Author Topic: Please tell me this isn't my old anxiety returning...  (Read 1533 times)

[Buddie]

Please tell me this isn't my old anxiety returning...
« on: December 19, 2008, 11:03:04 pm »
Approximately 6 weeks ago I began to taper off of .75mg of Klonopin.  I was on it for 5 months due to severe anxiety.  In September, I quit my job, went into intensive therapy and by November was feeling well enough to try to eliminate some drugs from my daily routine.  I would really like to have a baby and the benzos are a big no-no during pregnancy.  Go figure... ???
Anyway- on my pdoc's advice I cut .25mg (to .5mg) and stayed there a month.  It was relatively uneventful so again on my pdoc's instructions, I cut another.25mg two weeks ago.  Unfortunately, this cut has not been so uneventful.  I was ok during the first week but by the second week had some pretty miserable morning GI issues.  Now, at the beginning of the third week, I feel like I did 6 months ago.  I shake uncontrollably, have no appetite and am incredibly restless.  Can these be withdrawal symptoms or am I destined to have anxiety if I choose not to take this drug?
Any advice and/or encouragement would be greatly appreciated.  Also, does anyone have any recommendations as to what my next step down should be?  Pdoc says stop anytime I want but I'm kind of thinking the .25 cuts have been a little harsh...
Suggestions, opinions and/or advice provided by the author of this post should not be regarded as medical advice; nor should it substitute for professional medical care. Consult your doctor before making any changes to your medication. Please read our Community Policy Documents board for further information.

[Buddie]

Re: Please tell me this isn't my old anxiety returning...
« Reply #1 on: December 19, 2008, 11:10:04 pm »
Approximately 6 weeks ago I began to taper off of .75mg of Klonopin.  I was on it for 5 months due to severe anxiety.  In September, I quit my job, went into intensive therapy and by November was feeling well enough to try to eliminate some drugs from my daily routine.  I would really like to have a baby and the benzos are a big no-no during pregnancy.  Go figure... ???
Anyway- on my pdoc's advice I cut .25mg (to .5mg) and stayed there a month.  It was relatively uneventful so again on my pdoc's instructions, I cut another.25mg two weeks ago.  Unfortunately, this cut has not been so uneventful.  I was ok during the first week but by the second week had some pretty miserable morning GI issues.  Now, at the beginning of the third week, I feel like I did 6 months ago.  I shake uncontrollably, have no appetite and am incredibly restless.  Can these be withdrawal symptoms or am I destined to have anxiety if I choose not to take this drug?
Any advice and/or encouragement would be greatly appreciated.  Also, does anyone have any recommendations as to what my next step down should be?  Pdoc says stop anytime I want but I'm kind of thinking the .25 cuts have been a little harsh...


Hi Annie,

I agree that you are cutting too much at a time and that can make your w/d symptoms more pronounced. We recommend cutting approximately 10% off your total daily dose every 7-14 days. Your first cut was 33% and your second cut was 50%. Most here are able to cut their .50mg pills into 1/4s and reduce by .125mg every week or two (usually two). Hope things settle down for you.

T2 :smitten:
Suggestions, opinions and/or advice provided by the author of this post should not be regarded as medical advice; nor should it substitute for professional medical care. Consult your doctor before making any changes to your medication. Please read our Community Policy Documents board for further information.

[Buddie]

Re: Please tell me this isn't my old anxiety returning...
« Reply #2 on: December 19, 2008, 11:38:06 pm »
Returning anxiety can happen, especially if that's what you're taking the Klonopin for, but the problem is differentiating it from withdrawal anxiety.

I'm almost seven months off and my anxiety has returned. I was disgnosed with severe pyschological problems as a child, however, and thus I am not a good case in point. I do not suffer from situational anxiety, I suffer from a far more vicious type of mental illness. It depends on what kind of anxiety you had. Some people find after the meds that they can be without meds, but others find that it's a matter if finding a compatible med.

