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Babz: I never should've got on this CRAP! (gabapentin)

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babz

Back in late November I got off of clonazepam "cold turkey", and it was HORRIBLE!
A few months before that I got off of hydrocodone, but that was quite literally nothing in comparison...
But then I made the idiotic mistake of trusting another doctor/medication that "wasn't addictive", and it goes by the name of neurontin (or gabapentin)...
I'm not addicted to it as in I want more, but my body is apparently dependent on it.
I first realized this a couple months ago when I missed a dose and started feeling like I was back in the first week of benzo withdrawals.
I haven't been on it for more than maybe 4 months now, but that doesn't seem to matter, and I'm really scared!
Nevertheless, I want off of it!
I finally talked to my doctor about 3 weeks ago about it, and he decreased the mg by over half : /
I was supposed to be on 900 mg a day, but for some reason I only got up to 600 (which is a good thing).
He only prescribed me 200 mg (a day) though.
For the past 3 weeks I've been using my "extra" pills to tide me over while I've been bugging my doctor to change the mg to something more like 500, but I finally gave up today and went and got the 200 mg script.
I still have 7 of the 300 mg pills, so I'm thinking I could use them to taper, but it'll just have to be a really fast taper...
Like 2 days of 500, 2 days of 400, and 3 days of 300, then I can stay at 200 until I "chill out"?
I don't know, maybe I shouldn't be freaking out so much, but coming off of benzo's was insane!
I saw the forum that said something about water soluble, but I don't have any test tubes...
Granted, I should probably read the whole article, but I saw what was needed and clicked out of it in frustration.
ANY advice would be HIGHLY/GREATLY appreciated!!!!!
I'm in college and last semester was so rough that I can't do as poorly this semester, but I swear this Neurontin makes me feel worse.
I also really believe that it's caused me to have "negative" thoughts, paranoia, and to top it all off... weight gain!
But seriously, I can't go on like this, but I'm scared of the time between now, and being off of them...
I'll shut up now though, thanks in advance!
 
P.S. One of my biggest reasons for being "scared" is because I'm alone a lot. I live in a "dorm", but I have my own (tiny) room that nobody ever really comes into. So if I were to have a seizure (or whatever) because of coming off of this stuff, I doubt I'd "be found" for at least a week : (
Maybe it would be more like a few days, but still...

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mammaP

Hi Babz, welcome to SA.  You are in good company here, we have all been where you are

with doctors who don't have a clue!

 I would go back to your doctor and ask him for the full 600. Then start your taper your way!

 We recommend cuts of no more than 10% of the current dose every 4-6 weeks.  

 

PLEASE DO NOT attempt the fast taper, you will could end up with awful withdrawal

symptoms that can last for a long time!  

 

How much are you taking now?  You don't need test tubes, we have an excellent thread on 

making solutions from tablets. You will find that here  http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/2693-how-to-make-a-liquid-from-tablets-or-capsules/

 

And the topic for tapering Neurontin http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/2309-tips-on-tapering-neurontin-gabapentin/?hl=neurontin

 

Don't panic hun, you can get off this drug safely, it just takes time.  The awful side effects usually

lessen as you taper down to lower doses. 

 

It would help us if you put your drug history in your signature strip.  When started and stopped, and

doses,  this will help us to offer the best advice. 

 

Here is how to do that. http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/893-please-put-your-withdrawal-history-in-your-signature/

Edited by mammaP
Edited to include link

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babz

Thanks for replying.
I'll try to get back on 600 mg, but I doubt he'll do it. He still thinks I was on 900 mg, and he only gave me 200 mg to shut me up.
If I do end up having to taper faster, at least I'll have this site to turn to.
I talked to 3 different pharmacists who all told me not to believe the internet, and that I'd be fine going from 600 mg to 200 mg, but I know better..
I'm glad I know, because it would be even scarier if I didn't know what was going on, but it still sucks.

 

 

Does anybody know if magnesium really helps?
I've heard it helps with withdrawals from benzo's and Neurontin, but Neurontin isn't a benzo... Really?...
 

Also, if I cut 10% off, I could possibly make the taper a little longer, just a side note.. That's just if I can't get back on the 600 mg.

I'm an insomniac on Neurontin (it's 4:44 a.m. and I haven't slept), I'm not looking forward to how I'll be during the taper, haha...


