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Avatar universal

Why did Xanax made me feel so horrible? (not a withdrawal thread)

I'm just curious to see if anyone had the same reaction as I did.

I suffer from constant anxiety which causes me tons of undiagnosed health problems: heart palpitations, stomach cramps, sinus infection-like symptoms. It also causes a mild to moderate state of depression sometimes.

Last summer, My doctor tried me on Xanax .5 mg when needed. It seem to work while I was on it, but the next day it usually made me feel horrible mentally. I cannot describe it... It was a form of anxiety/depression that would make me extremely irritable. I could not get anything done because it would literally "hurt" to think.

At first I thought it was just my anxiety making me feel that way, so I kept taking the Xanax. I eventually realized what was causing it and I stopped it.

That horrible feeling went away after a few days of stopping Xanax, but my anxiety still remains till today. I'm afraid of taking Klonopin because I'm worried I might have the same reaction. Anxiety is really interfering with my daily life and I want to do something about it. What are my options? Should I try Klonopin and see if it has less side effects for me?
11 Responses
685562 tn?1447158831
Theres a huge difference between Xanax and Klonopin "and all the rest of the benzos"
Klonopin is more of a maintenance of anxiety, taken usually twice a day "sometimes 3 times" and it become really beneficial after about 2 weeks at preventing all the anxiety.
Sometimes theres breakthrough anxiety, but not nearly as bad.
It has a extremely long half life, which is more bang for your buck, and will make it easier for taper when you feel you are ready to come off.
When taken below 2mgs daily, tolerance is unlikely, and withdraws shouldnt be much.
It can cause depression for some, so you will need to watch out for that.
All and all, if you have your choice between Benzodiazapines, Id suggest Klonopin for number 1, it is very effective for GAD especially. "I have GAD, I take klonopin at a maintenance dose"
Also, dont let the benzo bashers discourage you, most of them take, or took short acting benzos at first, and at high amounts, and they like to say "you'll have to face your anxiety sometime, why are you escaping" just laugh at them, because you'll know they have no idea what kind of anxiety your going through, Because they never had it 24/7 like us.    
O, and when they start saying how bad they are "short term use, and long term use" tell them to go study the health effects of extreme anxiety, then multiply it by 24, and thats the possibility for us with GAD to have more health problems.

Sorry for rambling on, your "not a withdraw thread" kinda makes me think your getting sick of all the bashers and there propaganda, lol
Avatar universal
Honestly I am not able to take Xanax it makes me sick for some reason!  Though I do take Klonopin and works very good!  
Thank you Jake for saying all of that, because I do have to hear it all the time from people!  
Avatar universal
Anxiety has caused me so many health problems I can't even being to describe it. All of these problems are undiagnosed too. Doctors can't never figure out whats wrong with me. I have had sinus surgery, upper GI, AKG, and Echocardiogram for all my symptoms, spending thousands of dollars, only to get no answers.

I have heart palpitations which I control with Propranolol. I also have acid reflux (that cannot be controlled with any medication when I get a flare up), insomnia, and sometimes depression when the anxiety gets really bad. The list goes on and every single symptom is still is undiagnosed.

If taking Klonopin can help me get rid of all those symptoms, I would definitely take it regularly. If my anxiety doesn't improve in teh following weeks, I might try it.
Avatar universal
After feeling crazy on Xanax (My psych would later call it an "evil drug" she never prescribes!), I thought I'd never get better ... maybe it made me have rebound anxiety, but it surely did NOT help me at all!

Long story short.....Psych changes me to Klonopin (the dissolvable tablets), tells me to take only 1/4 tablet the first day, and I can literally feel the anxiety and tension begin to melt away........started with 3 a day (which made me sleepy!) til my antidepressant kicked in (I am anti-meds usuallly, but I needed both these pills to get better!).....am down to the antidepr. and one low-dose Klonopin before bedtime!

This combination has made me SO MUCH  BETTER than I was without the meds, and also than I was with the xanax.   So don't be afraid of Klonopin, but DO NOT exceed the dose your doc. prescribes.  GOOD luck!
Avatar universal
This is my particular positive experience with alprazolam (xanax).  It has been prescribed for me to take, of course, only as needed.  

