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Hppd and benzo's need some advice


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Hi guys, 

I'm at this point where my hppd is getting so bad that my life quality is getting low and its affecting everything. I cannot enjoy being outside by day, i go crazy over white walls, need to wear sunglasses everywhere.. I'd like some help, thoughts and advice. Thanks in advance

I'm 27 years old, i live in Belgium and i think i have hppd symtoms for over 4 years now. I have very very bad visual snow. 

I gave up on all drugs because of my hppd. The last year it got a lot worse. The only stuff i still use is alcohol and sleeps meds. 

I took zolpidem (ambien) to sleep, because it made my hppd alot worse my doc gave me lormetazapam and trazodone (ssri) to sleep. The trazodone fucked me real good. After 3 weeks my hppd doubled. I gave up on trazodone 3 months ago. Now i am building of my lormetazepam i'm on 0.3 every night. Still my hppd is getting worse. While this 0.3 and 1 evening of alcohol every week are the only substances i am using. 

I read alot that benzos might help for hppd, would there be a differance among benzos for hppd? That lormetazepam makes it worse and clonazepam would help? Or is that not possible? 

How could my hppd be getting so much worse while using no other substances then 0.3 benzo and sometimes alcohol..? 

 

Any advice is welcome, i am desperate 

 

Thanks in advance 

 

 

Edited by Bizzey1993
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Hi Friend, 

I'm sorry to hear how much you are struggling.  Unfortunately I do not have much experience with meds other than Zoloft which I have been on for about 3 years and has helped my anxiety and OCD.  I don't think it's impacted my visual symptoms and they have progressively gotten better.  I know it's hard to bear day in and day out but try to stay positive; you will recover.  Everyone's path through recovery is different, this disorder is very strange and sometimes doesn't seem to make sense.  I tell everyone the same thing which is what worked for me:

  • Stop all drugs (even alcohol for a bit if you can) 
  • Get as much sleep as you can 
  • Exercise regularly even if it makes your symptoms worse
  • Eat well 
  • Stay busy with work/ school/ hobby etc
  • Try not to worry 
  • Learn to meditate if you can (this was really helpful for me) 
  • If you're open to it, start praying to God (it doesn't have to be any particular religion just ask for help on your knees everyday.  I really believe it will come if we reach out)

There's an old saying and it goes like this: "When you're in hell the only thing to do is keep moving".  You'll get past this, stay strong and know that we're here for you.  If we can recover then so can you. 

Take Care,

Nick 

 

Edited by cosmiccharlie
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4 hours ago, cosmiccharlie said:

Hi Friend, 

I'm sorry to hear how much you are struggling.  Unfortunately I do not have much experience with meds other than Zoloft which I have been on for about 3 years and has helped my anxiety and OCD.  I don't think it's impacted my visual symptoms and they have progressively gotten better.  I know it's hard to bear day in and day out but try to stay positive; you will recover.  Everyone's path through recovery is different, this disorder is very strange and sometimes doesn't seem to make sense.  I tell everyone the same thing which is what worked for me:

  • Stop all drugs (even alcohol for a bit if you can) 
  • Get as much sleep as you can 
  • Exercise regularly even if it makes your symptoms worse
  • Eat well 
  • Stay busy with work/ school/ hobby etc
  • Try not to worry 
  • Learn to meditate if you can (this was really helpful for me) 
  • If you're open to it, start praying to God (it doesn't have to be any particular religion just ask for help on your knees everyday.  I really believe it will come if we reach out)

There's an old saying and it goes like this: "When you're in hell the only thing to do is keep moving".  You'll get past this, stay strong and know that we're here for you.  If we can recover then so can you. 

Take Care,

Nick 

 

Thanks for your response, i appreciate, could you perhaps send a link or site of wich meditation you are using? I'm new to this.

Thank you

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Glad to help.  There are many different options but basic technique is very simple.

  • Set aside a time of day (I like the morning) and a place 
  • Seated on the ground or in a chair (whatever is comfortable) 
  • Eyes open or closed your choice (maybe closed since visuals can be distracting) 
  • Back straight posture good but not uncomfortable 
  • Set a timer (start small whatever feels reasonable maybe 2-5 minutes) 
  • For that time your only responsibility is to place your attention on the rhythm of your breath 
  • Breath normally and count your breath 1,2,1,2,1,2....
  • Thoughts will come (am I doing it right, my back hurts, should I have oatmeal for breakfast....) This is totally normal this is just the chatter of our mind.  When they come, acknowledge them and let them go, try not to chase them.  It's also very common to inadvertently chase a thought, this is totally natural but when you realize you have been thinking just acknowledge and go back to the breadth.  
  • Try to have an open mind and limit expectations
  • TRY TO MAKE A COMMITMENT IF YOU WANT TO SEE RESULTS. I think of it as exercise, you won't notice a difference by going to the gym three or four times.  You need consistency and eventually our bodies become stronger.  The same is true for the mind, give it time, make it a priority if you really want to try it.  

Our minds are incredible machines and the thoughts can be very overwhelming but they really are not who we are.  Being present in the moment, that is reality and the more we do this the more aware of our true selves we become. 

Recently I have been using an app called Headspace, I think it's $5 (US dollars) per month but it's certainly not necessary.  There's some nice resources on there, guided meditations, meditation for anxiety reduction, meditation for creativity....

https://www.headspace.com/meditation/meditation-for-beginners 

Let me know if you have any questions.  Remember, the basic instructions are to just pay attention to our breathing.  This is a purely mechanical exercise that somehow stimulates our deeper selves (the spiritual side if you will) 

I wish you the best.

