I have been on clonazepam for 12 yrs. I have been taking 1mg. at night to help with sleep and anxiety related thoughts. I am now trying to stop because I think it was causing more harm than good, and it's been too long. I tapered from 1mg. nightly to .5 mg for a week, then tapered down to 1/4 of a 1mg tablet over a ten day period, and then stopped. I am having terrible problems with my vision, dizziness/motion sickness, slight nausea, light sensitivity and a horrible heavy-headed feeling pushing right out to my ears, and worse at the base of my head/neck. It's very difficult to focus on work (I'm at a computer all day), or even carry on a conversation. I have racing heart, which isn't great since I'm a cardiac patient. I am also sleep deprived. I have been clonazepam free for one difficult week. When will these withdrawal symptoms go away, and are they normal? Should I go back on a tiny dose and taper back off since it looks like I may have tapered too quickly, or do I stick it out? Thanks
3 Mar 2011
I hope this may shed a little light on what you are experiencing. I've been taking 2mg clonazepam at night for two years. I also have meniere's disease. Clonazepram is also prescribed for that because it reduces pressure caused by fluid build up in my inner ears. Perhaps after 12 years your fluid level in your middle ears grew dependent on the medication. Now that you are weaning yourself from it, you may have increased fluid build up creating your symptoms.
3 Mar 2011
What you are experiencing sounds like typical withdrawls from the benzodiazepine. Clonazepam can last in the body up to 50 hours after the last dose. So you are now through the worst of withdrawls. It will gradually get better over the next few days. I encourage you to hang in there.
Try googling "clonazepam withdrawl" if you would like to read more about this topic.
Good luck and keep in touch,
8 May 2012
how are you feeling? I too took clonazepam for 12 years (0.5mg twice a day for 8 years and 0.5mg once a day for the remaining 4 years with the occasional 0.5mg whenever I felt more anxious). I stop taking this medication on January 1st, 2011, and on January 17th, my anxiety was so high I could not go to work for 2 weeks. I had all the symptoms you explained above and a few more that were just wild. After those two weeks went by, I started to feel much better, but not 100% well... Fast forward to today (May, 2012) a year and a half later since my last dosage and I am still feeling some symptoms. Some days are good and then some days or weeks are not. I continue to experience off-balance symptoms, not dizzy, but just off balance similar to when you're on a boat. I feel as if the floor is moving up and down and gives me the stomach feeling one sense when a plane is taking off or landing. I also have pretty bad acid reflux since I stopped taking clonazepam. I cannot take reflux meds because they all make me extremely anxious 1-3 days after I start taking them - and I've tried about 4 different ones. My nervous system is so sensitive that even a small piece of chocolate gets me super anxious. I also get overwhelmed pretty easily. From what I've read the first year is the worse, the 2nd year and forward are cyclical. Things that help making the anxiety a little more bearable is exercise, listening to relaxation tunes at night, trying to get good sleep and drinking lots of water. I'm hoping that by the end of 2012 my symptoms go away completely at the 2 year mark, my symptoms go away completely.
Take one day at the time... hang in there - time goes fast.
6 Jun 2012
I am on 6 mg. of clonazapam for the last year. Just started the weaning process. I cut back .05 for a month and continue til we find a good balance. I have had very few symptons of withdrawel. Some aching, slight headache and dizziness which went away after 3 or 4 days. I think some people think it's going to be worse so they make themselves feel worse. Obviously it will take me a long time to get to 2 mg. but this is not that difficult. Good luck!
24 Feb 2013
Good luck to you, my son has gone off his and is having problems sleeping. He was also on several other things that did not seem to "mix" well. I have been on Clonazepam for about 5 years for restless legs, and am working on weaning off. God Bless and Good luck. Hope all goes well, I will continue to follow.
- Clonazepam Information for Consumers
- Clonazepam Information for Healthcare Professionals (includes dosage details)
- Side Effects of Clonazepam (detailed)
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