Xanax (alprazolam) [Benzo] - Social Anxiety Forum
X

Download the SAS Android App

Or switch to mobile version of the forums

X

Download the SAS iPhone App

Or switch to mobile version of the forums

Help/FAQLog InJoin SAS
Go Back   Social Anxiety Forum > Recovery > Treatment Reviews > Medication > Benzodiazepines


Like Tree22 Liked Posts

Reply
Old 02-26-2010, 12:43 PM   #1 (permalink)
 
Helena_SAS's Avatar
 
Status: Community and Website Administrator
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Everywhere
Gender: Female
Posts: 1,247



Default Xanax (alprazolam) [Benzo]

Xanax is a commonly-used benzodiazepine medication. It is prescribed primarily for use on an “as needed” basis for periods of extreme anxiety or panic attacks. SAD patients have had success with Xanax, however, care should be taken not to become dependent on it as this is a well-documented problem with its use. For daily management of SAD, a SSRI or SNRI would normally be a more appropriate choice.

Reports of the benefits of Xanax stress the importance of using it strictly as needed and also tapering off its use slowly rather than stopping the medication abruptly. Building up a resistance to the drug can affect dosage calculations and, often over time, SAD patients will need to increase the amount taken in order to get the benefits they did initially, although this is not the case for all patients.

More info:User ratings/reviews:
h4rmonthomas likes this.
Helena_SAS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-01-2010, 12:53 PM   #2 (permalink)
 
Helena_SAS's Avatar
 
Status: Community and Website Administrator
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Everywhere
Gender: Female
Posts: 1,247



Default Beginning the recovery

(Copied over from old review system)

Posted by orpheus
Social Anxiety Background
Social anxiety/other anxiety issues.

Other Treatments
SSRIs were useless.

Treatment Experience
In sharing my experience with Xanax, I hope to warn people about the potential consequences of long-term dependency.
I began taking the purported miracle drug in March 2007, shortly after I experienced my first and only panic attack -- brought on by a caffeine overdose. I was traumatized by the experience, and developed what is known as “rolling anxiety” (anxiety caused by fear of anxiety). In short, I thought I had gone insane. I tried cognitive therapy but to no avail. My psychologist appeared uninformed about panic attacks and was convinced that my panic attack could be traced to a bad experience.
When therapy failed, I turned to my general physician. I got Xanax and Lexapro, and he instructed me to take the benzo as needed. The first pill flushed my “rolling anxiety” out of my body and I thought I had found the cure for my problems. For four months, I took 1.5-2MG of Xanax every other day. The problem was that I felt a higher level of anxiety on the off-days. Initially, I was convinced it was the Lexapro; but to my chagrin, discontinuing the SSRI didn't stop the rebound anxiety.
I knew about drug dependency but I was convinced I wouldn't get hooked (This wasn't heroin or crack. It was Xanax, a legally prescribed medication, and therefore OK, right?).
Eventually, I could not endure the withdrawals on the off-days and I began taking 2MG every day (one in the morning and in the late afternoon). Occasionally, I would experience mild anxiety between dosages or a few hours after the last dosage (Xanax has a short “half-life,” or the amount of time it stays in your bloodstream).
In October of 2007, I landed a newspaper gig and increased my dosage to 3MG/day. This worked for a couple months, but eventually I began feeling mild anxiety between dosages. I increased it to 3.5MG, which for a time seemed to be the right dose. For four or five months, the potency of the drug kept steady.
Unfortunately, I became deluded into thinking I would never build a tolerance to the drug. I even thought I could take this drug my entire life; however, I gradually developed that dreaded tolerance and suddenly felt less relief than I had when I began taking it at a 2MG/day.
When I began taking 4MG a day for two weeks, I knew I was developing a tolerance. My doctor wouldn't prescribe me more than 4MG a day, and I knew it was only a matter of time before my body demanded more.
The worst chapter of my experience was when I began reading stories of other people struggling to taper off Xanax. I heard about people who cold-turkeyed, only to end up in the ER after experiencing a seizure, an extreme panic attack, or another severe side-effect of “abrupt discontinuation.”
My doctor told me I could get off the drug in a month, no problem. I tried to explain the mechanics of slow tapering, but he shook his head and told me Xanax would be easier to taper off because of its short half-life. I wanted to believe the guy. I wanted to believe that the people who thronged to the benzo-recovery message boards were just extreme cases.
Then one morning I woke up and I almost fell over from a sudden rush of dizziness and anxiety. I grabbed my bottle of Xanax like a starving man grabbing a piece of bread. It was that moment of clarity; I felt like a junkie, hounding the pharmacy to see if the the 50 pills I had refilled less than two weeks prior were refilled again. The interdose withdrawal and the dependency have made life difficult. Even the 3.5MG I'm currently keeping steady at barely allows my brain to maintain homeostasis.
I've since quit my newspaper job, and I'm looking for a filler to hold me over while I taper slowly. The literature is split on the subject of benzo discontinuation syndrome. Wikipedia cites studies that show no support for the syndrome, even though “a survey of physicians showed that 84% of physicians reported alprazolam as being extremely problematic in terms of the severity and prolonged nature of the benzodiazepine withdrawal syndrome...” From my own experience, the withdrawal I feel now is unique and much worse than the occasional anxiety I felt before I had the panic attack and began the taking the drug.I'm not a doctor, but I discourage anyone from taking this drug long-term. It's going to cut a chunk out of my life to get off it. This is not a drug that you can check into a detox center and come out a few weeks later fully recovered. For anyone who is currently trying to get off Xanax, I'd recommend reading all the literature you can find. http://www.benzo.org.uk/manual/contents.htm would be a good start. I didn't vote on the efficacy of Xanax because I feel that I was the problem, not the drug. Used when needed, Xanax is fine. But if you begin to rely on it, you're taking a huge gamble.
Helena_SAS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-01-2010, 12:57 PM   #3 (permalink)
 
