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Comment from: nomorepanic, 25-34 Female on Treatment for 1-2 years (Patient) Published: July 01

I had the most debilitating panic attacks! I started getting them at 23 yrs old. Beforehand, I didn't even know there was such a thing! I thought I was having a heart attack (other panic-disorder sufferers know what I mean!) So, for YEARS, I would have an attack w/out any outside trigger or reason. I stopped drinking coffee, alcohol, and even thought that I was causing them from eating high-fat foods!! I had no clue. I tried all the Vitamins, minerals, herbs (esp. Kava, and Valerian) commonly recommended for anxiety; minimal to no relief! Tried dieting, exercise, meditating, even candles and soothing Music! NOTHING, nada and zip! Then, at 28, I finally had medical benefits, and saw a psychiatrist. Long story short: I was prescribed Clonazepam .5mg twice daily for my dreadful high anxiety. (I was also prescribed Adderall for ADHD and Remeron for Insomnia). Within 1 hr, I felt so much CALMER, RELAXED, MELLOW, and slept like a baby the FIRST DAY! Virtually no side effects either; just a little drowsy and sleepy the first 3 or 4 days. ZERO PANIC ATTACKS! I researched Clonazepam thoroughly and am well aware of all the bad rap it has got: Abuse, withdrawal syndrome, dependence, etc. Everyone's inner-chemistry is like a box of chocolates: You never know.. blah blah! Trial and error; works for some, paradoxical anxiety for only 1% of patients, the 'o-my-god-I-have-to-take pills' 'phoebes that try to stop taking the very solution that works....Duh! Yet, I know it doesn't work for everyone (they can have my Valerian--it's gathering dust!) Bottom line: Communicate w your Doctor!! And, If Clonazepam works, it works! Period! I've been taking it for well over a year, and I have FINALLY completed TWO COLLEGE SEMESTERS! 4.0 GPA! How's that for a 'side effect' of an anxiety-treatment plan? I rest my case. Clonazepam (and Remeron) has really helped me live a more productive life free of debilitating panic, insomnia, and anxiety! I even stopped drinking! Just beautiful.

Related Reading: panic attacks | heart attack | vitamins

Comment from: Smash, 25-34 on Treatment for 6 months - 1 year (Patient) Published: August 16

I am writing this post to warn all who are interested in taking any benzodiazepan - they can be extremely helpful but are incredibly physically addictive and often times your GP or prescribing physician does not inform you of that. I was taking Klonopin once a day at 1 MG for about 4 months and then I leaned how addictive it was and stopped cold turkey. My mistake - I narrowly avoided having a seizure and didn't sleep for almost a week or eat or anything due to the withdrawal. I went back to taking them and had a psychiatist wean me off of them, and I still experienced withdrawal symptons though not as bad. So, please be careful, only take it when you need it, and consult with a physician when you choose to stop taking it. I am currently taking it again - though only as needed, and no more than 3 times a week - because life stressors have been more than I can handle lately. So, just please be careful with this drug, it can be so helpful but in the long run the cure may be worse than the cause.

Related Reading: klonopin | seizure

Comment from: AmyC, 25-34 on Treatment for 2-5 years (Patient) Published: August 10

I have had panic attacks for about 10 years now. For a long time, I would think I was going to die every single time I had one AND in between times having them all I could think about was having another one! Noone really understood or believed me-they said it was all in my head. Finally I found a Dr. who told me not to be embarrassed by this or try to figure it out. Some people just have this problem. I have tried about everything out there and I promise Klonopin is the best thing to keep your anxiety at bay. My dosage is 1mg 3 times a day. You have to take them, even if you don't feel nervous to make sure they stay in your system. I had to learn that from experience. These don't work as fast as xanax to "calm" you, but they last longer and if you take them correctly you will feel like a "normal" person again. I don't feel tired or groggy at all. As a matter of fact, I can't tell I'm on any medication I just don't feel nervous anymore-and isn't that the goal!! Good Luck and if your Dr. doesn't want you on these because they are "addictive" find another Dr. because you have to live your life!!

