Meds, Mind, Body & Benefits > Mental Health & HIV

Anti-Depressants May Be Doing More Harm Than Good

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Well, ok, let me be clear:  I was on high dosages of Xanax and Valium and quit them cold turkey.  But at the same time, I also quit Morphine, ES Vicodin and Dextroamphetamine, and yes, it was all cold turkey.  Which I don't suggest to anyone.  And I had used all of them for a period of about 10 years (I use the term "use" loosely, since most of the time I abused them).  I believe the only reason I didn't run into trouble such as seizures etc. was because I was in a mental health facility, therefore I was "observed" by the staff while going through the withdrawal.

While a lot of people who use benzo's may not experience withdrawal, I believe people who use them regularly for a long period of time would, if the benzo's were suddenly discontinued.  And that's not just from my own experience, it's also from talking to tons of people who got addicted to benzo's, some unknowingly (until they were dc'd), besides taking a couple of master's level courses in addiction, one in particular where the popularity of using/abusing addictive substances was discussed; benzo's are pretty high on the list nowadays (I mean, they sell them on the street for heaven sake).  Of course, there's also the evidence of people's dosages needing to be increased, or the type of benzo being used has to be switched from time to time.  That person has developed tolerance, and can experience nasty happenings if the benzo is dc'd.

However, benzo's can be very useful when taken in situations that warrant them-extreme panic attacks (until something like CBT can be used to fend off the attacks); extremely stressful situations, such as the death of a loved one (but used short term then, along with talk therapy), or other stressful happenings. I'm not saying I'm a purist just because I no longer use them. I also realize some people can use them for recreation purposes without really getting "hooked," to where those people would experience withdrawal.  And I'm not saying what I say is "word."  This is just my experience, a lot of other's experiences, and textbooks and addiction doctor's experience and knowledge.  I know everyone is different, every case is different, and that you cannot diagnose one person based on someone else's experience. 

Short article from NIDA on benzo's (and other CNS depressants):

They say they took other factors into account.  If you're depressed and stressed, you probably are going to have higher blood pressure, which could lead to a stroke.  And, we know people who aren't depressed have better outcomes when sick, because they have a better mental outlook.  This definitely warrants more study. 


I was on Paxil for a year and a half.  I will say it caused more harm than fact, I never really experienced 'good' in regard.  I became quiet and the exhuberance of my personality was zilch...

Anyone wanting to discuss a situation, please PM if the availability is there...I'm new to forum, so I don't know entirely how this works...

My Doctors seem very aware of the potential for Anti depressants causing high blood pressure. This would explain why elderly people are more at risk for stroke if they are on these Meds.

I think that between seeing my ID Dr and my regular one that my health is monitored more than the average person as my blood is tested every three months for any changes including any depletion of vitamins. My Vitamin D was low also B12 so increased amount by taking Vitamins.

I take my Anti depressants because the other option seems to be somewhere 6ft under.


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