Using CBD oil to help taper off anxiety & depression meds?

Posted by tundra @tundra, Apr 14, 2018

I am currently in tolerance taking 30mg a day of Serepax (Oxazepam). I want to get off the benzo and realize I have to taper after 15 years of being on it. Has anyone used CBD oil minus the THC to taper off benzo's?

Interested in more discussions like this? Go to the Depression & Anxiety group.

@merpreb

@mcberry – Good morning. – Good morning and welcome to Mayo Clinic Connect. I am a former Valium abuser, or addict, which is more precise. Valium, as you probably know, is highly addictive and will soon have your body demanding more and more as you become more and more tolerant. When you stop using it suddenly withdrawal will be a result of psychological shock and physical dependency, producing a complex of symptoms that and sometimes can be dangerous. I found that every time I tried to withdraw my body would begin giving me signals that it wasn't a great idea to do it cold turkey. And you might not feel anything for a day three or four days, and then the symptoms of withdrawal will become very intense.

Muscle pain.
Mood swings, especially depression and anxiety.
Gastrointestinal problems such as vomiting and abdominal cramps.
Tremors.
Confusion and restlessness.
Irritability.
Headache.
Difficulty sleeping.

"General withdrawal: After a period of 3-4 days of acute symptoms, the person will tend to experience a more lengthy withdrawal phase that will continue for 10-14 days in most cases. During this period, the person will experience increased cravings for Valium, lightheadedness, mild headache, mild fever, periods of nausea, potential chills, depression, and continuing bouts of anxiety. These symptoms will be significantly less intense than the acute symptoms. In general, the person will experience flu-like symptoms, general feelings of dissatisfaction, and an overall sense of melancholy. In some individuals, there may be an additional period of rebound anxiety between 10 and 14 days."
https://americanaddictioncenters.org/valium-treatment/withdrawal-duration
Valium, in some ways, duplicates an alcohol effect on the body such as central nervous system depression, slow down the heart rate, slowed or difficulty breathing, impaired motor control, unusual behavior, and memory problems.

I know that this sounds pretty gloomy but Valium withdrawal can be pretty awful and with help and good guidance, you can avoid potential dangers.

Other medications that might be used include the following:

Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors are antidepressant medications that have been shown to be useful in some instances in the withdrawal process from benzodiazepines and may be useful in addressing rebound anxiety.

Melatonin is a hormone that can ease symptoms of anxiety and induce sleep in some cases and may also address tolerance and withdrawal symptoms.
Anticonvulsant medications would be used in the event that an individual develops seizures. Some anticonvulsants also appear to be useful in addressing the overall symptoms experienced during withdrawal from Valium.
Other specific medications for nausea, headache, and so forth can be added at a physician’s discretion.

CBD oil is safe but it's mostly for calming anxiety and won't do anything to help other physical withdrawal symptoms. In order to safely withdraw from Valium, you need a detox program so that you can receive proper care during withdrawals. Physicians can initiate a tapering strategy for Valium.

How long have you taken valium and when did you decide to get off of it? It took a while for my body and brain to balance themselves out and for me to learn to live life without it. But I did it and I was on way, way too much so if I can do it, so can you.

There are many detox centers around the country. If you need help in beginning this process you can call:

https://www.samhsa.gov/find-help/national-helpline SAMHSA’s National Helpline – 1-800-662-HELP (4357)

Merry

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@mcberry – Hello again. Did I scare you off? I hope not. I might have told you way too much but I really wanted you to know the difficulties if you don't detox in the right way. How are you feeling?

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@jamienolson

Hello @tundra. Welcome to Mayo Clinic Connect. Thank you for starting this conversation. I see that you also posted in the group talking about using CBD oil for withdraw on effexor. Lots of helpful information in that thread! You may also find helpful information regarding CBD oil in this thread: https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/cbd-oil-and-depression-anxiety/?pg=4#comment-99190

I would like to introduce you to @gman007, who also has been through the process of tapering off Benzo. However, I'm not sure if he used CBD oil to do so. Also, you could check with member,@ronlin1948, who used CBD to taper off of seroquel. Hopefully they will have some insight to share with you.

