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PostPosted: Sun Oct 14, 2012 12:16 am 
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It began with a serious back injury, then within the past year/year and a half I started on norcos, moved to blues (roxy - OxyCodone 30mgs) then black tar heroin for the past 3 weeks. I just got back from the doctor where I was prescribed 30 of the dissolvable soboxone tabs. I was already withdrawing in the office, an 11 on the COW scale... however when I got back home, I wanted on last high. In retrospect, I shouldn't have done it; but I wanted to finish whatever I had on me & wasn't thinking clearly. I had been taking (snorting & smoking) between 30-90mg of roxy a day, then I moved up to smoking a gram of black tar heroin over 3-4 days without doing the roxies. I cut down on the amount I was using a few days before I went to the doctor. However, when I got back home at 7pm I smoked what little heroin I had left (probably .1g - it was like 1 or 2 small hits) and snorted one roxy (all withdrawal symptoms went away). I'm going to let myself withdrawal tomorrow and then induce at the appropriate time... whenever the withdrawals are unbearable... I'm thinking 24-36hrs or more.

My concern is this, I have a HUGE job on Tuesday (today is Saturday) and I'm pretty busy the rest of the week. My job requires a lot of fine precision skill, me to be highly functional & in a good mood, driving and dealing face to face with customers. Will the suboxone make me feel great right after I induce? I'm worried that it wont and I wont be on my A-game for this huge job... I know you may be thinking, how were you on your a-game while smoking heroin, but I was, I didn't over do it before work... I just did enough to get a lil buzz and not withdrawal. How do you feel after induction? how do you feel over the next couple days? would anyone recommend doing more than 8mg to feel your best?

I'd love it if I could get advice on what to do! Should I continue using (and weening off) another week and then induce? Or will I be feeling great for Tuesday if I induce on Sunday or Monday. Any helpful induction stories would be great. I want to induce ASAP, but I cannot jeopardize this job. I also got nervous when I saw a thread on someone else who still felt like shit after they induced. Because once I induce, I cannot take anything to make me feel better!

I want help and I want off these drugs that have just been snowballing and depleting my health and finances. Please help! thanks!


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 14, 2012 12:54 am 
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Hi AshCal3,

Welcome! Induction on to sub seems to be different for everyone. Some people have a harder time than others. I was put on sub 15 hours after my last dose of dilaudid. I felt awesome one hour after I took it. I sat in detox for 4 days feeling like a million bucks. I dont know why I had to stay.....

So anyway, I think you should be feeling great on tuesday as long as you wait until you are in withdrawl before you take sub.

Also, with sub, less is more. I would not take more than 8mg unless you are still sick. Taking more and more sub will not make you feel better. Did the doctor tell you to start with 8mg?

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PostPosted: Sun Oct 14, 2012 1:15 am 
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Orange doll wrote:
Hi AshCal3,

Welcome! Induction on to sub seems to be different for everyone. Some people have a harder time than others. I was put on sub 15 hours after my last dose of dilaudid. I felt awesome one hour after I took it. I sat in detox for 4 days feeling like a million bucks. I dont know why I had to stay.....

So anyway, I think you should be feeling great on tuesday as long as you wait until you are in withdrawl before you take sub.

Also, with sub, less is more. I would not take more than 8mg unless you are still sick. Taking more and more sub will not make you feel better. Did the doctor tell you to start with 8mg?



To be honest, the doctor kinda sucked and I was withdrawing and getting really anxious, wasn't thinking clearly and I just wanted to leave. he prescribed me starting with 8mg... should I take less? I'm just really scared to start on subs and be too exhausted to work. One of my friends said he just slept all day and he said I should probably wait... I'm just nervous because I cannot go back once I start.


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 14, 2012 1:21 am 
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Hey AshCal3, welcome to the forum.

You don't have to be in unbearable withdrawals before you induce on Suboxone, you just have to be in moderate withdrawals.