Related Reading: anxiety | xanax

Comment from: Grateful, 45-54 on Treatment for 10+ years (Patient) Published: January 25

When I started having panic attacks I had no idea what it was. I thought I was having a heart attack despite only being in my 20s, and went to the ER twice. The second time, one of the doctors recommended I see a psychiatrist. Although I didn't think it was all in my head, I took his advice and made an appointment. I remember being in the waiting room, pacing, wishing I would just fall to the floor unconscious. The psychiatrist diagnosed me with panic disorder and started Klonopin .5 twice a day. She said it was the drug with the highest hit rate. My god...I couldn't believe it. After suffering for such a long time, I was finally free of the panic! I was slightly drowsy for two days, and then no side effects whatsoever except the relief from the horror. The medication allowed me to get back to my life, and glad to do so. I have been on Klonopin almost 25 years now. I take 3 or 4 mg per day. As the years have passed, and I have moved and gotten new doctors, often they have tried many different drugs, but not only have these never worked, but have made matters worse in a couple of cases. I wish I didn't have this disease. I am just glad that there was a medical solution or I would have killed myself, that's how bad it was. Klonopin saved me.

Comment from: Marware, 55-64 on Treatment for 5-10 years (Patient) Published: November 14

Until June, I have been on 6mgs of this poison for seven years. In my opinion, it is given out to easily, prescribed at high doses for too long at a time, and is highly addictive if used for most two weeks. I've been going through withdrawal for weeks and it is only the beginning of what I will endure. Just watch the videos on Youtube or Google Klonopin Withdrawal and you will be horrified. I have suffered just about all of the things that they say "may" happen, including losing complete feeling in my lower body for 6 hours and flailing all over the place. They thought I was seizing and having a stroke. People, DO NOT GO ON THIS MED OR ANY BENZODIAZAPINE! I have never used drugs in my life; not even weed. And I am addicted to what I consider the worst family of drugs there is. You can't go to detox as you can't stop cold turkey. It is a process that can take years. My life has been so effected by this. I've lost communication with my children and have developed agoraphobia from this. I don't have a life. I am alone. It sucks. Oh, I have beautiful to my waist hair and it is falling out. So tell me, WHY are doctors allowed to hand this stuff out like candy? I didn't know it was even addictive as both of my doctors told me that stopping it was "no big deal", AND I BELIEVED THEM. I realized I was no longer anxious and decided to stop....that is when the hell began and I almost died. Thank you for reading.

Related Reading: klonopin | stroke | agoraphobia

Comment from: damien712, 55-64 Female on Treatment for 10+ years (Patient) Published: October 24

I was first prescribed Xanax back in 1985 for general anxiety with panic attacks. It worked fine but he felt I would do better with Klonopin so I have been taking it for many years now. As far as addiction is concerned . I am not. The point is that with it I function like someone without excessive and abnormal anxiety. Without it my life is a mess. There were a couple of medications that worked and were not addictive however in one case with the medication Nardil I felt really strange and even at the age of 37 there was no way I could ever attain an erection. The other medication amoxapine caused my heart beat to increase from a normal of 60 to almost 90. With Klonopin no problems . I am 60 years old now and have been on the same dose of Klonopin for decades . My life is good and normal. Have two sons 16 and 20. A wonderful wife as well. So I say do not worry about addiction if you are having crippling anxiety with panic attacks. Just as a diabetic may need insulin some of us for whatever reason need some kind of a benzodiazipine such as Klonopin. Generally considered quite safe. So why worry about something that really is not a problem. Life is too short so we need to take advantage of what medical science provides . I realize nothing is perfect and to take a medication is a personal decision. Also it effects your loved ones. I just feel that I want a life without excessive abnormal anxiety. So I will be taking it as long as I live no doubt.

Related Reading: xanax | anxiety | panic attacks

Comment from: Gramof4, 55-64 on Treatment for 5-10 years (Patient) Published: September 08

I've suffered from Panic attacks & anxiety for 20 years, went on xanax for 15. It was horrible! Xanax is called the clock watchers drug, The longer you take Xanax the shorter it works. I could not miss a dose without horrible anxiety-panic. My Dr. weened me and began Klonopin. What a difference (for me) I was taking 6 mg. of Xanax, I needed an increase frequently. The Klonopin works all day, I take 1 mg in the morning and one at bedtime. It does leave me a little tired in the morning, But I feel like I have my life back. All drugs of this nature are addictive. I just don't have that paniky feeling if I am running low or leave the house without it. For me..... It's been a miracle! But, we all react differently to any drugs....

