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 Post subject: How do I know what dose?
PostPosted: Wed Jan 14, 2015 11:16 am 
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Hi everyone,
I am new to suboxone...started a little over a week ago. My dr wants me on between 2-4mg a day. I'm feeling best between 2.5 and 3mg...how do I choose a dose? I don't know which is best for me. I will say when I was on 2mg, I felt I needed to take more later in the day as I didn't feel as stable as the day went on. I took 3 yesterday and just took 3 this am. I'm itchy, but I also took 1mg later yesterday so it could be because I'm really above 3mg right now in my blood. Would you try taking 3mg tomorrow am again since I took my whole dose this am and see how I feel, or would you go back and try 2.5mg? I'm not sure that would last all day, but also not sure if this is a mental issue. Any advice? Thanks!
Maya


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 14, 2015 2:22 pm 
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Maya,

You're still new to this drug. It took me about two weeks to stabilize and then I tapered down to a comfortable dose. My doctor was a little mad that I did it myself but finally agreed with my need to feel my best.

And yes, you are correct in saying that a lot of it is in your head. We are addicts and our brains always want more and more. You won't go through withdrawals on a low dose unless you were taking massive amounts of pain killers or heroin.

Suboxone has a very long half life. If you read some of the older posts here you'll find that many members went for 3-4 days w/o any Suboxone before feeling any withdrawals so I wouldn't worry about it day to day. Find the dose you feel best on, confer with your doctor and live your life.

My suggestion would be to stay on 3 mg's for a few weeks and see how it goes. Then talk to your doctor about whether you need to go up, down, or stay on that dose.

One way or another you'll find what works best for you.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 14, 2015 5:21 pm 
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Thanks rule! I am going to do the 3mg for a few weeks and see how I feel. I am not feeing withdrawal at all on that dose, so I feel like it could be the right dose. I don't want to take more than I need because it's unnecessary, but of course the addict in me is used to my brain getting used to low doses of things quickly...I just need to keep reminding myself that this is not a drug I'm abusing, it's one I'm on for maintenance, and the same dose will work for me daily without the need to keep increasing--I'm right there aren't I? Thanks for the response. I'm praying that this along with my meetings and psych appt's will help me stay sober this time around! Thanks again!
Maya


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 15, 2015 12:05 am 
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You are absolutely right Maya. Not only should you look at this drug differently for the reasons you mentioned, but also because this drug works in a different way than any other opiates. On suboxone you will never develop an increasing tolerance. If 3mg works for you today, it will work the same exact way for you 5 years from now. No more having to increase your dose every few days to keep up with the escalating tolerance.

You are doing very well. It takes all of us awhile to figure out exactly what works best. I think you have your mind set in the right direction. Trust the advice of your doctor and what you read here. Don't second guess it because of past experiences, as I said this drug works very differently from anything you have taken in the past. You are off to a great start!

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PostPosted: Thu Jan 15, 2015 1:41 am 
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Hey there :)

I also wanted to say that I wish I had been more educated when I started sub 3 yrs ago because I started on a higher dose and if I'd been more informed, I would do exactly what dose ur doing. I thought my dose needed to be as high as possible to help me. Its actually not that way at all, which goes against what us addicts have always done....the more the better. So ur actually doing very good on ur starting dose and I wish I'd had someone to tell me this when I first started. Good luck!!

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PostPosted: Thu Jan 15, 2015 9:01 am 
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Thanks everyone. Yesterday I ended up taking 4mg because I felt antsy like I used to before the cravings hit and I figured taking one more mg of sub was better than the alternative! My doc says she wants me on between 2-4mg a day. I wonder if I should just go with 4mg and be done and stay there. That is still a relatively low dose isn't it? What do you all think? I want the lowest effective dose but I'm worried that since I felt antsy on the 3mg that the 4 might hold me better? I don't want to take too much either. My doc also has me on .5 mg of Klonopin a day because I've been on it for years for anxiety and I have awful panic attacks off of it....funny that is the only drug I have never had any desire to abuse. Fine with me! I don't want to take too much sub especially being on klonopin, but is 4mg a low dose relatively speaking? If you don't mind me asking, what dose are you all on?
Thanks!
Maya


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 15, 2015 10:36 am 
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Hey Maya,
Because of your low tolerance your dose at 4mgs should cover you physically. But as an addict we tend to think we need more. May you do. Try getting stable on 4mgs the next few days.See if this ansy feeling gos away. Otherwise you may start reaching for more.
Your doing fine and dosing can be tricky in the begining. You ll find it. If you do seem to feel you need more that should be discussed with your Dr too.
Isnt great that we dont have to use ....


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 15, 2015 2:29 pm 
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Hi Maya,

Yes, 4mg is still a pretty low dose. However, I want to be sure you understand that the antsy feeling in the beginning of treatment is normal too. It will take a little while to get used to not dosing many times a day. That's the part of the addict brain that just has to have time to heal. You are doing meetings and other recovery work, so I really think you will learn how to overcome that feeling without having to up your dose over 4mg.

