Mental Health

Have Mental Health Questions? Ask a Psychiatrist Online

Ask an Expert,
Get an Answer ASAP!

Mental Health
This answer was rated:

I have been taking xanax now for a little over 3 years. I

have taken up to 4mgs...
i have been taking xanax now for a little over 3 years. I have taken up to 4mgs a day and went on the taper method 2 years ago and got off them for 2 months. In this time i got a new job with new forms of anxiety so i got back on them after fighting so hard to stay off. i now take 2 mg daily and i get the pills from a friend. i have been honest with my doctor about it and he just keeps refering me to psychologist and psychiatrist but its expensive to keep seeing them. I need help im 30 years old and want off the pills for good whats the best way to get off them ?
Show More
Show Less
Ask Your Own Mental Health Question
Answered in 5 minutes by:
10/18/2013
Elliott, LPCC, NCC
Elliott, LPCC, NCC, Psychotherapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 7,664
Experience: 35 years of experience as a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor, National Certified Counselor and a college professor.
Verified
Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Seeking expert counseling is a sign of strength. A personal relationship with a caring professional is proven clinically effective.

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Dear friend,

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

I believe that I can help you with this situation.

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

hello

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

A daily dose of 2 mg of Xanax will make you dependent and you will become tolerant to the drug and it will stop working for you.

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

i agree i take 1.5mg before work at .5 before i go to sleep at night

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

for about a year now

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Xanax, and other benzodiazepines are miraculous if used correctly but they soon can become a major MEDICAL problem.

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

You have restarted taking them Do you feel dependent already?

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

yes and i do feel dependent already

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

I just saw "for a year now"

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

You have successfully tapered down before, very slowly?

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

yes i have

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

it took about 2 months to do so

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

but then after 2 months of being competely off the drug got a new job and again started to take them to ease my stress and depression

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

THAT is considered a rapid taper with benzos and should be done even more slowly for safety's sake.

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

There are psychological approaches to reducing your anxiety which you can learn with a few good workbooks.

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

i have seen psychologist and psychiatrist they are very expensive even with my insurance

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Do you get panic attacks or just high anxiety?

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Psychiatrists just give drugs in most cases.

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

anxiety its the worst in the morning and before i go to bed

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

its like i cant turn my brain off

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Are you sure it is anxiety and not something else? Do you have racing thoughts?

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

yes i do have racing thoughts

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

what else could it be ?

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Do you feel speeded up at times?

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

I will ask some questions and then speak about it.

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

just anxious when i have something important to do the next day and keeps me up and i think a lot

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

ok

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Do you also talk faster at times?

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

no

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Do you sometimes feel like you are euphoric and on top of the world?

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

when on the drug ?

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Any time.

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

when i first started using yes now no

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

it just puts me just right enough to get through my day i feel

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

mentally that is

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Do you engage in reckless behavior (spending, gambling, driving, sex, unwise investments)?

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

not in the past couple of years

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

ive been very anti social

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

How was it before?

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

and use to never be like that

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Depressed?

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

yeah

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

definitely depressed

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Do you go from depressed state to happy state, sometimes quickly?

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

yes depending on the moment

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

but yes

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

When is the last time you felt on top of the world, perhaps even invincible?

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

honestly not in a long time

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

maybe 4 to 5 years ago

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

cant even remember

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

its been so long

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Do you ever feel aggressive?

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

no

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Can you continue to function on a lower dose?

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

ive tried but it depends on what i am doing that day

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Are you currently taking ANY other medications?

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

working no i feel that what i take sometimes its not enough

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

no other medications i sometimes take my mothers trazadone 25mg to help with sleep but nothing else

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Do you have an MD who will give you medications (other than controlled substances such as Xanax) ?\

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

yes my personal doctor has given me meds before but for minor things flu and back spasms one time and prescribed me flexarol

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

other then that no

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

There are some less dangerous medications that can help with anxiety along with the self-help (and effective and professional) workbooks I am going to recommend.

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

ok

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

im just scared because of all the horrid things i have heard when trying to quit xanax

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Quitting Xanax can be horrible. I will give you the best guide to download and give to your doctor. Let me get that first.

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Dr. Heather Ashton from UK is the best expert and her guide (free download) is the best and safest method.

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

http://www.benzo.org.uk/manual/bzcha02.htm

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

ok again he knows my xanax use and just recomended me to other specialist but i feel like if they can't help and again i think he is shocked i was so honest about everything

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

In the meanwhile, talk to your physician about an antidepressant also used for anxiety, called bupropion (Wellbutrin) which, is very effective, does not promote weight gain nor does it reduce libido as so many other antidepressants do.