Related Reading: panic attacks | xanax

Comment from: Love Klonopin, 25-34 Female on Treatment for 5-10 years (Patient) Published: August 31

I started taking Klonopin when I was 20 for panic attacks and social anxiety. I've been prescribed it for over 5 years now. It works wonderfully. It really is a miracle for those who suffer from panic and anxiety. It takes about an hour to kick in, but it lasts for at least 5 hours. It kicks in much faster if you put it under your tongue and let it dissolve. Some side effects include drowsiness, lack of a "filter" when talking, very slight clumsiness/lack of balance, and very slight memory loss. It works great right before bed if you can't sleep, too. A little goes a long way. Half of a milligram doesn't sound like much, but it is. Klonopin is very potent. Word of caution: DO NOT take this every day. You will get tolerant to it, and you will need more of the drug to feel any relief. DO NOT drink when taking this. You will do things you regret, black out, and not remember anything that happened. I highly suggest, with every fiber of my being, to take Klonopin only as needed, and only when absolutely necessary. The last thing you want is to take 1mg of Klonopin and not feel any relief. And that is exactly what will happen when you take Klonopin every day or otherwise abuse it.

Comment from: Shaunice40, 35-44 on Treatment for 1-2 years (Patient) Published: December 02

Used for anxiety, also took wellbutrin for depression. I have not been on any medication in more a year and am glad to say I have not have any unpleasant side effects. Klonopin did work wonders for anxiety, BUT and this is a huge BUT. Was extremely addicted to this after being on it for a year. Was "fired" by my therapist and I went online to learn how to ween myself off of it. I recommend it for anxiety because it works but it's very addictive and made me very tired to the point I would just dose off to sleep. Felt like a junkie. NEVER stop this medication abrubtly. And if I missed a dose would get the shakes. I emphasize that it does work extremely well but you will become ADDICTED to this medication so be mindful of this. I weened myself off of it SLOWLY and didn't experience any withdrawal symptoms. I have changed my diet and only eat ORGANIC and whenever I get a little stressed I go the health food store. They sell homepathic medicine that works just as well for my anxiety and sleepiness without the negative side effects. The organic diet help cut out the intense food cravings I was having. BUT never ever stop taking your medication unless you consult with your physican first. I don't knock tradional medicine because it helped get me through my rough time when I got divorced and lost my home and everything else I valued and felt like I wanted to end it. I still have "talk" therapy and I would still use traditional medication if I need to but I felt I was on klonopin too long and shouldn't have been on it that long. And if it ever gets to point again I would defintely use if it I had to again. God bless everyone one of you. Having a mental illness is not easy but just know that it will get better and eventually the sun will come out again. If one medication doesn't help don't give keep trying until you find something that works for you. Not all medications work the same for everyone but eventually you find something that works for you.

Related Reading: wellbutrin | depression | mental illness


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Comment from: 25-34 on Treatment for less than 1 month (Patient) Published: December 02

I have been stuggling with postpartum depression/anxiety afer my son was born 6 months ago. My anxiety was so bad that i had a breakdown and had to be admited inpatient to a stress center. After a month of being on Xanax as needed and paxil I felt like I was getting worse. I was waking up with severe anxiety and that would turn into a tailspin of crying and extreme panic! Not fun. I finally found a medical professional who knows what she is doing. She is a physiciatric NP. She put me on Klonopin .5mg am/bedtime and she is weaing me off Paxil to the Zoloft. Let's just say I went from histeria on Tuesday morning to calmness upon waking this morning. I am sleeping well also. I expect to be on Klonopin until I am well on Zoloft and then taper off. If you take yourself off of Klonopin by yourself cold turkey of course your going to feeling it. Make sure you are with a physciatrist who knows meds and there side effects and how they will react with you personally. Good luck with everyone else out there, I know it stinks being on medicine but, at least we have these options.

