Another Benzo Withdrawal Thread — Clonazepam (Klonopin, Rivotril)

Discussion in 'Support' started by randomuser, Oct 25, 2015.

    1. randomuser

      randomuser Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      05/2013
      Hi, I am very lost and would need some advice. Hopefully from people who has gone through withdrawal too.

      After getting my lovely t back in 2013, I was immediately put on rivotril (klonopin) 1.5 mg day, but I felt that this dose was too high and reduced to 0.5 mg in less than a month, this doesn't count as withdrawal.

      The t started to alleviate a little with time, at the beginning all the days were bad days, but some time after I started to have 1-2 good days followed by one bad day. This spring, even the bad days were "almost good", but not for the noise itself, but for my mental outlook. I was on a ridiculous 0.1 mg then.

      Now, I am on 0.03 mg, almost at the end of the taper, strictly following the Ashton manual, even slower than recommended. My good days are as silent as they were, and my bad days are more bothersome, but I think that the absolute perceived loudness is almost the same, but for now I can't tolerate loud days. Yesterday was beyond horrible, panicking the whole day, even writing suicide notes because of my desperation. I don't know if my reasoning abilities are damaged or not, but I think and people keep telling me that after jumping off, everything will improve. My reasoning is that, now, on withdrawal, the noise is the same, so no worsening, but the highly increased anxiety is making me more sensible to everything. And that, once the drug is out of my body, I won't have a relief and anxiety will skyrocket again.

      I'm extremely anxious, scared and thinking on doing stupid things, I think a lot on suicide, death, the purpose of life, what is the point on suffering too much.

      My simple question, for the kind readers to answer: did your t stayed the same after tapering (it looks like for most people this is true)? was it less or more bothersome? how long takes to return to your normal emotional baseline? I'm 5 months in and this is endless, a daily torture.

      Thank you

      Btw, for those interested... my silent days are 1/10 and the loud ones 6/10. Changing from "mild" to "moderate" t every 2 days is ridiculous, if I only could get rid of the loud ones...
       
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    2. glynis
      Feminine

      glynis Member Benefactor Ambassador Hall of Fame

      Location:
      England, Stoke-on-Trent
      Tinnitus Since:
      2004
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Meniere's Disease
      If you are coping with your tinnitus but your anxiety is bad and thinking suicidal thoughts I would stop your withdrawal and stay on the dose you are on till well into the new year if your doctor agrees.
      You have done really well coming Down off your meds but if your anxiety is bad you need a slower taper so won't hurt to stay where you are for now .
      Have a word with your doctor about your feelings and dark feelings and hope you are getting treated for depression with talking therapy too....lots of love glynis
       
    3. linearb
      Psychedelic

      linearb Member Hall of Fame

      Location:
      1
      Tinnitus Since:
      1900
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      karma
      I'd say my T stayed more or less the same; initially when I was on benzos they actually quieted it, but I think that stopped being true when I reached tolerance.

      My ability to tolerate any/all stimulus was greatly decreased during benzo w/d. Don't get me wrong, I still do not like my tinnitus and spend more time attending to it than I'd like, but I don't lose sleep over it anymore.

      It took me 12-18 months to begin to feel any glimmers of hope after coming off benzos, but I was on them for a long time.
       
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    4. Kah Povi

      Kah Povi Member Benefactor

      Location:
      New Mexico
      Tinnitus Since:
      2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Genetics and stress
      I tapered off of benzos after a very long dependency and it was definitely hard. I've been completely off of them for a year and a half. I'm glad I'm off of them for sure, but I understand your spikes in anxiety and the suicidal thoughts. But even in the midst of the fear and what seems to be loud and horrible T, I would say that I know that there is a lot of good in life and that the clarity I have off of benzos is a good thing. But I agree with glynis-habron - stay on the dose you're on for now and do some talk therapy. Also, know that the bad times will pass. I know how relentless and cruel they seem, but there is a world of compassion out there. Try to do what gives you even a grain of serenity, and know that your anxiety isn't a personal failure or flaw -- it's part of the human condition that we can help each other with.
       
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    5. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      randomuser

      randomuser Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      05/2013
      Ok, so here I am again, I'm a bit annoying, I know. You can just ignore this post.

      The fact is that, it's possible to "dehabituate" while withdrawing? Any tought? I can't stand the noise today, but I was able to live a normal life few months ago, when the withdrawal symptoms were inexistent. Do you really believe that the anxiety increases the noise? I would like to have an absolute loudness scale, in fact I have something like that but it looks like mine is as quiet as it was at the beginning.

      I don't know what to do, sincerely, I'm afraid of losing my job and everything else just for a noise, when the world is full of noises.
       
