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 Post subject: Hello All
PostPosted: Tue Jul 13, 2010 6:13 pm 
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Hello everyone, found this website the other day and have been very encouraged by what I have read in regards to others positive experience with Sub. I am 34 and have been abusing opiates for the past 6 yrs (4-6 10/325 day). I have quit/tapered off several times throughout the years and for the usual reasons always find myself right back in the same boat. I live in an amazing location and have a supportive girlfriend but I have also spent every last dollar that I had managed to save, alienated all, and I mean all, of my friends and spend almost all my free time (which is copious) sitting on the couch in my "dungeon" watching tv or playing video games. I had started a great career about the same time the full-time habit kicked in and that habit has been my career ever since. I am miserable. I never go out anymore, I stopped going to the gym, the few times I was able to get clean I felt so empowered and back in control....anyway enough with the poor me routine :D.
I am very interested in suboxone but at the same time very nervous about "taking the plunge" (even though I realize it is the best answer, no matter how much I lie to myself and say I can beat it on my own). I do have insurance but cant afford to go into an inpatient facility nor to I want to expose myself to my family and everyone else. I guess what I am looking for are any pearls of wisdom or encouragement from the members here. Will I feel gross the first few days? Does the amount of opiates I take really constitute the need for Sub? or is that precluded by how long I have been taking them?

Thanks for any insight, and taking the time to read my post


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 13, 2010 7:00 pm 
Hi CP, Interestingly, Dr. J just did a blog post on Suboxone treatment for people with low dose habits. Click on "Talk Zone Blog" at the top of this page and then scroll down about three posts and you will find it. I think Dr. J says that a maintenence dose of Suboxone is roughly equivalent to 60mg of oxycodone/day. So you would be INCREASING your tolerance by going on it. But that doesn't necessarily mean you shouldn't go on it if other methods and attempts at sobriety haven't worked for you. Ultimately only you can make the final decision (in consultation with a doctor).
Good luck,
Lilly


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 13, 2010 9:06 pm 
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Hi Lilly,
thanks for that link, I have been looking for Just that article for some time. It raises some questions on my end and gives me pause. I plan on calling a local out-patient facility and setting up an appointment, I will bring up the article when I speak to them. Maybe I just need a better plan, and a bit more toughness


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 13, 2010 9:59 pm 
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Hi couchpotato and welcome to the forum. I hope you find the same wonderful support here as I have. Like Lilly said, ultimately you are the only one who can decide if sub is right for you. It's not just the amount of opiates you were/are taking that should determine if you need sub, but other things like how much you've relapsed, how hellish your life has been while in active addiction, if other attempts at recovery have failed, the length of your addiction, etc, etc. You might be on a low dose of opiates, but all things considered you might be a good candidate for sub, regardless of that low dose. I think it's fair to say that many of us raised our tolerance by going on suboxone.

I think making an appt to see someone and going over all of your options is a very good plan. Keep your recovery in sight and you'll do just fine. Again, welcome, and please keep us posted on how you're dong and what you decide to do.

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PostPosted: Wed Jul 14, 2010 11:43 am 
Hey CP. You know what? I think you already know the answer to the questions you're asking. I say that because I remember wondering the same things. When I started Suboxone I had already been through acute withdrawals, gone through an outpatient treatment program, done 12 step work, etc. I had managed to accumulate some time off my drugs of choice, but was still suffering a great deal. I had not had a major relapse, was not even using opiates daily again and was not using large quantities of drugs or even the strongest of drugs (hydrocodone.) But.....in the deepest part of myself, I knew I was headed for trouble. I knew that I was not going to be able to break free from my addiction to opiates. I knew that it was not about being strong enough, smart enough, stubborn enough, or anything like that anymore. It wasn't even about being motivated enough.....because I stood to lose a LOT by starting Suboxone. But I knew.....it was the only hope I had left. I knew I had to try something different, because nothing else was working.
I understand your concerns. Sometimes (a year into Suboxone treatment now) I still wonder if I did the right thing. I still question whether I've just prolonged my problem with opiates by starting Sub. I hate that initially I may have increased my opiate tolerance. But then I go back to the bottom line......I was NOT going to make it with the abstinence route. I was 'failing'. I was miserable. It was NOT working! So really, I didn't have any other good choice.
And I think maybe that's where you're at. You've lost a lot. Regardless that you're not taking all that much drug daily, it is negatively affecting your life. It will not get better. If anything, it will get worse. And I thing you know that. So in my mind, you've got a couple of choices......1) Try Suboxone along with other education and support or 2) Check yourself into to an inpatient treatment program and try abstinence-based recovery, and be prepared to be consumed by recovery work every minute of every day, as that is my understanding of what it takes to be one of the less that 5% who is successful with that method.
I'm sorry you're in this mess. You're not alone. I understand how it feels to know you have lost so much to this disease and to want it to stop. It can stop. It will require work and it will not be easy, even if you go the Suboxone route. The drug helps tremendously.....but there will still be work to be done if you truly want to get better.
We're all here for you. Please post again and let us know what we can do to help. Hang in there! And again, know that things can get better....there is hope. Sometimes taking the first step is the hardest. You asked about the first few days. For me and many others......those days were fantastic! I felt great.....fine.....normal....moreso than I had in a long, long time. Once in a while people will report feeling a little 'high' or 'foggy' or nauseous or whatnot, but not usually. I will say that because you are not on a crazy amount of drugs, that you probably won't need all that much Suboxone to start. Usually (or often anyway) the doctor will give you 2mg to start, check on you in an hour and if needed give another 2mg for a total of 4mg. Then send you home telling you that you can dose again later that day if needed. I hear a lot of people say their doctors start them on 16mg or more a day and that probably would be excessive for you, and might not make you feel too good. But generally, if you're started on the proper dose....just enough to make the w/d symptoms and craving go away....you will feel pretty fantastic (normal.)
I'm not a doctor or an expert. These are just my opinions and experiences. So take it for what it's worth! Best of luck and let us know what you decide!