Related Reading: postpartum depression | anxiety | stress

Comment from: brockhull1976, 35-44 Female on Treatment for 10+ years (Patient) Published: December 07

This medication gave me back my life!My panic attacks got so bad that i could'nt eat sleep or function. I lost 40 pounds in a month, i was just a shell of a man. Wanted to die checked in to a mental hospital and after beging put on klonopin and zolft it has saved my life my marriage and i can fuction now in puplic. This truly has been a miracle drug for me i would recomend it to anybody with a panic disorder.

Related Reading: panic attacks | klonopin

Comment from: 35-44 on Treatment for 1-6 months Published: March 04

I have anxiety really bad from life alterating situations that have happened in the last 2 years which were very hard for me to cope with. I would cry from frustration because I was so full of anxiety that I could not do the most simple everyday tasks. I couldnt sleep, eat, or go to work and I love my job. I started taking klonopin which actually gave my body a rest, and calmed me so I was able to function again. I am on .5 mg which is perfect for me. I also started going to therapy which worked wonders....

Comment from: Booklady51, 45-54 on Treatment for 10+ years (Patient) Published: August 07

I have tried various medictions since a traumatic incident in my teen years. Clonazepam has worked for me for over 2 decades despite the fact that supposedly it would stop working at the same doze I have not had this experience and it has improved my life and its quality immensely.

Related Reading: clonazepam

Comment from: mooty, 45-54 on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: January 09

I've been on this drug for about 4 months and cannot express how much it has helped me with the panic attacks and sleepliness. I went a whole year with no sleeping and suffering horrible panic attacks all night long. Since being on it I no longer suffer from either of these symptons. I finally feel human again!

Comment from: karkee, 19-24 on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: June 02

After being told I had a Genernal Anxiety and Panic Disorder I was put on Klonopin .50mg. And it works wonders. It has totally made my way of life better and I don't know what I would have done with out it. One of the most effective medications I have ever taken.

Related Reading: anxiety | klonopin

Comment from: sanpaxton, 45-54 on Treatment for 5-10 years (Patient) Published: November 04

I have Used Klonopin Faithfully for 8Years; I Am Very Calm and Forever Grateful for this Drug!! I Can Even Drive More without Feeling Nervous and Shaking Terribly. I take 5mg since Day 1 and have never had to Increase My Dosage. Thanks 4 Giving Me my Life Back No Anxiety At All :-)

Comment from: Sml1read, 45-54 on Treatment for 10+ years (Patient) Published: October 21

I have used 2 mg. of Klonopin every night before bed for the last 10 years. It has completely cured my insomnia, IBS (irritable bowel syndrome), and reduced the frequency of my migraines. I was able to eliminate 4 other meds by taking only the Klonopin. I have no side effects, although I understand some people feel tired in the mornings.

Related Reading: insomnia | irritable bowel syndrome

Comment from: T, 25-34 on Treatment for 6 months - 1 year (Patient) Published: June 06

It worked for the panic attacks for a few months; I am trying to get off it and am having terrible side effects including: cannot stay asleep for more than two hours, vomiting, shaking, memory loss. I just want to feel normal again.

Related Reading: panic attacks

Comment from: catscorner, 45-54 on Treatment for 10+ years (Patient) Published: June 04

For years, I struggled with panic disorder. Clear back in the 70's, I had my first panic attack. THEN, no one believed in drug treatment for panic attacks. No one understood them. I struggled for almost 18 years with panic attacks and in all of this, it affected my marriage, which ended. I fist had Klonopin in the early 90's and my life has been different ever since. Had it not been for this drug, I truly believe I would have been housebound still today. I take 1 mg. 3 times a day and it's amazing what it's done for my life. I've traveled, flown on planes, done things with my kids, LIVED life. I use Klonopin with an antidepressant and my life is VERY good!