I did my induction and then went to work that same day and I was totally fine, I took 4mgs and then 4mgs an hour later at my induction appointment. I was experiencing no withdrawals at all, maybe some mild cravings toward the end of the day.

Your habit is not particularly huge so I wouldn't think that you would still feel sick after taking 8mgs. Orange Doll gave you good advice on the less is more thing. You can always take like 4mgs and see how you feel. It takes 60-90 minutes for a sublingual dose of Suboxone to FULLY kick in, though you might feel relief from withdrawal symptoms more quickly than that. I remember feeling better really quickly, so it's good to give it a little time and see how the medication effects you. You can always take more later if you need to, but if you take too much right off the bat you can end up feeling ill.

So start when you're in moderate withdrawals according to the COWS scale, take a smallish dose and then wait and evaluate how you are in an hour or 90 minutes. Score yourself again and if you are still having withdrawal symptoms you can take more. Sometimes it takes a few days to figure out the ideal dose.

Good luck.

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PostPosted: Sun Oct 14, 2012 1:31 am 
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when you start to feel really crappy,,,,,,,,

I'd probably start with 4mg, just to make sure you 'clear' for no precipitated w/d's............
you'll know right away..........
if you feel little/no relief you could take 4mg more, wait about an hour between. if you still feel like your in w/d you take more.... and so on
if it's precipitated w/d you feel WORSE RIGHT AWAY.

and everyone is different. Some people feel GREAT, right away ........ like they 'used to' way before their opiate addiction.
BUT, I must tell you ,, going from heroin to suboxone, or methadone to suboxone, is not as smooth as the other, shorter acting-opiates. the heroin, I think it's becuz its so strong.

I went from a lot of methadone, to suboxone, I ended up taking 24mg in the begining, and honestly I still felt somewhat of a "kick"
is was NOT full blown w/d , no
but I still had the sweats, the 'runs' and RLS (worst at night)
Suboxone made the w/d bearable, for sure. Before that, every time I tried to quit, I just didnt make it very far
So, dont expect a miracle. LOL
you MAY get a miracle, you may be 'one' of those people, but if your prepared not to, then you won't be disapointed.

You could use the 'cows' scale agian, to 'judge' when you are in 'mild withdrawl'
Its not necessarily the AMOUNT of time from your last opiate, its the AMOUNT OF WITHDRAWL

Hope this helps.
Induction can be rough, and frustrating trying to "find your dose''
Orange Doll is right.
You want to take ENOUGH to curb your withdrawl,
and not OVERDO it, to be sleepy or have lots of side effects.

GOOD LUCK
if you have ANY more questions, just ask

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PostPosted: Sun Oct 14, 2012 1:41 am 
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Thank you for all of your advice, I really appreciate it, as I feel so alone and so stupid for allowing it to get to this point... I think I got the induction down... What I'm nervous about is how I will feel after. in a couple days, will I be too tired? Feeling side effects? etc? Do you think I should wait until I have a few days of free time to induce and find my correct dose? or should I just go for it? I just dont want it to fuck up my work, probably the biggest opportunity ive ever gotten, and if im sick, or exhausted, etc... It will ruin everything.


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 14, 2012 2:36 am 
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I've been reading everything on this forum and it's just scaring me... here is a post I just made: this is all just making me want to suck it up and quit cold turkey... Seems like youre trading one drug for another and the only upside is that its cheaper and legal. Is there anyway I could just take subs for a few days and tapper off? I DO NOT want to be on these for over a month. I've only had a BAD problem for 6 months.


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 14, 2012 3:05 am 
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Sure, lots of people use Suboxone as a short-term detox medication.

I think that whether you decide to do a short-term detox, a month long taper, or use Sub as a maintainence medication is something you should talk about with your doctor or with an addiction counselor. I wouldn't make a snap decision based on fear or based on things you've read on the internet.

