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415_stylee last won the day on March 28 2016

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  1. Lorazepam reduces my HPPD symptoms temporarily, and relieves tension and anxiety. When it comes on, there´s a noticable slowing down of the static, and objects appear more solid. Think it´s because it has a more pronounced anti-seizure effect than other benzos (Clonazepam has the most though). I have a strict routine for the of use them; I only use them when I really need them, never when I want them. If I notice any increase in tolerance, I stop using them for a while to get the tolerance back to baseline.
  2. I hope it goes well Jay! Had Lamictal before, it did help DP/DR a bit and made the visual framerate overly smooth (check out "soap opera effect" on Youtube to see what I mean). I was forced to quit due to a much more common side effect; complete loss of need to sleep and inability to sleep. Upon quitting, I was able to get sleep again. As long as no rash, liver toxicity or sleep issues occur, you can keep on going with Lamictal. These side-effects usually occurs in the beginning or with increased dosage, you'll notice if any of these happen. Since you have a strict schedule for use of Clonazepam there should not be any issue with it. Some benzos, especially those with more pronounced anti-seizure effects, can work wonders if used at the right times with very sparse intervals. Keep us updated on the progress, Jay!
  3. This whole Candida thing "causing" problems is to confuse cause and effect. Candida overgrowth cannot be mistaken; thrush on the tounge and in the throat, skin rashes, stringy feces etc. You don't think you have it, you'll know if you have it. The very few people who I know have had it got it from immune system dysfunction, people with cancer, HIV, and autoimmune disorders are most susceptible. But then it's these disorders that are the cause, candidiasis is only a visible symptom which tells; something is seriously messed up in the body. Many "alternative medicine" sites will tell all sorts of strange things which lacks scientific evidence entirely, or has a bit of evidence and builds up a theory based on speculation. It's pseudoscience. Using meds, diets, or other types of therapies based on assumptions is at best just ineffective, but can also be dangerous. Think to actually having candidiasis, trying to remove the overgrowth, when there's actually underlying undiagnosed cancer causing it? Such mistakes can cost you your health or even your life. Pinionlel, taking Zoloft while having HPPD is not a good idea. What you might be experiencing right now is most likely placebo effects, but it can also be a serotonin poisoning gradually building up. With the HPPD and the rest of the medicine cocktail you have an increased risk of developing serotonin syndrome. The increased energy and sociability might be a bit of hypomania, a standard symptom of too much serotonin. I'm just telling you since I got serotonin syndrome from Zoloft some years ago. I had hypomania (felt high, trippy and energetic) from it along with severe mood swings, heavy perspiration, diarrhea, tremors and dilated pupils. However, the symptoms might build up more gradually and slow if you are on low doses. Your visual disturbances are not Candida related, I can guarantee you. Don't use your body as a test subject based on pseudoscientific assumptions! By some strange coincidence I have Candida overgrowth right now for the first time in my life, due to a possible autoimmune inbalance onset by a stressful period. My whole gastrointestinal system is full of it. But my HPPD does not have anything to do with it. Rather, the HPPD flare up I've had for som time now has been caused by the lack of sleep and surge stress hormones, the flare up is going back to baseline now but the Candida has not subsided. My doctor says it's fruitless to treat Candidiasis symptoms, rather I have to rest it out and it will disappear by itself when the autoimmune relapse fades down. Fix the cause and the effect gets fixed, put simply. Just telling you so you don't mess yourself up even more, Pinionlel! Some things (such as messing with the serotonin system when one has HPPD) can cause lasting damage, and such things no one needs as an extra bonus on the nasty pile of problems one already has..
  4. I had flashbacks once or twice after use of hallucinogens. They are very brief and intense, it really feels like being on the drug. One I remember very clearly, was a month after i had dropped a large dose of HBWR seeds (LSA), in 2006. It occured upon an abrupt awakening from sleep. For 15 seconds I tripped without the drug being present. The melty, textureless cartoony visuals, the looping sounds, the "dreaming awake" trippy feeling, everything rendered in perfect detail. Total panic attack in other words! I have not had such flashbacks since then, the HPPD "permafried" sensation is not a flashback really, more a changed neurochemistry, so I don't count it. Flashbacks are a burnt in memory, which on occasion can repeat. It's because a psychedelic trip is so intense, it makes an lasting impression. The very same mechanism as PTSD traumas are, only not necessarily negative. Since I have had PTSD also, from a trauma, I can confirm that you relive smells, sounds, every aspect of sensory impression from the traumatic event in perfect detail. It's very forceful and can pop up unexpectedly. Thankfully, flashbacks and PTSD are entirely psychological reactions, not changed neurochemistry, though they can potentially damage the brain in the long run due the excessive exposure to stress hormones. The brain will eventually begin to forget, that's why the flashbacks seem fade to nothing after some months/years. So a medication like Keppra can't really stop flashbacks, since it doesn't remove the psychological reaction. Keppra works against the neurological changes that is HPPD. In conclusion: don't worry, flashbacks will cease to happen the more time passes. But yes they are damn frightening when they happen!
