Psycho-Babble Medication | about biological treatments | Framed
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Benzos are not great for everyone

Posted by bubblegumchewer on August 13, 2002, at 11:08:06

In reply to Re: BENZOS ARE SAFER THAN ANTIDEPRESSANTS, posted by cybercafe on August 13, 2002, at 7:28:27

I took no AD but just a benzo (klonopin) for four months, three times a day, and got progressively worse panic attacks until I was having them all day and all night and could not eat, drink or sleep. I thought that I would prefer being dead to "living" that way. Each time I drifted mercifully into sleep it was interrupted a few minutes later with hair-raising (literally) panic attacks. Taking more klonopin to try to force myself asleep did little to help; a slight increase in sedation and sleep time was more than offset by the inevitable panic attacks that grew stronger over time and crippled me until I was living in my bedroom, starving close to death.

I checked into a hospital and they started my on nortriptyline which immediately restored my ability to sleep. I still felt crappy and wondered whether it was worthwhile to live for about three weeks while the nortrip. kicked in and I was ramped off the klonopin. I don't know if it was coincidence but the first day I felt normal again was the day I took the last of the klonopin.

I am not saying that klonopin never helped me. Before I got a tolerance to it, the occasional quarter or half tablet (which would knock me out cold) of just a .5 mg. tablet would save me from a bad night of panic attacks and let me go on to live normally the next day. But taking it round the clock had devastating effects, as I described above. I would take it again if I needed it for very occasional short-term relief.

I'm not out to argue, but I wanted to point out that benzos have gotten a bad reputation for a reason. They can cause big problems, or at least BADLY complicate depression (I'm not at all convinced I was depressed before the klonopin entered the scene although I did have some panic attacks) for certain individuals. I certainly would have died without hospitalization and antidepressant therapy.

BTW, I was taking 100 mg. of nortrip. and am now ramping off it; down to 50 mg. Each 25 mg. down-ramp has caused me a somewhat unrestful night's sleep and maybe a little nausea and uneasiness, but that only lasted a day or two and I feel fine now.




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