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Prescribed Benzos in Recovery

Old 09-17-2017, 10:08 AM
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Prescribed Benzos in Recovery

Im going through a period of bad anxiety at the moment, I am doing everything as suggested by AA yet I am getting little relief from anxiety, I can hardly eat due to the sick churning feeling in my stomach. My doctor has prescribed me diazepam. I told her I was an recovering alcoholic and told her everything I had been doing to try and help myself.

She said she thought I could do with a little reprieve and prescibed 10 tablets at 2 mg.

I havent taken them. Im worried that if I do I will some how be cheating my recovery?

Im just wondering what your thoughts are on this? I am trying very hard to work my programme and ride this out but at times the waves of anxiety can be unbareable.

What do I do? Has anyone taken such medication in their recovery for the same thing?

My sponsor has said that she would never tell me not to take them as they have been given on the advice of my gp but mentioned to be it is not a fix to what is going on with my life right now. She is right.

Please could someone advise x
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Old 09-17-2017, 10:17 AM
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My experience is that when I started seeing a therapist who was a chemical dependency therapist their views of benzos (mine was xanax) are completely different from GP and mental health who are not trained in chemical dependency. I was told that the benzos basically affect your brain in the same area and in the same way that alcohol does. (This is why they are used in medical detox) So it was pretty much like taking a small sip of alcohol and telling my brain that's it, that's all you get, deal with it. Obviously that was never going to cut it. I stopped taking xanax over a year ago. I have had depression and anxiety issues for as long as I can remember, and my CD doc and CD therapist work really hard to find the right combo of medications that are both effective and NON addictive. I want to stress that's just my experience though maybe you could seek out a therapist who has a lot of experience and specializes chemical dependency? And see what they think. To be completely transparent though, I am on day 2 (again) with no alcohol. Do what you think is best for YOU.
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Old 09-17-2017, 10:19 AM
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I think that following your doctor's suggestion is a good idea, but I think it's also important to learn ways to deal with your anxiety without medication too. I struggled a lot with anxiety before, during and after my drinking days.

Belly Breathing is amazingly simple but it works

Sit comfortably, with your shoulders, head and neck relaxed.

Breathe in slowly through your nose so that your stomach moves out.

Tighten your stomach muscles, letting them fall inward as you exhale slowly through your mouth.


And, I read a lot of books :

Amen, Daniel Change Your Brain, Change Your Life

Bassett, Lucinda From Panic to Power

Burns, David MD When Panic Attacks

Chodron, Pema The Places That Scare You

Doidge, Norman MD The Brain That Changes Itself

Dyer, Wayne The Power of Intention and Change Your Thoughts, Change Your Life

Orsilla, Ken Mindful way Through Anxiety
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Old 09-17-2017, 10:25 AM
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Its a tough call, I went to her because I was terrified of relapse. Now ive got the pills my mind is off having a drink I guess. I know the tablets are there if it gets too much. I agree I should try and manage this without chemical substances. It is so very very hard tho, but the good thing is Im not looking to pick up a drink anymore. Im going to try and work through this, I think, Day by Day, hour by hour, it is so verrrrrrrry hard going at the moment. Admittedly.
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Old 09-17-2017, 10:30 AM
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hi blueberry I'm on day 3 or 4 don't know anymore and my anxiety is to the roof.

how long have you been sober ?i know the longer you are without alcohol maybe your anxiety gets down. i am scare of taking meds i know myself i would probably abused them but you need to do whats best for you.

stay around this is a good place to be
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Old 09-17-2017, 10:37 AM
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From someone who used to be addicted to benzos, as long as you don't take them every day you should be OK. But it's a slippery slope. It's like alcohol in a pill and in my experience even more addictive and the withdrawal is worse. There are other meds that work pretty well for anxiety and aren't addictive. I take something called Tenex that works quite well and isn't addictive. There is another one called Hydroxyzine. I agree with others who advise you to see someone who knows about addiction. Most GPs know very little.

