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Got off phenibut but still feeling intermittently "weird", anhedonia, anxiety, and depersonalization

phenibut anhedonia depersonalization phenibut withdrawal

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#1 jacobjerondin

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Posted 05 March 2019 - 10:56 PM


Title basically says it all, I managed to get off Phenibut over a month ago using Pregabalin for a couple weeks. I started feeling a lot better after feeling some sort of PAWS for a few weeks perhaps partially thanks to St John's Wort. However, I've noticed that my mood, confidence, and motivation, among other things, seems to fluctuate far more than it should for no reason.

 

In general, I seem to be feeling less social and more robotic than I should be, kinda dissociated and depersonalized. Sometimes, I seem to feel burst of happiness and energy where I feel just like my old self or better, but most of the time I feel at least slightly out of it. I'm a little worried that I did some sort of permanent damage from switching straight off from phenibut onto pregabalin and then off that within a few weeks, and maybe I should've gone with a longer taper despite how rough I found tapering to be.

It's really frustrating because I can't seem to predict what causes these weird feelings at all or when they'll appear. In general, I seem to feel a good bit better at night, so I think part of it might be linked to my morning cortisol spikes being worse than normal. I seem to be much more susceptible to stress than normal which leads me to believe that there might be some issues with my HPTA axis or adrenals.

Beyond supplements to help with that, I'd love any ideas about anything biohacking supplements or devices I should look into to help. I keep considering NSI-189 but I'm a little worried that it might make my anxiety worse.

 

I've been tapering down doxylamine succinate (an antihistamine similar to benadryl) lately, which might be causing me some of the morning anxiety/fogginess, after taking it for around a month so I could sleep decently while getting off Phenibut. So maybe that's part of the problem too?



#2 Azet

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Posted 09 March 2019 - 11:47 AM

Just a few questions from me, because I found your topic interesting:

1. How did you feel on Phenibut and why you stared taking it? (I don't judge, I'm just curious)

2. What was the difference between being on Pregabalin instead of Phenibut?

I also feel slightly better at night, and considered cortisol to be the culprit, but I'm not so sure about that. Phosphatidylserine lowers cortisol, but it has to be from bovine source which isn't obtainable practically. I suspect too much glutamate to be more involved in those symptoms


Edited by Azet, 09 March 2019 - 11:50 AM.


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#3 jacobjerondin

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Posted 08 April 2019 - 11:46 PM

Just a few questions from me, because I found your topic interesting:

1. How did you feel on Phenibut and why you stared taking it? (I don't judge, I'm just curious)

2. What was the difference between being on Pregabalin instead of Phenibut?

I also feel slightly better at night, and considered cortisol to be the culprit, but I'm not so sure about that. Phosphatidylserine lowers cortisol, but it has to be from bovine source which isn't obtainable practically. I suspect too much glutamate to be more involved in those symptoms

 

1. I started taking f-phenibut because there was no a/c in my apartment during a period of 70-80 degree weather during which I couldn't sleep because I was sweating from the heat. I've always been an easily awoken sleeper and I need to be very comfortable to fall asleep at the best of times. So I started taking f-phenibut to fall asleep quickly because it seemed like I wouldn't be able to sleep otherwise. Then I started taking f-phenibut every night for a couple weeks and increasing the dose because I was worried I wouldn't be able to sleep without it. I started getting withdrawals during the day so I started taking it around the clock, which gave me the best week of my life during which I felt limitless, with unreal motivation, confidence, and background euphoria. Unfortunately it wasn't worth in the slightest because tolerance started building really fast and I still have some PAWS today because I was taking so much (it was really stupid I know and I didn't realize that the f-phenibut was getting me high unfortunately until afterwards, I thought it was feeling really good because everything in my life was going so well).

 

2. Pregabalin is more recreational and far safer to use regularly. It makes me talk more by some strange mechanism rather than just disinhibiting me and making me happy like phenibut does, and it has a lot more euphoria. However it also makes me incredibly hungry for carbs and I get symptoms of hypoglycemia if I don't answer the call of the carbs, lmao. I really hate that because I'm tryna lose weight and pregabalin is known to cause weight gain. It's also not nearly as good for sleep as phenibut but it's a lot more fun overall.



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#4 jroseland

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Posted 18 May 2019 - 10:37 AM

Yeah, Phenibut is problematic. How much were you doing? How often? Daily?

 

Look into gabaergic Nootropics

 


Edited by jroseland, 18 May 2019 - 10:38 AM.


#5 jacobjerondin

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Posted 19 May 2019 - 07:28 AM

Yeah, Phenibut is problematic. How much were you doing? How often? Daily?

