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Kava for benzodiazepine withdrawal

Roaddog

Kava Who?
Ya, I got a bit of a benzo issue also. Been taking Valium for a couple years, know. I plan to slowly start tapering in a month or so. Much love. Roaddog....
 

appleton

Newbie
Hey, I started an account because of this thread. I just wanted to stress that quitting benzos cold turkey can cause life-threatening seizures. I had no idea and made the stupid mistake of not taking them regularly or running out too soon as I developed tolerance. For seven months I had seizures and couldn't figure out why. I survived and I'm no longer ignorant to this horrific withdrawal symptom (looking back, I'm terrified that I put my body through that for this long). Please, by all means taper! This is what I am now doing; with a psychiatrist. Even if you quit for just a few days, this can induce a seizure. They're apparently uncommon, but I was also on Lamictal, an anti-seizure med for PTSD purposes at the time and still experienced them; I have absolutely no family history of seizures/epilepsy. Benzos are very dangerous, and I wish I knew that before I almost killed myself (seizure a month). As for withdrawals, I agree with you guys completely; they are horrid, but Kava for me, has been a godsend. But again, don't replace one addiction for another. I have an addictive personality and anxiety naturally, but I'm done being heavily medicated. I just wanted to share my own experience, and hopefully help someone.
 

appleton

Newbie
I do agree with you that it is not, but one may end up using it as a psychological crutch, especially from something as debilitating as a benzo withdrawal. It should, again, be treated with respect. I just wanted to really stress how serious benzos can be. Just my two cents from my experience. Kava is a wonderful root. :)
 
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Roaddog

Kava Who?
Hey, I started an account because of this thread. I just wanted to stress that quitting benzos cold turkey can cause life-threatening seizures. I had no idea and made the stupid mistake of not taking them regularly or running out too soon as I developed tolerance. For seven months I had seizures and couldn't figure out why. I survived and I'm no longer ignorant to this horrific withdrawal symptom (looking back, I'm terrified that I put my body through that for this long). Please, by all means taper! This is what I am now doing; with a psychiatrist. Even if you quit for just a few days, this can induce a seizure. They're apparently uncommon, but I was also on Lamictal, an anti-seizure med for PTSD purposes at the time and still experienced them; I have absolutely no family history of seizures/epilepsy. Benzos are very dangerous, and I wish I knew that before I almost killed myself (seizure a month). As for withdrawals, I agree with you guys completely; they are horrid, but Kava for me, has been a godsend. But again, don't replace one addiction for another. I have an addictive personality and anxiety naturally, but I'm done being heavily medicated. I just wanted to share my own experience, and hopefully help someone.
Yes, tapering is essential. I will soon begin my taper, off Valium 30mgs. I realize also the risk of seizures. It isn't as uncommon as you think. Also yes they can kill you. Very Dangerous. I am wishing you the best, with your taper. Im also in the same boat. But if you taper down for several months, Its not too bad, so I have heard. We have many recovering addicts, who are seeking relief through Kava. I find Kava to be good medicine. Thank you for your post. Its a point that needs stressed.


Now Allow ol Roaddog to be the first to
wellcome.jpg
You to the Kava Forums. Much love. Roaddog....
 
D

Deleted User01

Welcome to the Forum Appleton! You are definitely in the right place. Also, with your experience, you can help counsel people who come in here looking for solutions. Thanks for telling your story.
 

yepimonfire

Kava Enthusiast
I do agree with you that it is not, but one may end up using it as a psychological crutch, especially from something as debilitating as a benzo withdrawal. It should, again, be treated with respect. I just wanted to really stress how serious benzos can be. Just my two cents from my experience. Kava is a wonderful root. :)
If im withdrawing from something i need as much "crutch" as i can get. Kava is practically harmless.
 

