Xanax or Valerian?

Discussion in 'Your Living Room' started by rondrums, Jan 26, 2007.

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  1. rondrums

    rondrums Bilateral

    Hi, everybody.
    I was at work tonight (I'm a musician at night--a drummer--and a college professor during the day), and ten minutes before the band was going to hit, I got an incredible case of the dizzies. I guess it was the crowded, noisy room and the lights in my eyes.....who knows? Anyway, I glommed down a Xanax. It took about half an hour to kick in, but it did the job--the dizzies were gone.

    The stuff is amazing. But I'm totally addicted to it, and I always wonder: It is anxiety that brings on the dizziness, or does the dizziness bring on anxiety? I have a definite Meniere's diagnosis, and I have never had anxiety problems in the past.

    There is a strong correlation between anxiety and dizziness. Dr. Jack Wazen, my neurotologist, says in his book that Xanax and other benzodiazepines are good for suppressing dizziness that is brought on by anxiety.
    But at the same time, Xanax is a central nervous system suppressant--it calms down the nerve in the inner ear that is causing the problem.

    So what IS the problem? Meniere's is a physiological disorder, not a mental one.
    It's all very confusing to me.
    Meanwhile, I keep scarfing Xanax, and I don't know what I'd do without the stuff. But I hate being addicted to it.

    I have read about people who beat the Xanax addiction by substituting Valerian. Has anyone tried this? Does Valerian help suppress dizziness?

    Bless all,
  2. cheese

    cheese New Member

    Hi ron

    I was a professional muso too, but had to give it away because of poor balance .....It's awesome that you're still out there ...keep it up .....I can't wait to gig again. Hopefully it won't be too long.

    My experience with Valerian is that it is totally benine .....like ...I could neck a bottle of valerian, and still not be all that sleepy. It may give enough of an effect for you though .....It's hard to know until you try it.

    On the whole, pop a pill at the 1st signs of dizziness thing ........Im starting to believe that it's not the best thing to do

    I was never taking taking benzos, but I would pop a stemetil, a heavily sedating ant-emetic, at the 1st signs of dizziness thinking it was doing me good. I would scan my body 24/7, and the minute i felt a little "off" I would pop a tablet.

    About 3 months ago, I quit this whole regime, because of the fear of long term side effects from stemetil use, and guess what?

    The dizziness would always pass, whether or not I took the tablet...... Here I was thinking that unless I took a tab, I would soon be on the ground whirling and vomiting .....But in my experience, this is definitely not the case, and 90% of the time the dizziness would soon pass to an acceptable level, exactly the same way it would after popping a tablet.

    Of course this is only the case for dizziness, and not the vertigo ......If I was to start having a genuine meniere's attack I would be reaching for the pills so fargin fast.

    Anyway ...Thats just my $0.02 .......But if the xanax is keeping you productive, and "in the game", it can only be a good thing. But maybe just try and save it for the moderate dizzies, rather than the real minor ones. It might help with the addiction. Good luck.
  3. Goomeri Spinner

    Goomeri Spinner New Member

    Addiction is defined as : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Addiction

    I don't know about you Ron :) but it sounds to me like you are taking the xanax as required, which is how it is probably prescribed ??? If you are taking the xanax when all is well, just cause you "need" it and not cause you are starting to feel the spins coming on, that sounds more like addiction, plus you will probably need to increase the dose to get the desired effect.
    I have used valium for over 10 years now and have never become addicted...I use it cause without life would stop :( Have never tried valerian cept to try and sleep years ago...it didn't work :(

    I think Cheese has a point though...sometimes if its only a mild "feeling" that something is going to happen I sit still and focus on something for about 10 minutes, it works sometimes so I don't need to take a pill...