Helena_SAS's Avatar
 
Status: Community and Website Administrator
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Everywhere
Gender: Female
Posts: 1,247



Default Excellent when used PRN

(Copied over from old review system)

Posted by xboxfreak
Social Anxiety Background
I blush a lot and my heart starts pounding terribly when I get in social places. I have also been diagnosed with Hyperhidrosis (also known as Excessive Sweating). I believe I also have a very mild case of Depression which I have treated in the past with Fish Oil and St. John's Wort. I have been suffering from anxiety and Hyperhidrosis since I was in 8th grade (now I am in college).

Other Treatments
Celexa - you can see my review on it. Celexa is more long-term help.

Kava Kava - Pure Kava root is safe and provides some anxiety relief although the powder tastes abosolutely awful. Too bad powerdered root is the safest and most effective form of Kava.

Treatment Experience
I was prescribed Xanax (I use the generic = alprazolam) a month or two ago. I only use it PRN and 1mg at a time. I try to take it once to twice a week at most as I don't want to become dependant. Xanax works very well and I can experience what it is like to live life without anxiety. I am much more outgoing and talkative because I don't have such fear and anxiety. I also do not notice any sort of sweating which I am normally prone to seeing as how I have Hyperhidrosis.

I highly recommend getting some type of Benzo to be able to use, but I would recommend PRN so that you don't build up a tolerance and it continues to work well.
Helena_SAS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-01-2010, 12:58 PM   #4 (permalink)
 
Helena_SAS's Avatar
 
Status: Community and Website Administrator
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Everywhere
Gender: Female
Posts: 1,247



Default Short lived

(Copied over from old review system)

Shared by SeaShell
Social Anxiety Background
SA, PTSD, OCD, GAD, Depression

Other Treatments
Cilift, Cipralex, Zopiclone

Treatment Experience
I've had the Xanax SR 0.5 mg, and when it did help to calm me and give me a sense of well being at first, it took all of 5 days to wear off. My body built up a resistance to it far too quickly and then it felt like I was just taking a placebo. It had no effect.