Some things you might want to consider:

What kind of support system do you have in place to help you stay off opiates once you complete your Sub treatment?
Have you had a lot of issues with trying to quit opiates in the past and then relapsing?
Do you have any kind of treatment plan (counselor, meetings, etc)?
If you still have pain issues do you have a way of adressing that without the use of medication?
If you decide to do a rapid taper will you be able to take time off work to detox?

I can understand the feeling that you're just "trading one drug for another," that's actually a pretty commonly expressed sentiment. The main benefit of taking Suboxone long (or longer) term is that it suppresses withdrawals and cravings and it also blocks the effects of other opiates, making it harder to relapse. For some of us, this lets us cultivate some stability in our lives so we can begin to address the damage done during active addiction.

I'm not personally familiar with using Sub as a detox or short-term taper medication, but there are some threads in the Stopping Suboxone section with stories from people who used Sub this way. I guess the benefit there is that it is somewhat easier to taper off Suboxone than it is to taper off full-agonist opiates.

I hope you'll be able to figure out what the right answer for you is - hopefully some other members will chime in here and give you some advice. Give it some consideration though and do talk to your doctor.

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PostPosted: Sun Oct 14, 2012 6:56 am 
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Hey and welcome.

I've had some experience with using Sub as a detox tool... It seems like there's a different detox regimen depending on the clinic where you're at. It just depends on whether your doctor views Suboxone as way to do a short term taper off your drug of choice (2-4 weeks on Sub), or whether they're using it to relieve withdrawals from your drug of choice and that's it (7 days on sub).

My experience is with 6 or 7 day Sub detoxes to get off heroin. The reason it's only 7 days of Sub is because they only gave it to relieve the heroin withdrawals. The benefit of this is you're not on Sub long enough to start to get dependent on it. Generally (for me) the detox regimen went day 1 - 4mg .. day 2 8mg .. day 3 12mg ... day 4 8mg ... day 5 4mg ... day 6 2mg ...

The weird thing about it is that ... I did a detox regimen like that twice, and both times I experiences nearly zero withdrawals from day 7. Hardly any Sub withdrawal, no heroin withdrawal. I thought it was a miracle cos I'd been taking opioids for that long I shoulda felt symptoms ... but somehow I didn't experience them... and other people in NA who went to the clinics that did that kinda detox said the same.

As to whether you should to detox or maintenance... That's really your choice. I'm a big believer that people should at least try abstinence before they choose for Sub... Because it'd be a shame to be dependent on Suboxone if you didn't really need it. I only turned to methadone and Suboxone when I realised I was getting nowhere trying to stay clean.


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 14, 2012 10:29 pm 
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The doctor I went to was horrible. He just seemed like he wanted to prescribe the suboxone and take my money. So I need to find another doctor who I can talk to more thoroughly and figure out if I can do what you did or if he thinks I need more long term help. Because, I think I do need a better plan of attack here. I saw my habit progressing and realized I could not ween off on my own, which, similar to you, is why I chose suboxone. If you read my above post I really wasnt bad until 6 months ago... and then really bad for 3 weeks. I still don't think I was that bad tho (in comparison to other addicts I know)! I was making a gram of H last me 3-4 days (smoking it) with no problem. I was able to work and be functional, I think people would be seriously surprised if I told them I was an addict. I think that the only thing I was weird about was at night, I'd prefer to get high with a friend or alone then go out. I became more of a homebody.

Did you relapse after the 7 day detox? how have you been since?

Thank you everyone for all your insight and help. I just feel very alone right now.


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 15, 2012 1:33 am 
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Man, I'm so sorry that your doctor sucks. That's a real problem with Suboxone - it's so hard to know if you're going to get a good doctor or not, or even if you'd have access to a good doctor. The 8 hour training course for becoming a Sub doctor is really inadequate and many prescribers are not familiar enough with addiction to be of any help (other than writing the script). There are good doctors out there though. Maybe try to find one why is a Psychiatrist, preferably one who is familiar with addiction and has treated many people with Sub.