 

Look into gabaergic Nootropics

 

Hey Jonathan, thanks so much for your reply, I've been pretty frustrated with no one really responding to this thread so it's really good to hear from you. I've been a fan of your content for a while now, you were one of the first biohacking gurus I ever started listening to when I was just getting into biohacking. I also really dig your medium articles about being an alpha male and the wild stories you tell on them. I do strongly disagree with your latest video on psychedelic microdosing being dangerous, personally it's the best biohack I've ever tried by far but that's kind of off topic.

 

Anyway, my usage started with f-phenibut nightly, which got up to like 600mg or 700mg after a week and a half. Then I switched to phenibut at around 2-3gs to try to get off the f-phenibut but unfortunately I ran out of that so I switched back to f-phenibut to replace the phenibut which really fucked me up. The f-phenibut felt like it was wearing off much faster than the phenibut was, and the effect kicked in much faster too, which led to me taking a few doses per day to replace one or two doses of phenibut.

 

By the end of a week I was taking like 5 or 6 doses of 300 - 400mg of f-phenibut per day, which is the equivalent of like 10g of phenibut per day since f-phenibut is far more potent than phenibut (and it has far higher affinity for gaba-b receptors compared to phenibut). Incredibly stupid and irresponsible, I know. It doesn't matter much now, but as I said, I had no idea how much more potent f-phenibut was and I also didn't know that it was getting me high at those doses, I thought I was just having a really good week until I noticed that the f-phenibut was lasting shorter and shorter periods of time. I was also getting weird feelings of high blood pressure and electric spasm like feelings in my arms sometimes, especially as a dose would start to wear off, so I knew it was time to get off the f-phenibut.

 

I switched back to phenibut but only was taking around 3.2gs per day after taking the equivalent of 10gs of phenibut the week previously. So I felt like absolute shit for a week even on the phenibut, really bad anhedonia, anxiety, insomnia, and the like. After about 10 days or so, I felt really good, like I was back to normal. It even seemed like the phenibut was making me feel great like it used to (this whole time I was maintaining a daily dose of 3.2gs, I didn't want to start tapering until I was feeling better).

 

So then I tried to taper by 100mg, which was decently easy until I got down to around 2.2gs. From there I started feeling really stressed and anhedonic whenever I would reduce my dosage, even trying to do like a taper 30mg a day seemed impossible. So after trying to reduce my dose and making myself get down to around 1.8gs per day, which really sucked, I remembered that I had a few boxes of 150mg pregabalin/lyrica. I'd read that gabapentin and pregabalin were great for getting off phenibut, so I switched to 300mg pregabalin for a week, then tapered down to 150mg for another half a week, and then tapered off from there to nothing over another week. That was all in january, and I still have the PAWS now, tho it's not as bad as it was a couple months ago.

 

I've looked into basically every biohack under the sun to help with this, but I really don't think GABAergic noots are going to do much for me now. I really don't have that much anxiety these days, which is very unlike how I used to be. I just feel very asocial and anhedonic, like I don't feel like doing anything. I think my GABA-B system may have mostly recovered but my opioid system is still messed up, which is why my anhedonia is so bad. I think my kappa opioid system was highly upregulated due to the week of recklessly dosing f-phenibut and all the chronic intense stress that follow it.

 

Homotaurine, a gaba b antagonist seems like it helps my anhedonia a bit after the gaba b antagonism action wears off (the idea is to upregulate my receptors) but it's hard to tell.

 

So I am trying salvia, hesperidin, and boosting serotonin to fix my kappa opioid system. For the last approach, I'm trying microdosing psychedelics, which seems to help so far, and will probably try a MAO-A inhibitor, probably harmine from syrian rue/b caapi tho I'm looking into methylene blue and other MAO-A Is as well rn.


Edited by jacobjerondin, 19 May 2019 - 07:36 AM.


#6 jacobjerondin

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Posted 20 June 2019 - 03:01 AM

I got some great relief for around a week and a half to two weeks after microdosing 4-aco-dmt which is basically legal shrooms and smoking some plain leaf salvia. Unfortunately those effects seem to have faded since I used phenibut a couple times last week for some big social events I had (dumb I know).

 

I'm going to try combining those two again soon to see if the effects will be replicate. I'm also going to start taking homotaurine regularly and will get some bacopa as well once I can afford it to upregulate GABA B.

 

Would love to hear any other suggestions for things I should try, if anyone has any. I'm stuck in a deep hope with those anhedonia and really need to get out asap.