The cold turkey side-effects of going off them were hell though. Always taper!
Helena_SAS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-01-2010, 12:58 PM   #5 (permalink)
 
Helena_SAS's Avatar
 
Status: Community and Website Administrator
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Everywhere
Gender: Female
Posts: 1,247



Default Barely Works

(Copied over from old review system)

Posted by UltraShy
Social Anxiety Background
35 years of SA hell. Can't work, no social life, sit alone waiting to die. Have done nothing since college graduation in May 1995, so nearing 14 wasted years.

Other Treatments
Have tried a whole laundry list of total failures; basically sugar pills with side effects. MAOIs would be about the only drug class I haven't tried.

Treatment Experience
Xanax is not a magic pill. I should know given that I've consumed nearly 7,000 2mg bars of the stuff over the last several years.

I take 10 mg a day and it most certainly doesn't get the job done. It only helps to a limited degree.

And it kills both sex drive and sexual function as well (though few will notice that effect since you need to take huge amounts like me to find that effect).
Helena_SAS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-01-2010, 12:59 PM   #6 (permalink)
 
Helena_SAS's Avatar
 
Status: Community and Website Administrator
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Everywhere
Gender: Female
Posts: 1,247



Default Xanax

(Copied over from old review system)

Posted by Keith
Treatment Experience
I really like xanax it was the most helpful medication for my anxiety. I was on .5mg twice a day. It helped my panic attacks alot as well as my daily anxiety. I was on it daily for a few months then took it as needed. It didn't obilterate my anxiety but it numbed it enough so i could function without me being drugged into oblivion.
Helena_SAS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-01-2010, 01:00 PM   #7 (permalink)
 
Helena_SAS's Avatar
 
Status: Community and Website Administrator
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Everywhere
Gender: Female
Posts: 1,247



Default A joke of a treatment for SA.

(Copied over from old review system)

Posted by redlegion
Social Anxiety Background
Lifetime sufferer, currently working in customer service! Yay nightmares.

Treatment Experience
Being that social anxiety is pretty much constantly triggered for me, this was hardly an option. The dose had been increased several times before I simply gave up on this as a treatment option entirely. It seems to have little to no use for the SA community except for those who enjoy recreational drug abuse.
Helena_SAS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-01-2010, 01:00 PM   #8 (permalink)
 
Helena_SAS's Avatar
 
Status: Community and Website Administrator
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Everywhere
Gender: Female
Posts: 1,247



Default Miracle drug for short term anxiety

(Copied over from old review system)

Posted by BearFan
Other Treatments
Buspar

Treatment Experience
After all these years, I still use xanax as needed for anxiety situations. The lowest dose is effective for me, can help with presentations and getting more out of your life. Slight lift in mood as well. Unlike some medications, it works right away instead of waiting a few weeks. Just be careful it can be habit forming.
Helena_SAS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-28-2010, 02:41 PM   #9 (permalink)
 
Status: SAS Member
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 464



Default

Xanax is good stuff. I have been on every SSRI, Wellbutrin, Effexor, Seroquel, and Ativan and Klonopin.

Xanax is the best of the above meds. I only take 1mg per day generally and it always helps at least some. Xanax is really good for panic attacks, it will get you back to normal in no time.
Himi Jendrix is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-28-2010, 08:17 PM   #10 (permalink)
 
QuackQuack's Avatar
 
Status: SAS Member
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: New York, NY
Gender: Male
Age: 33
Posts: 364



Default

I was given this after going to the doctor about heart palpitations. Ironically, it seems to actually make me more anxious and feel phantom pains in my chest when I take it.

I just took one 15 minutes ago and I just felt a weird sensation in my arm and chest, like a withdrawing or pain or something. This is the same thing as happened before, though I can't remember what it's like in between taking it. I don't know how to describe it. Like a feeling of warmth and tension and numbness in the left side of my chest? I probably shouldn't bother taking these.

Now I am looking back through notes I wrote about the experience before, and I don't remember writing this, but they're the same for each one.