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 15, 2010 6:54 pm 
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setmefree, thanks for the post. I spoke with a counselor at a local reputable hospital/OP Clinic and she felt I was a good candidate for Sub treatment. The program she offers sounds very appealing however the time and financial commitment is something I cannot commit to (although I think that it would be great). So moving forward my question now becomes how do I find a "good" Dr.?? Should I go to the Sub website and punch in my zip and start calling? What, if any, are some red-flags I should be watching for? I have been looking on the net for any recommendations for local docs but found nothing.

Thanks in advance for information


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 21, 2010 5:43 pm 
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Hello all,
I must say that finding a Dr. and getting an appointment. (without committing to a 2-month OP program) was more difficult than I imagined it would be! Majority of the Dr.'s listed on the Sub sites where dead-ends for a variety of reasons ranging from Death to termination of employment with the practice, one guy want $500 upfront which was sketchy to say the least. Anyway I found a well reviewed Dr. and after some hesitation gave me an appt. tomorrow morning!! I say hesitation because I was told that the practice wasn't sure it wanted to continue to prescribe the medication because quote. "it has helped a lot of our patients but it also brought a lot of 'bad elements too'".....assuming those seeking to abuse it. It is worth noting that of the many offices I called there appeared to be a shying away from the medication for whatever reason. Needless to say I am very excited about the consultation. I have been tapering over the last week and have been feeling the effects ( psychological at this point I am sure, breaking of the daily ritual) and look forward to the Dr. advice, to A) start Sub or B) Quit CT, either way I am ready, so ready (at least at this moment :? )
Anyway just felt like posting, hope everyone has a great day
peace


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Jul 21, 2010 6:00 pm 
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I'm so glad to hear you found a doctor so quickly. Usually it takes longer to get in with someone, especially when using the online locators. My insurance covers my doctor visits and prescriptions, but, and I hate to say this, I think $500 for the first appointment (induction) isn't all that uncommon. For some unknown reason, many sub doctors seem to be cash only. I'm also curious as to how suboxone brought in a "bad element" to their office. Rarely do people go to a sub doc to abuse it (you can't really), although I suppose they could be referring to people acquiring it for diversion purposes. Let's hope if you decide to be induced that they continue prescribing it.

Good luck tomorrow and please do post about your experience when you get home.

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-I'm only responsible for what I say, not for what you understand.


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 Post subject: Bad Element
PostPosted: Thu Jul 22, 2010 12:41 am 
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I hate to even have to say this but I'm pretty sure the "bad element" that was brought up really didn't have anything to do with patients trying to divert or abuse Suboxone. I'm pretty sure it had to do with the "type" of patient that was showing up in need of treatment. Like it or not, drug addicts, heroin users, junkies, etc. (not my terms, but how "they" often think of "us") are not usually thought of as the upper-middle class or next door neighbor type. Even if the reality of that is not accurate, that really is the mental picture that many people have of this disease. They don't often think of us as the typical, upstanding, employed, productive, upstanding, citizen. After-all, on many levels, drug addiction is tied with crime. Again, that is many times not really true - but it is what many people think whether we like it or not.

I could be wrong. I actually wish I was wrong. But I don't think I am. I’d bet a fair amount that is what the person on the telephone was referring to. Welcome, once again, do the disease of addiction.