Roaddog

Kava Who?
If im withdrawing from something i need as much "crutch" as i can get. Kava is practically harmless.
Yes I agree with that. I have been using it to get over opiates, with great success too. My goal is to also be free of all drugs. At least the man made ones. Much love. Roaddog....
 

yepimonfire

Kava Enthusiast
I have consumed kava for days on end to the point of being completely intoxicated in large amounts, and then ceased it abruptly with no ill effects, or craving for more. kava is very special in this regard and i would not fear it. i too have a very strong addictive personality.
 

appleton

Newbie
Yes, tapering is essential. I will soon begin my taper, off Valium 30mgs. I realize also the risk of seizures. It isn't as uncommon as you think. Also yes they can kill you. Very Dangerous. I am wishing you the best, with your taper. Im also in the same boat. But if you taper down for several months, Its not too bad, so I have heard. We have many recovering addicts, who are seeking relief through Kava. I find Kava to be good medicine. Thank you for your post. Its a point that needs stressed.


Now Allow ol Roaddog to be the first to View attachment 1007 You to the Kava Forums. Much love. Roaddog....
Yes, absolutely. Best of luck to you as well, to all of you! I had no idea my seizures (good to know they're not that uncommon, thanks for that) could have been fatal; just the thought gives me the chills. I was in a near fatal car accident back in June of 2012, resulting in an orbital blowout (crushed upper skull, in the eye area), and lost my left eye. Needless to say my world was thrown upside down; I developed depression, anxiety and PTSD. It was a horrific experience, and since then, I have used many different substances to help with the sheer trauma from that event. I am getting better, and hope I am now well enough to get off all my crutches...god knows I've got a lot! During my recovery, I kept telling myself this quote: 'This too shall pass'. That kept me going through my recovery from the near-fatal wreck. Humans are surprisingly resilient, we can do this!! Kava has helped me in so many ways.
 

Roaddog

Kava Who?
Yes, absolutely. Best of luck to you as well, to all of you! I had no idea my seizures (good to know they're not that uncommon, thanks for that) could have been fatal; just the thought gives me the chills. I was in a near fatal car accident back in June of 2012, resulting in an orbital blowout (crushed upper skull, in the eye area), and lost my left eye. Needless to say my world was thrown upside down; I developed depression, anxiety and PTSD. It was a horrific experience, and since then, I have used many different substances to help with the sheer trauma from that event. I am getting better, and hope I am now well enough to get off all my crutches...god knows I've got a lot! During my recovery, I kept telling myself this quote: 'This too shall pass'. That kept me going through my recovery from the near-fatal wreck. Humans are surprisingly resilient, we can do this!! Kava has helped me in so many ways.
Wow, that's a lot to go through. I am so glad your getting relief from kava. That's what this whole forum is about. Thank you so much for sharing your story. I know its not an easy one to tell. If you ever just need someone to talk to, who is also a recovering addict, Please feel free to PM me. I would be happy to help in any way I can. May kava set your mind, and your muscles to Relax. We are here for you. You have found the right place. Much love. Roaddog....
 

appleton

Newbie
Wow, that's a lot to go through. I am so glad your getting relief from kava. That's what this whole forum is about. Thank you so much for sharing your story. I know its not an easy one to tell. If you ever just need someone to talk to, who is also a recovering addict, Please feel free to PM me. I would be happy to help in any way I can. May kava set your mind, and your muscles to Relax. We are here for you. You have found the right place. Much love. Roaddog....
Thanks so much, Roaddog, I really appreciate your support. :)
 

