting them. It's likely that coming off alcohol suddenly created a destabilized nervous system, which is now hyper-reactive. So a clean diet, gentle exercise, and learning some breathing and mindfulness techniques will serve you far better than subjecting your nervous system to even more chemicals. 

 

47 minutes ago, roverds said:

I met a psychiatrist today and  he has put me on Paxil 12.5 mg and etilozam 0.25 mg as a rescue dose for panic attacks. He has told I might need to take it for about an year or so.  I needed advice from the group should i start taking paxil and will it be safe to continue it for an year.

 

Psychiatrists are only trained to give out drugs. This wasn't always the case. Before they sold out to the pharmaceutical companies, depression and anxiety used to resolve on its own. Please see:

 

 

History We Can’t Overlook Anymore: Details Before the Anti-Depressant Era

 

And:

 

Now Antidepressant-Induced Chronic Depression Has a Name: Tardive Dysphoria

 

Psychiatrists are trying to fix a disease that doesn't exist, and this has been proven. Please see:

 

Again, chemical imbalance is a myth. Stop the lies, please.

 

All it takes is 2 - 4 weeks to become dependent on etizolam and a month to become dependent on Paxil (or any other antidepressant). 

 

 

52 minutes ago, roverds said:

My bout of anxiety and panic attacks started after I stopped drinking alcohol coldturkey in January.

 

The drug your doctor prescribed, etizolam, is a benzodiazepine analog, meaning it has the same dependency and withdrawal as a benzodiazepine (sometimes called a "benzo").  These drugs frequently cause rebound symptoms, so while it may help initially with a panic attack, the rebound symptoms, especially over time, will make your anxiety much worse. 

 

Also, benzos and alcohol both work on GABA receptors, so using a benzo (or a benzo analog) to cope with lingering symptoms from an alcohol cold turkey is not wise. 

 

Paxil has it's own withdrawal syndrome, as well. In fact, the Royal College of Psychiatry recently changed course and now states that antidepressant withdrawal is severe and there's now a movement to have the official guidelines changed so that patients are warned of a severe withdrawal: 

 

Anti-depressants CAN ruin lives: Major U-turn as psychiatrists say millions of patients MUST be warned over severe side effects

 

It's also in the academic literature:

 

A systematic review into the incidence, severity and duration of antidepressant withdrawal effects: Are guidelines evidence-based?

 

There are many things that can cause anxiety. It could be unresolved trauma and / or grief. Could be nutritional deficiencies. It could be a spiritual crisis or lack of meaning in life. 

 

But when you go to a psychiatrist, they are trained as medical doctors and will treat you with drugs. You will benefit more from mindfulness, restorative yoga, eating nutritious food and eliminating sugar, caffeine, and processed food (our bodies were never meant to ingest these types of chemicals), and breathing techniques have been found to be quite effective.

 

If you had a long history of alcohol use, you may not have had the opportunity to learn from your fears and anxieties and develop better coping skills for future life adversities. This is similar to those of us here on the forum who used psych drugs for years to numb our emotions - we now need to learn other ways of coping. We refer to these as non-drug coping skills and we have a lot of resources available for free: 

 

Non-drug techniques to cope with emotional symptoms

 

Many of us find mindfulness to be especially helpful for feelings of anxiousness. As my favorite mindfulness guru Mooji says, "Your thoughts are just visitors and you are NOT a hotel! Don't invite them in!"

 

In other words, just let your anxious thoughts pass by. No need to engage. Let your anxiety and panic be an opportunity for you to practice this. In time, your non-drug coping skills will become automatic. 

 

Dr. Jon Kabat-Zinn is a regular go-to for people going through withdrawal, especially his body scan: 

 

Jon Kabat Zinn Body Scan Meditation GUIDED MEDITATION video (45 minutes)

 

And breathing exercises are also very helpful: 

 

The Breathing Space by Jon Kabat Zinn video (4 minutes)

 

4-7-8 Breathing: Health Benefits & Demonstration

 

Try this at night to ease you into sleep and away from anxious thoughts:

 

Guided Meditation Deep sleep | anxiety and insomnia relief | relaxation before bedtime video (21 minutes)

 

When you feel yourself starting to get anxious, try a breathing exercise and then work on not going into a spiral:

 

Dealing With Emotional Spirals

 

We don't recommend a lot of supplements, as many members report their nervous systems are simply too fragile to handle them. However, magnesium and fish oil tend to be calming to the nervous system and many people report they do help. Please only add in one supplement at a time and at a small dose. For more, please see:

 

 King of supplements: Omega-3 fatty acids (fish oil)

 

Magnesium, nature's calcium channel blocker

 

Please add a signature.  Include drugs, doses, dates, and discontinuations & reinstatements in the last 12-24 months. Also include supplements. This will help us give you the most accurate advice we can. 

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I know this is a lot of information, but I would put the drugs away and give yourself plenty of time to research these drugs before making a decision. And definitely try the breathing techniques and guided sleep meditation and see how you feel. 