I break a 0.25 tablet in half and take a half - not much; but, it works wonders for me when needed.  I have no unpleasnat side affects.  The following day after having taking one has always been a very good day.  For me, this small amount greatly reduces a severe PVC episode and the anxiety and sometimes pain associated with PVCs.  I take no other medications.  

A bottle containing 20 count - 0.25 mg. tablets will take me well over 1 yr. to finish; therefore, my doctor knows I am performing responsibly well with not abusing the benefits of xanax and my doctor actually has said that I can take it more often than this without encountering a problem.  But, I don't.  

The first time I ever had xanax prescribed was about 15  years ago.  I was fighting many years of anxiety / panic attacks at that time.  My doctor prescribed 0.25 mg. tab. twice a day to be taken for approx. 3 months; so I took it as directed for 3 weeks without missing a dose.  Then, I was able to recall what it was like to feel "good and normal" again; so, I didn't feel like I needed anymore and took it upon myself to stop suddenly with no problems.  

Six months later, I went in for a routine checkup.  The doctor noticed I was looking and feeling very healthy and asked about the xanax.  I told him, "Oh, I stopped taking it twice a day after 3 weeks use."  He told me I should not have stopped it suddenly!  I told him, "I did not know that.  Why?"  He said, "Due to probable withdrawel symptoms.  How did you do that"?  I said, "Well, you did not tell me that I couldn't just stop, that possible withdrawal could be involved; so, I just stopped suddenly because I was feeling so well.  I felt absolutely great!  Better than I have in years. Still do.  No withdrawels or problems."  He just shook his head and said to never do that again because even at that dose you can become addicted after only 3 weeks of use!

Now, years later I take a half of a 0.25 tablet which helps me reduce severe PVC episodes maybe once or twice every two months.  No reliability.  No addictions.  No unpleasant side affects.

People can have different reactions and opinions on various medications due to personal experience.  This is my particular experience.    
299912 tn?1341626700
I suffered from anxiety for several years and at first it was EVERY DAY all the time. It never stopped. I also had numerous (sometimes 20 a day) panic attacks as well. I also had many so-called undiagnosed medical issues as well. Every time I went to the doctor, it seemed as though he just brushed it off as being the anxiety. "But it is so real and definately there" I thought. I had thought about getting a second opinion or switch doctors, but something told me just to trust. The one thing that I did do was really get into researching all that I could about my GAD. I felt that if I understood it, using as many resources that I could get my hands on, that I would feel better about it.

I was initially on all sorts of medicine, Effexor, tofranil, atavan, among others. I hated it - the side effects were almost worse than the anxiety itself. Anyhow, I took the approach that taking the meds only masked my symptoms - it never "got rid of" the underlying cause - the anxiety and panic. So, this left me weak and vulnerable to it - it is always there waiting to rear its ugly head as soon as I was in a bad position like not having enough money to fill my prescriptions, etc. I refused to be a victim in this situation. So I took myself off of the medicine, except for the Xanax. Towards the end of my research, I stumbled upon a book by Claire Weekes called "Hope and Help for your nerves". This book absolutely changed my life! I was able (in a quick time frame) to essentially heal myself of 98% of my anxiety and no panic - in Feb it will have been a year now! And this was not done with some supernatural meditation and mystical yoga (I am not into that stuff); rather, it was a simple (and I mean simple) change in the way that I thought about it.

As far as the Xanax - I hate to sound like the doctor who you feel is brusing off your symptoms, but i have found that most things like this are resulting from the anxiety, not the medication. Now, this is not saying that it is out of the question, but I have found that Xanax has been one of the most mild and effective medicines that I take. I hate taking medicine and refuse to do so unless there is no choice, but I have no problem with taking my Xanax. I am prescribed it the way you are - .5 as needed. Generally, whenever I take it I always take a half at first, wait 30 minutes. If it is not seeming to take the edge off, I take another half. I generally do this up until about 1.5 or 2 and by that time I am usually pretty relaxed. This was a suggestion by a doctor that I went to shortly after having my panic/nervous breakdown in 2001 and thought that it was not helping. Now, that being said I get a prescrption of 20 a month (if I need it) and the pills that I have now were from the prescription that I filled in Feb 08 - and there are still 18 in there.