Related Reading: klonopin

Comment from: onefootinfrontoftheother, 35-44 Female on Treatment for 2-5 years (Patient) Published: December 29

I have taken Clonazepam (Klonopin) for over 4 years. I initially was started on 0.5mg 2x a day every day for a year and then started taking Lexapro with it. I continued to take the Clonazepam for another year with the lexapro then decided to wean myself of the clonazepam and just take in on an as needed basis. It works wonderful for a "PRN" (as needed) drug. I probably take it once or twice every two months and during those times I will take it for 3 or 4 days and then stop and go about my routine till I feel the need for it again. My anxiety has been greatly under control, it's just every once in a while it creeps up on you and you feel like you can't function. It's these instances when clonazepam works wonders. I hope this helps all those with anxiety issues. I would not recommend this drug on a "full-time" basis. I think it is a great drug to be used in conjunction with another SSRI or SNRI until one that is found that works. Once the SSRI or SNRI is found to work, the person should wean themselves off this med and then just use it as an as needed medication.

Related Reading: clonazepam | lexapro | anxiety

Comment from: Lostsoul80, 25-34 Female on Treatment for 2-5 years (Patient) Published: November 18

This is by far the best anti-anxiety medication that I have ever taken. It works fast and lasts for up to 8 hrs. I take it only when I feel like I am going to have a panic episode and it works in less than 15 min. I would recommend it to anybody who has trouble with being anxious. It also works great for anger...I get angry quickly and have no patience because I have Bipolar disorder type II. If I get angry, then take the Klonopin, 15 minutes later I turn into the nicest is a miracle drug but don't abuse it because you will experience withdrawal symptoms that are awful to deal with but otherwise it is very effective. I have no side effects from it either so that's also a good reason why it's a good drug for me.

Related Reading: bipolar disorder

Comment from: Becca, 55-64 on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: March 13

I have been on this medication a couple of months and it is wonderful. I am calm and can function without all the anxiety that I am so used to feeling that keeps me a mess so that I can't get anything accomplished. I would like to stay on this the rest of my life. I am 59.

Comment from: clay, 45-54 Female on Treatment for 5-10 years (Patient) Published: February 25

My Doctor prescribed this and It is HELL to get off of it. I ran out and called in for a refill. My MD will not refill it untill I see him for a simple "med check up" All I ever say is fine and he writes the RX. This time it is three weeks away and I am going through sever withdrawal symptoms. I have been on this drug for over five years and don't recommend it. STAY OFF OF IT. I think it should only be available for a very short term use.

Comment from: change1, 35-44 Female on Treatment for 10+ years (Patient) Published: December 12

I had been diagnosed with acute anxiety disorder in my early 20's (I'm now almost 40). In my opinion I would rate Klonopin at the top of all benzodiazepines (and i've tried almost all of them) as it has a relatively long half-life (lasts longer than most benzos). I have been taking .25mg (1/2 of a .5mg tablet) daily for nearly a decade now, and I have had no urge or need to increase my dosage (although it does take discipline to take the absolutely smallest effective amount without wanting to experiment with more). This dosage, combined with regular cardio excercise, has eliminated what was once extreme debilitating panic/anxiety. If you're going to start this medication, take small amounts (experiment with the smallest dosage possible that still remedies your anxiety, etc). Don't ever get into the habit of taking more, and stay indifferent to people, doctors, the media, etc, who criticize the use of this medication. Become comfortable with the likelihood that you may need to take this medication permanently. In other words, if you maintain a small daily dose regimin, there's no need to put yourself through the pain of ceasing the use of this wonderful medication. I am certain it is much more harmful to stop taking this medication than it would be to continue to use it responsibly for a life-time.

Related Reading: benzodiazepines


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Comment from: sandy, 45-54 on Treatment for 5-10 years (Patient) Published: July 25

BEWARE: causes major hair loss. Been on it for years, too sick & could no longer work so didn't notice I'd lost so much hair. Mental dr or family dr didn't know why. Dermo dr has a book that cost $250, printed out the page & showed that this drug & lamital both caused hair loss. I've been off them about a year, don't see any hair coming back. Devasted. Especially for women. Trying to find what company makes this, no luck. Will try pharmacy for the FDA paperwork I have to fill out. I'M TICKED! understatment Had I read this, I'd never have taken it.

Related Reading: hair loss


Medical Editor: John P. Cunha, DO, FACOEP

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