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    Old 11-22-2009, 05:21 AM   #1
    redness
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    Benzo taper advice

    I've been trying to taper off benzos for some time now, but it's not going smoothly. I started taking lorazepam 1mg daily last April, sometimes twice a day. I realised this was not good, so started tapering and was fairly stable on 0.5 mg. My doctor was clearly not up on benzos, and simply said this was a very low dose and therefore I was not likely to develop a dependence, although I should try not to use them every day. Read the Ashton protocol, saw another doc and switched to diazepam. Started on 5mg, then 2.5 mg which went relatively smoothly: always some residual anxiety, as diazepam was never as effective as lorazepam. Switched to 2mg tablets, which felt relatively ok after a while. I've now had a couple of attempts to drop to 1mg, but things seem to go wrong after a few days, and I feel so tense that I have to up the dose again.

    Has anyone got any advice/suggestions? This is taking much longer than I anticipated.

     
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    Old 11-22-2009, 06:39 AM   #2
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    Re: Benzo taper advice

    how long were you on them before the taper?

     
    Old 11-22-2009, 07:31 AM   #3
    redness
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    Re: Benzo taper advice

    I was probably taking lorazepam 1mg a day for 4 months; April - July. It was working fine, but I was worried about the fact that I was taking it every day. I could go a day without it, but I felt terrible. I dropped down to 0.5 mg, which was not too bad, then switched to 5mg diazepam. Instantly felt a difference that the diazepam was less effective for the anxiety and making me more drowsy. Dropped to 2.5mg, and stayed there for a few weeks, and felt ok. Thought it would probably be ok to just stop taking them at this stage, but after about 5-6 days anxiety flared right up, and I had to take about 7.5 mg to feel calm again. Switched to 2mg tablets, although on some days I had to take two. After two weeks on 2mg a day, feeling ok, I dropped to 1mg last week. Feeling a bit tense on thursday, so took an extra one. OK friday, but tired and tense yesterday. Today, really tense, sweating all the time. Took 2mg this morning, took another 2mg this afternoon as still feeling really tense. I assume this is withdrawal? Not sure where I have gone wrong. Was two weeks at 2mg not long enough? Should I have tried 1.5mg rather than dropping to 1mg?

    I could do with some advice, because my doctor is clearly not up on benzo withdrawal.

     
    Old 11-22-2009, 08:18 AM   #4
    confusedman304
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    Re: Benzo taper advice

    sounds like you are jumping all over the place......is your dr a psych?

     
    Old 11-22-2009, 10:53 AM   #5
    redness
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    Re: Benzo taper advice

    No. I did see a psych briefly, who really did not have a lot to say on the subject. GP was already prescribing prozac and diazepam, which he said to carry on with, but added to watch out in case the diazepam became a problem. He then discharged me, and said to ask for a re-referral if I continued to have a problem with anxiety. Not very helpful. Most of what I know about discontinuing benzo's has come from the net, rather than Drs., none of whom seem to know much other than taking a benzo every day leads to trouble. In fact, half the time I ask a doctor a question, they look it up there and then on the net themselves.

    I think the prozac has improved my mood a bit, but it has not helped with anxiety, which was what it was prescribed for.

     
    Old 11-22-2009, 04:59 PM   #6
    confusedman304
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    Re: Benzo taper advice

    maybe you should try to see a psych....they know more about treating anxiety and the meds too...

     
    Old 11-29-2009, 05:15 PM   #7
    sitracotd
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    Re: Benzo taper advice

    To go from 2mg to 1 is not the right way. If you read about benzo taper you will find that the best way to do it is over a long period of time. I have read that it is best to cut your dose by a 1/2 of mg ever 2 weeks. So if your on 2mgs, then go to 1 1/2 stay there for 2 weeks or more, the longer the better. Then cut to 1mg stay there for 2 weeks or more. Then to 1/2 a mg, stay there for a while, then 1/4 mg and at that point you should be out of the woods.

    Go slow, no huge rush, as long as your dose is going down and not up. Taking your time is important here.

     
    Old 11-30-2009, 11:42 AM   #8
    confusedman304
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    Re: Benzo taper advice

    I agree a slow taper is best.....I am trying to stop taking just .5mg a day and it is harder than I thought...I am cutting back 1/4 of a .5 mg pill a day right now...

     
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