Combat Veterans with PTSD Only!

My Combat PTSD is for combat veterans with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) only, not that you served in the military and have PTSD, but you physically deployed to a combat zone itself and were either land or sea based (in direct naval or air support), and you have PTSD as a direct result of your combat service. No exceptions! This community IS NOT for spouses, family or friends of veterans. Spouses, family and friends can find support at MyPTSD.com.

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Zoloft And Ativan

Discussion in 'Therapy / Medications' started by Zipperhead, Feb 9, 2012.

  1. Okay, I'm on page 3 in the search results and still no real usable info. Seems lots of people have used, I understand that ativan has a limited period in which it will be effective, and I know it's adictive. Any warnings out there? If I do get addicted, how hard is it to get rid of? Signs you are addicted? New to the pill popping scene, so any advice will be helpful.
     
  2. Unfortunately it starts to lose effects over time. It is addicting because it works. good luck
     
    Zipperhead likes this.
  3. Mate, Zoloft is an SSRI and I was on it for 5 years. It worked for me, but I had to monitor it and go up and down in dosage. Eventually I changed to an SNRI called Pristiq, it works for now.

    But what works for one might not work for another

    Antivan or Lorazepam is a part of the wonderful Benzodiazipam family such as Xanax and Valium.
    Valium is a slow acting and is one that you would use over a full day, whereas Xanax is fast acting and used for immediate usage. That is what I use when I have anxiety attacks.

    The problem with all Benzo's is that they are addictive like Marc said. They also build up tolerance levels.
    I started on .25 mg of Xanax when needed, then I went to .5 mg. Now I need .75 to have an effect.

    http://www.medicinenet.com/lorazepam/article.htm

    After reading the link above it appears that lorazepam Quote '
    Because lorazepam is removed from the blood more rapidly than many other benzodiazepines, there is less chance that lorazepam concentrations in blood will reach high levels and become toxic' unquote.

    The simple answer is to not take it for a couple of months if I can handle it and to watch the usage. But I might ask my MD about it next time.​

    I used to be a drug addict (green smoking kind) and a pill popper. I would pop any pill that gave me a buzz, so its important to me make sure that I actually need the Xanax before I take it. Sometimes a few deep breaths can overcome the anxiety attack.

    Being proactive with Antivan can be good too. Just before going to a shopping mall, or a large crowded area, benzo's take the edge off.

    Just my 2 cents worth.
     
    Zipperhead likes this.
  4. I played the Zolfoft/benzo game for a while.

    The Zoloft (sertraline) works great for me in keeping the depression type PTSD symptoms relatively tolerable. For me the benzodiazepines (Xanax and Ativan, separately, a few years apart) were strictly for "holyshitI'mhavingaveteranmoment" type situations.

    In the case of all benzodiazepines (GABA inhibitors), the average effective therapy period is about 8 weeks, give or take, even if only used for on demand use. Anything much beyond that is not considered therapeutic and you get to enjoy a nasty neurochemical dependency. Personally, I did my best to never take the benzos unless it was truly an emergency. (Like going to the mall, a concert, or even church...) It helped, but often I ended up in a situation where I either couldn't take it (like work) or it was too late to even bother as I was already running laps around the building to keep myself in check.

    Once I explained to my Doc how I felt about addictive pharmaceuticals, he moved me on to an sodium channel blocker called Lamictal (lamotrigine) which works significantly better as I only have to take 25mg in the morning, rather than carrying around a damned bottle of pills for emergencies (which can get you mugged in this town).

    I will add that in addition to PTSD, I have service connected seizures too(was a really, really bad day that day), so the lamotrigine is a double edged sword for me, it controls the seizures well and is extremely effective in increasing the time between "veteran moments". However, it is the only drug since Lithibid (lithium HCl) that is FDA approved as a mood stabilizer...trust me, it is awesome stuff.

    In short, not a fan of benzos, me. Here in the states, the use of benzos for PTSD is an off label usage. Personally, I wonder what the Docs are thinking when they give this stuff to us MilSpec PTSDers as paradoxical effects are more prevalent in our case.

    Now if we could only find something to add to the mix so I can get more than 8 hours of sleep a week... ;)


    One additional note, DO NOT drink alcohol if you are on the zoloft/benzo mix! The short term effects may seem "fun" but the permanent liver and kidney damage is not worth it.
     
  5. As I understand, alcohol and Zoloft are "compatible". Ativan / Alcohol is a no go. But if I'm at a point where Ativan is coming out, I probably shouldn't be drinking anyways. I'm a happy drunk as long as I was happy when I started. Drinking while I'm pissed off just results in a visit from my alter-ego, f*ck face. 230 pounds of asshole. I get away with only because people think twice before going after 230 pound ex-army guys. Still, I avoid alcohol if I'm not in a good mode. People rremember even if you don't the next day.
     
  6. Aye, alcohol isnt an issue with zoloft, but when you throw a benzo into the mix odd things happen.
     
  7. Its been a long time since I have seen that side of me. Jimbo the arrogant arsehole.
     
  8. Hell, I did it last month...which is how I ended up here. LOL
     
  9. Okay, Zoloft, appearantly it can have an effect on vision. Is that permanent? Can the effect change over time? It is listed as one of the less common effects, not under the see the Doctor if section. Should I be concerned? I still haven't decided if the change is an improvement or not. Let's just say the perifrial is worse, but through the glasses seems to have improved (possibly because the clarity in the perifrial has decreased noticeably) My next appointment with the shrink is in March. Time to panic?
     
  10. Everyone is different; however I can’t say how much Effexor XR has helped me. I don’t seem to have any side effects and it helps greatly with my depression.
     
  11. Guys, seriously I think its better to speak to your actual pharmacist who dispenses the drug. There is also an online group of pharmacists who will tell you everything you need to know.
    I only say things because a lot of veterans with low self esteem and psychosis read the labels and end up with every side effect notated on there.
    The other way is to find the testing results where they grabbed 100 patients, gave 50 of them the drug and the other 50 a placebo and monitored the effects.

    Right now I am the most stable I have been in the last 10 years. I am on a mixture of Pristiq (an SNRI) like Effexor and Valdoxin at night. Valdoxin is relatively new and will come under some other name over there.
    I also have Imovane at night to put my lights out which I hope to get rid of soon.

    For the anxiety attacks that I can't control by breathing I have my bottle of Xanax (I did not help Whitney Houston). But I only try and use those when really really desperate.
     

  12. If you are having vision issues, get a hold of the Doc ASAP!!!!
     
  13. Doc says give it another week. Light sensitivity isn't a big deal. Edginess is way down already. I could get use to this.
     

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