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BENZO STORY: Anne in California

Updated: Feb 28, 2023

Summary


A story of eventual success tapering off of Xanax with the support of a general physician, a loving spouse, and dog which kept her walking each day.

 

Details

  1. Key Topics: Anxiety, Benzos, Dependence, Withdrawal, Xanax (alprazolam), headaches, tinnitus, head band, neurologist, insurance, success

  2. Listen on the Podcast: https://www.easinganxiety.com/post/coping-skills-from-a-to-z-part-1-of-2

 

Content Warning


Stories presented on Easing Anxiety may contain triggering content. If this is a concern for you, please refrain from reading any further. These stories are provided for informational purposes only and should never be considered medical advice. Opinions stated are those of the author only. See our disclaimer at the bottom of this post for more information.

 

Anne’s Story

NOTE: Anne’s story is a composite of her correspondence from two emails.


First Email


I just listened to your last podcast and wanted to say Happy 5th year anniversary! I’m looking forward to achieving that goal as well.

I will be four months Xanax-free on August 30, and what a journey this has been.

I will be four months Xanax-free on August 30, and what a journey this has been. When I first open my eyes every morning, I wonder how the day will be or what symptom I will experience. But with the support of my loving husband and dedicated sister, I have made it through each day, and count my blessings (as you mentioned to do) each night.


I just started listening to your podcast, and I have to say you have helped me get through each day on the right foot. I have a dog and I promised myself that no matter what I felt like each day, I would take him for his morning walk. These daily walks give me an opportunity to get my mind in the right place. And now I listen to your podcast on our walks and it makes the day so much better.

I have a dog and I promised myself that no matter what I felt like each day, I would take him for his morning walk.

Thank you for all you do for all of us, as there are so many people who just don’t understand. I purposefully wrote this message in a positive tone because we all know what the negatives are.


Anne


Second Email


Thank you so much for responding to my comment!


I just listened to your latest podcast, and I have to say that you touched me in a way no one has in a long time. To hear what you said about how you were feeling, in the early am, reminded me of myself and how I wished I could wake up my husband, (at 4 in the morning when I was wide awake), and just cry. And although my sister has MS and her own issues, she would allow me to text her at all hours of the night, to listen and comfort me.

I also did a lot of research at 4 am while in bed about withdrawal symptoms…

I also did a lot of research at 4 am while in bed about withdrawal symptoms, and why I was feeling the way I did. My symptoms are pretty mild now for the most part, (unless I’m in a wave), but I still have a lot of head issues, as I took alprazolam for 3 years for chronic headaches.


So what I’m left with now is head pressure and banding around my head, full ears, and lots of noises. My husband thought it would be a good idea to purchase a white noise system to listen to at night, but I’m not sure how great this is as when I tried it the first night, I fell asleep but woke up with heart palpitations (another of my symptoms)!


My biggest issue is dealing with stress or when to stop doing a task. I overdo it sometimes (be it gardening, cleaning, or exercising), so I still have problems trying to say “enough is enough.” I was finally able to retire from property management, which was huge for me as this was our family business.

I overdo it sometimes…so I still have problems trying to say “enough is enough.”

To give you a background of myself, I’m 57 years old (going to be 58 next month), and took Alprazolam XR .5 three times a day. My neurologist prescribed these to me for chronic headaches, (without telling me what would happen if I wanted to stop), and every time I would ask him about the drug, he would say I would have to take it for the rest of my life. I never doubted him, so I never thought to ask him what he meant by that.


Then, last December, my insurance wouldn’t cover more than 1 pill per day, so the only way I could continue with my regular dose would be out of pocket. Then my father passed (I took care of him), and it was downhill for me with nervous issues that I never had before, trembling, etc.


I finally decided to go to my regular doctor and he understood what to do, and we came up with a tapering schedule to stop taking this horrible pill.


Anyway, sorry to rattle on, but, again, great podcast and thank you for everything. And one more thing…I don’t mind at all when you talk about yourself!


Anne

 

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Disclaimer


All stories shared on Easing Anxiety are done so with the author’s permission. These stories are provided for informational purposes only and should never be considered medical advice. The views and opinions expressed within are those of the author only, and do not necessarily reflect those of Easing Anxiety or its founder. Stories presented on Easing Anxiety may contain triggering content for certain segments of the population. While provided as an informational resource to our community, some stories may not be beneficial to those who are sensitive to their content. Regarding benzodiazepine withdrawal or BIND, most people can withdraw safely, successfully, and without serious complications if they are informed and have a solid support system. Many of the stories shared on Easing Anxiety are extreme and should not be used to create any expectations of one’s individual experience. Please read the Ashton Manual formore information and work with your doctor. Withdrawal, tapering, or any other change in dosage of benzodiazepines, nonbenzodiazepines (Z-drugs), or any other prescription medication should only be done under the direct supervision of a licensed physician. View our complete disclaimer for more info.

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