  5. I would recommend getting an anti-seizure medication rather. Keppra, Lamictal or something of the kind. It will clear up much of the DP/DR, and help the cognitive work. Also, you can not use any type of hallucinogens or cannabis again. You have only had your symptoms for two months, which means you have a really good chance to recover! To the question of CNS stimulants (ADHD meds): they aggrevate HPPD really much. But it's possible to use them if you have an effective anti-seizure medication prior to getting CNS-stims. I have diagnosed ADHD and HPPD, and use both Concerta (methylphenidate) and Keppra. Got Keppra a year before Concerta. Got the antidepressant Wellbutrin (it's actually a substituted amphetamine), some years before Keppra. During the adjustment period of that med, I had serious visuals. Like I was semi-tripping. Melting walls and detailed colorful CEV:s etc. But then I got Keppra and after that Concerta. Concerta packs a lot more punch than Wellbutrin, and I thought; if Wellbutrin can aggrevate so much, what can Concerta do? But I got no aggrevation at all to my surprise, I later found out that Keppra stabilized the surge of neural activity which Concerta causes. In other words, never use an CNS stimulant without having a stable anti-seizure medication before, when you have HPPD. The symptom aggrevation is unbearable.. It's basically the same principle as they use when they medicate coexisting ADHD and Bipolar. To get optimal effects without risks, they use both a CNS-stim and anti-seizure. It can be a frustrating situation to have so much to do and getting HPPD on top of it, and having a jittery ADHD brain, messing all up. A lot at once.. You should keep studying, and quit the drugs. See a doctor and get properly diagnosed. If you need meds; get an anti-seizure med first of all. Keppra IMO. Avoid the CNS-stims until you have a diagnosis in your hands. They are really beneficial for ADHD, but not nice for HPPD (at least not without anti-seizure stabilization).. This process can take a long time to get right, maybe even years. And remember, you might recover entirely if you quit the drugs! Hope what I've written makes some kind of sense.. :-)
  6. I have always had insane dreams, but they managed to get even more insane since I got HPPD. More psychedelic and unearthly.. If I wake abruptly from them I get lasting spiraling tunnels overlaying my open and closed eye vision. So there seems to be quite a lot more psychedelic activity than before IMO. They say endogenically produced DMT causes dreaming, and I'm very sure that's correct.. Plus HPPD-caused latency problems, and bam you got lasting visuals up to 15-20 mins by only dreaming! The dreams can be anything from Inception-like shifts of physical laws, weird colours and creatures. Lack of logic. Exciting but a bit too intense. Then the nightmares.. Getting psychosis in the dreams, The Grudge-like types of entities, faceless demons killing, hunting or tearing your soul to shreds. I've also had sleep paralysis occasionally. For me I can identify atleast three factors; HPPD seems to have added the intensity and psychedelic unrealness to the dreams, as I only had more "grounded" dreams before. ADHD messes a lot with the sleep (brain waves which resembles wakefulness intrudes on sleep type waves) which causes tossing and turning, sleepwalking etc. Basically sleep is always unsteady. Stress/anxiety I have identified as being able to cause sleep paralysis and "wake by becoming insane or killed" type of nightmares. Losing control in the dreams. Since I got Keppra, and the fact that it alleviates a lot of overactivity in the brain (both with HPPD and ADHD), has reduced the frequency of both surreal, intense, and horrible dreams. Unfortunately, I rarely dream at all anymore, and when I do they're forgettable. It's a reasonable price to pay to get rid of many these of these parasomnia tortures though! I get refreshing sleep at least.. Which leaves only stress/anxiety left as a culprit, which can for me cause temporary rebounds of the above mentioned parasomnias. Long lasting benzos though, they cause a kind of sleep which is more like unconsciousness. No dreams, because the sleep is too shallow. Which might be good, or bad. Very unrefreshing sleep also, since the deeper stages of sleep gets hindered, the body repairation stage never really occurs. For me these benzos also triggers a weird kind of sleepwalking in which you can do things you do during the day, I dialed numbers and called two people, without remembering it. The phone was on the floor next to the, off the hook for 2.5 hours and no memory whatsoever of doing it. Unsettling.. In conclusion: Can HPPD change your dreams? I would say yes. Anything overactive in the brain might affect sleep, since it's a delicate mechanism which