#7 Keizo

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Posted 07 July 2019 - 08:33 AM

I have no experience with phenibut but rather with benzodiazepines which I primarily used circa late 2010 to early 2012, and then got a bunch of problems at the end of that period and for a few years after. Then a few weeks here and there in recent times (one reason being surgery and muscle cramps and pain the other being just being stupid and using some excess just for the heck of it).

For help dealing with pain and sleep after surgery it was a great experience having a pack of Oxazepam prescribed to take up to 40mg a day or whatever for 15 days or something (along with some oxycodone, paracetamol, and NSAID at max doses except the oxy), can't note anything negative about that.

 

However more recently I took a couple of weeks of low dose benzodiazepine just for no particular reason (well to make time fly and deal with dumb family stuff), but that was really quite useless. Now Phenazepam is probably a particularly terrible benzo for mood, but I've experienced similar things for short periods with prescription diazepam years ago where it more or less immediately made me feel lethargic, a bit grumpy and pissed, and at best sort of content. So what I can say is that there was about a 1 week period here recently after I quit phenazepam and I felt rather low mood, then it improved a lot, but not quite what it used to be a couple of years ago. I won't speculate in the mechanisms, other than the initial sedation seems to be a bummer unless you got some tension to relieve.

But I can well imagine there might be rather complex involvements of hormones and all sorts of things (like with oxycodone which a similar thing happened, altho that did make me feel way better than phenazepam for a week but then it totally dropped down into depressed territory).

 

 I also got problems with mood after I initially quite them in 2012, I felt rather cognitively impaired (turned out one of the problems was a really stiff neck/upper back which caused some of the brain fog and eventual dizziness and so forth). Using and then quitting them caused various vague problems like that so it's not too easy to say why exactly I felt low mood all of the time for those several months (maybe 1-2 years in reality). Either way for some reason when I tried Cerebrolysin in 2013 or 2014 that really made a difference to my cognitive function, I recall 2 big things that immediately happened, 1. I could speak much more fluently, something quitting the benzos had made difficult 2. increased mood, it was rather amazing how the world in a weird kind of way felt a lot more colorful and interesting after taking a few shots of cerebrolysin. previously for many months after quitting in 2012 I had felt really rather flat mood (but weirdly rather low anxiety after quitting).

 

The reason I imagine why cerebrolysin had good effects at that time for me, many months (couple of years) after having quit benzos 1. it's slightly relaxing, and I imagine quite a few of my problems were due to tension (If I recall cerebroylsin has some mild or novel action on GABA receptors, https://www.ncbi.nlm.../pubmed/8930365 , I read the thomson reuters monograph from 2012 or so years ago about cerebrolysin and it briefly cited this study or some other study) 2. general cognitive improvement.

I doubt cerebrolysin is some sort of great cure for people who got problems from benzos or phenibut, but it seems like a pretty solid drug, the mild relaxing effect it can have seems rather benign (also rather subtle, unless you got some real problems), and overall effects seem like they can be long lasting, or at least no withdrawal symptoms from using cere. 


Edited by Keizo, 07 July 2019 - 08:42 AM.


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#8 Keizo

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Posted 07 July 2019 - 08:55 AM

Some other guy (here on this forum on some thread about protracted benzo withdrawal) who also got rather long-lasting problems after benzo use tried Mexidol (Mexifin specifically, injectible, no sulphite added) and I did try Mexidol (mostly the injectible, with sulphite), but that seems rather dubious as I think there's actually some tolerance to the calming effects. And really hard to tell if it does much long-term (but I might've just been too healthy/functional to notice much, unlike those years ago when I first used cere). I did notice some really calm moments here and there with that stuff, where I took some really nice naps in the middle of the day, and some weird increases in blood flow at the same time, but I don't know, it seems like a really weird drug (It's supposed to be an anti-oxidant and that's the main mechanism behind all or most of it's effects). It seems rather benign however, just keep in mind there's sulphite in some variants of the ampules, and the tablets might not be very effective in comparison. But I wasn't really trying to treat anything in particular with that, more like trying to get beyond normalcy.

 

I can recommend Selank much more highly than Mexidol if you really want to get some sort of effect that's apparent. Got a single vial of that stuff a couple of times, and those run out in like 10 days, and it's not great for your nose (due to preservatives I think), but certainly very noticeable effect, both stimulating  and relaxing weirdly enough (sort of like cerebrolysin in that regard, but I think selank effects are more pronounced and more short-term).  Stimulates thoughts and seems to help with thinking at the same time as having noticeable relaxing properties on me (a bit too much at times).


Edited by Keizo, 07 July 2019 - 08:57 AM.






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