Tapering off clonazepam (Klonopin, Rivotril)

Posted by mmussak @mmussak, Dec 19, 2018

Hi my name is Mary and I am a first time user of ever using a discussion blog online but have felt in my heart I need some advice and help with an issue I am having. My dr I have seen for many years moved out of state and referred me to another phychiatrist within his office. At the time of his moving away he had me weaning off clorazapam slowly and doing it as slow to not make it not so difficult as you all know , and I was doing well at it until I was having extreme chest pain and they put me in the hospital for 2 days to check to make sure it wasn’t my heart, with all this happening I knew it was the weaning off the meds that was causing it so i went back up in dosage and it all went away again, and I was almost off it…My old dr started me on this med 27 years ago and I had no idea what it was but my body anxiety was shutting down my body and it helped it all go away so i didnt question it, well not until I went to school for nursing did I find out what it was all about. He put me on .5 mg three times a day and that stayed that way for 27 years not knowing what It does later in years, so I asked my dr to help me with the weaning off it, so our weaning process was as follows: Take .5 in a.m. ,25 afternoon and ,5 evening dose for 2 weeks then cut morning dose to .25 afternoon to .25 and evening .5 for 2 weeks then finally .25 three times a day for 6 weeks and then starting the last of the wean at this point the same as we did the first .25 till i was off. My new dr went from .50 3 times daily to .25 two times a day starting right away to get off it, that is over 1.0 mg a day off it all in one day and forward , I am already sad and crying because I dont know what to do, I have been there and I know how hard it was just to get off the way my old dr did slowly…..anyone out there that can help me with what to do I am so scared and I don’t think she knows how extremely hard it is to get off this stupid stuff or that I really do want to do it, but please make it as painless as possible if there is such a thing with these meds. At 56 I didnt think I would have to go through menapause and this hell(sorry about the word but so true) all at once…at times I think it would be easier to just get cancer or something and die. Sorry but its true if you have been there you will understand. PLease help me!!!

Liked by Leonard, falon

@annfsd

Mary
How are you doing?? Prayers being sent your way.
Sending thoughts of peace and strength.
Ann

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I'm taking a day at a time ann….its tough fir my fiance doesnt understand it so alot of tension between us right now which makes it worse…so important to have understanding people to help u through it….I want to run away and be by myself so I dont have to deal with both ..but a day at a time is all i can do..ty an for ur prayers i so need them right now.. this second half has not been good at all!!!!

Liked by Leonard

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@mmussak

I'm taking a day at a time ann….its tough fir my fiance doesnt understand it so alot of tension between us right now which makes it worse…so important to have understanding people to help u through it….I want to run away and be by myself so I dont have to deal with both ..but a day at a time is all i can do..ty an for ur prayers i so need them right now.. this second half has not been good at all!!!!

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Mary you are definitely in my prayers. I understand about needing supportive people surrounding you. My husband and I don’t live never any family except our son. Both my son and husband work full time. So I’m alone a lot, I have found that it’s hard to b around friends. Most know what I am going thru but r at a loss as to how to help. Personally I do just want to be alone most of the time. Laying on the bed seems to be my best comfort zone. Getting out and walking our dogs feels good when I’m not terribly nauseous but it’s been a really cold winter here in Arkansas and Im frozen to the bone this winter.

My cut this month was only .0350mg. Very small, I’m going to try for a bigger cut in a week but I’ll be puking my brains out I know it. My dr thinks I am experiencing benzo toxicity, which means I get sick when I take a dose and feel better after it wears off and if I cut a dose I get extremely sick. Cutting a dose by .0048mg shouldn’t really make much difference but I experience nausea, vomiting, migraine headache, temporary eyesight changes, burning in my gut, muscle weakness, no appetite for several weeks. Then I rest a week with no cuts then I start it all again. Very slow going, at this rate it will take me 4 years to get off my current dose of 1.09 mg daily. I get zero benefit from taking Klonopin, sick if I take it, sicker when I don’t. The only upside for me is that I don’t have any cravings to take my doses. I do get a headache if I put it off too long, like by a couple hours.