 

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Altostrata

Welcome, Babz.

 

Do you mean the Neurontin keeps you from sleeping?

 

Any doctor can prescribe the drug. Are you able to communicate better with any other of your doctors?

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babz

Strangely enough, yes.
Back when I first started taking it it made me sleepy for the first couple of days, but then it stopped.
Now it makes me unable to sleep when I want to, and unable to wake up when I finally do sleep.

 

The worst part about it is the way it's changed my way of thinking though. It's scary.

 

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sunnydays0912

How has your thinking changed? I've experienced this as well. My meds have made me have scary thoughts.

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babz

I feel like something "evil" is "out to get me".

Plus I'm extra paranoid, partially because of the "evil", but also just in life.
I always have anxiety, just not quite as bad as it's been recently.
I've also noticed that I've been more irritated.
It's just weird, and kind of scary.
I feel like I'm losing my mind at times too.
I've been praying a lot more recently though...
Oh and my imagination has been running wild with some pretty scary images...
I HATE IT!

 

And to answer the question from earlier.. No, I don't know any doctors that will help me if my current one fails to.
I moved here about a year ago and I've been treated like crap from all of the doctors in this area.
I'm really going to try to move over the summer partially because of this if I'm able to transfer (again)...

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Altostrata

Strangely enough, yes.

Back when I first started taking it it made me sleepy for the first couple of days, but then it stopped.

Now it makes me unable to sleep when I want to, and unable to wake up when I finally do sleep.

 

The worst part about it is the way it's changed my way of thinking though. It's scary.

 

 

 

Okay, this is an indication the dosage is too high for you and you're getting a paradoxical reaction.

 

Would you consider reducing by 10%?

 

You may be experiencing bad feelings because you've found you can't trust doctors. A lot of people here have trouble with this before they come to terms with taking care of themselves.

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babz

I had to deal with the realization of not being able to trust doctors at the end of last year, but it's really set in recently.
I had moved back to my old town because I transferred schools, and so my current doctor is actually the same doctor that I had as a child.
He even delivered me.

Don't get me wrong, he means well, but he's apparently ignorant to a lot of this mess.
I just got off the phone with the doctors office trying to get "bumped back up" to 600 mg (so I'll be able to taper slowly), but it didn't sound too promising.
The nurse is going to ask him and call me back later, but until then, I'll be "sweating bullets".
Going from 600 mg to 200 mg? I might as well just go cold turkey if that's the case, right?
 

Just to get an idea, I went down to 500 mg yesterday. It wasn't anywhere near as bad as it was when I got off of clonazepam, but it's definitely not something I can really deal with right now.

That's interesting though, about the dose being too high causing me to be unable to sleep.
It just seems like it would be the opposite.
Good to know though, thanks :)

 

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Altostrata

Tell your doctor you're already experiencing withdrawal symptoms, you want to reduce, but you want to do it in a way you feel comfortable.

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babz

The doctor finally called in 600 mg again.
I only took 300 mg today and I'm still able to function.
I'm trying to find my "sweet spot", as in how low I can go before having intolerable w/d's...
My main issues now have been hot flashes, continued sleep issues, tingly/crawling sensations, and (what I would call) "brain zaps".
I'm not sure of what "brain zaps" actually means, but I've been having some serious "zone-out-moments", and other random things that I would think could qualify to be "brain zaps"...
Anyway, it doesn't matter what they are, the fact is is that it's my brain and something's going on, so I'm going to try going back up to see if the "brain zaps" stop (or at least become less frequent)...

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Altostrata

How long have you been taking 300mg? Please don't go up and down, this confuses your nervous system.

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babz

Up until Monday (4/7/14) I had been taking 600 mg. Since I only had so much to work with, and I wasn't sure if they were going to help me or not, I went ahead with a faster taper. Plus I was wanting to see how I'd react to it.
On Tuesday, 4/8, I took 500 mg.
Yesterday, 4/9. I took 400 mg.
And today I took 300 mg.

 

I don't need to go back up to 600, but would going back to 400 hurt? Or should I just stay at 300 for a bit?
It still isn't too bad, but it's coming and going, and I do feel ill.
 

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Altostrata

300mg might be enough. If I were you, I'd plan to stay at that dosage for quite a while, maybe more than a month.

 

Please let us know how you're doing.

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