7/17/2008
Quote:
just took half a xanax
immediately got really nervous
10/21/2008
Quote:
kind of like heat? or shooting pain? brief?
started at 5 pm, happening more often since?
started after taking xanax
10/30/2008
Quote:
4:13 PM me: and i think taking xanax makes me paranoid and does weird things to my body
4:20 PM me: makes my left neck and left hand numb?
9/16/2009
Quote:
took half a xanax today. i do not like the way it makes me feel. i feel like my brain is stuck in a rebooting loop or something

it makes me feel uneasy, like i'm waiting to puke or something
like something bad is going to happen

i can feel the change in my brain but it's n really making me any less depressed, just making me feel weird. maybe the depression goes away later?

yeah i feel a sort of apprehensive anxiety feeling
chest feels wrong, brain feels wooly

i dont like this sensatoin. can't think straight
need to remember not to take these anymore
So in another few months I'll forget about the bad sensations and try one again, and feel the same way and think "I should never take these again"
QuackQuack is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-29-2010, 07:22 AM   #11 (permalink)
 
Status: Permanently Banned
Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 206



Default

Had a nasty withdrawal recently after taking 2 mg of xanax daily for two months.

I thought I was going to die really, I couldn't sleep for two weeks it was awful and will not take any type of pills again.
precious007 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-05-2010, 01:46 PM   #12 (permalink)
 
Status: SAS Member
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 27



Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by precious007 View Post
Had a nasty withdrawal recently after taking 2 mg of xanax daily for two months.

I thought I was going to die really, I couldn't sleep for two weeks it was awful and will not take any type of pills again.
Did you taper off or stop cold turkey? Also, what did you withdraw feel like?
Heatherx is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-06-2010, 04:22 PM   #13 (permalink)
 
Status: SAS Member
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Central North Carolina, NRA member, Sons of Confederate Veterans member, reenactor, & a Christian
Gender: Male
Posts: 8



Default

The closest I ever came to being hooked on anything was Xanax. It made me want to crawl out of my flesh.
Troutbum is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-07-2010, 07:42 AM   #14 (permalink)
 
Status: SAS Member
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 27



Default

I have been taking about 2 mg a day for about 4 weeks now and always split up into 4 separate times of the day. Yesterday I woke up and just decided not to take any. I felt fine, nothing wrong in any way, continued through the entire afternoon until around dinner time. I didn't NEED it, I just decided to take it. It actually made me feel nervouse "inside" if that makes any sense
and my teeth we chattering. I could function normal and everything, was just wondering why in the world would I fee fine all day NOT taking it when I SHOULD be experiencing withdrawl or something and then when I TAKE the pill, get to feeling uneasy. SO CONFUSING. I have not taken any yet today, and I feel fine. Even having crystal light that has some caffine in it. No problems as of yet. I guess what I am wondering is when are you supposed to feel the withdraw? What does it feel like? Does it start days after you stop or usually after missing your first dose?

I heard that you should not stop cold turkey, after a period of time. I have only been on for about 3 -4 weeks, but from what I heard that is long enough?

Any responses would be very appreciated!

Thanks!
Heatherx is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-10-2010, 09:36 PM   #15 (permalink)
 
Status: SAS Member
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 7



Default

Just dont rely on it use Valerine root extract to calm down the nerves and eat healthy dont over sleep or sleep less. Stay warm,take showers often,eat lots of fruits and vegetables. These are methods I try to calm down the nerves. Also learn how to breath properly as rapid breathing makes you more nervous. Breathe slowly and exhale slowly. Overbreathing is not healthy.
erolsipar is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-20-2010, 12:49 PM   #16 (permalink)
 
Status: JNM123
Join Date: May 2009
Gender: Female
Age: 26
Posts: 30



Default

I would never take Xanax again like I was, I was taking HOWEVER much I wanted basically, I'd say up to 4MG a day. Because of like someone said, the days I WOULDN'T take it, I'd feel terrible anxiety. I'd go to 3-4 different pharmacies to get the medication early until I found a doctor who wrote me however much I wanted basically. I would obsess over the medication, refusing to leave the house without it. The withdrawals are bad, but it is worth it to get it out of your system. It is a GREAT feeling, but a terrible withdrawal. And xanax doesn't cure anxiety, it just masks it. I say this coming from a person who has had anxiety/panic attacks since kindergarten! I have never been better now that I am off of the medication. Use it for emergencies only, is my suggestion.
jnm123 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-20-2010, 12:53 PM   #17 (permalink)
 