I have to force myself to eat and forget about cooking or going to a grocery store. My sense of smell has gone nuts and I want to put a clothespin on my nose. Plus I can’t drive when I take my meds, I’m taking .17mg in the morning and also in the late afternoon. I feel totally looped on that small amount and I can’t drive for 3-4 hours. Weird fact- the smaller the dose the more doped I feel. It just stinks No matter what!!
My husband has had to do a lot of research to understand what’s going on. He has read the Ashton Manuel as well, he gets that it’s awful and I have it pretty bad in comparison to some others. But he is only human and he does get frustrated with the situation. He likes to eat and I don’t anymore. That can make for some serious tension to say the least. I’m lucky I’m not working bc I’d probably b fired.

Are you taking supplements or vitamins? I know from experience that they can make your withdrawal symptoms much worse. Vitamin D, B, especially bc they excite yur CNS. Also sugar, caffeine, alcohol, chocolate can make it worse and absolutely no artificial sweeteners. I even have issues taking a probiotic, I take one but only every other day or two days. I went from 124lbs to 111lbs in 3 months. I gained most of that back by taking a break during November & December.

I pretty much live on water, Martnellis organic apple juice deluted with water, eggs, 2%milk, bananas, applesauce, Progresso chicken noodle soup, cottage cheese, cooked carrots, green veggies when I can tolerate them, pasta, lean roast beef, special K cereal and boost drinks. I do sip on a little coke sometimes, it seems to settle my stomach.
Elixanol CBD oil helps tremendously with anxiety which wasn’t a problem until I started this taper 7 months ago. In 7 months I’ve cut .285mg, doesn’t seem like much but it’s been a horrible struggle and completely turned our lives upside down.

So sorry for the crazy long post. Please be careful, rest, drink water. Praying for you girl….

Liked by Leonard

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@jakedduck1

@clonazepamxxx
I’m not judging anyone. I personally don’t believe it should have ever been legalized. One reason is the 400 or so chemicals in it and how the molecular structure may be altered by heating, processing and chemicals used for pest control etc. Anything that alters the how it functions can’t be a good thing. Also a major concern is that people get high and drive and cause accidents. The death toll keeps rising but states still legalize it. How many more have to die? There is not nearly enough research proving it’s safety. Although there are thousands of studies, only a handful are backed up with scientific proof. According to the Federal Government marijuana is still illegal and banned in all National Parks and on Federal Lands. We live in a free Country and are allowed freedom of choice. Obviously I disagree with some of those choices. Unfortunately people are allowed to get high on various substances and jeopardize innocent people. That’s 1 of my 2 cents worth.
Hope your feeling better soon,
Jake

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@jakedduck1 Sounds like you may have lost someone meaningful in your life because of mind altering substances.

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@jakedduck1

@annfsd
No way would I do that. That isn’t the purpose of that drug. Are you abusing Benzos? My personal opinion is that if you slowly decrease your dose you can get off Clonazepam with NO! withdrawals. I was on almost the max dose and it took time to get off but what’s the hurry. Did you ever wonder why no other detox center offers this treatment? You need to give it a good think!!! I don’t know what your dose is but your brain isn’t going to stabilize in a weeks time.
Health and happiness,
Jake

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Hi Jake,
I’m guessing you must have experienced a very easy and mild withdrawal. Oh how I envy you! How long were you on Klonopin and what was your dosage? How long did you take to taper off it? We are all different and what may work for one person might not for another. But good advice is always appreciated.! We are all so different in our experiences with this poison.
To answer your question, NO I have never abused benzodiazepines. I took what was prescribed by my then doctor (who is no longer my current dr). Never more.
Please share your experience with benzo withdrawal, I would appreciate any new advice you can bring to light with regards to your own taper experience. My current dose is 1.09mg, due to benzo toxicity and my sensitivity at my current taper rate I’ll b done in 4 years, maybe a bit longer. My dr is a bit concerned about my reactions to the benzo and we are both afraid to change to a different one that might b easier to taper off of bc there is no telling how I may react. Also my health is in a decline now and cognitively I may be a veg in 4 years. I am now being treated by UAMS med professor with 10 years of experience treating drug dependency and abuse. She has some experience with the use of Fumazinel in drug dependency withdrawal.
Best regards,
Ann