    Hope this helps

  4. ToniG

    ToniG Guest

    All my ENT's have always been against valium. Xanax...the only experience I have with that is with a family member...another family member died and the person didn't cope well and well we called it her "Xanax vacation/party"...she wasn't the same person on it. :-[ Have you thought about meclizine or Serc?
  5. Caribbean

    Caribbean New Member

    I'm also addicted to life, I would choose to be addicted to Xanax rather then let this beast MM control me.
  6. charisse

    charisse Been hanging here for 8 years

    I am on ativan every day, I fought taking the stuff but it gave me some of my life back. If I'm addicted oh well. I would have ended my life without it.
  7. ToniG

    ToniG Guest

    I am not against the valium family. If it helps, by all means take it. I just don't understand why my ENT's won't prescribe it, believe me, I've asked for it. :)
  8. basket lady

    basket lady New Member

    Hi Ron,

    I too am on xanax. I have tried valium and couldn't take it. What dose are you on? I find it does help. My dr recently increased my dosage. I was on .25mg now I take .50mg. I usually take .25 in the morning and .50 in evening. It has helped with the dizzies. I have never heard of valerian, but when I go to the ENT I am going to ask about it.

    Take care
  9. nassman

    nassman Guest

    You need to get help getting off of this drug. You have become addicted to it. For your own sake, please see a professional to help you wean off this drug. As you become more dependent on it you will need more and more to alleviate your dizziness.

    Yes, I can say with almost 100% certainty that is the case. Yoy were about to perform and, subconsciously, you were worried about getting a dizzy attack during your performance. This made you dizzy. The xanax took the edge off. This was not dizziness brought on by a classical meniere's attack which stems from problems of th einner ear.

    Wrong. The nerve of the inner ear is not part of the central nervous system. It is part of the peripheral system.
  10. nassman

    nassman Guest

    So if you are addicted to Ativan, how dod you know that is the drug that is helping you rather than the acyclovir which you push as the "miracle drug" which saved you?

    It could simply be the arivan you have been taking for so long.
  11. gert157

    gert157 New Member

    Hi Ron,
    I have had MM for 10 years, through those years I have tried many meds... The valium it was really helps me and my Dr. confirms that it is the most widely used drug for dizziness or vertigo.... I took xanax several years ago for panic disorder and did become addicted.. It gets to the point where you need to take more and more for the same effect.. It did change my personality as well... I checked myself into a hospital to get off of it and never looked back. As far as the valium goes, its a personal choice and it works for some and does not for others... Discuss it with your Dr. and see what he says... I also tried valerian with no luck, it is supposed to have some sort of valium like qualities to it, but it did not work for me....
    Take care, Leanne
  12. gtrvox

    gtrvox our pooch Hugo

    I - and many others - can directly contradict Nassman's claim. I have been taking Xanax for over two years. I take 0.5mg at night. I have never had to increase the dosage. I have been able to go off it for a few months at a time, then get back on it. At the present time, I am habituated to the drug which means that to go off it, I need to taper the dose in order to minimize rebound anxiety. I am not addicted: I do not need to up the dose, I do not need to take the drug more frequently, there are no changes in my personality, I do not resort to subterfuge or crime to get my drug.

    Benzodiazepines are very useful drugs with a very bad rep. They can be abused - many other drugs can and are (painkillers come to mind) I am fed up with constantly hearing negative things about a class of drugs that can be very effective for some people. Please let's not propagate the scaremongering

  13. Caribbean

    Caribbean New Member

    "Wrong again", I was given a script recently for Xanax to help with my Tinnitus.

    Had you read the articale I posted on Tinnitus a person with your wisdom would have figured this out for himself, Insted of bashing!
  14. gert157

    gert157 New Member

    Here Here Caribbean!! I agree with you 100 percent!! I have heard xanax can help with tinnitus and I too agree the bashing should stop, this is not what this board is all about. Its about personal experiences and support of one another not making one feel worse than they already do!! Emotionally speaking.We all feel ill physically or we wouldn't be here, but lets post positively and try to keep spirits and hope up and alive and well... That's why I am here anyway....
  15. rondrums

    rondrums Bilateral

    I hear you, Nassman. But, like others here, the drug has, so far, been the ONLY thing that really alleviates dizziness. Yes, I need an increasing dosage. I started with .5 mg a day about a year and a half ago (a .25 mg. pill twice a day), and now I'm up to .75 to one mg. (3-4 pills) daily.