    6. linearb
      Psychedelic

      linearb Member Hall of Fame

      Location:
      1
      Tinnitus Since:
      1900
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      karma
      benzo w/d activates the hell out of the limbic system, fires up the fight-or-flight response, if we could brain scan you now we'd probably see a ton of signaling in your amygdala. So, yes, withdrawal may cause "dehabituation", and yes, for me, anxiety absolutely can ratchet up the volume/intensity of the sound.
       
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    7. Richard zurowski

      Richard zurowski Member Benefactor

      Location:
      England
      Tinnitus Since:
      27/12/2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Ear infection.
      Yes. But this noise is in our heads it's torturous.
       
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    8. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      randomuser

      randomuser Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      05/2013
      Indeed, but I have experienced some sort of "habituation" not so long ago, when I was able to sit in my laptop, read, write, think... while the hissing was still annoying me, but not as much as now. Withdrawing is hell, is completely fucking up my poor OCD-obsessive-anxious and depressive brain, but I still see some "window", as they call to these relatively calm periods in between the glutamate-GABA storm. This morning the noise was 5, annoyance 10, this afternoon noise 5, annoyance 3. This is, to say the least, puzzling.

      Btw yesterday I had an intense "spike" that lasted no more than 20 minutes, electric buzzing, like a storm, and it calmed down as soon as I stepped out of the bar where I was having a beer (well, water in my case) with friends. wtf.

      @linearb thanks man.
       
    9. Inge
      Cool

      Inge Member

      Location:
      california
      Tinnitus Since:
      11/2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      benzodiazepine withdrawal
      The ashton manual discusses the terrible protracted withdrawal symptoms one can experience when discontinuing benzo's. My T started after going cood turkey in rehab for klonopin. The T lasted for a year and is now almost gone. I also suffered from massive anxiety, but this will pass. Getting of of benzo's is a long hellish process but eventually the fog will lift. Hang in there.
       
    10. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      randomuser

      randomuser Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      05/2013
      @Inge I wish my T was from withdrawal, because there are very good chances to go away, like you, but mine is idiopathic (stress? ear infection? accumulative hearing damage?), I'm in my third year and no signs of it going away, so I only can hope for habituation (hopefully, the volume is low to moderate) or for some miraculous treatment, but this is highly unlikely. I am also going through a lot of stress, from work, living abroad and alone, the endless withdrawal and the setback in habituation. In fact I feel like I am not a normal person, there is something fundamental missing inside me, and this his very uncomfortable.

      Anyway, congrats for your recovery, now you know what T is like, so take care and enjoy your new life!
       
    11. Inge
      Cool

      Inge Member

      Location:
      california
      Tinnitus Since:
      11/2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      benzodiazepine withdrawal
      Thank you for best wishes. You talk about stress. I think reducing anxiety and stress is the most important thing when it comes to T. Once the limbic system gets involved the T becomes ingrained in the brain and it gets worse from there. Sound therapy has helped me alot. Do you use masking sounds? I spent $5000 on in ear maskers but they were worth every penny. On bad days I would pop them in and it would bring some relief. Also a free app with white noise on my phone helped a lot. I wish you strength in dealing with this horrible condition called T.
       
    12. Richard zurowski

      Richard zurowski Member Benefactor

      Location:
      England
      Tinnitus Since:
      27/12/2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Ear infection.
      That's a lot of money for maskers. What makes and models were they, and what sounds did they produce?
       
    13. physics13
      In pain

      physics13 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2005
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      antibiotics
      does clonazepam klonopin cause hearing loss?
       
    14. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      randomuser

      randomuser Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      05/2013
      It is listed as ototoxic, but it looks like the most dangerous aspect of this drug is quitting cold turkey, it will probably give you hearing loss and t.
       
    15. physics13
      In pain

      physics13 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2005
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      antibiotics
      are you sure about that? I have to take klonopin every night for my sleep apnea, I think it might increase my oxygen levels
      one person on here said it gave him hearing loss so I'm worried now. I could try to find a doctor to prescribe me ambien but it is difficult
       
    16. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      randomuser

      randomuser Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      05/2013
      It is listed as ototoxic. This doesn't mean that will for sure hurt your hearing. If you go to benzo withdrawal forums, you'll see that a fraction of people who is withdrawing gets t as a result, or even a bit of hearing loss. IIRC, RaZaH lost part of his high frequency hearing and got t, but after cold turkey, and it looks like it's unusual to have bad side effects while on the drug, and it looks like it's less dangerous at therapeutic doses.

      The point is, while you take the drug, if you haven't had bad reactions already, it looks like you should be fine. If you take the drug for a loooong time, you could develop tolerance and side effects, but it depends a lot on the individual. I am no doctor, it's only the opinion of a layman, but why change to zolpidem (z-drug, very similar to benzodiazepines) if you are ok with klonopin? Withdrawing from clonazepam can be hard, and switching to a similar drug it's not advisable.

      But again, find a doctor, he'll be more helpful than me, it's a risk to ask for medical opinion on internet forums.
       