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Not all therapists prefer it but it is very widely used and an effective alternative to SSRIs.

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

and do i tell him i got this infromation from another doctor ?

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

It is usually started at 150 mg and later upped to 300 mg.

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

i actually have read that on the ashton method in tapering and using longer life lasting bezos such as valium

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Tell him that you got the information from a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor with extensive knowledge of psychotropic drugs and who studied under a psychiatrist..

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

ok

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Yes, Valium replaces Xanax in the last stages because it has a longer half-life and stays in the body longer.

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

It is easier to taper from.

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

and if he refuses treatment and just recomends me to another specialist what should i do ask for another doctor to help with this situation?

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Yes, go to a psychiatrist and spend the money. However, he should not refuse you because this is a safe alternative to what you are doing now and medically sound.

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

I recommend medications routinely and send notes to local doctors and they all accept my recommendations because they check them out themselves and see that they are sound.

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

so go see my personal doctor about all of this again and then go see the psychiatrist until they find a medication that works ?

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

I recommend bupropion (Wellbutriin) and also an antianxiety drug that you can take with it called buspirone (BuSpar). It is for anxiety.

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

on a scale of 1 to 10 and your expertise doctor how serious is my situation ?

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

5

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

You are not yet in trouble but you are on a dangerous path and you must act to get off of it.

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

You must control your anxiety.

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Let me recommend these books as well.

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

ok

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

anything

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

i just feel my doctor wont give me anything because of me being honest in how i was obtaining the xanax

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

and when i told the psychiatrist my story he was in shock at my stiuation

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

But you will be asking to get OFF the Xanax, which he will help you do if he has any sense.

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

That is not very professional.

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Nor does it show understanding of the real world.

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :


and a different approach:

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :



I think I have given you a great deal of good information with which to move forward and I wish you great success.

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

thank you Dr Elliott i will have to give everything i have and then some but atleast i know someone is out there knowing that there is hope for getting off this damn pills

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

You can do it. You have a wonderful and honest attitude and I salute you for that, and shall keep you in my prayers for success.

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Warm regards,

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Elliott, MAE, LPCC, NCC, CCMHC

JACUSTOMER-6kre5p3m- :

again thanks you for taking the time to listen to my situation

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

You are most welcome. I am so happy to have helped. :)

Elliott, LPCC, NCC
Elliott, LPCC, NCC, Psychotherapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 7,664
Experience: 35 years of experience as a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor, National Certified Counselor and a college professor.
Verified
Elliott, LPCC, NCC and 87 other Mental Health Specialists are ready to help you
Ask your own question now
Ask Elliott, LPCC, NCC Your Own Question
Elliott, LPCC, NCC
Elliott, LPCC, NCC
Elliott, LPCC, NCC, Psychotherapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 7,664
7,664 Satisfied Customers
Experience: 35 years of experience as a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor, National Certified Counselor and a college professor.

Elliott, LPCC, NCC is online now

A new question is answered every 9 seconds

How JustAnswer works:

  • Ask an ExpertExperts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional AnswerVia email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction GuaranteeRate the answer you receive.

JustAnswer in the News:

Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.

What Customers are Saying:

I can go as far as to say it could have resulted in saving my sons life and our entire family now knows what bipolar is and how to assist and understand my most wonderful son, brother and friend to all who loves him dearly. Thank you very much

Corrie MollPretoria, South Africa

I thank-you so much! It really helped to have this information and confirmation. We will watch her carefully and get her in for the examination and US right away if things do not improve. God bless you as well!

ClaudiaAlbuquerque, NM

Outstanding response time less than 6 minutes. Answered the question professionally and with a great deal of compassion.

KevinBeaverton, OR

Suggested diagnosis was what I hoped and will take this info to my doctor's appointment next week.
I feel better already! Thank you.

ElanorTracy, CA

Thank you to the Physician who answered my question today. The answer was far more informative than what I got from the Physicians I saw in person for my problem.

JulieLockesburg, AR

You have been more help than you know. I seriously don't know what my sisters situation would be today if you had not gone above and beyond just answering my questions.

John and StefanieTucson, AZ

I have been dealing with an extremely serious health crisis for over three years, and one your physicians asked me more questions, gave me more answers and encouragement than a dozen different doctors who have been treating me!!