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@jakedduck1

@annfsd
No way would I do that. That isn’t the purpose of that drug. Are you abusing Benzos? My personal opinion is that if you slowly decrease your dose you can get off Clonazepam with NO! withdrawals. I was on almost the max dose and it took time to get off but what’s the hurry. Did you ever wonder why no other detox center offers this treatment? You need to give it a good think!!! I don’t know what your dose is but your brain isn’t going to stabilize in a weeks time.
Health and happiness,
Jake

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@jakedduck1
I appreciate your adding, "My personal opinion is that if…" As we have discussed many times, Jake, everyone is different in how they react to meds as well as to their withdrawal. When a person is having a problem with withdrawal and/or change of dosage, it is important to not think that what worked for you will necessarily work for everyone. We certainly cannot dictate how a person's body will react.

When we share our experiences it is important to remember that these are just our experiences and we cannot assume that they are correct for others. Therefore, it is important that we not dictate how others should feel or react.

Does this make sense to you, Jake?

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@hopeful33250
Hi Teresa,
Did I mess up again? I really am trying to watch it. Never hesitate to let me know if I cross the line.
Take care, Jake

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My doctor told me to take the 4mg. of Clonazepam to help with sleep, even if I feel a bit fuzzy in the morning. It is better than insomnia, and it is comparable with the feeling one has from lingering too long at the communion rail the night before…Been there, too. I scaled back to 3.5mg yesterday, and the morning is much more clear. Best news is hat the Prozac is dealing with the depression. My wife offered an unsolicited, but very welcome observation concerning the change in my demeanor, that was a great gift. Depression and anxiety are an indescribable challenge, and things seem to be on the uptick.

Liked by Leonard

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@hopeful33250

@jakedduck1
I appreciate your adding, "My personal opinion is that if…" As we have discussed many times, Jake, everyone is different in how they react to meds as well as to their withdrawal. When a person is having a problem with withdrawal and/or change of dosage, it is important to not think that what worked for you will necessarily work for everyone. We certainly cannot dictate how a person's body will react.

When we share our experiences it is important to remember that these are just our experiences and we cannot assume that they are correct for others. Therefore, it is important that we not dictate how others should feel or react.

Does this make sense to you, Jake?

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Very well said and so very true to the core. It's just as said everybody reacts to every medication differently that is why so many side effects for they have to take all people's into effect….this coming from A nurse that sees it daily

Liked by Leonard, annfsd

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So I have a question about taking a dose of clonozaoam or Klonopin during a taper. How do you feel when you take it? Does it provide you any relief from your discomfort? I dont have any craving to take it, but when I do take it, it makes me terribly sick to my stomach with burning pains in my gut. I get terribly ill and it will cause me to become nauseous and often develop migraine headaches. I can feel ok before I take it and then I feel awful after. My taper is very slow with micro cuts of.0048mg usually weekly. I’m currently working to get off 2daytime doses morning and afternoon doses of .17mg. In addition to feeling sick I feel stoned for 2-3 hours after these .17mg doses. I wait 3-4 hours before driving and only if I have to. I have no appetite most of the time and force myself to eat, which I think is pretty common. I’m just wondering how others feel when they take a dose and if it is normal to feel fine before a dose and then go to feeling like crap after a dose. My dr says it’s a paradoxical reaction to the benzo. Just wondering how you all physically feel when you take a dose during your taper….any input is very much appreciated!
Hope, love and strength
Ann

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@annfsd

So I have a question about taking a dose of clonozaoam or Klonopin during a taper. How do you feel when you take it? Does it provide you any relief from your discomfort? I dont have any craving to take it, but when I do take it, it makes me terribly sick to my stomach with burning pains in my gut. I get terribly ill and it will cause me to become nauseous and often develop migraine headaches. I can feel ok before I take it and then I feel awful after. My taper is very slow with micro cuts of.0048mg usually weekly. I’m currently working to get off 2daytime doses morning and afternoon doses of .17mg. In addition to feeling sick I feel stoned for 2-3 hours after these .17mg doses. I wait 3-4 hours before driving and only if I have to. I have no appetite most of the time and force myself to eat, which I think is pretty common. I’m just wondering how others feel when they take a dose and if it is normal to feel fine before a dose and then go to feeling like crap after a dose. My dr says it’s a paradoxical reaction to the benzo. Just wondering how you all physically feel when you take a dose during your taper….any input is very much appreciated!
Hope, love and strength
Ann

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I also experience mild chest pains (not always, probably 30% of the time when I take it.) Also throat pain/ burning after swallowing a dose.