In answer to your question, I started at 8mg and during the first couple months I still had to learn to overcome some cravings. I am currently down to 2mg and have been on suboxone almost 3 years I think. We have a member here, sub addict (hope you don't mind me referencing you SA) who was on doses above 32mgs per day and was still having cravings. Obviously it was just the state of mind he was in, which he fully admits, and had nothing to do with not having 'enough' subs in his system. Those antsy feelings will go away as you learn methods to distract and overcome them. IMO as long as you are physically comfortable and the cravings aren't unbearable than your dose is probably fine where it is. You should definitely do what you think is right in your situation, but I would give it a couple more weeks before you seek to increase over 4mgs for sure.

Q

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 17, 2015 6:58 pm 
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Hey everyone thanks! I think you are right and it's the addict in me that is questioning whether my dose is too low. I am used to taking pills all day long so it's very odd to me not to be doing that anymore. So I keep questioning what dose do I really need. I am going between 3 and 4mgs a day. Not sure I need 4 but some days when I only take 3 I feel like the cravings are bad. So still trying to figure out what dose I really need. I'm so glad I found this forum!


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 18, 2015 5:28 pm 
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Hi Maya!
So, I was started on 16mgs, two 8mg tablets a day, one in am one at night. My doctor said he planned to gradually reduce my dose, but he never did. 3yrs later I'm on the same dose. I wish he had started me on a lower dose to begin with. I was doing a massive amount of opiates so I can see why he'd think he had to put me on so much, but I could get by on the street with only 4mgs of sub when I couldn't find my drug of choice. I was totally honest with him from day one about everything, but he still keeps me on this dose, idk why. I would say to take the smallest dose you can without feeling sick. Those cravings will always be there, the sub definitely helps to curb them because it keeps you out of withdrawals and overwhelms your opiate receptors making it pointless to do opiates. But, especially in the first weeks of induction onto sub, your still gonna crave opiates.

I would suggest splitting your daily dose into 2 or 3 different doses throughout the day, doing this helped me trick myself into feeling like I was taking more. And also helped me when I thought I may be feeling sick at night from taking the sub too early in the morning. Try splitting your 3mg dose into 2mg in the morning and 1mg around dinner time. This helped me a little with cravings cuz I had another dose of sub to take later in the day when I was craving opiates the most.
It sounds like you really have the right idea about what the sub is for and how to use it. I think that once you are through the first few weeks you will see how much the sub helps to keep you away from opiates.
Good luck! Stay positive and if you have to take more sub, its a better alternative than using!


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 19, 2015 9:19 am 
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Thanks everyone! I am going to dose twice daily and try to stay on 3mg instead of 4mg. But, if I need 4 I need 4. I see my sub dr today so it will be my first checkup since I started sub. Been on it for 2 weeks now. I had to take my daughter to the ER in the middle of the night last night because she's got the flu, and it was the first time ever being in the ER that I didn't have massive cravings! It was great being able to focus on my child instead of wanting drugs! Progress!!
Maya


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 19, 2015 6:30 pm 
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Hey Maya!!

Awesome to hear that ur doing good and starting to figure things out. I know exactly how ur feeling when u said u can focus 100% on ur kids and not being triggered at the er. The first Christmas that came around after I had started my sub, I was able to spend 100% of my money on my kids and I think that was probably their best Christmas ever. U can wake up and play with ur kids and not have to worry about feeling sick or having to run to the dealers or find money to get the stuff and on and on. It's definitely a feeling of freedom and peace. Having extra money and being able to devote all my time to whatever I choose too is a real blessing. I'm so glad ur getting settled with ur dose and now u can truly enjoy life again :)

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 20, 2015 6:22 pm 
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Trying to catch up on threads, and just read yours. So glad read that you're finally settling in to your comfortable dose. I was nodding my head in agreement with what jennjenn said in her last comment about how great it feels to finally be able to focus on other aspects of your life, rather than the usual crap of where, when, and how to get our d.o.c, the waking up sick. ... ugh it takes over your whole life. .. yuck! It will take some time to not think about your dose every time you take it, or taking the next one etc. But one day, taking your normal dose and doing other recovery oriented activities, you'll just realize that all that obsessive thinking has dissapated, and you'll go back to enjoying your hobbies again, and spending time with loved ones, pursuing other interests, and feeling normal and content. Like jennjenn, that 1st Christmas, after starting suboxone, was the most awesome feeling. All my money went to give me kids things that my active addiction took away from them. I almost cried when I watched them so happy playing and opening their gifts. ...totally worth it all! Happy to hear that you're headed in the right direction too!


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 21, 2015 9:07 am 
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Maya

How did the doctor visit go? Hope everything went well. So glad you are adjusting to the medicine. It took me a few weeks to get stable and feel normal.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 21, 2015 5:43 pm 
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The doctor visit went well! I am down to 2mg a day. I felt very sedated--especially when driving for some reason--on the 3mg a day. I was also having bad palpitations. Has that happened to anyone? Now on the 2mg I feel way less sedated and less palpitations. I do wake up in withdrawal a little bit, but not bad. I put the film in as soon as I wake up and within an hour or 2 the w/d is gone. So, my plan is to stay on 2mg daily for as long as I need, I'm thinking long-term. I need to have a stable life and pick up the pieces of the mess I made while using. I start back at work next month after a medical leave of absence and things are starting to fall into place. I attend 3 meetings a week (AA/NA) ad see my dr and a counselor. How is everyone else doing?
Maya


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