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PLEASE WATCH "THIS IS LIFE" WITH LISA LING ON CNN THIS SUNDAY NIGHT FOR A SPECIAL SHOW ON BENZO DRUGS. SHE ADDED THIS TO HER SERIES AFTER HER FATHER HAD A DEMENTIA-LIKE REACTION TO KLONOPIN AT AGE 79. You can find details on Facebook or I am sure CNN's webpage.

Thanks CTTN. This has been such a nightmare and the thought that the simple prescription of an antibiotic might have prevented it blows my mind. Then when I was prescribed one it was the mildest one and that was with a fully swollen face. I am now on my fourth set of dentists with this. I have great faith in them and they are willing to continue to prescribe pain medication. I would much rather be out and about living a simple active life than the routine of treating the scar and lying with ice packs. I try my best with the medication in terms of the amount I take. I think doctors could prescribe if there is justification. I haven't run into that issue except for one and I would not go back to him for a shoulder issue because I don't find him sympathetic. I get rebound affects from even 1 dose of an opioid. I understand it is a great problem but I wonder how others don't experience that and find them so appealing so that they become addictive. I realize this subject was benzos but it seems there is such a clamp down on both categories.
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Riverdale, I am sorry for your bone infection! I have had root canals, and I am trying to remember if I was prescribed antibiotics afterwards. I think I remember is that I might have taken them before the procedure? My memory is not clear on this, though.

I fully expect antibiotics to be prescribed when I need them, because I was NOT one of the ones to be over-prescribed them to cause the antiobiotic resistance episdemic. When my kids were still minors, experts were saying that kids shouldn't have their ear infections treated with antiobiotics unless there was severe pain.

I can see both sides of the benzo problem. People can become addicted, but it is not fair to make it difficult for the people to get them who really need them. I don't know what the answer is.
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Yes, dr.'s need to be educated on how to safely wean people off of
these drugs.
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My brothers dr. Just took him off tramadol, (3x a day) cut anti depressent from 60 to 30mg a day and took his xanax as needed away. I am all for getting him off these drugs especially the benzos after the Lisa Ling show, but how can dr. cold turkey take him off all of these at once. Dr says he has to cut due to state regulations. Will not listen to me about needing to taper. Brother is complaining of electricity in his head and ringing in his ears after 8 days of need for constant motion. The nursing home is doing nothing to help.
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I personally have experienced some of the horrible withdrawal symptoms that were described on this documentary. I was also on the lowest dose of the particular medicine that I was prescribed.

I think it's important to show the public what can happen if you take a Benzo. Not just benzo's either. It can happen with all sorts of medications. I don't think the parents who lost their son think it was fear mongering or the woman who was contemplating suicide.

If you never had a problem with taking these types of drugs you are lucky but that doesn't mean it doesn't happen. I think it's important to educate the public and sometimes in this sensationalistic society we live in the only way you'll get someone's attention is to scare them.

It is unfortunate that people who legitimately need these medications have a hard time getting them now but better that than throwing them out there to everyone who thinks they need them when they really don't.

And yes, I get annoyed that I have to practically beg for a lowest dose ativan but so be it.
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I admit that I did not watch the show being discussed--but know from past "shows' that this reporter has done--they're usually about half 'truth' and half 'let's scare your pants off'. If it wasn't 'scary' they wouldn't air it and you wouldn't watch.

Everyone has to be educated about the meds they take. And now I am going to say something that will elicit a forum wide gasp-- I have taken a benzo (lowest dose & can't EVER have more) for the last 23 years. I have tapered down and it's no fun, but it's doable and someday I will probably go off them. Or not. This is between me and my psych doc. I also take and AD for depression and chronic anxiety. Again, a very low dose and only with a twice yearly visit to my psych doc.

For 'simple and occasional anxiety', the root beer thing works, but when you are in a full blown panic attack, it's literally dangerous for me to NOT treat it.

Shaming people for needing something never works, in order to 'teach them'. I was severely abused as a child--for many years. Mother knew it and even 60 years later calls me a liar for talking about it and 'outing' the abuser, who, turns out, had hurt MANY more kids than just me.

I can look at a glass of root beer for a week and the anxiety will not abate.

I HAVE done a lot of therapy and I am MUCH better. But the damage my abuser and mother did to me was hard wired into me and I am still in the process of rewiring my brain.

