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Re: Long Term Klonopin Usage

Posted by rutt on January 6, 2004, at 15:45:49

In reply to Re: Long Term Klonopin Usage psychlover, posted by zeugma on January 5, 2004, at 2:51:08

> > I just read something about how people who are taking benzos (like Klonopin) for panic attack (like I am) don't try and make behavioral changes (I guess that means get specific therapy) to address their panic disorder and rely instead on the meds. I for one have been almost panic free on Klonopin, esp. before I lowered my dose, and I have not gone for therapy specifically to treat the panic.
> >
> When I was undergoing CBT I was experiencing numerous periods of increased anxiety, and CBT dogma (as expressed in David Burns's book "Feeling Good" (which my therapist asked me to buy after the first session)) says that benzodiazepines make it too easy for anxiety sufferers because they do not have to "face their fears" while on the meds. Burns instead touts SSRI's as a non-addicting adjunct to therapy that won't interfere with the CBT process.
> Well, whether SSRI's are "addicting" or not is a matter of terminology: I have seen people go through withdrawals on SSRI's that looked nasty, caused a lot of missed work, and were protracted over a period of months. AND they don't seem to work as well!
> The irony is that if I had Klonopin at the time the therapy itself would have been a lot more productive. Burns makes it sound in his book that people on benzos are like junkies living only for their next high, completely indifferent to whatever 'issues' they had previously as the next dose of drug fills their veins. I still need to work out my issues, and what is more I am actually more aware of them than ever, because I'm less likely to become anxious over trivial things. I think that people with severe anxiety need medication to get through the therapeutic process, and that people like Burns don't understand that severe anxiety is no more the product of a bad 'cognitive schema' than severe depression is.
> > Anyone else with the same experience?
> Hi zeugma,
I started my CBT therapy while on klonopin. I definately believe that the klonopin helped my therapy for panic attacks, and high anxiety in that I needed my panic to stop before I could effectively absorb CBT. I haven't really had any luck with ssri's. Many sources say that the best treatment for panic and anxiety are a combination of a benzo- and CBT. Once the CBT is absorbed, the benzo can be tapered. This is highly individual of course.
best wishes




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