CURRENTLY AWAY FROM THE FORUM

 

Drug free May 22, 2015 after 30 years of neuroleptics, benzos, z-drugs, so-called "anti"-depressants, and amphetamines 

 

My Success Story:  Shep's Success: "Leaving Plato's Cave"

 

And what is good, Phaedrus, and what is not good — need we ask anyone to tell us these things? ~ Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance


I am not a medical professional and this is not medical advice, but simply information based on my own experience, as well as other members who have survived these drugs.

 

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My favourite techniques for anxiety (I wish I would have known about before taking antidepressants and maybe I could have avoided them) :

 

Books and recordings by Dr. Claire Weekes:  The Dr. Claire Weekes method of recovering from a sensitized nervous system

 

Relaxation exercises for calming the nervous system:  Relaxation exercises, guided meditations, calming videos, sleep hypnosis

 

2001–2002 paroxetine

2003  citalopram

2004-2008  paroxetine (various failed tapers) 
2008  paroxetine slow taper down to

2016  Aug off paroxetine
2016  citalopram May 20mg  Oct 15mg … slow taper down
2018  citalopram 13 Feb 4.6mg 15 Mar 4.4mg 29 Apr 4.2mg 6 Jul 4.1mg 17 Aug 4.0mg  18 Nov 3.8mg
2019  15 Mar 3.6mg  21 May 3.4mg  26 Dec 3.2mg 

2020  19 Feb 3.0mg 19 Jul 2.9mg 16 Sep 2.8mg 25 Oct 2.7mg 23 Oct 2.6mg 24 Dec 2.5mg

2021   29 Aug 2.4mg   15 Nov 2.3mg

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Thanks Shep  and Songbird  for your valuable suggestions  and feedback. No matter how much i am tempted to start  those meds because of my current disabled situation, I would give it  some more time  and  would try out the things  that you both have mentioned above. I very desperately want to get back to my feet. I have been a very  active guy until  the  last 7 months and i am so debilitated now  that  I am dependent on my aged mother for everything. I haven't been able to get out of the  house  for  the last 6 months and  this had made me  more anxious and panicky.

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Are you thinking anxious thoughts? Or are you just feeling panic attacks? Are you someone who suffers from an anxiety disorder? Or is the panic attack from your alcohol withdrawal? Is it a combination of both?

 

if your panic attack triggers frightening thoughts it grows bigger and eventually your nervous system is so sensitive it will trigger fearful fight flight in everything, you will lose the ability to care for yourself and develop agoraphobia 

 

in in these cases I think you need to be on an antidepressant and sedative and allow weeks to months to allow it to work and level out, then take lots of rest. If you still have anxious thoughts you might need to see a psychologist who specialises in anxiety.

 

but if you are going through alcohol withdrawals then that would be another system of your body that would cause similar symptoms and you might want to seek up advice from psychiatrist 

Lexapro

10mg 11/2018 -  4 weeks

20mg 12/2018 - 4 weeks

20mg - 0mg - 01/2019 - 02/2019  - taper 6 weeks - WD symptoms

10mg - 03/2019 - 6 week reinstate

03-04/2019 taper 10,7.5,5,2.5,0mg as instructed by dr.

0mg - 04-06/2019 - WD symptoms again.

accute symptom cleared follow by protracted symptoms still ongoing

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  • Moderator Emeritus
2 hours ago, TriD said:

in in these cases I think you need to be on an antidepressant and sedative and allow weeks to months to allow it to work

 

@TriD we generally do not recommend drugs here.  We are trying to help the OP to avoid them by using other techniques.

2001–2002 paroxetine

2003  citalopram

2004-2008  paroxetine (various failed tapers) 
2008  paroxetine slow taper down to

2016  Aug off paroxetine
2016  citalopram May 20mg  Oct 15mg … slow taper down
2018  citalopram 13 Feb 4.6mg 15 Mar 4.4mg 29 Apr 4.2mg 6 Jul 4.1mg 17 Aug 4.0mg  18 Nov 3.8mg
2019  15 Mar 3.6mg  21 May 3.4mg  26 Dec 3.2mg 

2020  19 Feb 3.0mg 19 Jul 2.9mg 16 Sep 2.8mg 25 Oct 2.7mg 23 Oct 2.6mg 24 Dec 2.5mg

2021   29 Aug 2.4mg   15 Nov 2.3mg

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  • Administrator

Welcome, roverds.

 

On 6/6/2019 at 3:24 AM, roverds said:

My bout of anxiety and panic attacks started after I stopped drinking alcohol coldturkey in January. Ever since then i have been experiencing severe anxiety and panic attacks.

 

It sounds like you might have had a substantial alcohol dependency. You have a post-alcohol withdrawal condition. If I were you, I would not transfer this to a psychiatric drug dependency, I'd find a drug and alcohol rehabilitation counselor who uses non-drug therapies. Joining Alcoholics Anonymous might also help you find solutions.

 

We do not offer counseling in drug or alcohol rehabilitation here.

This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

"It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has surpassed our humanity." -- Albert Einstein

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