Take Care,

Nick 

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19 minutes ago, cosmiccharlie said:

Glad to help.  There are many different options but basic technique is very simple.

  • Set aside a time of day (I like the morning) and a place 
  • Seated on the ground or in a chair (whatever is comfortable) 
  • Eyes open or closed your choice (maybe closed since visuals can be distracting) 
  • Back straight posture good but not uncomfortable 
  • Set a timer (start small whatever feels reasonable maybe 2-5 minutes) 
  • For that time your only responsibility is to place your attention on the rhythm of your breath 
  • Breath normally and count your breath 1,2,1,2,1,2....
  • Thoughts will come (am I doing it right, my back hurts, should I have oatmeal for breakfast....) This is totally normal this is just the chatter of our mind.  When they come, acknowledge them and let them go, try not to chase them.  It's also very common to inadvertently chase a thought, this is totally natural but when you realize you have been thinking just acknowledge and go back to the breadth.  
  • Try to have an open mind and limit expectations
  • TRY TO MAKE A COMMITMENT IF YOU WANT TO SEE RESULTS. I think of it as exercise, you won't notice a difference by going to the gym three or four times.  You need consistency and eventually our bodies become stronger.  The same is true for the mind, give it time, make it a priority if you really want to try it.  

Our minds are incredible machines and the thoughts can be very overwhelming but they really are not who we are.  Being present in the moment, that is reality and the more we do this the more aware of our true selves we become. 

Recently I have been using an app called Headspace, I think it's $5 (US dollars) per month but it's certainly not necessary.  There's some nice resources on there, guided meditations, meditation for anxiety reduction, meditation for creativity....

https://www.headspace.com/meditation/meditation-for-beginners 

Let me know if you have any questions.  Remember, the basic instructions are to just pay attention to our breathing.  This is a purely mechanical exercise that somehow stimulates our deeper selves (the spiritual side if you will) 

I wish you the best.

Take Care,

Nick 

Thank you very much Nick, i appreciate the effort you put in for me. I will definitely try meditation because i also need more rest in my mind. I was a person living from high to high always feeling this emptiness, i try really hard not using any substances, i gave up on smoking for over a month now and i started running. I feel these benefits so i am open to meditation and i truly believe i can benefit from this. 

I assume that meditation can lower stress and in this way it can benefit for hppd.

Thanks alot

 

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11 hours ago, cosmiccharlie said:

other than Zoloft which I have been on for about 3 years and has helped my anxiety and OCD.  I don't think it's impacted my visual symptoms and they have progressively gotten better.

 

This is interesting, because i've read a couple of other cases were it actually have helped alot (see below). Did your visual snow go away while you were on them?

https://amp.reddit.com/r/HPPD/comments/6a62yr/ssri_helped_with_hppd/

And a case study, but it seems that he only had HPPD type l since it says that his symptoms "occured almost daily":

"Antidepressant treatment was begun with sertraline 25 mg and was titrated upward slowly owing to concern about these flashbacks. Mild exacerbations of these LSD-like phenomena were noted for 2 to 4 days after each dosage increase, primarily as flashes of color, positiva afterimages, and feeting hallucinations in his peripheral vision. Within 1 month after the target dose of 100 mg was reached, these perceptual disturbances decreased until they had almost completely remitted. The depressive symtoms also improved. These gains were maintained for 4 months, at which point Mr. A graduated and terminated treatment.

https://www.psychiatrist.com/jcp/depression/sertraline-treatment-hallucinogen-persisting-perception/"

Edited by Rusken
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44 minutes ago, Rusken said:

This is interesting, because i've read a couple of other cases were it actually have helped alot (see below). Did your visual snow go away while you were on them?

https://amp.reddit.com/r/HPPD/comments/6a62yr/ssri_helped_with_hppd/

And a case study, but it seems that he only had HPPD type l since it says that his symptoms "occured almost daily":

"Antidepressant treatment was begun with sertraline 25 mg and was titrated upward slowly owing to concern about these flashbacks. Mild exacerbations of these LSD-like phenomena were noted for 2 to 4 days after each dosage increase, primarily as flashes of color, positiva afterimages, and feeting hallucinations in his peripheral vision. Within 1 month after the target dose of 100 mg was reached, these perceptual disturbances decreased until they had almost completely remitted. The depressive symtoms also improved. These gains were maintained for 4 months, at which point Mr. A graduated and terminated treatment.

https://www.psychiatrist.com/jcp/depression/sertraline-treatment-hallucinogen-persisting-perception/"

It is interesting.  We are all different.  In the beginning of medication I think I did feel some exacerbation of visual symptoms but I stuck with it because I also felt some gain in the anxiety, depressions, OCD realm.  I think the flare up was short lived and once an equilibrium was reached which usually takes 8 weeks or so, maybe even longer they went back to baseline.  I still have visuals today but they are much less prevalent and I have accepted that I will likely have them for the foreseeable future. This is what one gets for taking 15 hits of good LSD in one night.  

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22 hours ago, cosmiccharlie said:

It is interesting.  We are all different.  In the beginning of medication I think I did feel some exacerbation of visual symptoms but I stuck with it because I also felt some gain in the anxiety, depressions, OCD realm.  I think the flare up was short lived and once an equilibrium was reached which usually takes 8 weeks or so, maybe even longer they went back to baseline.  I still have visuals today but they are much less prevalent and I have accepted that I will likely have them for the foreseeable future. This is what one gets for taking 15 hits of good LSD in one night.  

Yea it really is! But i'm curious, you've said that your visual snow diminished, was that when you were on Sertraline? And are your vision really clear today? 

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