I have NO JUDGMENT for those poor souls who suffer like I have...or for people with chronic pain that requires an opiate to help through daily life. The waste of time of having to see my doc every 3 months to simply get a scrip that they used to just 'call in' is annoying. I go in, say hi, he says hi and signs the already printed forms and I am off. We've had the 'be careful' talk, and honestly? at 63, I am not going to suddenly get all spry and bouncy was until my mid-50's. Life w/o pain meds is not worth living and I know I am not alone in this scenario.

Do you know who abuses opiates the most? DOCTORS. Not the great unwashed out here. DOCTORS and people in the medical field.

Off my high horse. If you have to take meds that aren't considered to be "OK" and feel judged and embarassed, come stand by me. I'll shore you up.

I personally hate that the Gov't even HAS a say in what medications I can and cannot have.
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Gershun, you most likely were given a medication for pain from a dentist for when the effects of anesthesia sets in. With new prescription rules one has to have a physical copy rather than a medication being emailed to a pharmacy and that may be more complicated once you have left the dentist's office. This being said rules vary from state to state. I have recently left life in NY for SC. They have completely different guidelines for prescribing controlled substances.

What infuriates me is hesitancy for prescribing antibiotics. I know and respect those who lean towards avoiding them. As I have shared in different posts I was not prescribed one after a root canal procedure. I am mad at myself for not insisting on one because an infection set into the bone. I ended up having major surgery for a jaw that became fractured. It is a long story I will spare those here now but I would suggest strongly asking for one if under going this. I am on a PICC line for 6 weeks.. They very likely will have to go back in to create bone and certainly will if I opt for implants. This will all be months down the line. Guess I haven't really spared you all that much. My doctor has provided me with pain medication. I would prefer so much to be living a different life. I enjoy exercising as an example. Right now I only go out with my husband as I am not comfortable driving yet. I also am very self conscious about my appearance. My point is that avoiding prescribing medications that the government is directing the course of can lead to tragic consequences and life altering circumstances
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My pharmacy hands you sheets and sheets of information regarding your prescription - regardless of whether it’s a new RX or a refill. If it is a new prescription, you next have to wait for an official pharmacist to come and give you a mind numbing tutorial, as well - before they will “release” the drug to you.

Still, I go home and dutifully read every - often repetitive - line. Most of the time when I’ve finally reached the end I’m more frightened by the cure than I am of the cause.
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CW I read the statutory Patient Information Leaflet out to an elderly lady on Saturday evening. She had been worried about side effects, and it was my job to make sure she had taken her prescribed meds, so I thought "informed consent. Let's help her check."

Both the elderly lady and the experienced worker supervising me looked at me like I had two heads. I am coming to suspect that most people think that PILs are just extra packaging, put into the boxes deliberately to make them harder to close tidily.
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Willie I think it's people just say to themselves I'll be fine and take a chance. I know sometimes I've not even read the printout they give me. Mind you I'm big on doing my own research on things before I even visit the doc.

Plus everybody's body chemistry is different. Maybe some people are more sensitive to certain medications.
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But how can people be so uninformed? My pharmacy hands out pages of information with every prescription and it is a rare person who doesn't have access to the information easily available on the internet.
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I think the big issue is that most people are taking the medicine as prescribed, but are not warned about the ability to become physically dependent very quickly. My parents have taken them for decades and were always told they were "safe" but have experienced many/most of the negative side effects for about have the time they've been on them.
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I did watch this show, but, missed the last part. I'm not sure if they ever told about how many people take these medications as prescribed and they are very helpful and do not cause all of the scary side effects that some people reported. I thought the show might have been a little heavy handed in portraying these medications so negatively, though, I normally like Lisa Ling's projects. Some people do have bad side effects to all kinds of medications, but, they are not terrible for all patients. My concern is that these documentaries may scare people who need medications to not take them due to fear.

The young man who committed suicide seemed to act quite different once he reached a certain age. I wondered if he might have developed schizophrenia that was never diagnosed, though, they did not mention that.
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I spoke to my MIL’s physician yesterday morning. She has anxiety attacks and problems settling down to sleep. She takes 0.50 mg Ativan at bedtime. She has at times felt she didn’t need the Ativan and followed drs instructions to taper off. She has never had a withdrawal problem.

My MIL’s doc felt that the Lisa Ling report was not that accurate. She didn’t think the descriptions of withdrawal symptoms were the norm for most people and that overall the show was an exercise in fearmongering. She said she would be following her medical training, her experience and keeping up with current research on the topic. And most importantly the needs of her individual patients and their behaviors.
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I did not watch the show, but I am always skeptical of an all or nothing approach to anything - the pendulum has certainly swung much to far when it comes to some medications.

Of course if you can't get your prescriptions renewed here there's always the option of recreational weed available. And booze.🙄
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Send you are right about the focusing on something outside of yourself when experiencing a panic attack.