Janet VPhoenix, AZ

< Previous | Next >

Meet the Experts:

Dr. Keane

Dr. Keane

Therapist

1,379 satisfied customers

Clinical Psychology PhD, Licensed Professional Counselor with experience in marriage/family, teens and child psychology.

TherapistMarryAnn

TherapistMarryAnn

Therapist

3,984 satisfied customers

Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues.

Dr. Olsen

Dr. Olsen

Psychologist

2,336 satisfied customers

PsyD Psychologist

Norman M.

Norman M.

Principal psychotherapist in private practice. Newspaper contributor, over 2000 satisfied clients on JA

2,246 satisfied customers

ADHP(NC), DEHP(NC), ECP, UKCP Registered.

Dr. Michael

Dr. Michael

Psychologist

2,177 satisfied customers

Licensed Ph.D. Clinical Health Psychology with 30 years of experience in private practive and as a clinical psychology university professor.

Steven Olsen

Steven Olsen

Therapist

1,728 satisfied customers

More than twenty years of expertise in counseling, psychological diagnosis and education

Anna

Anna

Mental Health Professional

1,656 satisfied customers

Licensed Clinical Social Worker with 29 years in addictions and mental health.

< Previous | Next >

Related Mental Health Questions
I have generalized anxiety disorder with panic attacks that
I have generalized anxiety disorder with panic attacks that I treat and keep managed with BCT, exercise, eating a well balanced diet, and breathing exercises. For the most part this works well. This p… read more
TherapistMarryAnn
TherapistMarryAnn
Therapist
Master's Degree
3,984 satisfied customers
What would you recommend to someone with a bad anxiety
Hi, what would you recommend to someone with a bad anxiety disorder, 25 years old, 134 lbs, who keeps worrying about fainting if he doens't... eat yet another meal? Driving and walking has become hard… read more
Nancy
Nancy
Psychotherapist
MS, PhD can.
492 satisfied customers
I have generalized anxiety disorder with panic attacks at
I have generalized anxiety disorder with panic attacks at times. For the most part I have improved a great deal through BCT and other lifestyle changes. I had it terrible after I quit smoking for abou… read more
Linda D.
Linda D.
Master\u0027s Degree
721 satisfied customers
OKMH1212211 I have an extreme medically diagnosed anxiety
OKMH1212211 Hello. I have an extreme medically diagnosed anxiety disorder. Recently, it's been getting worse. Everything makes me anxious and I have panic attacks regularly. I am allergic to all SSRIs… read more
Dr. Ravoof
Dr. Ravoof
Doctoral Degree
1,880 satisfied customers
I would like to know if it is possible for anxiety to cause
Hello,I would like to know if it is possible for anxiety to cause bladderproblems like urinary retention and bladder overactivity. Like if you fear it and you are constantly conscious regarding it, it… read more
TherapistMarryAnn
TherapistMarryAnn
Therapist
Master's Degree
3,984 satisfied customers
I have a history of health anxiety and panic. I went to hear
Hi. I have a history of health anxiety and panic. I went to hear a band Saturday and smoked about 5 cigarettes. I never smoke! I am very health conscious with diet, running, etc. I did smoke a few in … read more
TherapistMarryAnn
TherapistMarryAnn
Therapist
Master's Degree
3,984 satisfied customers
OKMH115211 My daughter struggles with anxiety depression
OKMH115211 My daughter struggles with anxiety depression OCD. She has tried numerous medications without any luck. She is at a new inpatient facility and her psychiatrist put her on zyprexa and Prozac… read more
Dr. Kaushik
Dr. Kaushik
PSYCHIATRIST ( MD Psychiatry)
Doctoral Degree
203 satisfied customers
Bipolar2,anxiety, avoidant pd.having swirling pinballing
bipolar2,anxiety, avoidant pd.having swirling pinballing dark thoughts. depressed, frustrated, feeling hopeless. I have taken many different meds in the past but what i am taking now doesn't work that… read more
Dr. Kaushik
Dr. Kaushik
PSYCHIATRIST ( MD Psychiatry)
Doctoral Degree
203 satisfied customers
I struggle with severe anxiety and depression and self love
i struggle with severe anxiety and depression and self love and self esteem and self confidene issues. i need help … read more
Therapist Leslie
Therapist Leslie
Masters, Professional Psychology
5 satisfied customers
I've had anxiety due to trauma... I've had anxiety due to
Hello, I've had anxiety due to trauma... Hello, I've had anxiety due to trauma in the city I lived in, I moved out to a different city, I accidentally spoke to somebody associated with the trauma , in… read more
Vakul Aren
