Author Topic: Over 60 years old and over 30years of use  (Read 3921 times)

[Buddie]

Re: Over 60 years old and over 30years of use
« Reply #10 on: November 22, 2021, 01:18:39 am »
Right there with you guys!  Prescribed them in 1998 for a few panic attacks after the birth of my son.  In hindsight, it was probably nothing more than hormones (and a husband who was of zero help).  Started out at .25 mgs 4 times per day, per doctors orders. This was prior to being able to Google everything under the sun.  I had never heard of Xanax and assumed that is was akin to a Zoloft or Paxil.  I stupidly never questioned it other than asking if it was addictive to which I got a firm "certainly not at this dose" which seemed logical to me since a tiny milligram seemed like nothing!  Ha!  What did I know. 

Over the years it was increased.  For about 13 years it treated me well ... or so I thought!  I maxed out at a whopping 6 milligrams and started to question things.  Physically and mentally I was in the best shape of my life but kept feeling really unwell every 5-6 hours.  Could not make heads or tails of it! Started to research Xanax and .... you all know how that went.

Years later, here I am, 54 years old, still tapering and praying to be finished the 4 year journey soon!  I REALLY want to live again!

Fondly,
[...]

PS:  Please forgive my obnoxiously long signature.  It's been with me since day one and I'm keeping it until I jump.  After I do, I promise to shorten it up a bit!  LOL!

Hey [...]
No worries about your name. Like you I was prescribed xanax for a panic attack. Started out at 0.25 as needed which to an addict is saying take as much as you want. I always didnít exceed 2 mg a day. Why I have no clue but glad I did. I strongly feel that keeping myself at 2 mg was the cause of anxiety caused by withdrawal from intradosing.
Anyway, glad to see you doing so well and when you jump, youíll feel a new life. Itíll be tough but keep yourself busy, active, eat right and youíll be good.
Stay strong
[...]
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: Over 60 years old and over 30years of use
« Reply #11 on: November 22, 2021, 06:24:56 pm »
Hi everyone,
I thought I would try to start a new group for those of us that are older and have been these drugs most of our adult life. I had a small bout of insomnia at age 25 as I was starting a business. Got put on Ativan .5 and took them nightly for almost 40 years. Never thought twice about it. I moved to a new state in 1997 and had to meet new people, etc. I started to notice I couldn't pull up words, lose my ability to stay focused, memory was faulty,  forming sentences got hard. I never hit tolerance, never went up in dose. Started to research and thought, holy shit, this is from the Ativan. Tried cutting my dose in half in Sept 2019, and I got hit with symptoms. I quickly reinstated within 2 weeks. I thought, I am dependent on this. My exhaustive research began. My long term prescriber was going to retire in a few years. Through research it appeared that drs were pulling people off of this class of drugs. Honestly I got too scared to stay on them with dr. retiring.  I started my taper in March of 2020. I am at .16mg through a dry taper. I am hoping that a group of us can band together with this common thread of being older and on these drugs for this long. Help each other through the process.

Unlike others out there, I would bet that your symptoms and challenges improve in a great way once you're off this drug and healed. Don't rush it. Going too fast doesn't help anyone. Heal faster than you taper! Long-term use of this class of drugs is brutal on so many different levels. A whole new you is out there. Just drift over the finish line rather than sprinting, and you'll be rockin' on in a great way soon. I'm 61, a long-term user/taperer (27 years), and been off for about 7 months now. Still a ways to go, but SO much better. Bless you!!
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: Over 60 years old and over 30years of use
« Reply #12 on: November 22, 2021, 07:22:06 pm »
Happy to find this thread!  I am soon to be 61...Was prescribed Ambien at around 48 year old for insomnia due to menopause and stressful career.  Had NO IDEA what it was able to to do to the human body.  I tapered pretty fast (5 weeks) because I was suffering such awful interdose withdrawal. 

So many days I would awake and my coffee tasted off, I would be unable to choose the right words, I should have realized what a profound effect it was having in my brain.  I'm improving but it is an agonizing slow recovery and by the time I'm there I'm pretty sure my age will render me never the same.

Acceptance is key for coping.
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: Over 60 years old and over 30years of use
« Reply #13 on: November 22, 2021, 08:11:57 pm »
Great group idea!

