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If I may add my long experience....

I was on (and addicted) to Valium for 28 years straight and at one time was on doses of 40-80 mg a day which was insane. I was sleeping a lot back then and the problem with Valium was it wasn't the answer to panic attacs.
I felt "drugged" most of the time and it had a stronghold on me.
I had tried ( with medical supervision ) to get off of it several times ...but I always strayed back on it.

Then Xanax came along. Yeah, I know another addicting benzodiazepene.

My shrink changed me from Valium to Xanax instantly and (about 7 years ago approximately) and since that switch....my panic attacks have been much less frequent than anytime when I was on Valium.

The thing is...I have been able (with a lot of self discipline) to maintain my dosage over the last 7 years which is .5 mg four times daily with an option for an extra one as needed.
That's 2 mg. a day of Xanax and that dosage is at the bottom of the therapeutic dosing chart which ranges from 2-9mg daily.

Like many have said here...there is no "buzz" with Xanax. Valium always gave me a nice warm blankety buzz.

Xanax...if used properly can help panic sufferer's to have somewhat normal or normal lives. However, There comes times in out lives where we fall deep in a depression..or fear..or obsession...or something extremely worrysome...or just high anxiety,panic...you know...all the fun stuff.

The answer here is proabably some kind of behavioral cognitive thinking,exercise,diet change ...etc. instead of an increase of the drug.

Last night I was in the ER from a heart-panic episode thing. I have been on a deep depression some serious digestive physical problems for a while now which has been consuming almost 100% of my waking hours. I have been so obsessed with my fear of what is wrong with me and other things ( long story) that my life has totally changed for the worse. Sleeplessness.....apetite loss...weight loss....unhappiness...despair about my future or lack of one....etc. Just AWFUL.

Back to the hospital story...As I layed there overnight in an observation room(bed...tv...phone...and plenty of interruptions) I started to feel a bit anxious. That was AFTER I took my nightime meds. Well..instead of reaching in my overnight bag for another Xanax....I turned on The Animal Planet on their limited cable TV. When I saw some of the poor dogs (Animal Cops Miami) who who were being so mistreated and ignored...starved etc....by an AWFUL pet store owner...I lost it. I started crying and crying (I'm a 52 year old male and a huge animal lover).

The natural release of my body chemicals after a good cry seemed to have a calming effect. I finally started to fall asleep after a half an hour (I was hooked on the show..needed to see how the puppies recovered).
As soon as I was nodding off...a nurse came in and woke me up for more blood draw. I was pissed. I mean I only had been averaging 2 hours of sleep a night and ...oh you get the idea.

About another hour later I fell asleep for about 20 minutes and the same nurse woke me up again ..flicked on the light and drew more blood.

I never fell asleep again last night and left the Observation area against medical advice.

The point here is....I think that even though Xanax can do wonders for panic..there are always other things a person needs to do to assist the relaxtion process...without ingesting more pills.

Thanks for reading,
Mark





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