relies on a set amount of specific brain waves, a small disturbance can create ripples on other waves, upsetting the balance. What happens when you take a benzo then? You'll get sedated, neural overactivity will be suppressed. But it can make a glitch in the lock for the body muscles, making you act out things as you were awake when you're unconscious in sleep, which can be dangerous. If you have been sleep walking before or have ADHD, you have a large risk of doing it under the sedation of a benzo. Sorry if the reply got much too long (as is usual with my replies!). Hope it can make some kind of sense into the whole sleep-HPPD question. These are a combination of personal experiences mixed with a whole lot of the science behind it (I read a lot). It's an addition to the common knowledge, not an absolute fact.. ;-)
  7. It seems to be working for you Chase! Lucky that you have not had Keppra rage, I got it and I went from aggressive to hyperaggressive for a month or so. The fatigue (or somnolence) is a very common initial side effect with Keppra. You might feel it temporarily return when you increase dosage. Somewhere at 1500 mgs per day seems to be the optimal dose for most people, after reading a couple of studies on Keppra for various conditions. You'll notice when you've reached optimal effects. The adjustment period can be quite long, think it took almost 6 months for me. You'll notice more side-effects fading away, replaced by more beneficial effects. When you're adjusted you'll not notice any side-effects at all (Keppra is really nice to your body!). I have the same experience as you regarding doctors. The standard physician follows standard protocols and are for the most part completely unintrested and even arrogant to patients opinions. The doctor who helped me the most and properly diagnosed was a supervisor Phd, professor and also the author of treatment guides for many disorders in my region. Very scientific-minded, vast knowledge and very open for new challenges (i.e. my conditions). Meeting this guy ended up as a paradigm-shift in my health condition and treatment plans. As a bonus my conditions are now a part of official medical knowledge and praxis for some disorders, helping a lot of other people too! They really are something special to meet, I hope you get to keep your doctor Chase. Such a doctor will be the best insurance you have for regaining at least a bit of your health! Keep going on Keppra and update your progress on it soon again!
  8. Indeed Spartan, anyone can choose what they think helps them. Though it would ethically wrong for a doctor prescribe it instead of an evidence-based method. If they would recommend meditation or whatever as an addition to the regular treatment is ok though..
  9. Atlantic mackerel.. Yummy! Contains a lot phosphatidylserine, omega 3, vitamin D. I think no supplements can replace a well balanced diet however, since you'll need a larger variety of nutrients than you can get from a specific supplement. However keep us updated further, Mr.50's. Remember to eat other food aswell though! ;-)
  10. You should continue to taper at the dose you were at. What you're experiencing now is due to the receptors adjusting. When you took a larger dose by mistake you "stirred up" the brain a bit and it remembered what it craves; more GABA. Kind of like an echo which takes a bit of time to die out.. So it's temporary.. Continue the steady tapering. I've not tapered from Klonopin, but I've tapered two other types of benzos. It's really hell so you need to be dedicated and disciplined to pull through it. The addiction will try to trick you back, never fall for it.. I'm not really sure if Glutamine is fantastic for aiding your recovery, but try it since it's no real danger to use. Other than that, try to keep a good nutrition, lots of water (due to the terrible diaphoresis). Also if you get the dangerous insomnia from withdrawal, use some meds which bypass the GABA system but are strong enough to sedate you. Mirtazapine and Mianserin can be used for short periods (~10 days) to save you if it would occur. They do have side effects though. Last time I had withdrawal my blood pressure and heart rate rose to dangerous levels, much due to persisting inability to sleep at all. I used Mirtazapine a month and the levels went back to normal. I slept like a log on it. Beat the withdrawal. Inability to sleep might occur when you're completely without the substance in your body. Taper as far as you can, to 0.25 mgs on Klonopin perhaps? You can not avoid the withdrawal, but you can survive it if you taper slow and steady. Benzo withdrawal on cold turkey can produce life threatening conditions as you might know (delerium tremens, seizures, circulatory shock, coma etc.) Keep on going, stay dedicated and plan it well!
