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 Post subject: increasing dose... why?
PostPosted: Wed Mar 08, 2017 3:28 pm 
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I'm on Suboxone and have been for about 2.5yrs. I started at 12mgs then went to 8, then 4mgs then one day I took an extra 2mg because I had things to do and had no engery. Now I can stop taking extra now I'm taking roughly 12 mg per day all a different times, I take 4 mgs in the morning then by 2pm I don't know I just take 4mgs more. it seems like every time I have to clean up or do a job I feel taking more will boost my energy. I HAVE NO ENERGY. and its been going on like this for a year,i cant seem to cut down. help me please I don't want to take more and more everytime I feel like I need energy.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 08, 2017 5:32 pm 
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Well hardee there's a little trick Dr Junig has told us about that I'd use if I needed to (because I'm not going to lie, I've done that same thing ur describing in my past.... which didn't give me any extra energy because it was all in my head). Dr J says that when u start getting that thought run through ur head about taking extra, immediately go do something to keep urself busy for 15-20 minutes. Go do something, anything, to take ur mind off taking extra. After u have refocused ur thoughts on something else, the urge to take extra will pass. Trust me it works.

We all know that taking extra isn't doing us any good. It's actually just wasting our medicine. Of course we're addicts, so those thoughts of taking more can happen to some of us. We just need to be prepared to fight those thoughts. If u don't try and just give in every time, nothing will ever change. There won't be any magic help, it's hard and we have to work at it. U can do it, just refocus ur mind on something else.... like watering ur plants or walking ur dog..... anything besides giving in and taking more than u need :)

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 08, 2017 6:01 pm 
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HI Hardee,

I too used to do the same thing. What helped me is locking my medications up . I know that I had a key to unlock the lock box. But I would go to work after taking my Morning dose and then Lock up the meds at home. Then, if I had the urge to use more or if I had a bad day at work , I made it a "pain in the ass" to get more meds. i would have to drive home get the key and get the meds. out. After a while, I stopped wanting to take more, but that didn't happen until 6months to a year of locking my meds up.

Exercise and yoga helped too. I think it helped distract me from those craving of wanting more and more. And ...I also Journaled about what I was doing. Somehow arranging my thoughts help me by getting out my frustration on paper.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 08, 2017 10:32 pm 
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thanx for the tips guys. my 3 friends and I went on the same time and I'm so jealous because one has been on 2mgs for a while now and she doesn't get that feeling of wanting more. and my bestfriend has went from 16 to 8mg and does not feel that either so when I try to get advice from them they don't understand and just say well just take 8mgs in the morning and that's it and my reply always is well if I do that ill probably end up taking extra anyways then end up doing more. I hope I could get past this. my plan was to be off this stuff already. I'm my community it was every hard for people to go on it so they really didn't try. when me and my friends went on we had to travel everyday for 8weeks, we actually got an award for being the most dedicated to the program but being like this taking extra having to buy more makes me feel back to being an addict. when I did my program I told my worker that this needs to be brought to my community, people want the help but its soo hard to get being so far away and they did bring it and it did good to my community, now theres barely any dealers of other drugs. thinking of all this makes me soo happy and want to cut down cuz that was the purpose of going on it was to try and quit drugs, but taking extra is bugging me, i cant seem to stop. and your right Jennifer it doesn't get you any extra energy at all and ive said this said this to my self soo many times, its all in my head.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 08, 2017 11:55 pm 
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Taking extra is common-- and frankly, it is just a part of opioid dependence. Buprenorphine is pretty effective in treating opioid dependence, but it isn't perfect. Understand that addiction is a very complicated illness that involves multiples areas of our brains, including those that regulate emotions, impulses, and higher-order thinking. I always think of that saying 'to a man with a hammer, everything looks like a nail'-- the point being that people who study addiction tend to see the primary issue as most connected to whatever their area of study.

Behaviorists look at behaviors, and stimulus/response, classical conditioning, operant conditioning, etc-- addiction as a learned behavior. Psychodynamic experts look at childhood deficits and old wounds that people try to self-medicate. Chemists see the tolerance and upregulation at receptors, and changes in endorphin pathways that push toward using. People with a holistic approach may see problems with spirituality, or emptiness of the soul that needs to be filled.

However you see it, those of us who became addicted tend to return to using. Sometimes we find something healthy to take the place of substances. Sometimes we learn to fill the hole with something else, or we learn to tolerate those empty feelings. But those things take work, and luck and genetics likely also play a role.

Understand that those extra uses are caused by the core of your addiction-- the desire or need to relieve certain feelings. I suspect your lack of energy is related in a way you didn't mention; on some level you are disappointed with yourself (you hinted at that), and those thoughts are manifest in pulling back in life, and losing your sense of confidence and 'mojo'.

Everything is related, always. So yes, use distraction in the short term. Recognize that the extra use is an 'existential' problem-- one based on the same issue that pulled you into using in the first place, or at least contributed to keeping you there. You need to find something else to pull you forward; a mission in life, or something that makes you happy. Something you can look forward to. Maybe a hobby; maybe an exercise kick; maybe falling in love. Try to make it a positive thing, not an affair with your boss(!) And as you get back on track, congratulate yourself for taking the issue on, rather than letting it rot below the surface.

Good luck- keep talking about it too, as those cravings tend to live in the dark.


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Fond Du Lac Psychiatry
Dr. Jeffrey Junig, M.D., Ph.D.

  • Board Certified Psychiatrist
  • Asst Clinical Professor, Medical College of Wisconsin

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