Intensive outpatient programs

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has anyone done something like this and found it made a huge difference?

Basically what has happened is I was taking clonazapam 1.5mg at night and felt like I was relying on it too much so I decided I would reduce it weekly by .5m.  I had never heard of Prof Ashton, the Ashton Method or that benzos were so dangerous.  Anyway I triggered anxiety/panic that would not go away.  Now I finally got into pdoc and she prescribed gabapentin only two days ago after I went to E.r. And has me taking an anti seizure to get ready to taper off the benzo.

anywya I haven't even started tapering and Iwas so bad.  She recommended an intensive program but I really like my current therapist I have been seeing for only four weeks.

Just wondering if anyone has any thoughts or experiences.

thanks

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  • Posted

    I had a CPN quite a few years ago, this was an extended period of several years. We got quite close, not like sexual or anything, it was like meeting a friend.

    Eventually they arranged for a new CPN and I lost my friend and was given a new one. I tried to get my old CPN back and the more I asked the more they dug their feet in and I never saw here again.

    A true story where I learned a great deal from the experience.

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  • Posted

    oh my god i have been through all of this. the ashton manual , the whole thing. these doctors have no idea how bad the withdrawals are. what i did was basically take about 4 months for the taper. it was horrible, and that is when i decided to just take my time, so as not to develope protracted withdrawal . valium is a longer acting benzo that klonipan, and that can make it a little easier. and the gabapenten helped me with the shakes in my hands, fingers, and also kept me calm a bit. i kept a diary and wrote down how much i took every day. you cannot cut it down every day. more like make a cut onece a week. just go as slow as you doctor says. if you are honest and want to really rid yourself of them, there is a doc out there somewhere that will let you go slow. i hate to say it, but these docs have no idea what we go through. DON'T GO TOO FAST!!!!!!!  i do not think anything outpatient would help on this, and even inpatient, if they detox you very fast, when you get home you have the same issues. good luck to you. you aren't alone. don't read too much about it or you will be scared to death. listen to your body and it will tell you when you can make another cut and by all means don't go too fast......... good luck. any questions, pm me. i did this last year.......

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    • Posted

      Thank you for your response.  Did you find a pdoc that also gave you an anti seizure med to help with withdrawal?  She wants to do it in 10 weeks, I said I think I need more time but she won't crossover to valium.  It is hard to get into a pdoc.  I read a lot at first on line and now I have quit reading online because it is too scary.  What was the result of your taper?  What meds do you take now to help with anxiety?  What was the worst part of withdrawal? 

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  • Posted

    okay, i am not a doctor everyone......    this is just my experience and how i got through benzo withdrawal.       First the Gabapentin is a seizure medication and i would take it as directed if not more during your withdrawal. i re-read your post and see that she is giving you 10 weeks. i wish you had 12. do you possible have enough for 12 weeks by any chance?    this drug stays in your system for about 36 hours. that is when you will really feel the withdrawals.  perhaps you have a few more somewherre where you could stretch it to 12 weeks?

    my advice is to look at how many pills you have left.........maybe it might be a little more that the 10 weeks worth. i would get a pill splitter where towards the end you can take even .12.5 mg.   i would not go down more than .25 a week. toward the end of the taper i would even cut the .25 in half and do that for a few weeks.  just look at your pills and go as absolutely slow as you can. remember you are getting rebound anxiety and this will all go away. i know the feeling of wanting to get it out of your system after you read everything...... but do not. depending on the size of you pills you could even spit them into thirds every week and more than likely you would be ok even if it took you 14 weeks.  always remember that if your body cannot take it, you can take another small dose and that will make your symptoms go away. i don't think you will have near the trouble i did....  my dosage was higher. and i had been taking it for 12 years. my worse symtoms were anxiety, neuropathy in my hands and feet. one arm even curled up!!!!!   but they will all go away. The gabapentin is a seizure medicine and it should help. look up the dosing on this, some people take really high amounts. but start taking it like she said. if you get dizzy, this could be from the Gabapentin, but will subside. You do not need to be in a stressful work enviroment or anything while you do this.  i also supplemented with a GABA supplement. and it helped. it was called irwin naturals " stress defy' in the morning and " power to sleep pm"  i took benydry and took it regurlarily during this time, especialy at night. and i started taking melatonin at night. 6 mg. i know it sounds crazy that one little pill could cause so much discomfort, but it really can.........     one more thing you could try is to take the melatonin and benydryl at night with your gabapentin. and you COULD split the dosage into 3 pills and take it 3 times a day. ( while still tapering only .25 per week. this might be a bit more comfortable. it sounds like you had a good doctor to start you on the Gabapentin. It is those receptors that benzos cross and this should give you some relief.   write me back if you need anything. just count your pills, get out a calander and stretch them as far as they will stretch. i was shaving off tiny bits there at the last.......

    i later got on 40 mg of prozac to help me with the anxiety. it took a m onth to work. that is another way that people get through the withdrawals. it is called the prozac bridge. it really helps with the withdrawals. if she would look to change you to an SSRI antidepressant that works on anxiety, she might let you begin it soon......    very important, i drank hot herbal tea, the entire time. no caffeine whatsoever. i think i may have made chammomile or sleepytime all day every day during this process.  it was just calming. 

    so as for meds now, like i said i take low dose prozac every day and it does seem to help a bit with worry. and i take the gaba supplements since they work in a similar way. and i get about 12 valium a month in case of a panic attack. it's funny, because you just will not take them unless neccesary unless you have to. and you cannot build up a tolerence to any benzo when using it only 10-12 a month.

    just work with what you have....... taper as small as possible...... don't worry about getting off of it fast because that is really bad. and remember that any symptoms are just a rebound of anxiety because your body is looking for benzo.  i can't tell you how much the 50 mg benydryl and 6 mg melatonnin helped me at night. i didn't sleep a wink until i started those. 

    you are gong to be blad that you have gotten off of this and will feel better physically. you could gain a l ittle weight on the Gabapentin, but it will go away. and all the otherr symptoms will, too. so later on you might ask her for an antidepressant that helps anxietyy some. Prozac and Zoloft i think are in the class for anxiety.   good luck to you. go as slow as you possibly can with the pills you have. and DO NOT REDUCE MORE THAN ONCE A WEEK!!!!

    keep me posted, if you will. i could go smooth as silk if you go this slow. there is not need to rush as it could lead to that proacted withdrawal that lasts almost a year........  don't want that!!!!    good luck to you. you are going to be ok. it is not a large dose you are on ........ so just spread it as long as it will go.....  split it into quarters and take it for 4 months if you have to. Be easier on your body.......

          

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  • Posted

    just wanted to say that the Gabapentin is a really good choice to have put you on during the taper......  not all docs would know to do that!!!    when i have taken gabapentin, though, i had to slowly increase it. i got a little dizzy, then it went away....       GOOD LUCK.  tell us how you did because this is something that all of us need to be aware of....
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    • Posted

      Thank you thank you thank you!! I appreciate your knowledge, and even though none of us are doctors when you live this you have great experience so thank you for sharing that!!! You have given me hope!!!

      thank you so much!!!! I send hugs, as i am a hugger!!! smile I will keep you posted and will not decrease more than once a week to ten days

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