drich1998

Newbie
So I joined this site purely to share a few medically/pharmacologically proven methods of coping with the absolute torture that is benzo withdrawal. Undoubtedly, a slow taper is best. That said-- there has been one, and truly, only one, medication that has shown to provide RELATIVE relief from a slow taper (mine was 6 weeks off 1.5mg of klodapine + Xanax on some days for about a 2 year period. After a stint in medically managed detox at a psych hospital (as a 7-year healthcare administrator, I'd made some great relationships with docs and psychiatrists, and this was the first method of attack), where they loaded me with phenobarbital, I enjoyed my last good buzz. 10 days after discharge, the full benzo PAWS came back, and bordering seizure territory, I went back on 1mg of klodapine (big cut in dose, but not nearly there). Before this, I could take 1/4mg less a day and id be in full-blown agony. The medication that was a godsend, relatively new to being used as a benzo withdrawal aid, is oxcarbazepine (akin to carbazepine, but safer). It's for the bi-polar patient, but has anti-seizure effects, does touch your GABA sensors, provides anxiety relief, all the while allowing your receptors to heal (a frickin long process, as I type this going on 7 months fully off, and still have my days, every day feeling some sort of PAWS). Oxcarbazepine can be easily tapered off when ready, but a graduating high dose while tapering, followed by a low management dose, does wonders... Feel free to message me w questions. I know how bad benzo withdrawals are... They're misery. And it doesn't help to have people around trying to help, but then again being alone can make it impossible to function and complete your normal activities of survival... I get it.
This is a Kavalounge, so I will speak on my experience. I've never had an "intoxicated" feeling from kava (root, root extract, etc), but undoubtedly it has provided relief during and post-taper. Mellows you out. Aids sleep (the most important thing next to exercise). 100% non-habit forming (most recent studies show it as not affecting GABA as benzos do... Definitely an effect, but not damaging as benzos or alcohol or PHENIBUT.... Lord, don't use PHENIBUT for withdrawals). There are a ton of methods of dealing with PAWS-- valerian root, chamomile,
Rhodela, piracetam-- believe it or not, every one of those damages your GABA receptors. Kava does not. L-Theanine helps and isn't GABAgeric either. Do your research, as some of the most seemingly innocent aids are far from innocent, and the aid the offer will come back to haunt you.
As a doc about Oxcarbazepine. Trust me-- it's THE only drug out that truly helps and won't cause dependence. Sad thing-- pharm industry could study more into kava to help people entrapped by benzo addictions. After all, they're the ones that left us this way. But they can't profit. But they sure can off Suboxone/subutex for opiate witjdrawl, producing another addiction. Shame. Benzo PAWS lasts a long time. Your GABA receptors simply need time. It's like a motor that's been drained dry of oil, then started and the accelerator pushed all the way down, shocking the shit out of your brain. Good news is, w some good breathing techniques, some kava, when its all said as done, most come out healthier and more capable of managing anxiety than they ever were. Once you go through benzo paws, literally nothing can faze you again.
 

kavabala

Kava Curious
So I joined this site purely to share a few medically/pharmacologically proven methods of coping with the absolute torture that is benzo withdrawal. Undoubtedly, a slow taper is best. That said-- there has been one, and truly, only one, medication that has shown to provide RELATIVE relief from a slow taper (mine was 6 weeks off 1.5mg of klodapine + Xanax on some days for about a 2 year period. After a stint in medically managed detox at a psych hospital (as a 7-year healthcare administrator, I'd made some great relationships with docs and psychiatrists, and this was the first method of attack), where they loaded me with phenobarbital, I enjoyed my last good buzz. 10 days after discharge, the full benzo PAWS came back, and bordering seizure territory, I went back on 1mg of klodapine (big cut in dose, but not nearly there). Before this, I could take 1/4mg less a day and id be in full-blown agony. The medication that was a godsend, relatively new to being used as a benzo withdrawal aid, is oxcarbazepine (akin to carbazepine, but safer). It's for the bi-polar patient, but has anti-seizure effects, does touch your GABA sensors, provides anxiety relief, all the while allowing your receptors to heal (a frickin long process, as I type this going on 7 months fully off, and still have my days, every day feeling some sort of PAWS). Oxcarbazepine can be easily tapered off when ready, but a graduating high dose while tapering, followed by a low management dose, does wonders... Feel free to message me w questions. I know how bad benzo withdrawals are... They're misery. And it doesn't help to have people around trying to help, but then again being alone can make it impossible to function and complete your normal activities of survival... I get it.
This is a Kavalounge, so I will speak on my experience. I've never had an "intoxicated" feeling from kava (root, root extract, etc), but undoubtedly it has provided relief during and post-taper. Mellows you out. Aids sleep (the most important thing next to exercise). 100% non-habit forming (most recent studies show it as not affecting GABA as benzos do... Definitely an effect, but not damaging as benzos or alcohol or PHENIBUT.... Lord, don't use PHENIBUT for withdrawals). There are a ton of methods of dealing with PAWS-- valerian root, chamomile,
Rhodela, piracetam-- believe it or not, every one of those damages your GABA receptors. Kava does not. L-Theanine helps and isn't GABAgeric either. Do your research, as some of the most seemingly innocent aids are far from innocent, and the aid the offer will come back to haunt you.
As a doc about Oxcarbazepine. Trust me-- it's THE only drug out that truly helps and won't cause dependence. Sad thing-- pharm industry could study more into kava to help people entrapped by benzo addictions. After all, they're the ones that left us this way. But they can't profit. But they sure can off Suboxone/subutex for opiate witjdrawl, producing another addiction. Shame. Benzo PAWS lasts a long time. Your GABA receptors simply need time. It's like a motor that's been drained dry of oil, then started and the accelerator pushed all the way down, shocking the shit out of your brain. Good news is, w some good breathing techniques, some kava, when its all said as done, most come out healthier and more capable of managing anxiety than they ever were. Once you go through benzo paws, literally nothing can faze you again.
Wow, thank you so much for writing that. I'll quickly tell you my story. It's been a year since recovery / going through benzo withdrawal. This is kinda depressing, but PAWS do not get better... at least for me. I've tried everything. Every herb, (almost) every medication, every tea, every piece of advice.
Oxcarbazepine... I am going to talk to my doctor about it. I hope it's as helpful as you say it is. Any side effects? Is it meant for long-term use?
I do agree, kava has been tremendously helpful since I've been getting into the noble roots.

