I have been suffering from DP/DR since a stressful event in July. Right now I'm off all medications as I want to get more familiar with the "natural" state of my condition (not that I'm enjoying this, far from it..). Though what I'd like to share is PERSONAL experience that I gained when trying out a few groups of substances in the past few months: Namely, I found that opioid drugs made all my symptoms disappear. Subjectively, there was no trace of any DP/DR for the duration of a dose (first I tried some leftover Tramadol 50mg, then cross-checked with Dihydrocodeine). The effects were achieved with analgesic/sub-euphoric dosages. Now I do realise that endorphines or opioids for that matter serve to regulate a huge range of processes, yet I did not expect such a dramatic effect. I am not a doctor and personally would NOT condone the use of them due to the common issues of tolerance and addiction.
Interestingly, I found a few anecdotal reports on the net where people had the same experience. Given that the group of DP/DR sufferers who have also taken opiates is likely to be very small, I believe this to be remarkable.
It seems like Jeff is still reading along, so I'd just like to throw that in. Maybe this does merit some further research. I'm also aware that (maybe paradoxically), k-opioid antagonism is a notable candidate here. But I'm no expert in the field of pharmacology, so I'll just leave this as an input for the more qualified amongst us.
There have been some studies using drugs affecting the opioid system that confirm its likely involvement in DPD. Anecdotally, your story is very much like others i have heard. Hopefully further research in this area will lead to some answers, at least for some people.
figures. nobody is continuing to converse. we are not uncaring but... it is so hard. i am taking noltrexone but i just started on it. don't have an opinion on it yet. i answered this thread because it isn't from months ago and i thought i might get an answer. i feel very alone this morning. it has been a long journey. i don't feel sorry for it but life is dull, boring, and scary at the same time. i don't want to live and i don't want to die surprised and in terror. i think of suicide a lot and i am wondering if others do too. to expect death, to be ready for it, and to be done with life, sometimes is a lot more appealing to me than wanting to live. when i want to live i am just amazed at how little control of that i have. may be i am a control freak! anyhow depersonalization is terrible and wonderful at the same time. i've had it all my life it seems. i am surprised at how marijuana is being railroaded as a culprit. it saved my life at one point and continues to help me when i get too serious. i don't use it much. i take a hit, just one, now and then, like every month or so. i think it's spirit is being stolen from it perhaps. it is a living being and it is being treated as a commodity and it's effects are acting as such. in my day we smoked happy healthy weed with seeds. now in door is very strange and toxic looking. more research needs done because the very drug that causes depersonalization could also be the medicine for recovery in very small doses. thanks for hearing me out. i just want to be able to keep living with this and i went years without pot and it didn't help. the small amounts do help out. i must admit that to you. but i stick with outdoor and i barely use it at all really. i tend to get very down and axious and pot tunes me back in to the taste of food, water, and my body, breathing, etc. it is good, one hit a month. or two. any more than that is no good at all. i will admit that too. in fact i haven't done any for at least a month and that could help me right now. i am so unintouch that i never know when i should use it. i usually wait too long. i call it an m break. i also take an occasional xanax or ativan but i hate those drugs. i feel more blacked out but they do give my body a break from being constantly vigil. thanks again. is there anybody out there?
I sympathize with everything you say. And yes, I too have been thinking about life and death (what if one just disappeared, etc.) a lot since my DPD first started. Probably, almost anyone who suffers from this chronically does have these thoughts at one point or another. So you're not alone. Finding a name for this disturbing condition and realizing that there are more such people out there did comfort me a bit.
But I also understand how you and everyone else feel about it: You want to eventually OVERCOME it and not to wallow in self-pity.
Anything (be it an activity or medicine) which shows you a glimpse of normality or makes you feel more comfortable in your own skin is a glimmer of hope. I like to regard my ongoing struggle with DPD as sort of a puzzle of these moments/interventions/medications that, when assembled in the right way, will lead me out of this. And on a side note, I don't think that the Marijuana itself is DIRECTLY (neurochemically speaking) responsible for depersonalization. It just often seems to be MEDIATED by it, triggering panic/anxiety in certain individuals which then somehow leads to these feelings of DP/DR. No matter what, don't constantly blame yourself for a single action. You likely had a predisposition. See, mine was caused by stress + bad sleep. It actually was one of those rare situations where I felt very anxious due to pressure (I'm normally rather stoic). Now it's all gone and I cannot link my DPD to anything. There's no conscious stress/anxiety whatsoever.