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what about tapering off SSRIs? does CBD help with this?

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@jmacy

what about tapering off SSRIs? does CBD help with this?

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Hi @jmacy, welcome.
I'm glad to read the word "taper." It is always best to taper slowly if you're considering no longer using an SSRI. Some people use CBD oil to help with SSRI withdrawal syndrome, but I'm not qualified to advise about that. You can read more in this article:
– CBD oil and antidepressants https://www.depressionalliance.org/cbd-oil-and-antidepressants/

Naturally, I suggest talking to your doctor about dosage and how to get quality medical marijuana.

Are you currently on an SSRI? Have you started tapering?

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hi there.i've been in contact with my psychiatrist and been following a strict tapering schedule. i've been on variations of ssris for over 2 decades. it's going OK. i wasn't aware withdrawal happened until later in the tapering so i was glad to find the harvard article on that. He's pretty accepting of alternative therapies. will try CBD oil. main side effects have been dizziness, brain zap (which feels pretty wild), and serious irritation. How long does the irritation last? -asks my parter…

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@jmacy

hi there.i've been in contact with my psychiatrist and been following a strict tapering schedule. i've been on variations of ssris for over 2 decades. it's going OK. i wasn't aware withdrawal happened until later in the tapering so i was glad to find the harvard article on that. He's pretty accepting of alternative therapies. will try CBD oil. main side effects have been dizziness, brain zap (which feels pretty wild), and serious irritation. How long does the irritation last? -asks my parter…

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How long does the irritation last? That is a good question that I'm confident both you and your partner would like to know the answer to. Knowing that it will end helps get you through. I suspect this is another thing where people answer, "Everyone is different." No two tapers experiences are the same. None-the-less, it would be helpful to hear from others like @stephanieann @gettingbetter75 @sundance6 @georgette12 @sears @swimjay as they tapered off SSRIs, did they experience irritation and how long did it last?

Jmacy, when do you notice that you are most irritable? Is there a pattern?

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@colleenyoung

How long does the irritation last? That is a good question that I'm confident both you and your partner would like to know the answer to. Knowing that it will end helps get you through. I suspect this is another thing where people answer, "Everyone is different." No two tapers experiences are the same. None-the-less, it would be helpful to hear from others like @stephanieann @gettingbetter75 @sundance6 @georgette12 @sears @swimjay as they tapered off SSRIs, did they experience irritation and how long did it last?

Jmacy, when do you notice that you are most irritable? Is there a pattern?

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I’ve been tapering for 18 months now. I’m still feeling irritation and am quite short tempered. This is not easy. Antidepressants do nothing for anxiety in my opinion. I’m going to ask my doctor at our next visit to cut my Prozac. I feel as though I’m taking a med for no reason.

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Hello,

I happened to be taking CBD for my back during my last decrease as I taper off of Seroquel. The tapering before had been full of withdrawal symptoms (racing thoughts, anxiety, irritability) and was incredibly difficult.
During the taper with the CBD my symptoms were far less noticeable and lasted for a shorter period of time. I was shocked at how much easier it was. This may be different for you as CBD has been used as an antipsychotic (just like Seroquel is) but for me it made an incredible difference to get me through that rough withdrawal period and I will be using it the next time I decrease regardless of what kind of shape my back is in.