I know how scary and alienating this time must be for you. You've taken a huge step toward dealing with your addiction and you're just not getting the support that you need. Do you have anyone in your life who knows what you're going through? Sometimes just having one person you can be honest with will make a huge difference.

Have you considered seeing an addiction counselor for an assessment? They basically ask you a lot of questions about your history of drug abuse and other things (job, life circumstances, mental health issues, etc) and then make a recommendation for what kind of treatment(s) would be appropriate for you. Since you haven't really been abusing opiates for all that long and you indicated that you've really only gotten out of control recently, they might recommend a short-term detox and then an outpatient or intensive outpatient program (you basically go to group therapy & addiction education groups a few nights a week for a few months). That kind of approach can get you through the withdrawal and teach you about addiction, help you learn new coping skills for dealing with the urge to use, etc.

Some other treatment options are inpatient, which is usually only recommended for people who chronically relapse and don't have a safe or supportive living situation; medication assisted treatment, which would be staying on Suboxone longer than just for a detox; addiction counseling in a group or one-on-one, which is less frequent than intensive outpatient treatment - more like once a week; 12-Step groups or other community support groups like SMART Recovery; or some combination of the preceeding, like medication and counselling.

You aren't bound by the assesment or anything, the counselor who did my assesment recommened intensive outpatient plus Suboxone, but I opted for individual counseling instead and that worked for me. But it's a good way to get some feedback on your situation, you can ask why they made the recommendation they did, ask them to explain your risk factors for relapse, etc. One thing I would suggest is to find an addiction counselor who is open to Suboxone treatment. Unfortunately there is still a lot of stigma and misunderstanding about medication assisted treatment in the addiction recovery field, so you want to find someone who is open-minded and will present you will ALL of your options.

If you don't know where to find resources to help you, google to see if there is a local alcohol and drug helpline in your area. If there isn't, there is a national one. If you have health insurance, you can also ask them for a referral to providers in your plan. Don't be afraid to "interview" a few doctors or counselors, ask them how they approach treatment with Suboxone. Ideally, you'll want to find a provider who doesn't have a one-size-fits-all approach and a counselor that you feel comfortable talking to.

The SMART Recovery website also has a ton of great information about addiction and recovery. It is not a 12-step based program; it is based on actual research into addiction and incorporates a lot of techniques that have been well studied and shown to be beneficial (like cognitive-behavioral therapy). They have free meetings, both online and in-person, and they are open to Suboxone patients (some 12-step groups are not). Their website also has links to treatment providers. Here's their website:

http://www.smartrecovery.org/

And use this forum too - there are lots of great people here and we will try to help you. Whatever path you ultimately chose, you should feel good knowing that you've started this process of getting well.

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 15, 2012 2:05 am 
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I know I just wrote you a freaking book up there, but I also wanted to comment on this:

Quote:
I was able to work and be functional, I think people would be seriously surprised if I told them I was an addict. I think that the only thing I was weird about was at night, I'd prefer to get high with a friend or alone then go out. I became more of a homebody.


It's a pretty normal part of addiction to start isolating yourself, staying home to use, hanging out more and more with friends who also use, etc., as an addiction progresses. There are pretty predictable stages that most people go through and isolating is a sign that an addiction is getting worse. So it's good that you noticed this, that you noticed that you got out of control, because it's hard to remain a functional opiate addict long-term.

Did you ever decide whether to do your induction before or after your big job on Tuesday? I wish that I could tell you to go ahead and take it and you'll be fine, but it's really hard to know. If you are really hurting or you don't want to have to go score, you could try taking a small dose, like 2mgs, and see how the medication effects you. That's not an opiate-blocking dose, and I know you were concerned about that, but it's probably enough to give you a feel for how you will react. Based on my personal experience and from reading people's stories here, Sub will make you tired if you take too much, so if you're afraid you'll be too tired to work...start small.

I know you're probably freaked out and worried right now, but you'll get through this and you'll be so glad you did. And you're totally not alone, there are a lot of us in the same boat as you. Good luck with everything and let us know how you're doing.

