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PostPosted: Mon Aug 03, 2009 4:31 pm 
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I’ve registered for this forum so I could get this information out there. It may be redundant, admittedly I have not read or searched the forums to see if anyone else has posted such results so apologies if this is redundant. I have however spent significant time reading the Dr’s blog in the past few days after stoping suboxone.

Without much consultation from my doctor and after three years on suboxone for my addiction to pain killers I’ve successfully weaned myself off with relatively little withdrawal symptoms. As such, I wanted to share some of the things that I believe have helped me do this easily. First, starting in January of this year I began reducing my does of suboxone from 1 8mg/day by titrating (I will not go into the specifics, but unknowingly I used techniques that have been mentioned all over the Dr’s blog) down to 1/16th of an 8mg suboxone for nearly a month I took my last dose 8 days ago. Thankfully, I had not read any forums or read any websites or I may have been too scared to do so.

The first three days were a piece of cake (half-life), then on the night of the fourth day I had some sleeping problems, and GI distress, this was the worst part of the experience for me. While I say worst, given that full-blown acute heroine withdrawal would be a 10 on the scale I was at about a 4. The following day at work I actually had to go home, mainly from fatigue and a lack of mental focus, but once home and comfortable I was in relatively good spirits and feeling okay. Once again that evening I had issues sleeping, but my GI problems had subsided; the remaining WD symptoms were some waves of chills, yawning, and some 4-banger sneezes (which actually made me laugh, my wife too, she was like what a silly WD symptom). Then the following morning, day 5 I worked a full day, it wasn’t a great day but tolerable. Moving through day 6, 7, 8…things were getting pretty much back to normal, some nagging intermittent sleep, but for me who is normally a great sleeper this was again relatively speaking, mild.

So, now for what I believe are the reasons for my success. If you’re posting here you’ve read Dr’s posts about long term suboxone treatment, I’m not going to address this other than to say it is absolutely necessary for success. Now, yes, it’s too early for me to call things a success, but not too early for me to recognize that the period of time that I was on the suboxone allowed me to change the behaviors that got me to become an opiate addict. Okay, so how I think I beat the WD’s, first, I’m a competitive cyclist, I train nearly 18 hours a week. As such, I theorize (Dr or someone who’s qualified to comment, please chime in) that by continuing my training, which I do in the mornings, I was able to naturally create some of the dopamine my body was going to get pissed at me for not having. This really occurred to me the day after I had my worst night with the GI distress, because that morning I did not get in my normal 2hour training ride and felt pretty crappy at work. However, the following morning even after 4 hours of sleep my obsessive nature kicked in and I got up an did my training ride, I will not tell you that was easy, but when I got home, I felt great and that night, I slept a pretty solid 8 hours. The next morning I woke for my long training day, again, after my 5 hour bike ride I was feeling awesome. In addition to the cycling, which I’d been doing through the course of my time on suboxone, I took up meditation, this I believe helps with the mental part where you need to keep thinking positive thoughts. The moment you allow yourself to get caught up in how you’re feeling it seems to get worse. Please pick up the book called ‘The Relaxation Response’, not only do I believe it will help you with getting of suboxone, it’s something that you can use in your life on so many levels. Lastly, in preparation for getting off, or should I say, jumping off the suboxone I started getting acupuncture therapy, the purpose I gave the Dr was not to deal with my addiction but to address my energy flow and energy levels.

So in conclusion, I want to recommend a more comprehensive approach to getting off suboxone, start early, be prepared, think big and employ all that’s at your disposal. I’m talking, get your ass into the gym, or better yet, train for something, give yourself some purpose, simply going to the gym is boring as hell if you’re just doing it to do it. Pick a 5k running race to train for, a local cycling event, charity walk/run/ride, heck, if join a softball league, take up boxing/MMA. Bottom line, make your body make dopamine and endorphins, you’re going to need them.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 03, 2009 9:01 pm 
Thanks for an uplifting story regarding discontinuing Suboxone. I am about to finish my first month on Sub myself and have done probably too much reading on the subject! Much of what I have read (on sites other than this one especially), have me scared silly about staying on Suboxone for very long. However, my gut and my experience tells me I really
should probably plan on being on it for a good while. This site has by far been the best I have found in terms of general information and support. And reading your story and others like it about coming off Suboxone without horrific withdrawals is so very encouraging for me. As I have shared in other posts - I am in the medical profession so I have considerations regarding licensing board requirements and my ability to make a living that perhaps others do not have to consider.
Otherwise I would feel very comfortable with staying on Sub for an indefinate period of time. I have felt so good and just so normal on it. It has allowed me to have hope for a great life off of opiates! Prior to starting Sub, I went through an
intensive outpatient treatment program, countless NA meetings, etc but could not shake the cravings or get close enough to normal functioning to stay clean. With Suboxone, I feel more able to put to use what I have and continue to learn through the other treatment modalities. I hate the feelings of fear I feel when I read about some people's horrific withdrawal experiences with Suboxone. It just really rains on my parade!! lol! So thanks again for your encouraging post. Great tips to keep in mind when my time comes to taper and discontinue Sub.


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 04, 2009 3:11 pm 
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I have broken the cycle of opiate abuse a couple of times in the past and granted, it was a few days of flu like symptoms, extremely horrible bone pain, and inability to sleep more than a few minutes at a time. These issues I treated symptomatically as one who had the flu would do and it really wasn't that bad. What worries me far more about getting off of Subutex is the ongoing worry of relapse. I have had an added benefit from Subutex as well. Though I have never been a heavy drinker, in the past maybe 2 or 3 beers a week, since starting the use of Subutex, I have had absolutely no desire or perceived need for alcohol. Also, before I eventually discovered that opiates were the true object of my mind's obsession, I would occasionally dabble in cocaine use in an ill-fated effort to stop the constant "noise" within my brain. Again, since starting Subutex, I have had no cravings for cocaine or for that matter, drugs of any kind. I am so reluctant to take a chance at giving up this wonderful freedom and calm that I have searched so many years for just to save $300 a month. My only real concern is that something will happen for which narcotics "could be" required for pain control and then things would be complicated. Thanks for hearing me out.


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 05, 2009 1:34 pm 
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Thank you so much for your story.Also,please keep us posted on your progress from time to time.It will help so many others!

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 10, 2009 2:55 pm 
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Just wanted to post an update here at the two week mark. Two weeks sounds like such a short period of time, yet stopping suboxone seems so far away. I presume it helps that I’m feeling great; sleep is back to normal, chills which were nagging have all but subsided, focus and energy levels are good; the only thing still nagging is the sneezing. I would love to know what the sneezing is all about; funny stuff.

Again, as I said in my first post, please do try meditation, it’s a powerful tool that seems underutilized yet quite effective for some of the issues you’ll be dealing with in coming off suboxone. I hope this information has been helpful, I’ll post again in a week or so with an update. And, I’d love to hear if anyone has or is planning on employing some of the techniques I’ve mentioned and of course whether or not you’re having success.

Best of luck.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 10, 2009 7:42 pm 
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Hey Lukin -

I totally agree with you about exercise helping to generate more endorphins, which totally helps with withdrawals. I also use meditation as part of my recovery - it really helps with pretty much every part of my life.

Other things I've found to help have been advil, Kombucha tea, drinking lots of water, eating right, keeping busy, not feeling sorry for myself, and this forum.

Glad to hear you're doing so well. Sounds like you're doing everything right; keep up the good work.

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Dr. Jeffrey Junig, M.D., Ph.D.

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