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@stephanieann

I have used CBD tincture 20:1 for the past 4 months that has a very small amount of THC in it to assist in weaning my son with autism off his poly pharmacy that he has been on for many years. 1 dropperful contains 9.5mg CBD to.5mg THC I so far have successfully weaned my son off 2 prescriptions which dealt with his extreme anxiety- Clonazapam and Guanficine. His extreme anxiety often triggered serious behaviors in the past . Initially I weaned him off Guanficine while substituting the CBD oil. I then weaned him very slowly off clonazepam while giving him the cbd tincture generally 2-3 times/day. This is a trial and error method and there is no hard and fast methodology to guide a person in dosing. I am having his staff take behavioral data since we began the CBD and started taking him off the other prescription drugs. We are now very slowly weaning him off an atypical anti psychotic. His behaviors have decreased significantly. He is not as anxious or perseverative or irritable and I, his staff and him are so far very encouraged. The CBD oil seems to last about 4-6 hours. The medical marijuana dispensary people were very helpful but it is all anecdotal data at this point. You need to make sure you find a reputable company and dispensary There is some scientific evidence to show that CBD may be impacting GABA receptors or others but we need a lot of research. We need the FDA to change its policy of having medicinal marijuana as a Schedule 1 drug since this is preventing the research. I am not too worried about any potential side effects from the CBD but I am very careful about the amount of THC given, as that has been known to sometimes cause psychotic episodes if too much THC. . If anyone has information on weaning off atypical antipsychotic medication I would be most appreciative . Hopefully the CBD oil will make these other medications unnecessary since they seem to have many more long term side effects than the CBD.

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i am just starting to wean from clonazepam and i ordered some eagle cbd gummies. can you help me? im really scared and want everything to go well and little discomfort. i have to work and keep it together.

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@merpreb

@mcberry – Hello again. Did I scare you off? I hope not. I might have told you way too much but I really wanted you to know the difficulties if you don't detox in the right way. How are you feeling?

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Why do you call it detox? When it comes to Benzos tapering is a much better word. Very very slow tapering.

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@puppylove

i am just starting to wean from clonazepam and i ordered some eagle cbd gummies. can you help me? im really scared and want everything to go well and little discomfort. i have to work and keep it together.

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CBD tincture helps with anxiety; I like the combination THC/CBD gummies, but 1/2 is the most I use, at night, to help with sleep. I am also on zoloft. CBD/THC has not been robustly tested, so everything is anecdotal; hopefully laws will change to allow for a better look. I also like 5-hydroxy gaba.

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@rc009

I've been on and off benzos for years..now down to 2mg Valium. I've been using pure CBD the last few weeks to assist. The CBD does not seem to prolong the effect of VAlium at least at my low dose.

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I am on 4mg daily of Valium and would like to titrate off. I had a very difficult time getting from 15mg daily. I was very sick, seizures, anxiety etc.
I am very interested in trying CBD but see it also goes to the gaba a receptors and acts like grapefruit in slowly the livers ability to process
Valium leaving more in your body. Would appreciate any help.

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I have suffered from chronic anxiety and panic attacks for many years now and it seems that I've only gotten worse over time and all those pharmaceutical drugs given to me throughout the years gave me worse side effects than what I was dealing with with my anxiety issues. The side effects were so bad with many of the pharmaceutical drugs that I could not take them. Six months ago I had a doctor prescribed medical marijuana and I also do the CBD tincture drops which have greatly reduced my anxiety and depression and panic attacks as well as reduce my arthritis pain and neuropathy pain I suffer from. I believe more doctors need to do more research on the true benefits of this natural herb, cannibis, because I do believe that the benefits of smoking medical marijuana and/or doing CBD tincture as well could be a lot better for the patient than all these pharmaceutical drugs that have horrible side effects. Sometimes I feel that our government fights very aggressively in legalizing things like medical marijuana and CBD tincture or one-to-one tincture drops because many people could grow this marijuana in their backyard and the government would not be able to tax it like they can tax alcohol etc. But more doctors need to investigate the benefits of medical marijuana and the tincture drops and I'm not talking about the gummies or the tincture that you may find over the counter at some of these CBD stores. I'm talking about an actual doctor prescribing you medical marijuana that you get at a dispensary

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