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 Post subject: I'm back... update!
PostPosted: Wed Nov 14, 2012 2:57 am 
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Hey everyone,
I'm back! Prior to going through my induction phase, my mother went through my computer, found this forum open and read EVERYTHING I wrote! It was a major invasion of privacy and she had no idea I was doing heroin (she only thought I was abusing prescription norcos and Roxys); so to say the least, shit got real bad and even though she was here to support me, she had a lot of anger towards me for lying and doing heroin. I know she was just being a protective mother, but she did not realize how her anger and judgement was in NO WAY helping me change my life style and get clean. Now I'm finally back!

My induction went extremely well. I finished whatever I had, lit a prayer candle, said the guardian angel prayer on it, saged my entire house (especially over the areas where the most using took place) and threw out all paraphernalia (foils, paper clips, cutting cards, magazine with old foils and black marks on it, etc) ... These little things helped me to start fresh physically and mentally. A certain sense of calmness came over me. I liked that a created an ending ritual to my drug "rituals". This may not work for everyone, but it really helped me start a new. It also helped me promote positivity into the world; and it certainly has been working.

I wanted until I was between 15 and 20 on the COW scale and took 1/2 then another half about an hour later. for the first week i took 1 8mg sub first thing in the morning. A few days into it, I began to have increased anxiety, hear rate and I would become sooo exhausted around 2 pm that I would practically nod off if i was sitting or not doing anything. I listened to my body as well as other people on the forum. "LESS IS MORE". I then changed my dose. I began taking 1/2 sub in the morning, and then later that day (if I felt tired, had slight aches/RLS and/or had watering eyes and nose) I took another half. This worked great for me! The following week, I was able to only take half a day. Then weened a bit more, and have been talking around 1/4 a day and if need be, another quarter later in the day. I find that I only need that second dose if I'm working (I'm on my feet all day long), so that plus having pre-existing back/pain problems makes my body need a bit more sub.

There is definitely a method to the amount of subs people should take, and sometimes, you have to figure this out on your own. Even though a doctor can prescribe the dosage, they do not know how you truly feel and how your body is reacting to the drugs. Unfortunately, my doctor sucks, I told him how I felt & asked if we should change my dosage; he pretty much said none of what I was saying was a side effect of suboxone. Even though, numerous people on this forum shared the same exact concerns, like increased anxiety, initial energy but once you sit down you almost nod off, etc. Even though I have only been on subs for 1 month (today is my anniversary) I have learned a lot and helped others in the same position that I was.

So listen to your body, less is more! You can always take more later on, but you cannot "un-take" the amount.

I hope everyone is doing well! Since my subs, I have stayed clean, lost all urges mental and physical, got a great job, then a promotion after 3 weeks. I'm much more capable of handling the hurdles that life throws at you. In the beginning, I felt alone and depressed on subs. Now I feel proud and am able to do whatever I put my mind to.

Thank you everyone that has helped me through, now I can do the same. xox


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 14, 2012 11:31 am 
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WOW, now that is a Suboxone success story!!! I was half way outta my chair while reading about your induction and the wonderful things that have happened to you since you started it because I was so excited for you. Way to go AshCal!!

It's so unfortunate that so many doctors who prescribe Suboxone really aren't very familiar with it and how much one should take. I'm glad you took things into your own hands (after listening to advice from people who have been there and done that) and you're already down to a low dose.

Congratulations on one month clean!!

Rock on!

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 29, 2013 4:14 am 
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Congrats!! Everything sounds like it went great!!
What you say is true, you cannot untake a dose but another thing about sub is that its always best to take the same dose everyday.. its not good to take different doses depending on how you feel, after all thats what we did during our addiction. Also, if youre on a stable dose its gonna be alot easier when you start to taper. Taking more meds whenever you feel the need to is addictive behavior. Other than that everything sounds like its going well.. I wish you the best in your recovery.


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