    I'm using Vertigoheel (cocculus comp) and doing the John of Ohio thing, too These things all help, but when a bad spell is coming, I run for the Xanax.

    Maggie: I didn't include all the details in my post. As you can see above, I take it daily, not just when I feel dizzy.

    Cheese: I've heard the same thing about Valerian--that it's too mild to have much effect.
    Your idea of waiting for the dizziness to pass instead of rushing for the pill bottle makes a lot of sense. But as a performer, getting ready to appear in front of an audience, the stress is pretty bad when the dizzies are coming on. I'm thinking, "What if this goes into full vertigo?" etc. The same goes for teaching--If I'm getting ready to go into class, I'll eat an extra half a Xanax rather than tolerate dizziness while I'm trying to teach.

    Xanax is certainly the "perfect" drug. Once you're on the stuff, you can't live without it. I ought to buy stock in it!
  16. Henrysullivan

    Henrysullivan New Member

  17. ToniG

    ToniG Guest

    I read both of nassman's comments, I don't find him bashing anyone. Again a relative went on a 6 month 'xanax party" and was not herself while on the drug. I have a severe case of bilateral menieres and only have had to use something stronger than meclizine on one occassion.
  18. Mya46

    Mya46 Knowledge is POWER!

    I avoided valium as a last resort. And as i said before, Valium kicks vertigo ass! I wouldn't be the same without it, i'm glad i tried it, and it also helps anxiety as well. I was so sick last year with rotational vertigo, like never before, daily. I was out of work! Valium came along and it stopped it dead in its tracks for me. I then introduced acupuncture and after 8 months i'm in remission. I now take 10mgs of valium every morning. I found by taking daily instead of "as needed" seemed to work better for my dizzies. Who knows if i'm hooked, who cares at this point after what i went through last year. Acupuncture came along and that too was a godsend, got me off Valium from 20-30mgs down to 10mgs a day. Nassman always has his say when it comes to benzo's, he's very opinionated against them but to each their own. He has valid point but sometimes when one is so sick you just have to do what you can for the well-being of yourself so you can live your life! ;)
  19. cheese

    cheese New Member

    I can certainly relate to that, Ron. I'd never perform without my trusty stemetil in my pocket. There were more than a couple of occasions when I would pop a pill before the start of the set.

    It's the times when you're sitting at home watching tv, and you start to feel a bit "funny" so you pop a pill. Thats what I think can become the problem and lead to addiction. I know, because i've been there. And I feel ALOT better for not doing it anymore.

    The truth is, valium/xanax, or any sedative isn't really going to prevent a full blown attack. They may make you more comfortable once the vertigo starts, but it's very unlikely that they're going to stop the mechanical process that the vertigo stems from. The only drug I know that does this is either glycerol, or urea. Powerful osmotic diuretics that can be taken at the 1st sign of impending doom.

    As much as meniere's makes us feel lousy, and believe me, im the poster boy for feeling lousy. To have rotary attacks on an ongoing daily, or even weekly basis is quite rare.

    It's just a matter of weighing up the odds. What I have discovered since quit taking stemetil daily, is that that "feeling" disappears at almost exactly the same rate as it would when I was taking the tablet.

    So all that time when I was thinking, "I just need 15-20 mins for the tablet to kick in", could have just been coincidence. It seems that that 15mins is just the natural course of those minor spells, with out without medication.

    Anyway ...we do what we have to to keep functioning ....we all adopt different strategies. One mans trash, is another mans treasure. But if you are taking 4 xanax a day ......you maybe need to ask yourself "am i really going to have 4 vertigo attacks today" ....
  20. Mya46

    Mya46 Knowledge is POWER!

    Valium stopped my rotational vertigo dead in its tracks! So, for me it worked and i wouldn't do anything different if it rears up again.

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