  11. DP/DR is one of the many wonders benzo use and withdrawal can endow your life with..*sarcasm* Much of the DP/DR in HPPD is caused by anxiety issues, and benzos can make it much worse in the long run. But there's also an elevated baseline of DP/DR in many people with HPPD, without anxiety. Some people call it "permafried" which is a rather accurate description IMO. I developed severe HPPD close to 9 years ago from a series of good trips on various drugs. In spite of ridding myself of nearly all anxiety, and by that most of the DP/DR, even though all the meds which actually works for once.. I can not get rid completely of DP/DR, I'm having a minor trip-like surrealness every second of every day. However, I'm quite used to by now, how weird it might sound.. This benzo-fetish doctor of yours.. He must be out of his mind or something! Ativan is certainly not a mild benzo, actually there really is no such thing as mild benzos.. 2-3 mgs a day of Ativan for two weeks is enough to start tolerance building---dependence---withdrawal. I used up to 4 mgs for a month and could barely come of it, had to taper the dose a bit.. I sweated as heavy as a monsoon rain falls and wanted to kill everyone in sight, was half-delerious and could not sleep. Horrible pain in the whole body. Unbearable visuals and DP/DR. Makes one imagine what would have happened if you would have used up to 10 mgs a day for a year? It would have been delerium-tremens and/or death express.. Ativan can be useful if it's used very sparsely and only when needed. I don't repeat the mistake of using it too much ever again, only when I get hyper-aggressive and needs to calm down the alert system quick (can get consequences rippling out for days otherwise).. But if used too often, it will make visuals, anxiety, mood etc. 10 times worse. For you I think it would be wise to avoid benzos all together, using benzos with control is almost as hard as it is for a person with Tourettes syndrome to not say dirty words.. ;-)
  12. It can fluctuate a lot, depending on what level of stress you get bombarded with. Gas and brake can even begin coming at once in the worst burnout phase, as neither the levels of the "gas" stress hormones (adrenaline, noradrenaline) or the "brake" stress hormones (cortisol) never drops down. This can lead to permanent damage to some parts of the brain, and the rest of the body as well. Even deaths have occured in previously healthy young people with far gone burnout syndrome. Not to be taken lightly in other words.. There's a book by a Swedish scientist, specialized on stress which is both easy read and has a lot of examples and illustrations. It was released a couple of years ago but is still very up to date. Aleksander Perski - Ur balans: om stress, utbrändhet och vägar tillbaka till ett balanserat liv English: Aleksander Perski - Out of balance: about stress, burnout and roads back to a balanced life http://www.adlibris.com/se/bok/ur-balans-om-stress-utbrandhet-och-vagar-tillbaka-till-ett-balanserat-liv-9789101002908 Info on the scientist, there's an "in English" button in the upper right corner. http://www.stressforskning.su.se/om-oss/kontakt/personal/aleksander-perski-1.67398
  13. Yeah, I'm aware of the safety of keeping municipality jobs in Norway. There's a quite similar system in Sweden, but not as safe today as you have in Norway. Try a short sick-leave and do the necessary things you mentioned in your post. If these things reduces your stress, go for it! The most important thing for you right now is to get back on your feet, tell your social contacts about what needs to be done.. They'll understand and respect it if they're real friends and care about you! ;-)
  14. I agree fully with Jay.. You'll know what works best for you. There's no shame in getting sick-leave if you need it! Regarding your post on the "stress response curves" in another thread which I replied to, it would seem to be pointing more to taking a short, time-limited sick leave, rather than lowering work hours. Where I live this period is set to a maximum of 3 months (without extra hassle). Employers try to fire people who are on sick-leave for too long periods (½ year and more), and losing the job and getting unemployed is one of the worst stresses that exists. Not very much mercy from them.. My recommendation is to start in the shallow end, 1-3 months of rest and see how you feel and if your improvement speeds up. You'll figure it out, SFT, it's your call!
  15. SFT: Yes it does sound a lot like a stress-response.. Like you've been on full speed, and then the hand-brake is pulled. From stressed out and anxious, to numbness and fatigue.. It's very good that you're slowly improving, that means your stress curve is beginning to normalize. Allow yourself to rest it out, keep away from stress triggers (your response will be to get worse fatigue now) and you might recover in a not too distant future.. That it's been 11 months and your improving, is a good prognosis! Because, the longer these "stress-curves" last, the chances of recovery gets slimmer. 11 months seems like a very long time, but the body is able to take a hell of beating before going over the tipping point.. Wish you the best on the road to recovery!