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  #31  
Old 05-25-12, 02:37 PM
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Re: Ativan, the worst drug ever

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Originally Posted by Nucking_Futs View Post
What your therapist suggested is what we see long term care facilities a lot actually.

ps Ativan is not a PRN med your doctor should have informed you better.

And it is slightly addictive so you will see some withdrawal symptoms. Just stick with your therapist's suggestion and don't deviate or you'll set yourself up for a worse trip.

Keep us posted.

pss I didn't care much for Ativan myself either.
^^ Right here is the very problem.

Benzodiazepines are ***supposed*** to be PRN (as needed i.e. not every single day, not even most days, just rarely) medications.

You build up tolerance to them very quickly and the withdrawal can be so bad it has its own medical diagnosis (benzodiazepine withdrawal syndrome). It is my prediction that there is going to be a major crackdown on prescribers (in the form of lawsuits or regulations from the state boards of medicine/pharmacy) who give them to people for anxiety disorders on a long-term basis. The field of psychiatry is slowly but surely catching on to the long-term damage that prolonged usage of benzodiazepines cause.

My suggestion to those of you hooked on them and starting to feel sick from taking them constantly: go to your doctor, ask to be put on the equivalent dose of Valium (diazepam) and taper down by 1mg every 1-2 weeks.
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  #32  
Old 05-25-12, 06:36 PM
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Re: Ativan, the worst drug ever

I think Ativan is one of the best drugs out there to treat anxiety.
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  #33  
Old 05-26-12, 12:03 AM
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Re: Ativan, the worst drug ever

Ativan (lorazepam) like any benzodiazapine can be addictive. Unlike other classes of drugs such as narcotics or stimulants, withdrawal from benzodiazapines can result in death. I have spoken to heroin addicts who told me they'd rather withdraw from smack than a benzo. You have to respect that. So they are addictive, and they are a particularly dangerous and unpleasant drug to discontinue. Even though dying from withdrawal is uncommon, you could experience seizures and will certainly experience extreme anxiety. It can take months before anxiety returns to normal levels. Obviously the higher the dose and/or the longer it's taken will impact severity and duration of withdrawal.

That said, I have used several different drugs from this class for my anxiety, and I can attest that they work incredibly well IF you use them properly.

Take them only as needed. Benzos with a shorter half-life such as Xanax (alprazolam) or Ativan (lorazepam) are generally better suited to panic attack, when you need quick yet brief relief. A longer acting benzo like Klonopin (clonazepam) is better suited to generalized or social anxiety, where a longer period of relief is required. In any case, these are NOT a daily medication for long term treatment. If you need daily, long term treatment for anxiety, I would highly advise an SNRI, or other anti-depressant that has been proven to help anxiety. In my own treatment I would never use a benzo more than two days in a row, and more than three days in a week. My usual habit was to limit it to once a week. If you use them sparingly and with respect this is a perfectly safe, and very effective medication. In my opinion treating your anxiety with these medications should be a secondary concern to avoiding dependence.

A tip for those who need fast action: All of the conventional salt tablet forms of these medications can be administered sublingually for a much faster onset of action. You place the pill under your tongue and hold it there until it is fully dissolved. Then wash the remainder down with some water. In my experience clonazepam, diazepam, lorazepam and alprazolam administered this way have an onset within 10 minutes of administration.

Warning: Never, EVER consume alcohol when taking a benzodiazapine. This very quickly leads to memory loss and impairment (read complete and total loss) of judgement. In other words you tend to black out. You aren't likely to die from an overdose, but you very well might walk into traffic. Even with a low dose of benzo it is quite likely once you begin drinking you will take more. I know many people who took a couple of Valium before a night out and woke up with no memory and an empty Valium bottle. Don't do it. Some things you shouldn't do, but you do them anyhow because they are fun. This isn't one of those things. There is no fun to be had. Just amnesia if you are lucky...
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  #34  
Old 05-26-12, 04:03 PM
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Re: Ativan, the worst drug ever

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Originally Posted by spc123 View Post
Warning: Never, EVER consume alcohol when taking a benzodiazapine. This very quickly leads to memory loss and impairment (read complete and total loss) of judgement. In other words you tend to black out. You aren't likely to die from an overdose, but you very well might walk into traffic. Even with a low dose of benzo it is quite likely once you begin drinking you will take more. I know many people who took a couple of Valium before a night out and woke up with no memory and an empty Valium bottle. Don't do it. Some things you shouldn't do, but you do them anyhow because they are fun. This isn't one of those things. There is no fun to be had. Just amnesia if you are lucky...
People don't realize this but the infamous "roofies" (aka Rohypnol aka flunitrazepam) was itself a benzodiazepine used by rapists to lace the drinks of girls in bars. Like all benzodiazepines (albeit when mixed with alcohol) they have a tendency to cause anterograde amnesia and perhaps even respiratory arrest.

This class of drugs is so incredibly dangerous when taken for long periods of time I am in total shock that there hasn't been more lawsuits. They will come though.
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  #35  
Old 01-13-14, 08:36 AM
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Re: Ativan, the worst drug ever

Worked like a treat for me- had bad withdrawal after taking ativan for a month then tried to get off it reducing the dose from 4mg though i did seem to reduce it to fast which was hell. My doc put me on Sulpiride which worked wonders(2 x 50mg tablets 3 times a day and i cut my ativan down to 0.5mg in the morning then 0.5mg in the evening. got down to (1 x 50mg sulpiride 3 times a day and a quarter ativan then off with out bad withdrawal. My doc told me to stop the Ativan cold turkey and just do the sulpiride though i was a bit scared so i still took it but as i mentioned above only a small dose though i think going cold turkey may of worked if on sulpiride as my side effects once i took sulphiride seemed to disappear was great and such a relief. Ask your doc about this option as i would highly recommend it!!!
Use Ativan only if you really feel the need but never daily.
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Old 01-13-14, 11:19 AM
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Re: Ativan, the worst drug ever

Oh Christ in heaven.

Talk about making mountains out of molehills.

Benzodiazepines are perfectly safe if taken as prescribed (whether daily or PRN) by a doctor.

Benzodiazepine withdrawal symptoms can be significantly mitigated by withdrawing by gradually reducing the dose over a lengthy period. If you have been on the med for a significant time and/or at a relatively high dose, I would reccomend 8 weeks.

Benzodiazepines are also the ONLY class of medication that help some of us with severe anxiety disorders (I have clinically severe GAD and on-an-off severe Insomnia probably related to bipolar. I take Klonopin 1 mg tid and a benzo structurally similar to Rohypnol prn for Insomnia - the ONLY medication that helps with my insomnia particularly when manic.)

If they cut down on benzo's, I will become non-functional. I will probably commit criminal activities to sustain myself and will feel no guilt about it whatsoever.

As it is governments do nothing for disabled people, if they take away our meds, they and they laws can go f~~k themselves.
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  #37  
Old 01-14-14, 07:32 PM
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Re: Ativan, the worst drug ever

I didn't have quite the bad experience you had, but I don't like it much either. It's not something I can take and work on, it makes me quite loopy and I've done things on it (like lose thousands and thousands of dollars in Vegas) that I regret and hardly remember.

Librium and Valium are much better.
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