Bottom line, I believe that you are really feeling this effects. However, I am not convinced that it is from the Xanax - I would point my finger at the anxiety itself as opposed to the medicine. Now, I am not a doctor, but I do have experience and that is about all I can offer. The important thing is that you have to find what works for you, but you have to realize that your anxiety demon will constantly be there trying you control your life. You have to realize this and get past it - it is hard - it feels impossible at times. I used to think that way, but now I know that is an incorrect way of thinking.

By the way, I still have anxiety symptoms, but lets remember that EVERYONE in the entire world who has an adrenaline gland does as well. Those of us with the disorder just perceive it differently and this is what causes the cycle of fear and anxiety. We just have to know how to break it! Good luck to you and I know that you will get through it!

Avatar universal
The human body is the most complex chemistry set ever conceived.  No 2 sets are 100% alike, therefore, results can vary from set to set.

I started with anxiety almost 2 years ago but have been able to control it without med use.  (Different psych methods and relaxation techniques).  Anyway, When i was first starting with it, i developed a cold, and took Nyquil for it a little larger dose than normal i think.  Now, i normally don't get sick with the common cold.  But it happens every couple of years.  Because of this, I never took Nyquil till this first incident.  Anyway...  all night long and the following day, I had the nervous shakes and was WIRED out of my mind.

Come to find out, the combination of the ingredients in Nyquil conflict with my biochemical make up.  It freaks my system out!  So no more Nyquil for me. :)  

All this is to say that if your doctor gives you some meds and you have a non-expected reaction, don't worry just yet.  They sometimes have to try a  little trail-and-error.  Hope this helps a little.
Avatar universal
I just quit taking Xanax, because I felt like I was detoxing. Severe headaches, nausea, and extreme irritability, I felt like ripping everyone a new one that even looked in my direction. The side effects were not worth it to me :(  it was the first time in my 30 years I had ever taken anything along those lines, and I'll never do it again
Avatar universal
This is an older thread, but I find the same symptoms occurring with me. Have you ever found reasons for this by chance? I notice that when I take anything to calm me, I pay for it the next day, and worse!
Avatar universal
I'm so thankful to find this. I just went to my therapist about this issue. The day after taking half of .5mg tablet, I feel awful. I'm depressed, struggle to perform everyday tasks, extremely irritable, and feel mentally foggy. She told me to stop taking it. She informed me that they recently had a pharmaceutical rep do a presentation on using certain supplements to combat anxiety. This sounds fantastic to me since I usually prefer the natural approach if at all possible. She's going to get in contact with the rep, and get back to me at our next session. At this time, I'm only to take Xanax if I have a severe anxiety attack. Other than that, I use other coping mechanisms to get me through.
Avatar universal
Xanax is a short acting benzo that is why you get such a reaction
I know this is an older thread but I see people still discussing it
It's not uncommon to feel discomfort when a drug changes your state of mind in a matter of minutes, understanding this may also help you understand your anxiety attacks in the same respect hopefully
The discomfort you feel afterwards is normal too, the medication wears off very quickly, as soon as the anxiety is addressed the medication wears itself off just as quickly and unless you can extend the process with something like valium it's going to feel pretty terrible,  klonopin works, but it klonopin and xanax have more benefit when used recreationally by people who don't suffer anxiety due to the way they are metabolized
If you need something short acting laughing gas is much safer, completely different feeling but won't leave you high and dry, you just inhale from a whipped cream dispenser, you can buy bulbs and dispensers online pretty easily, don't actually inhale the whipped cream, you can also use balloons..... that said you will probably benefit from a combination of DBT and antipsychotics more then anything, anxiety is hard but benzo's make it harder
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