Vakul Aren
Consultant Physician
Post graduation (Liverpool, U.K.)
3,906 satisfied customers
I am desperate for something to help with my anxiety. For
I am desperate for something to help with my anxiety. For instance, I'm sitting here inn a Dr's office ave a lady behind me id's chewing gum and I am so course to turning around and saying something b… read more
LeahMSWuofm
LeahMSWuofm
Clinical Social Worker
Master\u0027s Degree
719 satisfied customers
I've been experiencing a lot of depression and anxiety after
second opinion] Hello!I've been experiencing a lot of depression and anxiety after a health diagnosis. I am constantly paranoid that something else more serious may be wrong with me. Constantly readin… read more
Therapist Leslie
Therapist Leslie
Masters, Professional Psychology
5 satisfied customers
I've been experiencing a lot of depression and anxiety after
Hello!I've been experiencing a lot of depression and anxiety after a health diagnosis. I am constantly paranoid that something else more serious may be wrong with me. Constantly reading forums and med… read more
Dr. Phil, MD
Dr. Phil, MD
Internal Medicine Physician
Doctoral Degree
2,620 satisfied customers
I experience a lot of Generalized chronic term anxiety and
I experience a lot of Generalized chronic long term anxiety and it pains my heart and chest and surrounding areas a lot and legs and arms numbness and tingling which drains me out daytime drowzyness all day and coffee and teas don't help anymore … read more
LeahMSWuofm
LeahMSWuofm
Clinical Social Worker
Master\u0027s Degree
719 satisfied customers
OKMH925100 Is it possible to treat panic disorder/anxiety
OKMH925100 Hi! Is it possible to treat panic disorder/anxiety disorder without medication?? I'm in my mid-thirties and just started having panic attacks after a very stressful past 4 years (I thought … read more
LeahMSWuofm
LeahMSWuofm
Clinical Social Worker
Master\u0027s Degree
719 satisfied customers
I I have extreme anxiety especially social anxiety I over
I I have extreme anxiety especially social anxiety I over worry about everything and I have PTSD from being stabbed and assaulted I've been prescribed Xanax for years and I got up to 2 mg which was wo… read more
Vakul Aren
Vakul Aren
Consultant Physician
Post graduation (Liverpool, U.K.)
3,906 satisfied customers
I HAVE ANXIETY DRIVING MY TRACTOR TRAILER.HAVE TRIED ANXIETY
I HAVE ANXIETY DRIVING MY TRACTOR TRAILER.HAVE TRIED ANXIETY BUSPAR,LEXAPRO,CYMBALTAL.NONE HELP.BUT MADE SITUATION WORSE.BUT XANAX WORKS.NO SIDE EFFECTS AT ALL.HOW CAN I LEGALLY GET PRESCRIPTION FOR X… read more
Dr. Mark
Dr. Mark
Doctoral Degree
129 satisfied customers
Im struggling with anxiety, I started having anxiety about
I started having anxiety about 12 years ago after going through a divorce and then becoming self employed. However the frequency of my anxiety and strong attacks are happening more frequently. … read more
TherapistJen
TherapistJen
Licensed Clinical Social Worker
Master\u0027s Degree
950 satisfied customers
Disclaimer: Information in questions, answers, and other posts on this site ("Posts") comes from individual users, not JustAnswer; JustAnswer is not responsible for Posts. Posts are for general information, are not intended to substitute for informed professional advice (medical, legal, veterinary, financial, etc.), or to establish a professional-client relationship. The site and services are provided "as is" with no warranty or representations by JustAnswer regarding the qualifications of Experts. To see what credentials have been verified by a third-party service, please click on the "Verified" symbol in some Experts' profiles. JustAnswer is not intended or designed for EMERGENCY questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals.

Disclaimer: Information in questions, answers, and other posts on this site ("Posts") comes from individual users, not JustAnswer; JustAnswer is not responsible for Posts. Posts are for general information, are not intended to substitute for informed professional advice (medical, legal, veterinary, financial, etc.), or to establish a professional-client relationship. The site and services are provided "as is" with no warranty or representations by JustAnswer regarding the qualifications of Experts. To see what credentials have been verified by a third-party service, please click on the "Verified" symbol in some Experts' profiles. JustAnswer is not intended or designed for EMERGENCY questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals.

Show MoreShow Less

Ask Your Question

x