Recently, I took the DHC for two days in a row and it's definitely breaking my symptoms, no doubt about it. As mentioned above, just knowing there is something out there which is able to help you (regardless of practicability) makes a tremendous difference. I hope you will soon discover your own gleam of hope, the same way I did.
>>I've had it all my life it seems. >i am surprised at how marijuana is being railroaded as a culprit. it saved my life at one point and continues to help me when i get too serious.< i don't use it much. i take a hit, just one, now and then, like every month or so. i think it's spirit is being stolen from it perhaps. it is a living being and it is being treated as a commodity and it's effects are acting as such. in my day we smoked happy healthy weed with seeds. now in door is very strange and toxic looking. more research needs done because the very drug that causes depersonalization could also be the medicine for recovery in very small doses. thanks for hearing me out. i just want to be able to keep living with this and i went years without pot and it didn't help. the small amounts do help out.<<
Were you replying to me? In that case you didn't get what I was trying to say. It is nice to hear from someone anyway. So thanks for that. Since I have had depersonalization disorder all my life I feel like an expert on it but I thank you for your empathy.
As I age, this disorder is getting harder to live with, not easier. I forget to eat and drink water, I run off (after my head), I am constantly in a state of being vigil. I used to be able to handle it when I was younger but this hurts physically now. Besides the loneliness and lack of feeling like I am living gets real boring and makes me down. My dream life is much more important these days than real life. It wears me out trying to act like I am here around people so my relationships suffer. I think opiates may work simply because they are pain killers and the emotional pain is huge. Now I am having physical as well. I just don't know from day to day how much longer I will be able to do this. Naltrexone has done nothing for me so far but I am only taking 50 mgs. The only thing I've gotten from it is constipation!
Anyhow, this disorder is a real hard thing to live with. I was diagnosed bipolar for 16 years and because the meds didn't work they finally changed it to borderline personality which I do not fit and gave me a hard time because therapists 'get ready' for borderlines, as they should. So then they changed it to skizoaffective, then to depression with psychotic features. I put myself in the hospital 2 years ago and that is when I was finally given the depersonalization diagnosis. I have tried all the meds for the conditions I had! LOL! Someone make me a test person!! Hehehe. It's been a long haul. I think I will eventually end up in a hospital for good or kill myself. This disorder is very serious and that is one thing I have always known. Whatever was wrong was bad.
So sometimes it is hard to have hope. We live in such dire times too. Have you seen the movie "Thrive"? They showed it at the library here last night. What a gas!! I could easily become involved in a cause that risked my life. Like I could fast for a cause or set fire to myself? It all seems funny to me right now for some reason. I have 3 grown kids and I stay alive for them. Nice chatting.
Thanks for checking in. I do not remember how this happened and I have no idea really what it'd be like to be rid of depersonalization, although I know and always knew, something was wrong. I haven't done any weed for nearly 2 months, so as you can see, if it really gave me large rewards, I'd do it more. However once in a while and in social situations with others who use it, I find it benefitial. I'm not trying to encourage anyone. I just don't like the possibilities of it's benefits being ruled out. Especially since it has no side effects like anything else that's out there and doesn't line the pockets of pharmasutical companies. Sorry about the spelling. I am too lazy to look it up right now.
I think if opiates work than why not take them? I use xanax once or twice a week and have for 20 years or so. Sometimes I go a couple months without it. It's addictive too and I have managed to use it only when this disorder is crippling me. Opiates could be used in the same way. Just keep in mind. Once an addict, the cure will no longer work! So don't get addicted. I would allow myself to get used to the disorder somewhat. It is a long term effort required to recover at any rate. It is not so bad as some disorders. If I can make the 'dream' good, it IS good. It's all just fleeting and temporary and very tiring but hey, I could have back problems! You know? I try to learn from this disorder too and that keeps it interesting. I don't mind all the research I've done. I've learned a lot about how I feel about the Universe. In some respects it's pretty cool. But it's taken years and I am still in a constant state of vigilance.
Xanax does give my mind and body a break. I take 1 mg. before 8 pm and I wake up grateful even though the night seems kind of like a blackout. However if I take it too many days in a row, say 3, I experience drug induced depression that lasts a day, a horrible day. So I tend to bear with the terrible nights quite often. I just don't know what the eventual outcome will be. It's hard on me. Woe. How old are you if you don't mind me asking?
By the way, what kind of opiates are working for you? I'd love to switch from xanax, hence the trial with naltexone, which I am so far real disappointed with. :-(