I had the mirena iud for about 4 years when I became ill. I started feeling sick gradually, it began with not sleeping well and waking up in the middle of the night with a pounding rapid heart, and a feeling of panic.
I would sometimes have panic attacks during the day as well, sometimes they would last a few minutes, sometimes longer. Then they began coming more frequently and I woke up multiple times at night in a panic and felt horrible during the day. I drank wine in the evenings to calm down, but if I drank too much it made things much worse during the day. Finally after not sleeping one whole night and feeling utterly miserable I went to the emergency room, as I thought I was having a heart attack. They gave me Ativan (worst drug ever, do not take it! Same family as Xanax) and did a number of tests and blood work. Some things were slightly out of normal range but nothing alarming, they diagnosed me with anxiety and sent me home with Ativan and told me to make a doctor’s appt. I was hesitant to take the Ativan but occasionally I would take a quarter or half a tablet and it would make me feel better the first two weeks.
I went to the doctor and he told me the same thing, and gave me more Ativan. I was in an almost constant state of anxiety but would have brief periods that were ok. I started wondering if my mirena had anything to do with it and so I googled it and what I found was shocking, if you have found my story I am sure you have read about the horrors some woman have faced with the mirena.
I decided to have the device taken out, but unfortunately the strings were gone and the device was slightly implanted in my uterus. My doctor tried three times to get it out, and I was literally a minute away from needing to have an operation to have it removed. But on the table in her office I screamed at her to get the f***ing thing out of me and she some how got it and yanked it out.
I started to feel a bit better after removal, but unfortunately I had already been taking the Ativan for a few weeks and little did I know that you can become addicted in one week.
I was getting less and less sleep, but the anxiety had eased up a bit. (I was at least able to leave the house and drive sometimes again- yes that’s how bad it was)
I spent my days on the internet looking for answers and praying, there were some days where I think the only thing I did was pray I felt so bad.
I kept going to the doctor, the acupuncturist, the natropath.
The natural doctor’s diagnosed me with adrenal fatigue, and they were probably right. I had been under so much stress that my body had run out of the chemicals that make you feel good.
My sex hormones were totally out of balance because of the mirena (which contributed to the adrenal fatigue and panic) and on top of that I had become addicted to Ativan.
My sleep continued to get worse and worse. I had started to think the Ativan had something to do with it so I googled it and found out what a horror that drug is, WORST DRUG EVER. More addictive than heroine and a worse withdrawal than heroine. I quit taking it right after reading about it and then did not sleep for four days. Back to the emergency room I went and they tried sleeping pills (none worked) and not one doctor would admit to me how addictive the drug was or that the withdrawal was the reason I didn’t sleep. My hands were dripping sweat during the withdrawal, I felt electric shocks running up and down my spine, I could not eat, drink, sleep and if I brushed my teeth it made me throw up.
I told them in the hospital I thought it was the Ativan, they said no way. The admitted me to the hospital overnight and gave me numerous medicines, including Ativan. That eased the withdrawal symtoms for 24 hours and I even slept a bit, and I knew my assumption was right and I prayed that I would never have to take it again. I didn’t sleep again after that night for 8 days. I was fired from my job. I went through hell, but it didn’t even compare to the hell I had read about some people going through after being addicted to a benzodiazepine for years. I was so weak I could barely lift food to my mouth, my teenager spent a month taking care of me and her younger sister. I didn’t know if I could make it, I prayed and prayed. There were times I wanted to die. Gradually, slowly, after weeks, months, it began to get better. After two months I would sometimes sleep a full night, but only once or twice a week. Six months later I slept most nights. One year later I can finally say I sleep again. In the end I believe that the mirena caused my body to stop making progesterone and that threw all of my hormones out of balance. Then the stress caused further hormone inbalance. I drank wine at night in the beginning to feel better, and that also contributed to how bad I felt.
It has taken me 14 months to be able to write this. And I am writing for woman like me who suffered needlessly because of drug companies. I am writing to tell you IT GETS BETTER. But you must not take pharmaceutical drugs, you must live extremely clean and healthy, no coffee, no alcohol, healthy food. Hold on tight.
I pray that you have the support of your family and friends, I pray that you believe your instincts and know that it is not a mental health problem but a physical problem that can only be healed with time and healthy living, lots of exercise and prayer.