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PostPosted: Mon Sep 02, 2013 8:45 pm 
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I am going to make this clear up front: I am not some badass tough guy. I am a giant pussy really, and I even cry during movies. I do however have a high pain tolerance, especially for dental pain because of a lifetime of poor dental care. I want people to know that you don't need opiates AT ALL no matter how severe your dental surgery is going to be.

I've been on Sub for a long time now, and am on minuscule maintenance dose of about 1/5th of one strip per day. Imagine cutting your Sub width-wise, about the width of a penny. I guess I am on about 1.3 mg. per day of Sub, if I added it up that way. But anyway, I've had some major dental work going on for the last few years. I've had several extractions done and I've never once needed anything beyond my normal Sub dose and Motrin. Oh and the antibiotics if that counts. I do not have real health insurance, so I use Western Dental. They are like the Wal-Mart of dentistry. No laughing gas, just Novocain injected into my mouth and that's it. They kick you out and hound you forever to make payments. No follow-ups unless it's MAJOR surgery, which is what I just had last week.

I am 30-years-old and because of my lifestyle and living "accommodations" during my heroin use, I have rotten ass teeth. I mean my teeth are very, very bad. It doesn't help that I developed a Mountain Dew addiction after quitting opiates, but that's another story. So they finally extracted enough teeth that I only had about 11 left on the top. A few months ago I was approved for a full upper denture. They ran out of individual bad teeth to extract and they yanked them all out in one sitting. Eleven teeth with nothing but Novocaine injected into my mouth. Front, back, all over. Teeth got pulled. It was brutal and bloody, yes, but when I left I told them no pain pills, just antibiotics please. I got Amoxicilin and OTC Ibuprofen, and took my normal Sub dose of course.

I am relaying this story because you know what? You don't need Vicodin or Norco or anything else no matter how severe your dental extractions are going to be. I might have a high pain tolerance, but like I said I am a giant pussy when it comes down to it, and if I can go without opiates, anyone can. My wisdom teeth got pulled some years ago and that was nothing (NOTHING) compared to what I just went through. Yes life sucks for a few days, and oh well you can't get lit up on Vicodin, but you aren't supposed to want to get lit up on Vicodin ever again, no matter what the excuse is.

Now I expect all kinds of inflammatory comments about one of the following:

- I must be a liar
- You are lying
- My (insert dental excuse here) was so bad I had to take Vicodin because my doctor said so
- Liar
- Good for you, we want opiates and it's our right and I can have them moderated
- LIAR!

And those are valid excuses (except for me being a liar). I am being 100% truthful and if you want pics of my new denture I could probably show you my beautiful new grill on Facebook, but the other excuses are the kind I'd expect. Yes, it is your right to take opiates if your doctor says OK. Yes, you are legally allowed to take opiates and have your Mom or Dad hand them out to you each day so you don't abuse them. Yes, yes that is all true and I am not even trying to get down on people for doing that. I'm simply trying to convey that us ex-junkies are very good at making excuses. I can talk myself into doing just about anything, and then I have a separate conversation in my head to justify it. When an opiate presents it's self in a legal fashion it can feel like Christmas morning. Seriously, how many of us got all our medication above board and took it as prescribed? And you don't wanna look a gift horse in the mouth, right? But someone out there might fear opiates as much as I do and is seriously trying their hardest to never, ever take one again and maybe hearing this will help them through a couple days of pain in order to never even give themselves an opportunity to use an opiate.

I will also note that I have never had "emergency room surgery" while on Sub. I hope I never have to either because if it's bad enough and you are unconscious or something they can inject all kinds of shit into you. I'm reminded of a story I heard about this old, old AA guy who got into a car accident and woke up in the hospital with an IV in his arm. He took out the IV and made them change it for one without a morphine drip, because he just didn't want that shit inside him period even though he wasn't one of us "drug addicts".

(PS, I don't do NA or AA. That's a discussion for another time. I just had this story relayed to me once from some guy I knew in AA)


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 02, 2013 10:21 pm 
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Lol! I don't know what kind of folks you're used to dealing with, but most of us here take people at their word! I think it's awesome that you protected your recovery by sticking to ibuprofen! We have a recent thread about one of our members who broke his hand. He gave his wife his prescription for norco, only took two, flushed the rest, and also relied on mostly ibuprofen for pain relief. You both are setting a wonderful example for those of us who might face something similar in the future.

Funny thing about tons of dental work...I used to be deathly afraid of getting my teeth worked on. I required nitrous oxide for just about EVERYTHING! But I ended up having to go through extensive crowning of most of my teeth. Somewhere in the middle of this I had to have an emergency root canal. It was New Year's Eve and we were leaving for Disney World the next morning, but I was in pain! My dentist met me at his office and said he could fix it right there, even without an assistant. The only problem was that I can't have the normal shots deep in my jaw to numb the biggest nerve. My dentist told me that he was going to have to shoot lydocaine directly into the nerve root of my tooth!!! OWWWWW!! But it quickly calmed down and the rest was cake Since then I've never needed nitrous or any opiate pain killers for dental work!

Amy

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 05, 2013 2:22 pm 
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That was funny! I agree with you about OTC Motrin working just fine. Years back I had my wisdom teeth pulled. This was before I was an opiate addict, just an alcoholic who was afraid of pain pills. (for good reasons) Being honest with myself the Motrin worked just fine. My dentist said to call him if I needed Vicodin. Where the hell did my old self go???

Today I prefer Aleve. To me it is a wonder drug for my back aches and whatever.

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 05, 2013 8:46 pm 
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Hey cool, thanks for the positive replies :D

I won't go into it too far, but it's been several years since I've been around former addicts or gone to NA or anything like that, and well, when you are around people who haven't finished their run yet but are momentarily clean, they will say just about anything to justify a legit prescription for pain pills. I spent the first two years of treatment going back and forth and talking myself into anything, and getting a legal prescription was like having a stripper pop out of a cake.


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 21, 2013 11:38 pm 
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Good job i appreciate your information.

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Last edited by brighamcalvert on Wed Sep 16, 2015 7:15 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 23, 2013 1:28 am 
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From the description it seems that you have very bad dental problem. It is very important to maintain a schedule of oral care everyday to avoid problems like these. I know that all the dental treatments are really very painful.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 20, 2014 9:34 am 
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I know this is a bit old, but I just found this forum and have found it to be rather informative. I agree that dental surgery can be tolerated with Tylenol or motrin. Just yesterday I went in to the dentist for a tooth that's been rotting away and recently causing pain again. So the dentist said "Hey lets just pull it out. Are you ok with that?" So I told her lets do it because I was tired of the mouth pain. Got 4 shots of lidocaine and she went to work on yanking it out. When all was said and done she was like ok well im going to give you a rx for vicodin and call me if you have problems. So I told her, No I do not want any opiates, I told you I am on suboxone. I will take Tylenol if its bad. She looked at me a little funny but hey, I am ok. The pain from the tooth rotting and breaking was way worse than the ache I have from it being pulled. It just feels like a fresh bruise. I cant take motrin or aleve anymore as they were my go to after quitting opiates because they caused a huge ulcer. So, all in all, yes it is possible. No it wont be that bad. Im actually shocked cuz I thought I would be in wicked pain, but im not.


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PostPosted: Sat Mar 22, 2014 5:06 pm 
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Good for you, Jess!

Amy

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