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Anxiety and Depression...trying to get off Klonopin!

Hey everyone, I just discovered this sight and hope that I can benefit from it! It seems like a great sight! Here is my story. In December of 2005, 3 months after my second child...I woke up in the middle of the night FREAKING out and crying hysterically. I had to go to the emergency room. I wanted to commit suicide. After my baby was born I barely slept, ate, or did much of anything besides take care of the kids! My baby had bad reflux and I would have to stay up at night with her a lot to make sure that after she ate she didn't throw up. This was before I had the anxiety attack (the first one ever in my life). I was told that from not getting any sleep and my hormones and not eating and breastfeeding draining me...that my body was so depleted (i lost so much weight and I am very small to begin with!). I was also told that I was clinically depressed and also sufferd sever anxiety. They put me on some meds, well those made me worse! Finally I ended up going into a hospital for 6 days because of my physical and mental condition. They put me on Wellbutrin XL 150 mg, Klonopin 2 mg., Remeron 30 mg.(antidepressant and sleep aid), and Zyprexa 1 mg. I have been on them for about a year and a half now. Happy to say that I have been stable....but it was a long long recovery! Luckily I was with a great psychiatrist in the hospital and had people to support me.

I have had anxiety my whole life and constantly worrying about stuff and memory problems...etc. But never as severe as after my second child (I have never in the past had to take meds before). My doctor about a week ago all os a suddenly said for me to take HALF of the Klonopin dose of what I have been takeing this whole time. I FREAKED! I usually take 0.5 mg. in the morning, 0.5 mg. in the afternoon, and 1 mg. before bed. So I tried takeing the 0.25 in the morning and the afternoon....then the 0.5 before bed. After about 2 days of doing this I started to have very severe anxiety all over again, "going crazy", being worried all the time and even crying because I feel like I can't do this anymore! So what did I do? I went back to my regular dose and now I feel o.k. again.

I know he is trying to take me off the Klonopin...I am going to see him next week about the issue. I need some support from people who have gone thru this and have any of you had to get off Klonopin? I am afraid I am going to end up back in the hospital if I get off this med. I don't feel right without it! Can I ever be myself again without depending on meds? I have been told by many doctors that my depression and anxiety are sutuational right now. I have had so many things happen in the past couple of years...so they think I will be able to get off the meds soon. I am so scared about haveing to get off the Klonopin, even tried Buspar a while back and didn't work. Just made me feel sick all the time. Is there anything safe out there that won't make me go crazy if I have to get off of it? I know the withdrawals of getting of this med are very serious. What should I expect? I am so scared! I feel so helpless....

I am also worried about my liver, because of me being so small and takeing all these meds...now I am worried about what my liver is like! It is just one worry  after another! I don't want to take a liver function test due to my worries it might come back elevated and they will have to take me off the meds quickly...AAAAAHHHHH Help please!
4 Responses
200828 tn?1209921575
Glad you found this site.  Welcome aboard!

Wow, kinda sounds like my story.  I don't have any advice on meds.  I am still considering it. I just saw a psych, he gave me Paxil and Klonopin.  I, too, was worried about the effects on my liver.  I asked someone on this forum, they said that low dosages would not damage the liver.  You should talk to your doc about that, though.

I just wanted to let you know that my story is similar.  I gave birth to my second child last May, a couple of months later I had a health scare.  I developed anxiety.  It was the worst time of my life.  I had/have extreme health anxiety.  I worried about my health and my kids' health all the time.  I was also exhausted from taking care of my kids.  When my son was born, he had jaundice, had to stay under Bili-lights for a couple of weeks and would cry at all hours of the night.  I also breastfed which is why my doc wouldn't give me any meds when this all began and it also drained me. I cried a lot too.  To make a long story short, I am doing somewhat better but I still get anxiety symptoms.  The latest one, shortness of breath.

Sorry that I can't give you any profound advice since I have very little experience with meds.  Just wanted to let you know that you are not alone and I know something of what you must of went through. Childbirth is hard on a woman's body and mind.  I'm sure you will find a lot of support here.

Best wishes!




198506 tn?1251160515
I do feel for you.  I am wondering for all of you fellow females on this board what you all think about the relationship between hormones and anxiety may be.  I have also always been anxious but only this past year have a I become (what I am slowly beginning to accept) a hypochondriac.  I worry excessively about my health and my childrens.  I turned 40 this past year and wonder if this has to do with changing hormones.  Both my primary and gyno dismiss this as a possiblity.  But my anxiety and physical symptoms, from palps, to dizziness, to leg and muscle aches all seem to increase about 2 weeks prior to my period.  I personally believe that hormones play a really big part in all this anxiety.  I am just trying to understand why this has happened to me seemingly out of the blue.  I weathered some very tough times and never have I experienced what I have been through in the past year.  Mattie, hang in there, I am praying for you.  Raine, the shortness of breath is my latest too.  It's with me all day every day.  Peace.    
187799 tn?1219613173
Holy "Mother" of God - Yes, a woman's anxiety has everything to do with hormones - at least for me and your situations sound ALOT like mine.  I never, ever had anxiety (maybe some depression and a little low self-esteem) before I had kids. After the birth of my first daughter 15.5 years ago, I totally changed. I was on edge constantly; irritable; paranoid; very, very worried she would die or I would die; had heart palpitations; total lack of any sexual drive (very unlike me); and unexplained illnesses. It wasn't until she was about 4 that I had my first full-blown panic attack and was taken to the hospital. I was very lucky to have friends and a neighbor that dx'd the anxiety b/c I had no idea what it was. For some reason, I went with that pretty much from the get-go. I had all the urgent testing done within the first week and all vitals were fine.

So off I headed to therapy and doses of klonopin for a year. Couldn't believe what was revealed in therapy (I was a push-over basically for anyone and anything).  The klonopin was a life-saver and no one should EVER be ashamed to take it - we live in a very hectic, crazy world and things are much different than when our parents raised us (although I believe my Mom had her moments of depression, etc.).  There are way too many demands on women today.

So now I'm on zoloft and wellbutrin (to counteract the lack of sexual desire from the zoloft) and these two meds work beautifully for me. Lately, though, because of the tremendous stress I've been under, I'm having anxiety attacks again. Guess what - I take my klonopin to control them and I couldn't live without it.

Everyone should do what feels right for them and if your doc wants you off the klonopin, you need to explain to him/her how that is making you feel. After all, the docs don't live our lives and we know best what gets us through.

In addition, though, I am a firm believer in therapy along with the meds and I still go occassionally to keep life in perspective - or try to anyway. WIthout that therapy the first year I feel the meds would have been just that - meds without the understanding of what was going on - mentally and chemically.

Hope this helps and I wish you all the best.........
193245 tn?1189993322
Why did your doctor take you off the Klonopin if it was working for you?  Your dose wasn't exceptionally high compared to others.  In any event, decreasing the dose by 50 percent is going to lead to bad, bad things.  Your doctor should've known that.  If he were my doctor I'd walk out and never come back based on that alone.  If he doesn't know happens when you cut a benzodiazepine dose suddenly and dramatically, he has no business prescribing them in the first place.

You should taper slowly off Klonopin.  Go to a NEW doctor and get a tapering plan.  You won't have to go to the hospital if you do that.  If the taper is slow enough, you may barely notice your withdrawal.

These are safe and useful drugs, but they're powerful and nothing to play around with.  It's doctors like yours who have given benzodiazepines a bad name.  
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