I wouldn't think of it as "cheating", but it's good that you're aware of the dangers.
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Old 09-17-2017, 10:43 AM
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I take alprazolam twice a day for anxiety and haven't had any problems with it. I do not abuse it, and often don't have to take it at all.
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Old 09-17-2017, 10:46 AM
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Originally Posted by blueberry2015 View Post
Im going through a period of bad anxiety at the moment, I am doing everything as suggested by AA yet I am getting little relief from anxiety,

My sponsor has said that she would never tell me not to take them as they have been given on the advice of my gp but mentioned to be it is not a fix to what is going on with my life right now. She is right.

Please could someone advise x
good on ya for reaching out,bb! reads like you have a good sponsor there.
just my opinion here:
-GP's are good, but underlying issues like anxiety should go to someone a little more qualified- a therapist or psycholigist?
- i didnt get sober to be all jacked up.
-now the thing that stuck out to me:
"but mentioned to be it is not a fix to what is going on with my life right now. She is right. "
is it things in your life causing anxiety or has this been an ongoing occurance? ya say,"she is right." that kinda tells me its situational anxiety, but not sure.
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Old 09-17-2017, 11:50 AM
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I used to be on benzos but not for a while. The doctor I see now cut me off even though I never abused them. Don't know how you would do that with just a 30 day supply, but I suppose it's possible. Extreme anxiety if a big deal, so maybe for you taking the meds as perscribed makes sense. But be careful, John
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Old 09-17-2017, 12:53 PM
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I take 5mg of Valium as and when needed. Prescribed by my psych. I have read on this site that these types of meds are booze in pill form, not true at all in my opinion. I certainly don't get a buzz from them, they simply take the edge off my anxiety.
A vital tool in my belt to steer clear of alcohol and at the amount being taken (ie 5mg) is no where near enough to become addicted or experience horrid withdrawals. This was also confirmed by my psych as I spent a good hour discussing this issue based on the comments I had read around this site.
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Old 09-17-2017, 12:57 PM
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I'm in Lyrica for anxiety, very potent stuff and I in no way see myself as cheating lol

Personally speaking I'd say take them ONLY if YOU are comfortable doing so!
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Old 09-17-2017, 01:11 PM
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Booze in a pill is probably not the right way to describe benzos, I apologize. For me it was a huge problem, but only taking them as needed and as prescribed is fine for most people. For me, knowing a pill would drastically change my mood within 20 minutes was just too much for my addictive brain. My doctor told me it takes 3 weeks of taking them everyday to get physically dependent on benzos. Withdrawal is inevitable once you become physically dependent.
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Old 09-17-2017, 01:14 PM
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blu,

In my line of work, no anxiety drugs are allowed.

But, we can be alky's as long as we don't get in trouble.

Weird.

If I wasn't doing this kind of work, I am positive I would have become a raging drug user early in life.

That being said, when I retire, or lose this job, I will have a tough road to hoe to not end up fully engaged in some form of drug use...other than booze.

Pot is legal now and is considered a prescription drug.

For people like us, staying totally clean is a challenge for life.

I currently drink at least 2 to 3 cups of coffee a day. I really feel like I am addicted to it.

If I don't get it in the morning, I start to stress out and get edgy.

So, use your prescribed drugs, as prescribed.

Enjoy your life.

We addicts obsess too much.

Thanks.
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Old 09-17-2017, 01:41 PM
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Originally Posted by Soberandhealthy View Post
hi blueberry I'm on day 3 or 4 don't know anymore and my anxiety is to the roof.

how long have you been sober ?i know the longer you are without alcohol maybe your anxiety gets down. i am scare of taking meds i know myself i would probably abused them but you need to do whats best for you.