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 22, 2010 9:12 am 
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Don, my knee-jerk reaction was much the same as yours, but I guess I was trying to give them the benefit of the doubt. Poor bastards having to deal with us junkies. Heavy sigh....

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-I'm only responsible for what I say, not for what you understand.


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 22, 2010 9:14 am 
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whats up couch. i myself hated those no energy gym trips and i have to tell ya that i have been clean for over 3 years now and going to the gym is as enjoyable now as it ever was. actually i take my dose about 2 hours before gym time and it gives me a great energy boost(mental most likely) my body is full of life and feel very excited about a good workout. because i was going from a fairly high clinical methadone dose (50mg) it took my body about a month to really accept sub. i was not sick or depressed just kinda wondering what i was supposed to feel like. and when that magical day came it was like all of sudden i felt the best in years and felt like i never even done drugs at all. i completely lost all since of desire for any narcotic substance along with the occasional alcohol bev. it was the best choice for me methadone is the best for others and inpatient for others whatever you decide wish you the best.


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 22, 2010 4:04 pm 
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Well my visit with the Dr. went very well. He talked to me at length about my past addiction history and felt that because of the years of abuse I should give Sub a shot, and that I was a good candidate for it. He referred me to a specialist and when I asked what he thought the wait would be to get in to see him (he said a few weeks) I almost broke into tears knowing that I only had enough vicodin to maybe stretch out the next 4 days, and cant afford another $500 trip to my "buddies" house, nor do i want to :x Dr. said he would give me a month supply 8mg to be taken as 4mg doses 2/day, and that I should come back after my visit with the specialist to determine my "state of health" after I have been abusing my body over the years. At this point I am waiting to here from the pharmacy and to learn if my insurance covers the med. It has been about 14hrs since my last pill and I feel ok, and am both nervous and excited for the Suboxone.

As for the "Bad element" comment I learned that word of mouth had spread (Dr office is a beach community with a lot of homeless) and his office was getting a bunch of walk-ins looking for something to bridge the gap between scores, and that they no longer want to stock the medication in their office....


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 22, 2010 4:13 pm 
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I'm so glad to hear things are moving along smoothly for you, couch! That's great. It's also good to hear they weren't having a problem treating addicts in general, but will just stop stocking the medication.

Did the doctor explain how to do your induction? That you have to be in mild-to-moderate withdrawals before starting the sub? Google the COWS worksheet - it helps you to gauge the state of your withdrawals in a more objective manner so you can avoid precipitated withdrawals.

Again, I'm so happy to hear you're doing well and progressing towards entering addiction remission. Good luck with the induction and please do let us know how it goes.

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-As I have grown older, I've learned that pleasing everyone is impossible, but pissing everyone off is a piece of cake.

-I'm only responsible for what I say, not for what you understand.


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 22, 2010 4:38 pm 
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Thanks for the kind words hat!! I know about the mild/moderate wd needed for induction and I read where most patients where told between 12-24hrs since last opiate intake but he told me 6hrs would be enough (was a bit confused about that and I am wondering if starting on 4mg is too much?)


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 22, 2010 4:45 pm 
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Starting at 4 mg should be fine, it's actually close to a typical induction dose or toward the low end (as far as I know). As for your withdrawals, don't think in terms of hours, that could get you into trouble. Think in terms of the state of your w/d instead. People are different and some might not experience w/d in 6 hours and may need more time to avoid precipitated w/d. You seem like an intelligent, reasonable person, so I have confidence that you'll be just fine. :D

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-As I have grown older, I've learned that pleasing everyone is impossible, but pissing everyone off is a piece of cake.

-I'm only responsible for what I say, not for what you understand.


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 22, 2010 7:50 pm 
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well its been a little over an hour since my first dose of Sub (4mg) and so far so good....I am a life long migraine suffer and get them frequently so after reading all the stuff online about the naxo. I let the pill dissolve under my tongue for 20min then spit for fear of getting a headache. Not sure if it is good to spit or not but time will tell. I definitely feel buzzed/foggy/different a bit tired, some minor back ache and slight waves of nausea but all in all I feel good!!! Off and running cant wait to see what the future holds, and I hope I just found the key to unlock the door!!! i will post again later.....


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 Post subject: So far so.
PostPosted: Sat Jul 24, 2010 1:09 pm 
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good to hear mate, my first induction period dosages were much higher, 16 MG per day taken at one time.
You will feel quite strange for the first few days on suboxone.. it has to get into the blood and the body has to become
use to it before you start to feel like its working properly.. I've had alot of moments I thought I was going to puke but it will pass. Also the first few days you will feel like the meds may be abit to strong but that will stop after a few days.. good luck mate hope you are pulling through and godspeed on recovery.


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