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Atypical stress?


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I've been filled with anxiety since I was a child. 6 years ago I was dx'd with bipolar and GAD. I was prescribed benzos, to varying degrees of success. The med that worked the best was Xanax, but it drugged me up way too much and my husband said it was dangerous for me (I was dangerous while on it too). I'm on Valium 10mg BID now, but it has little to no effect.

I get thoughts of something stressful or anxiety-provoking (like our dire money situation) and my brain snowballs it until I can't take it and take a pill. I sometimes take one at night to relieve the stress I've built up during the day.

But I'm doing pretty good with my bipolar symptoms right now. Better than I've done in a long time. It just sucks that I can't get rid of the anxiety. I've tried therapy, AD's, blood pressure meds, to no avail.

Am I the only one like this? What works for everyone else? Am I doomed to be on the benzos forever?

Thanks

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What do you mean by taking a pill? Take more valium than is prescribed, or...?

Because you still have a little room to go up on the valium. I was on 30mg (10mg TID) and it seems like if you're having breakthrough anxiety, going up might help.

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Thanks for asking. I don't take more than prescribed, mainly because my hubby locks up my Valium and doles it out to me two a day. (due to My past issues on Xanax).

I just wish 10mg would take all my anxiety away. I take it, and still feel anxious. I probably need to learn better coping skills, but my anxiety drama gets out of control quickly.

I guess I was just wondering if anyone else felt like their max dose at a time didn't work for them, and what they do...

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I would stop taking it prn and start taking it on a scheduled basis. Once you're already a ball of anxiety coming down is going to be harder than if you'd taken something earlier and averted it somewhat or completely.

You may need something other than Valium. Have you tried Klonopin?

You probably do need more therapy to get better coping skills too. The meds can only do so much when so much of your stress is situational.

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I would stop taking it prn and start taking it on a scheduled basis. Once you're already a ball of anxiety coming down is going to be harder than if you'd taken something earlier and averted it somewhat or completely.

You may need something other than Valium. Have you tried Klonopin?

You probably do need more therapy to get better coping skills too. The meds can only do so much when so much of your stress is situational.

muriel brings up some good points.

Klonopin, for many people (not all, of course!), can be taken regularly, more as a preventative measure than an I'm-already-passed-fucked measure. Of most of the benzos, it is one of the least likely to zonk you out, making it a good candidate for the more regular use.

And, of course, therapy and coping skills are always cool.

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I take klonopin on a regular basis. I do not take it PRN. I find it better to stay ON TOP of the anxiety rather than let it snowball into this huge issue and have a panic attack and then take a benzo. I fear I may be on benzo's for life as well. I don't know. My mom is turning 60 and is on buspar and xanax. She will most likely be on a benzo for the rest of her life. Unless they come out with something much better I just can't deal with the anxiety without a benzo. I wouldn't leave the apartment without crying and having a panic attack. I hope my new pdoc doesn't want to mess with my klonopin or mess with the dose or the way I take it. I found during a long-ish stay in the state hospital that this dose/schedule works best for me and is not too excessive IMO.

So, my question essentially to you is have you tried klonopin and have you tried it scheduled not PRN?

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