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PostPosted: Tue Dec 27, 2016 11:49 pm 
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First off, let me apologize if this is in the wrong area. This is my first time on this forum. This is kind of an embarassing issue, so please be understanding.

I've been on Suboxone for a long time. I also take other medications for anxiety and panic attacks. Even with these medications, I still have one, recurring worry. I constantly worry that something will happen to my access to Suboxone, and I will not be able to stay clean. I'm not talking about a short-term issue, like running out. I mean an event that would mean no access to Suboxone for a long period of time. For example, I worry that some misguided politicians will outlaw Suboxone, or something. Both my doctor and therapist have tried to help me. My dr has me on anxiety medications (low doses, being careful not to create sedation or side effects), and my therapist recommends hypnosis tracks, meditation, etc. I've tried the logical stuff. Again, it's not a fear of the physical withdrawal. It's a fear of being denied any access bupe for a long period of time, and relapsing. I'm doing well, but bupe (along with therapy and a good support network) is what holds it all together.

In my rational mind, I know this is completely crazy and counterproductive. The things I worry about have a one in a million chance of happening, but I worry about it too much. Does anyone else have this fear? Any idea how to start seeing this logically, instead of letting these thoughts snowball out of control? Any insight would be appreciated.

Please forgive me for any typos or sentences that don't make sense, as I'm typing this from my phone.


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 28, 2016 12:37 am 
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You poor person! That must be very hard to deal with!

I can only speak from my personal experience of dealing with panic attacks. I've noticed that the one thing that can stem panic is if I throw my brain into some sort of math problem. I know it sounds weird. But somehow, if I start planning how to divide up my future lottery winnings (ha ha) it puts my brain in a different space and short circuits the panic. It might have to do with having to use a totally different part of the brain to do math. Find something that doesn't bore you. I can think of lots of ways to divide up lottery money. There are foundations to create, charities to fund, relatives to surprise. Find your equivalent to that kind of math problem and just throw your brain into it when you go into panic mode. You have to commit to really doing it though, or I imagine you will be back where you started.

I hope that there are several people who comment with suggestions. Welcome to the forum!

Amy

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 28, 2016 6:48 am 
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Hi Saved....

I like your well chosen name. Most of the folks here could have picked it too, including me.
Amy, I think that's a wonderful idea! Very creative. I too find distraction a great
strategy for dealing with anxiety and worry.

Saved, I've had a lifelong battle with anxiety in all it's many intensities and forms Sometimes I
think we worry so much almost as a kind of superstition, as a way to subvert the evil
forces out there who would do us harm. I have the feeling that if i let my guard down,
which is to say if I stop worrying, then something terrible will happen to me. If
I just worry long enough and hard enough, the bad things out there will
go away. But of course we can never quite manage it.

Understand that we addicts are worriers. We're deeply insecure people who are constantly scanning the
horizon for threats. If we're unable to spot one, then our worrying minds will
just make one up! Because if we're not worrying then who are we? Worrying is a way of life
and a kind of identity.

"Who am I? "

"I'm a worrier and it keeps me busy ,,,,and
keeps the gremlins away... all the livelong day,"

One thing that works for me is to simply stop thinking. I go to
my deep breathing and cling to it like a raft in rough waters
for as long as I need to,

Thinking too much is the culprit here. For us chronic, severe worriers
thinking is the hole in the damn. It's the spark that lights the fire.
It's the Trojan horse designed to get through all our most
carefully designed defenses.

Most people....normal people... can use self talk quite effectively. But for others,
the severe worriers like you and I, it only gets us deeper into the swamp
Why? Because thinking about something positive is in a sense to
at the same time embrace it's polar opposite.

"It's silly to worry about losing my medication. It just can't happen"

"Yes, but what it it does? Politicians pass stupid laws all the time and
now Donald Trump is in the White House."

There's no thought we can think thats fool proof. And our expert,
professional worrying minds will find the flaw in every single
argument we can come up with

The only way out of this is to simply shut ourselves down, cognitively
speaking. Give it a try, Take deep breaths and keep at it until
you feel sufficiently distracted. When the worry comes back, do it again
I swear it works. You just have to have faith in it.

Truly it's saved my life, just like subs. And no one can take
it away from me, not even stupid politicians!

Yours in worry,
Godfrey...


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 28, 2016 10:45 am 
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Good morning Saved, Welcome! I can only share my story in the hope that it helps you a little, I used to worry all the time...what if I need surgery, what about the pain, should I tell the doctor or not about my suboxone use, what happens if I get treated like an addict just drug seeking and I have real pain? And then the time for surgery happened! I told the hospital at preadmission testing of my suboxone use. They had me meet with the head of anesthesiaolgy and he was wonderful! They told me to stop the suboxone 24 hours before the surgery. Afterward, all was fine, I was in minimal pain but my regular dose of suboxone and tylenol handled it! So, the moral of the story is...all that time spent worrying is lost and was for nothing! One of my most favorite practices and something I struggle with, is to stay in the moment! Looking to what can happen or might happen opens up your brain to all kinds of unwanted thoughts. I know that if I focus on where I am right now, what I am doing right now, and absorbing the feeling of the moment, negative thoughts and worries have much less room to get in the way! Enjoy your day!