I'm a 50 year young professional person who was prescribed Clonazepam to help with sleep after a major surgery and cancer scare in my early 30's. It helped and I never thought twice about taking it because I really trusted my doctor.  And, I slept better which was a great relief.  I started with .5MG and it grew to 2MG over time.  I do recall realizing that I was dependent on it when my prescription ran out and I made a mental note to never let that happen.  I also recall being extremely tired about 6 years ago and having no idea why.  I even spoke to friends about it because I just never felt rested.  We all thought that it must be because I'm a busy Mom...it was tolerance I had I no idea!

I wish I could go back in time to tell myself what I know now.  Never once did a doctor tell me this shouldn't be taken for long term use.  I was always upfront with any provider what I was taking and was never advised to consider stopping. To be clear, I do take full responsibility for not studying the drug that I took but I'm still surprised that there wasn't a conversation at any point. In June 2019, the same doctor who prescribed me mentioned that the government was making her report who was on this class of drugs.  I wondered why and thus started my journey to knowledge.  I started my taper in Dec 2019. 

Nice to meet all of you going through the same journey!
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: Over 60 years old and over 30years of use
« Reply #14 on: November 22, 2021, 08:19:11 pm »
Hi Rogerthat
Happy to see you making the decrease. Iím off for almost three months. Stay strong and keep going. Youíll be all good.
Peace and stay safe.
[...]
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: Over 60 years old and over 30years of use
« Reply #15 on: November 23, 2021, 05:10:05 am »
Interested in seeing how you are all doing tapering and post taper.
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: Over 60 years old and over 30years of use
« Reply #16 on: November 24, 2021, 05:49:44 pm »
You know for those of us on these for over 30 years , I am just curious, did everyone have the same prescribing dr? And then they retired? I am so glad I stockpiled Ativan and didn't tell him I was tapering. I only took this for sleep, never imagining it would cause any issues. I can hardly take ANY kind of stress...My heart starts racing, etc. What about everyone else? Where are you in your taper?
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: Over 60 years old and over 30years of use
« Reply #17 on: November 24, 2021, 06:39:49 pm »
Actually my doctor lives around the corner from me. Heís still in practice. I sometimes email him links about this issue of benzo withdrawal off YouTube. He probably doesnít get it. I hold no Iíll will with him. Yes, he prescribed it but I was the one who kept taking it with my current doctor prescribing it. No one held a gun to me and told me to take it so the issue is on me. I do though dislike the pharma industry. My Angel with them is to mention to as many people who will listen that benzos are a dangerous drug and to NEVER take them. If you tell enough people, itís a way to beat the pharma companies to their own game. I am pleased that I stopped and we can all do it!
Peace
[...]
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: Over 60 years old and over 30years of use
« Reply #18 on: November 24, 2021, 10:56:56 pm »
You know for those of us on these for over 30 years , I am just curious, did everyone have the same prescribing dr? And then they retired? I am so glad I stockpiled Ativan and didn't tell him I was tapering. I only took this for sleep, never imagining it would cause any issues. I can hardly take ANY kind of stress...My heart starts racing, etc. What about everyone else? Where are you in your taper?

I am close to the end of my taper after 2 years.  I was feeling exactly as you described above and I was freaking out.  My baseline anxiety was so high that I had trouble functioning and could not handle any stress whatsoever.  Nothing.  If someone raised their voice I had to go lie down for a half hour to calm myself and heart racing all the time.  I could not properly function and decided to go on an SSRI.  It helped me tremendously and lowered my anxiety by 60-70%.  I hate that I'm on anything else but for me it was a good decision. 
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: Over 60 years old and over 30years of use
« Reply #19 on: November 25, 2021, 04:38:45 am »
Hi [...], yep, know what you mean. After I had been on low dose Lorazepam for about 20 years(!) I started to get episodes of such awful black black depression and fatigue for no apparent reason. I would go to bed for days, non functioning and in great distress. Took me a while to work out that it had to be the Lorazepam  causing this. Started on Venlafaxine, helped a bitÖÖthen Mirtazipine, helped a bit but big weight gain. Iím fighting back now and hope to be slim and happy before I die! I am so impressed by everyone who is withdrawing after many years, we must do whatever it takes. Wishing everyone a better day tomorrow.
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.