stay around this is a good place to be
22 months sober now, in my early days of recovery my doctor did prescribe diazepam to help with withdrawal x I took them then, but that was for withdrawal and not anxiety. Always do chat with your doctor though, in such early days I would say your doctor knows best x x x
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Old 09-17-2017, 01:43 PM
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Originally Posted by tomsteve View Post
good on ya for reaching out,bb! reads like you have a good sponsor there.
just my opinion here:
-GP's are good, but underlying issues like anxiety should go to someone a little more qualified- a therapist or psycholigist?
- i didnt get sober to be all jacked up.
-now the thing that stuck out to me:
"but mentioned to be it is not a fix to what is going on with my life right now. She is right. "
is it things in your life causing anxiety or has this been an ongoing occurance? ya say,"she is right." that kinda tells me its situational anxiety, but not sure.
Yes definately situation anxiety, im on anti-depressants for general anxiety anyway but this whole situation im in has brought it through the roof!!
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Old 09-17-2017, 01:49 PM
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Thank you so so much for your feed back. Im gonna try and work my programme and work through this anxiety and fear, but feel safe that if I crash n burn Id rather take what has been prescribed and exactly as they have been prescribed over a bottle. I guess they are a little safety net. Doctor said she wouldnt prescibe me a lot because she knows my history but felt I could do with a little reprieve.

I'll see how it goes, hour by hour if I have to. I got to a meeting tonight and that has helped hugely.
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Old 09-17-2017, 01:50 PM
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Originally Posted by D122y View Post
blu,

In my line of work, no anxiety drugs are allowed.

But, we can be alky's as long as we don't get in trouble.

Weird.

If I wasn't doing this kind of work, I am positive I would have become a raging drug user early in life.

That being said, when I retire, or lose this job, I will have a tough road to hoe to not end up fully engaged in some form of drug use...other than booze.

Pot is legal now and is considered a prescription drug.

For people like us, staying totally clean is a challenge for life.

I currently drink at least 2 to 3 cups of coffee a day. I really feel like I am addicted to it.

If I don't get it in the morning, I start to stress out and get edgy.

So, use your prescribed drugs, as prescribed.

Enjoy your life.

We addicts obsess too much.

Thanks.
Lol! So true we do obsess too much ha ha x
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Old 09-17-2017, 02:14 PM
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good on ya bb!!
cant say how many times i went through the steps on one particular problem, but it worked pretty good.
i dont want to forget a ride home from seeing my oncologist once( of many). a 150 mile one way ride and it was the 1st time i went solo. i usually had someone else in recovery with me.
anyways, doc said the cancer was spreading rapidly and time for chemo. what scared me the most is it was the first( and last) time i looked at the PET scan and could see where the cancer was. that set the ball in motion for fear to creep in and take over.
i didnt have a cell phone to call my sponsor or anyone else. something came over me and said,"start at step 1."
so i did. i was ok with it,peaceful, and greatful in about 45 minutes.
THEN i stopped for gas.
leaning against my car while it was fillin, i looked across the expressway. there next to a farmers field was a HUGE maple tree with beautiful canopy. it was late november so no leaves on the tree. and the thought his me:
hhhhmmm.... i can see all them branches and know they are there. come summer that tree is full of leaves and i cant see the branches, but i know those branches are there holding up those leaves.
i think its time for me to be a leaf and let my HP be the tree.
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Old 09-17-2017, 02:28 PM
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have you considered some therapy/counselling? I'm in the UK the same as you & went to my GP when I got out of rehab a few months back to discuss, amongst other things, my social anxiety. he referred me for CBT, although I believe you can also self-refer, & it's been a bit of a wait, but I start six weeks' worth next this week.

he did offer me SSRI's but they've never done much for me in the past, & I'd rather try fixing the underlying issues before I go on medication.
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Old 09-17-2017, 03:10 PM
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Originally Posted by blueberry2015 View Post
Thank you so so much for your feed back. Im gonna try and work my programme and work through this anxiety and fear, but feel safe that if I crash n burn Id rather take what has been prescribed and exactly as they have been prescribed over a bottle. I guess they are a little safety net. Doctor said she wouldnt prescibe me a lot because she knows my history but felt I could do with a little reprieve.

I'll see how it goes, hour by hour if I have to. I got to a meeting tonight and that has helped hugely.
Going hour by hour sounds like addiction to me, but if gets you to a meeting, that's great. John
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