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 28, 2016 11:32 am 
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Like Michelle, trying to just stay in the moment does help a lot. Gosh I can worry over everything and anything. I can come up with a scenario for any situation lol. I especially get nervous and worry about my medicine. The way my clinic is, I worry about not getting to see the doctor, not making it to the pharmacy in time before closing, worrying about the pharmacy not having the medicine, and shoot I worry about drinking too much water before my drug screen in fear it'll look like I'm trying to dilute my urine! Now that's a worryer! Most of my worries are about anything that's going to interfere with my peace of mind, and I think that's because I lived in turmoil and chaos for so long when I was using, I'm in major fear of feeling like that again. I over think everything. It's hard to control it. I think sometimes that I need to go bk on medicine like I was on for 10 yrs before my addiction started. I mentioned it once or twice to my doctor but he didn't think I needed medicine so guess it's not too serious.

Trying to just stay in the moment and accepting that the cards will fall however they're gonna fall regardless of our worrying ourselves to death, it helps. Just accepting that is huge. Of course it's not easy and ur still gonna worry, but taking that approach relieves a little bit of it and it will finally become routine.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 29, 2016 10:51 am 
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I think it's a rational approach that many of us have. We spent so much of our time worrying about a fix to get us by for 3-4-5 hours...for how long? A few months, a few years, a couple decades?...it's a re-wiring of the brain when addiction comes into play. You don't get up and lead a normal day. You get up thinking about every action you'll take...

Addicts are the best brainstormers you can possibly encounter. They can play out a scenario in their head and predict the outcome with amazing accuracy...usually. You already know how much money you'll need, where it'll come from..how much of a fix you'll be able to buy, how long it'll last, when you'll need more, how you'll probably have to do something to get more money in order to get more later...
Some folks don't plan for their first home as well as an addict plans on the next fix to get the sickness to stay away. It's something we never dreamed we would wake up one day and be thrown into, but it happened.
So, to be chastised in this manner for SOOOO long, then to not have that worry suddenly..it leaves us with that same mentality, but not the addiction to go with it. So our only thing we can put in that same "boat" is the medicine we attribute with saving our lives. I don't think it's irrational to feel this way at all about Suboxone.

However,

I do think there won't be anything like that arise to cause Suboxone/Buprenorphine to suddenly disappear. I've wondered that too, but it would take a massive chain of events to cause that.

And you gotta look at how much the Fed is in bed with big pharma. There's plenty of money in addiction (sounds awful..but it's how they view it)....so there is plenty to be made. We are seeing the fed and big pharma realizing how much they can tap into with the addict population...so they aren't going to do anything to rock that boat. You can have doctors hooking people on these massively addictive opiates, and on the other end of that spectrum, you have doctors giving people a possibly life-long medication to get them off of it.
Sorry, it sounds rude and blunt (and that's not really my style) but it's facts. There's money there to be made...and there's lots of it. Obama has just seen exactly how much there is in the addiction treatment side of things (Obamacare even has coverage for it)..
It pays, now, to be treating addicts. Not as well as other medical fields, but the field is still rising in value and cost...so it aint going away.

Not trying to be offensive, hope no one takes this as such. I'm a very long-term member, and been on Suboxone for about 8 years now...no plans of ceasing. Probably ever...I'll be on this until the day I die...most likely. I'm an investment for the addiction treatment community. I'm a life-long member!!

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October 8, 2013

RIP little brother. Gone, but not forgotten.


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 29, 2016 11:35 am 
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I agree Jonathan, I don't think there's anything to worry about with buprenorphine disappearing, that's actually the one thing I don't worry about lol :) Look how long methadone treatment has been around, I think it's fine....I understand the op's concern but I think we're all ok on that front.

Ur absolutely right about how addicts plan everything to a T. I heard someone say once "no one works harder than a crack head" LOL and I remember thinking....ya know in a way ur right. I'll never forget that. It's funny how something just sticks in ur memory like that.

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 07, 2017 2:10 am 
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I know you've come here for comfort and for us to tell you everything will be okay. But to be honest, I don't think your fear is that irrational. The scenario you posit (conservative anti-MAT politics taking over) is a possible scenario, but that being said perhaps you underestimate how much politicians defer to medical expertise these days. MAT is one of the MOST studied medical treatments there is, and all the long term studies show that it's the best tool there is in the fight against opioid addiction. Most doctors know this, and all medical organisations I'm aware of that hold political clout are well and truly behind it.

The only thing that may effectively allay your fear is if you had some degree of hope or faith that recovery is actually possible without MAT. And it is! There are plenty of people who've been extremely addicted to opioids at a stage of their life who now take zero opioids whatsoever, MAT included. Sure many go on to experience other addictions (one of my best friends now drinks too much and takes ecstacy a bit too much on weekends). I've been clean off all opioids including MAT for 18 months at one stage, 14 months at another stage, through the help of rehab and 12-step meetings. However some may argue I just turned my substantial heroin addiction into a sex and nicotine addiction. Another friend of mine has been clean for aeons but struggles with gambling.

All's I'm trying to say is, not having Suboxone doesn't mean the end, and relapse isn't inevitable. Life goes on.

All that aside, chances of Sub being outlawed is miniscule to none.


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 07, 2017 6:23 pm 
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saved by subs. I agree with others about staying in the moment. Whatever happens, you have the capacity to adjust to. I don't know what dose of buprenorphine that you are on, but, have you thought of keeping a small extra stash in case? If you had a back up,short interruptions in your medication would not be a problems. I am more optimistic about the future of buprenorphine. Some politicians and medical people are advocating for wider availability of MAT. The worst case future that I can imagine is more stringent regulations aimed at preventing diversion. I have had four different sub doctors and have had some difficult finding ones that accept insurance in my area. Luckily there is a surplus of cash only practitioners in my area. If needed, I could use one of those doctors for a few months.


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