As with, "Once you go through benzo paws, literally nothing can faze you again." - I completely agree. Though, I think once you go through benzo ACUTE withdrawal, there can be hell on earth and that would wouldn't faze you quite at all.
 

MrCraggles

Kava Curious
I've heard Pregabalin is good for benzo withdrawal. It doesn't tickle the GABAa receptors like benzos do, but it calms brain activity and calms exitatory transmission in the brain, dulling glutamate activity. However, Pregabalin itself is addictive. I know this from personal experience of taking 600mg/day for four years. The withdrawal is hell. Absolute hell. But not as severe as benzo withdrawal. If you're able to use Pregabalin intermittently without getting addicted then it's a good tool to have in your arsenal for when things are particularly bad. It works in a similar way to gabapentin, but is much stronger and 10X more effective for anxiety.

L-theanine is an amino acid that is cheap to buy online. It blocks glutamate activity and increases the action of GABA, however the clinical significance of this is still up for debate as the research is still lacking somewhat. But it is associated with decreases in anxiety, so perhaps get yourself some of this.

And of course Kava should be of help :)

I can see you posted this a few years back so I hope you've managed to beat this. If not then I wish you all the best with your continued efforts.
 
Having bad PAWS 2.5 years out.. i cannot handle stressful situations for exmaple i have a final exam coming up.. bascially what happens is that when my body is under stress my brain cannot quel the stress i guess because my GABA is still now normal yet and i will get extremely dizzy with a bad headache and a sense of delusion with fear and extreme panic.. I need to find something to help me go into class and do good on the exam.. I want to try KAVA but i am afraid of sending me backwards into the hell. Can anyone lend me some advice?
 

StevenF

Kava Enthusiast
I suffer from Anxiety and Panic Attacks and I'm on 5mg Diazepam, normally once a day. I want to give up the Diazepam's. How do I go about replacing Diazepam with Kava? Do I take Diazepam one day and Kava the next? Anyone have experience on this please?
 

Krunʞy

Kava aficionado
Admin
I suffer from Anxiety and Panic Attacks and I'm on 5mg Diazepam, normally once a day. I want to give up the Diazepam's. How do I go about replacing Diazepam with Kava? Do I take Diazepam one day and Kava the next? Anyone have experience on this please?
I have experience with it and still use it, but maybe once or twice a year. 5mg is a very low dose, you don't need to worry about it. If your intention is to stop taking it, my advice is to first get used to drinking kava, dial in the right one for your needs and then start tapering, see if you can break the tablet in half for a month or 2, and then quarters for another couple months then you should be good.

Your best bet is to work a goal and plan with the doc that prescribes you those meds.
 
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