Ride out the symptoms, use the proper cut for now and see how you are feeling. Too large of a cut is painful, bottom line...
Suggestions, opinions and/or advice provided by the author of this post should not be regarded as medical advice; nor should it substitute for professional medical care. Consult your doctor before making any changes to your medication. Please read our Community Policy Documents board for further information.

[Buddie]

Re: Please tell me this isn't my old anxiety returning...
« Reply #3 on: December 19, 2008, 11:48:20 pm »
Approximately 6 weeks ago I began to taper off of .75mg of Klonopin.  I was on it for 5 months due to severe anxiety.  In September, I quit my job, went into intensive therapy and by November was feeling well enough to try to eliminate some drugs from my daily routine.  I would really like to have a baby and the benzos are a big no-no during pregnancy.  Go figure... ???
Anyway- on my pdoc's advice I cut .25mg (to .5mg) and stayed there a month.  It was relatively uneventful so again on my pdoc's instructions, I cut another.25mg two weeks ago.  Unfortunately, this cut has not been so uneventful.  I was ok during the first week but by the second week had some pretty miserable morning GI issues.  Now, at the beginning of the third week, I feel like I did 6 months ago.  I shake uncontrollably, have no appetite and am incredibly restless.  Can these be withdrawal symptoms or am I destined to have anxiety if I choose not to take this drug?
Any advice and/or encouragement would be greatly appreciated.  Also, does anyone have any recommendations as to what my next step down should be?  Pdoc says stop anytime I want but I'm kind of thinking the .25 cuts have been a little harsh...

Hi, Annie.   ;D

I think your symptoms are mostly likely a result of such relatively large dose reductions, Annie.  You probably learned some things to do to lessen your anxiety in therapy and will likely need to practice those while you get off the klonopin and probably for some months afterward. If this is the first time you've been put on medication for anxiety, it's highly doubtful that you have an unresolved anxiety disorder.  Your CNS is probably a little oversensitive right now and those feelings of shakiness and restlessness can be mistaken for anxiety when they are more likely do to your body protesting the loss of the klonopin.  I agree with Theresa that you should slow it down.  If you make that next reduction 0.125mg and that's still too rough, you might want to consider titration.  
Suggestions, opinions and/or advice provided by the author of this post should not be regarded as medical advice; nor should it substitute for professional medical care. Consult your doctor before making any changes to your medication. Please read our Community Policy Documents board for further information.

[Buddie]

Re: Please tell me this isn't my old anxiety returning...
« Reply #4 on: December 19, 2008, 11:49:44 pm »
Approximately 6 weeks ago I began to taper off of .75mg of Klonopin.  I was on it for 5 months due to severe anxiety.  In September, I quit my job, went into intensive therapy and by November was feeling well enough to try to eliminate some drugs from my daily routine.  I would really like to have a baby and the benzos are a big no-no during pregnancy.  Go figure... ???
Anyway- on my pdoc's advice I cut .25mg (to .5mg) and stayed there a month.  It was relatively uneventful so again on my pdoc's instructions, I cut another.25mg two weeks ago.  Unfortunately, this cut has not been so uneventful.  I was ok during the first week but by the second week had some pretty miserable morning GI issues.  Now, at the beginning of the third week, I feel like I did 6 months ago.  I shake uncontrollably, have no appetite and am incredibly restless.  Can these be withdrawal symptoms or am I destined to have anxiety if I choose not to take this drug?
Any advice and/or encouragement would be greatly appreciated.  Also, does anyone have any recommendations as to what my next step down should be?  Pdoc says stop anytime I want but I'm kind of thinking the .25 cuts have been a little harsh...


Hi Annie,

you are cutting way too fast, this is the reason why you are not feeling so well, please try to slow down on your cuts and take it slower, cutting too fast really doesnt help you at all, and also it could give you unwanted withdrawls in the future.