    17. ruben ruiz

      ruben ruiz Member

      Location:
      Tucson, AZ
      Tinnitus Since:
      2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      I believe it was meds and stress
      MY Doc wont change the Klonopin to change my life. I dont see how to tritate with chronic tinnitus.
       
    18. Jiri
      No Mood

      Jiri Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      11/2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      noise + injury
      Can you provide reference where it is listed as being ototoxic?

      I checked here: http://hlaa-sbc.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/11/Ototoxic_Brochure.pdf not listed.
      I checked on Prescriber's Digitial Reference and both Clonazepam and Valium weren't listed as ototoxic.

      How was your withdrawal? I hope you're doing better now.
       
    19. lymebite
      Vegged out

      lymebite Member Benefactor

      Location:
      United States
      Tinnitus Since:
      2013
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      According to this guide, which distinguishes between different aspects of ototoxicity in meds, clonazepam carries the risk of vertigo, but not tinnitus:

      http://www.europeanreview.org/wp/wp-content/uploads/956.pdf

      Each med is characterized by one or more of the numbers 1, 2, and 3, with the following meanings for each number:

      1. Ototoxicity, as a neurosensorial hearing damage also including the possible associated labirintine vertigo symptomatology and/or the possible onset of tinnitus;

      2. The onset of tinnitus only, with no documentable hearing damage;

      3. The vertigo generating action only, without any evident toxic action on the hearing apparatus.

      Clonazepam and most other benzos receive a “3” only.
       
    20. Bart
      Doh

      Bart Member

      Location:
      Antwerp
      Tinnitus Since:
      05/06/2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      2014 Noise / 2018 ototoxic meds
      I had been taking clonazepam daily for about 2 weeks , and for a couple of weeks prior to that I took it occasionally , mostly just one or maximum 2 nights in the weekends . The dose was very small, just one 0.5 mg pill before I went to sleep, it worked really well in bringin my tinnitus down and with sleep .

      The ENT who precribed me looked surprised when I asked him if I could just stop, he said it was fine for that low dose and that short period .

      The last 3 days of that 2 week period I took just half a pill before bed just to be sure and than stopped thinking it would be ok .

      However , the following night I had alot of trouble with sleeping, I felt asleep easy enough but woke up every 2 or 3 hours and it was very hard to get back asleep , as a result of the bad interrupted sleep anxiety levels rose and I felt pretty horrible , dizzy, sweating, ear fullness and increased tinnitus , but maybe that is because I came down with a cold as well . After 2 nights sleep improved but still bad compared to when I was on clonazepam, not surprisingly .

      Since the doctors seem oblivious about this drug, even the prescribing doc, I ask if I should have tapered longer, and if I suffer(ed) from a rebound effect , my GP said it is unlikely but I could Always start again with the clonazepam and do a fast taper .

      What are your experiences with this drug ? Was a taper necesarry for such a brief time taking it ?

      The available info in the net is pretty vague about the tapering period and only talks about months and years of usage .

      Thanks .
       
    21. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      HI @Bart

      I have been taking clonazepam for 8 years (but not regularly) and never had a problem. My ENT consultant advised me in 2010 to only take it when my tinnitus is severe. Dosage: 2x 0.5mg tablets. This reduces the tinnitus to a very low level or complete silence. If this drug is taken regularly, the body will quickly get used to it and more needs to be taken to have effect. Unfortunately this can lead to dependency with unpleasant side effects.
      Clonzepam can be very helpful for some people that have severe tinnitus, as it will lower the intensity. It is recommend for short term use and shouldn't be taken regularly.

      Michael
       
    22. Bart
      Doh

      Bart Member

      Location:
      Antwerp
      Tinnitus Since:
      05/06/2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      2014 Noise / 2018 ototoxic meds
      Yes Michael , thanks for replying , I know how usefull this drug is, it helps alot to bring my tinnitus down but I do not want to be or become dependant on it , my question however was after how long should you start to taper ?

      After a month of daily use ? After 3 months ? At what dosage ?

      The available info is all over the place and very incosistent .
       
    23. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      HI @Bart

      When I was first prescribed clonazepam, my consultant advised taking it every other day and I done this for about two weeks and then stopped and had no problems. I know some people taking this drug regularly for a month and longer have had issues stopping it abruptly.

      Since you have only been taking it for 2 weeks, I don't think there will be any problems reducing the dosage to every other day as I was taking it then eventually stop. The problem with clonazepam is this: Whilst it can reduce the tinnitus to a very low level or complete silence for some people. Once a person starts to taper or comes off it completely the tinnitus returns. Therefore, the person doesn't learn how to Habituate to the tinnitus since it was reduced/suppressed by the clonazepam. It is for this reason my ENT doctor advised me to only take it when the tinnitus was very severe.

      Michael
       

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