Status: JNM123
Join Date: May 2009
Gender: Female
Age: 26
Posts: 30



Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Heatherx View Post
I have been taking about 2 mg a day for about 4 weeks now and always split up into 4 separate times of the day. Yesterday I woke up and just decided not to take any. I felt fine, nothing wrong in any way, continued through the entire afternoon until around dinner time. I didn't NEED it, I just decided to take it. It actually made me feel nervouse "inside" if that makes any sense
and my teeth we chattering. I could function normal and everything, was just wondering why in the world would I fee fine all day NOT taking it when I SHOULD be experiencing withdrawl or something and then when I TAKE the pill, get to feeling uneasy. SO CONFUSING. I have not taken any yet today, and I feel fine. Even having crystal light that has some caffine in it. No problems as of yet. I guess what I am wondering is when are you supposed to feel the withdraw? What does it feel like? Does it start days after you stop or usually after missing your first dose?

I heard that you should not stop cold turkey, after a period of time. I have only been on for about 3 -4 weeks, but from what I heard that is long enough?

Any responses would be very appreciated!

Thanks!
It sounds like you simply don't need the meds or your body does not agree with them. I felt withdrawal symptoms within 2 days. I was on benzos for 2 years though. You may feel a little withdrawal but probably not as intense as if you continue the medication for an extended period of time. I'd give it at least 3-4 weeks to clear out of your system. Come up with a weening plan with your doctor.
__________________
"It's those pills that you don't need to take
Medicating perfection, now that's a mistake"
jnm123 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-21-2010, 02:01 PM   #18 (permalink)
 
Status: SAS Member
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 27



Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Himi Jendrix View Post
Xanax is good stuff. I have been on every SSRI, Wellbutrin, Effexor, Seroquel, and Ativan and Klonopin.

Xanax is the best of the above meds. I only take 1mg per day generally and it always helps at least some. Xanax is really good for panic attacks, it will get you back to normal in no time.
I go in to see my Dr. this Friday to talk to him about putting me on Klonopin. I noticed that you are on Klonopin amongst other things, and you still take a xanax 1mg once a day? Do you do that at a specific time or just when you really feel you need it. Just wondering because I am still going to have xanax left over. I have been taking about 2mgs a day of xanax. Going to tell the Dr. that, he already knows I have been taking xanax, but I don't think he knows how much. I hope that he gives me the same equivalency. I will bring up the dangers of "not" doing that if he doesnt. I am also thinking of trying Valium to see what I think of it. My hopes it to only take that every great once and a while.
Heatherx is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-01-2010, 11:02 AM   #19 (permalink)
 
bigcat1967's Avatar
 
Status: SAS Member
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 278



Default

Xanax is not bad if you need to take it for just a week. Warning though - don't take it longer - or you'll be it's slave like I was.
bigcat1967 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-02-2010, 05:30 PM   #20 (permalink)
 
Status: SAS Member
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 107



Default

I found xanax + Propranolol is a great combo for giving presentations, public speaking situations. I used 20mg Propranolol + .5mg xanax. Give a try!


icedCoffee is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply
Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Does alprazolam (Xanax) interact with the grapefruit juice? NihilBoni Voting Booth 3 09-15-2013 07:56 PM
Drowsiness from Xanax / benzo. Does it go away with time? bowlingpins Medication 17 05-18-2013 08:12 PM
Am I damaging my brain? (Alprazolam + Caffeine) Guide 4 Dummies Medication 16 09-23-2012 11:23 AM
alprazolam vs lorazepam Anxiety75 Medication 6 12-30-2011 11:31 PM
Is it normal? Alprazolam (Xanax) acted about 7 hours at me NihilBoni Medication 19 06-04-2007 10:09 AM

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 09:50 PM.
Powered by vBulletin® ©2000-2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
SEO by vBSEO 3.6.0 ©2011, Crawlability, Inc. User Alert System provided by Advanced User Tagging v3.1.0 (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2014 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.