Take care
Suggestions, opinions and/or advice provided by the author of this post should not be regarded as medical advice; nor should it substitute for professional medical care. Consult your doctor before making any changes to your medication. Please read our Community Policy Documents board for further information.

[Buddie]

Re: Please tell me this isn't my old anxiety returning...
« Reply #5 on: December 19, 2008, 11:52:25 pm »
Hi Annie,

Here is an answer that I found to your question, unfortunately I do not know the author but it is similar to what The Ashton Manual states.

IF I DISCONTINUE MY BENZODIAZEPINE, WON'T THE UNDERLYING CONDITION THAT MY DOCTOR PRESCRIBED THE BENZODIAZEPINE FOR RETURN?

It may or may not. It depends on what your underlying problem was, and what post-withdrawal measures you take to manage the condition, if necessary. Sometimes, the underlying problem is simply "gone" by the time you have withdrawan from a benzodiazepine. Many physical and psychological conditions are a transitory response to a temporary condition in your life, such as a traumatic event. Often, people take habit forming drugs such as benzodiazepines to alleviate the symptoms of these transitory conditions, and continue taking them long after the condition would have gone away on its own.

Other conditions are less transitory, such as chronic, long term panic disorder (PD). However, it is important to bear in mind that there are other treatments for these conditions, both of a pharmacological and a non-pharmacological nature. Anxiety and stress can be managed in a variety of different ways that are not as harmful to your body as benzodiazepines.

Often, when people complete their benzodiazepine withdrawal, they find an emergence of an underlying psychological problem that was masked by the benzodiazepine use for many years. People also often feel the resurfacing of emotions that may have been suppressed for a long time. Thus, there is sometimes a period of difficult adjustment even after the withdrawal symptoms subside. However, people often find the end result of this period of adjustment to be very rewarding.
Suggestions, opinions and/or advice provided by the author of this post should not be regarded as medical advice; nor should it substitute for professional medical care. Consult your doctor before making any changes to your medication. Please read our Community Policy Documents board for further information.

[Buddie]

Re: Please tell me this isn't my old anxiety returning...
« Reply #6 on: December 20, 2008, 02:39:37 pm »
Thanks for your input everyone.  I really appreciate it.  :)  I'm feeling better today so will chalk the past few days up to withdrawal.  I will definitely hold tight here at .25mg for the next few weeks.  But then what?  I have .125 disintegrating tablets (can't be cut) to make a .125 cut.  That's anther 50% reduction.  Too much?  What have others done?  At some point the reductions have to be big on a % basis otherwise we'd never be able to rid ourselves of these drugs, right?  Now I'm confused as to how to handle my last few cuts.  I was originally thinking-  .125 for 2-4 weeks and then none-  but now I'm second guessing that.  Does anyone have any suggestions?
Suggestions, opinions and/or advice provided by the author of this post should not be regarded as medical advice; nor should it substitute for professional medical care. Consult your doctor before making any changes to your medication. Please read our Community Policy Documents board for further information.

[Buddie]

Re: Please tell me this isn't my old anxiety returning...
« Reply #7 on: December 20, 2008, 03:48:11 pm »
Just to answer your question, Annie, most people seem to drop off at 0.125mg and that's what I did as you can see in my signature box below.  A few have been able to further cut that 1/4 pill somehow and go to 0.0625mg first.  It is also possible to do that by crushing your 0.125mg piece, mixing it in, say, 1/2 cup milk, stirring it good to disburse the benzo particles, split it into 2 - 1/4 cup portions and just drink one, which would give you just 0.0625 mg. Then drink the other 1/4 cup the next day and repeat until you are ready to stop.  However, if your symptoms are tolerable when you are ready to cut, you may want to just go ahead and jump off.   ;D
Suggestions, opinions and/or advice provided by the author of this post should not be regarded as medical advice; nor should it substitute for professional medical care. Consult your doctor before making any changes to your medication. Please read our Community Policy Documents board for further information.