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Pdoc wants to stop Klonopin: 'short term only'

Posted by HelenInCalif on December 20, 2004, at 20:53:44

I know this isn't an uncommon topic- I'd like to discuss the latest knowledge about longer-term uses of Klonopin for social anxiety. I started Klonopin for extreme stress, and discovered that it stopped a problem I didn't know I had- social anxiety.

My doctor seems to want me off of it soon-- her nurse said its because I've been taking it for about 9 months. The nurse said that its "an extremely addictive drug" and that the fact that I don't want to stop it could be a sign of addiction. I think the fact that I've had 3 deaths in 3 months in my family is the bad sign... plus, I like not having social anxiety: being able to network and schmooze is very useful.

I'm also taking Celexa for depression. I'd taken Paxil, Wellbutrin and Prozac at times in the past for depression and they'd never helped with social anxiety before. Based on those anti-depressant experiences I don't have reason to believe that Celexa alone would help- would it? The Pdoc's nurse said I'll probably have to switch to Buspar. Is that the usual post-benzo anti anxiety medicine?

In April / May I started Klonopin (.5mg 3xday) due to anxiety: extremely ill family members. Many weeks later I also started Celexa (20 mg /day then, 40mg/day now). I found that the Klonopin by itself also really helped social anxiety. Didn't really know that I had it, until experiencing a nervousness-free conference for the first time.

Over the past 3 months I've had 3 relatives die. That's why my Celexa dose went up. Between deaths #2 and #3 I had reduced my Klonopin to 2x day (more like 2.4x day-- every 10 hours instead of 8), but then went back to 3xday after the last death.

The doctor (through the doctor's nurse) seemed unhappy that I was going back to 3x day, even though that's the dose I'd been on most of the past 9 months. The doctor now is only writing 10 day supply prescriptions, so I'm paying 3 times as much per month compared to earlier this year. When I complained about the 3x prices, the nurse seemed unhappy about that too, as if it was a bad sign.

I have no experience with "addictive" drugs, so I wouldn't know what to look for if I've become "addicted" to Klonopin. There've been a few weekends where I'd forgotten to take the Klonopin for 2 days: didn't notice any side effects.

I do know caffeine withdrawal (but that's not a Schedule drug), and I do know what bad withdrawal from Paxil was like- just 1 accidental day without it caused nasty headaches, etc. With Klonopin I've been taking the same dose (2.4 to 3 pills per day) the entire time, and haven't had it stop working. If I were to stop Konopin for more than two days, should I expect withdrawal symptoms? What makes the Klonopin different from Paxil, given the bad effects of stopping Paxil?




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