I was surprised when I left the dentist office last week she handed me a prescription for tylenol 3's. Just like that. I never even said I was in pain. And that's the other problem. No consistency among the medical profession. I'm begging for 5 ativan from one doctor and being handed a prescription for tylenol 3 by another.

All I know for sure is if you are experiencing severe panic attacks and also desperate for sleep you'll take just about anything.

I also wonder about what they are giving seniors. That segment of the show with Lis Ling's Dad was interesting and kind of disturbing.
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Thank you Upstream for the valuable information!
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For a documentary, (if it was), the factual information was fuzzy, but overall addressing the issue had to be done! Most appreciative of Lisa Ling's efforts,
especially concerning Klonopin.

The withdrawal side effects are scary! Can you imagine the doctor's being confused over whether to take the med as a PRN (whenever necessary), or daily?

If one takes a benzo as needed for a few panic attacks a year, omg. the withdrawal side effects would happen each time! If you took 1-3 tablets, then stopped.....
two things are going to happen. 1) withdrawal will be experienced.
2) the withdrawal will make you feel you are losing your mind and need more!

Glad I watched it. Going back to therapist and complete extensive training on cognitive behavioral training to allay any future panic attacks. Handing out some literature just isn't going to cut it. I have had good results with the technique using the five fingers on your hand, naming the five senses for each finger, and then picturing: ( See)...a can of rootbeer (Hear)...pop open the can of rootbeer (Smell)...the bubbles and smell of rootbeer (Touch)...the can feels cold as you pick it up (Taste)...and drink the rootbeer. Picturing this in your imagination, no rootbeer is needed.

What this does? Distracts you from continuing down that downward spiral of panic in your memories, because you cannot hold two differing thoughts at once. It creates new brain pathways and new memories for the information to travel a new place instead of the panic place.

These drugs are dangerous, even more so to some biologically sensitive persons.
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I agree with Tiger here. The war on opioids have left many with SERIOUS pain issues with no help at all because Doctors are unable for the life of them to order any opioids at all without serious repurcussions. We go from one swing of the pendulum all to way to the other end with no common sense in between. I used to take 1/2 of a 5 mg. valium the few times I had to fly, couldn't sleep at night. It cannot be got at all now and they will instead ply ativan (which does nothing for me but constipate me within an inch of my life) and will tell you "take two a day" until you are good and hooked. Now they likely won't even give 5 of THOSE a month to those who ARE helped by it. I finally have managed to get 10 5mg valiums every four months. Do you know HOW I did that? After a long conversation by phone with my doctor I told her "I am an old RN. Do you think I do not know how to get these on the street? Because I am not stupid. I DO know. And if I have to go outside of my own medical care to go into the Mission and get Valium you can be sure I won't bother with only 10 every four months". I finally was able to get my script refilled. It infuriates me most because I have had this doctor for more than 10 years and she knows me to be extremely responsible, to be someone who had a surgery and refused to take medications for it. Used to be you had tooth work and they threw 30 vicodin at you as you left the room. Now you couldn't get it if your back was out and you were writhing on the floor. It just annoys me that there seems to be no common sense.
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I did watch the show. Very compelling and scary. People should do their research for sure before taking any drug a doctor prescribes them. Especially benzos.
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I know my doctor is very against these drugs. But I get anxiety attacks and sometimes mind over matter doesn't work. It's too bad that a few druggies have ruined things for people who legitimately need help.

I finally got my doc to give me a prescription for five ativan a mth that can only be filled monthly. Lowest dose. Better than nothing I guess.
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I think Drs give higher doses than necessary to people, & people may not follow the instructions also, but I think benzos are important to many people for valid reasons. I don't want another drug indicted because some people get addicted, or can't stay out of other people's med cabinets.
Do you want to take away alcohol again too? I'm not much of a drinker, nor pill taker, but I don't like what happened to so many patients when the 'war on Opiods' (B.S.) happened. People had no way to get their valid pain needs met for many many weeks....(nobody cared about them going cold turkey off their pain meds), as long as Drs feared losing their licenses: cuz of political pressure... Drs were afraid so they turned their backs on many valid patients in need. That's what happened where I live, cuz a lot of people were on my local news crying, & begging for any Dr to help them... cuz they'd been abandoned. That's cruel & unusual punishment for folks who'd done no wrong.
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Upstream, thanks for the heads-up on this :)
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This is great advice. I saw the trailers for this. Thanks a lot. I found this in discussions, where I seldom go, and am glad of the reminder.
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