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I also get very nauseated after taking it now that I am tapering off…never before when taking it regularly did I get nauseated…my chest pains are now starting up again but not as bad yet as when I was hospitalized ..my gut feels like it has a knot in it and my appetite is terrible…so I'm guessing looking at your symptoms and mine it has something to do with tapering…so remind me after 27 years and no problems why do I have to taper off and now has all these terrible things happening to my body…I dont get it….

Liked by Leonard, annfsd

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@parus

@jakedduck1 Sounds like you may have lost someone meaningful in your life because of mind altering substances.

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Not lost but severely injured from alcohol. My Dad was paralyzed from the neck down because of a drunk driver. As my Dad was lying in the cold, for Calif, fearing his truck was going to catch fire because of leaking diesel, the drunk drove off.
Jake

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@mmussak

I also get very nauseated after taking it now that I am tapering off…never before when taking it regularly did I get nauseated…my chest pains are now starting up again but not as bad yet as when I was hospitalized ..my gut feels like it has a knot in it and my appetite is terrible…so I'm guessing looking at your symptoms and mine it has something to do with tapering…so remind me after 27 years and no problems why do I have to taper off and now has all these terrible things happening to my body…I dont get it….

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@mmussak
What percentage is your reduction with each taper?
Dose and length are important when titrating. Maybe after being on It for so long you need to taper even slower.
Good luck,
Jake

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@mmussak

I also get very nauseated after taking it now that I am tapering off…never before when taking it regularly did I get nauseated…my chest pains are now starting up again but not as bad yet as when I was hospitalized ..my gut feels like it has a knot in it and my appetite is terrible…so I'm guessing looking at your symptoms and mine it has something to do with tapering…so remind me after 27 years and no problems why do I have to taper off and now has all these terrible things happening to my body…I dont get it….

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Mary,
As I understand it, the prolonged use of benzodiazepines can lead to many other health problems down the road. Also there is the connection to increased risk of dementia. Personally I don’t think i ever should have been put on it. I had no real problems with anxiety or depression until I was put on the YAS birth control pill. Which is now well known to cause psychological problems ie: anxiety, panic, depression as well as potentially fatal blood clots. My issues with depression and anxiety began several months after being prescribed that birth control pill. I didn’t put 2 & 2 together.
So after 11 years I wanted off and my dr thought I was nuts to try. He also didn’t have a real clue about how to taper safely. He wanted me to stay on it! 11 years at .75 mg at bedtime, no problems so why stop he said.
No medication should be this hard to stop, this stuff is poison and the manufacturers have never been honest with the medical community about the dangers of withdrawal and discontinuation. That’s why drs don’t know how to safely get a patient off it. My pcp is horrified at what I am having to go thru, and yet a different dr in his office told me I should have been off it years ago. Opinions differ wildly I’m afraid, but younger drs are more clued in on the dangers. Sadly they don’t teach benzo withdrawal in med school.!
The medical communities in Europe and Australia are much knowledgeable about benzo withdrawal. They have laws restricting the time a patient can be prescribed benzos.
I’m so sorry yur dr is being so hard on you with this taper. The rate at which you are cutting is scary, especially given how long you have been on it. I’m praying for u every day. Stay strong.
Hugs
Ann

Liked by Leonard

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@jakedduck1

Not lost but severely injured from alcohol. My Dad was paralyzed from the neck down because of a drunk driver. As my Dad was lying in the cold, for Calif, fearing his truck was going to catch fire because of leaking diesel, the drunk drove off.
Jake

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I’m so sorry Jake, for what happened to your father. Life can really hit us where it hurts. You have my sympathies.
Ann

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