Starting, managing, and supporting your taper.
The foundation of our practice is a patient-directed benzo tapering process. The schedule and timing of tapering are unique to you. We want you to feel in control but supported every step of the way.schedule and process of tapering we devise together is unique to you. We want you to feel in control but supported every step of the way.
While we may recommend supplements and lifestyle changes, we will continue to prescribe the level of benzos required for your successful taper, however long that schedule may be.
There is absolutely no doubt that anyone withdrawing from long-term benzodiazepines must reduce the dosage slowly. Abrupt or over-rapid withdrawal, especially from high dosage, can give rise to severe symptoms (convulsions, psychotic reactions, acute anxiety states) and may increase the risk of protracted withdrawal symptoms. Slow withdrawal means tapering dosage gradually, usually over a period of some months. The aim is to obtain a smooth, steady, and slow decline in blood and tissue concentrations of benzodiazepines so that the natural systems in the brain can recover their normal state.
As a very rough guide, a person taking 40mg a day might be able to reduce the daily dosage by 1-2mg every 1-2 weeks until a dose of 20mg a day is reached. This would take 20-40 weeks. From 20mg diazepam a day, reductions of 1mg in daily dosage every week or two might be preferable. This would take a further 20-40 weeks, so the total withdrawal might last 40-80 weeks. Yet some people might prefer to reduce faster, and some might go even slower.
However, the rate of your taper will be unique to you and your needs, and can be slowed down at any stage if necessary. We will work together to ensure your comfort and confidence throughout.