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PostPosted: Wed Dec 30, 2015 2:11 am 
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Hi, I'm a new member and not to sure how this forum works. I'm looking for any advice on my issue. Ive been on suboxone for about two years. I am on it for opiod dependence and treatment resistant depression. I'm also on all sorts of other medications ill get into if needed. My normal dose ive been on forever was 4mg. in the morning and 4mg. in the afternoon. 2 mg. tablets. I also usually would sniff my doses sometimes. Everything was good and I was staying clean and had no cravings. Four months ago I switched to Zubsolv 5.7/1.4mg. I really like it so far except for my problem. It doesn't seem to be working as good as it did when I first switched to it. So anyway I am not feeling as good as I'm used to and ive been taking more and more to try to feel better and stop my cravings. I keep running short at the end of the month and have to get tabs or strips from friends,which ive never really had to do before. Even when I get suboxone tabs or strips they don't seem to work as well as I'm used to. I don't know what to do? I talked to my doctor and he upped my dose to 1 and a 1/2 zubsolvs. Its still not working as I hoped upping the dose would. Do you think maybe I need to take less? Ceiling effect? I just don't feel good anymore and my depression is getting worse. I'm on other medications that are effecting my mood also, but my suboxone,zubsolv has always worked wonders for me. I'm worried and don't know what to do? Ive tried lowering my dose and I cant do it, my cravings take over and I end up taking more. Please help? thanks.


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 30, 2015 12:31 pm 
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Welcome- I'm in Houston, TX, not sure what time zone you're in, but it looks like you were up late. I, like most addicts suffered from depression, and tried multiple SSRI's, finally Prozac is what worked for me (took for 2 years). I started on subs about 2 years ago, and the first few months I was always running out early, thought I had to keep taking more. I finally gave my meds to my mom to dole out, one a day (I take 1 8mg strip a day). I've made it through the day on a 1/4 of a strip, but my "addict" mind has a hard time accepting that I can get by with less, not more.

I tried Zubsolv, and didn't really care for it, now that may be a "mental" thing, but it does work for people, otherwise they'd stop prescribing it. People have posted here about how to curb your dose, spouse, parent, or friend hold it for you, works for some, not so much for others. I have no experience with treatment resistance depression (I assuming that means that none of your meds help your depression?). For me, the suboxone works wonders on multiple levels for me, the pain relief for a bad back, the mild/minor depression, and mainly to keep me away from opiates. I had to question myself about why I wanted to take more, was I anxious, stressed out, want to enjoy watching a movie more, or just have a good time going out with friends...see all these example are exactly when I used to take more pills, to "increase/enhance" my situation, and help change the way I was feeling (the reason a lot of people take drugs). When I would want to take more suboxone, I'd ask myself why, examine my feelings and situation, and then realize, I was wanting to take more of my "drug" to help me get through. I'm not sure if that's something you could look at (why you're wanting to take more), but it could very well be that your depression is hitting you hard, and in the past you've gotten relief from the Zubsolv, so the mind naturally wants you to take more to help your depression.

I'm not a doc, or therapist, but I am studying to become an LCDC, and a lot of what I said above comes from personal experience, not a textbook. The Zubsolv shouldn't just stop working for you, so definitely talk to your doctor(s), is the same one prescribing all your meds? If you have more than one doctor, do they both know your situation? I also have little experience with taking subs and other meds, and knowing if there are any drug interactions between whatever else you're taking, but I've been on bupe for almost 2 years, and it's never "stopped" working, but I did, and still seldom get those urges to want to take more than one strip a day. I am aware of these urges now, and know how to handle them. I hope I helped you out in some way.


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 30, 2015 12:57 pm 
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Hi Harley and welcome to the forum! I expect that you are a motorcycle and car enthusiast!

Todd has given you a lot to think about and I don't have much to add except that I think it's probably time to take stock of all of your meds. There could be interactions that haven't occurred to you. Also, if more than one doctor is prescribing your meds they need to know everything you're taking if they don't already.

It is quite possible that the low that you're experiencing is not from a lesser dose of bupe, but from your depression worsening. What you may be doing is using extra to numb your feelings of depression rather than making up for the bupe not working. Do you have a good psychiatrist or therapist or are you working with a regular physician? You may need someone who has more expertise in this area.

Anyway, we hope we can help you figure this out. I'm on Zubsolv and I had to go up a slight amount when I started it.

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 30, 2015 2:14 pm 
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Hello and good job reaching out! I recently had a similar issue, I was on 8mg for just under a year and then it just didn't seem to be working the same. I was having cravings and even the basic feeling of well being Suboxone had given me was gone. I unwisely didn't tell anyone, including my doctor, the way I was feeling and had a slip. So talk to your doctor, maybe your dose needs to be adjusted. After my slip my doctor upped my dosage from 8mg to 16mg and I'm feeling fine again.


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 30, 2015 3:25 pm 
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Hi Amy,thank you for your reply, I also went up on my dose of zubsolv this month. Its helping some. Yes I am a Marine Technician and auto/truck mechanic. Not so much recently, depression and Addiction keep me pretty busy. I have three doctors, one for Zubsolv, one psyhc,and my primary care. And also a therapist. They all know my current medications and there are big interactions and I'm careful with my meds and don't abuse any besides my subs and zubsolv. Im on a lot of meds and was feeling and doing really good with my depression about 4 months ago, When I first quit smoking pot I felt great. Im pretty sure I'm on too many meds, but they were working good for awhile. Ive gone through hell and back over and over and wish I was not an addict and could just get off everything and function normally but ive tried it a few years ago and ended up suicidal. Currently I'm doing ok but in my mind I feel confused. I feel good sometimes but then I consider all the medications I'm on and that makes me worry and feel like crap again. Ready for this Med list... Wellbutrin 300mg daily, Clonazepam 1-3mg as needed, Zubsolv 5.7/1.4mg 1 1/2 tabs daily, Adderall 30mg. 2X daily, Levothyroxine 60mcg daily, Zyprexa 5mg daily, Trazadone 100mg if needed for sleep. I currently don't take the Zyprexa 5mg,which I'm thinking maybe I should go back on it. I was prescribed Zyprexa for bi-polar depression treatment. I have a hard time with the bi-polar thing, I believe it was due to excessive Alcohol, Cocaine, Marijuana and percs,oxy abuse years ago. I am now in recovery I guess, currently I don't drink anymore at all or use any illegal substances. I only take what I'm prescribed and don't abuse them(except Subs/Zubsolv). Well I still feel like a drug addict being on all these meds, I always have leftover clonazepam and Adderall at the end of the month. Its really the Buprenorphine that's got me. Im 33 years old, and my Father still harasses me about the suboxone. He says I might as well be on Heroin cause its the same thing, ive been fighting with him for months and we don't even talk anymore. He is so negative about everything and has a bad mindset about Suboxone. There is nothing I could do to make him happy or ever trust me again. I cant even have a conversation with him or I explode and have to walk away before something bad happens. Well here I go again rambling on and on. Sorry everyone and Thank you so much for Reading my posts, and I really appritiate your replies. Thank you


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 30, 2015 6:24 pm 
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First- you sound like you need some positive, uplifting comments directed towards you. Getting into recovery for a lot of addicts brings up feelings of shame, remorse, the "I'm not good enough" talk. In my addiction, I screwed over a lot of friends and family, not proud of it, but most if not all addicts have family issues. I'd like to say, congrats on trying to get things turned around, some people just get the suboxone, and don't get into therapy. I think real recovery means getting into your issues that caused you to use, and I see you have a therapist, so you're on the right track, and even now you're reaching out for more help/advice. A lot of us are on anti depressant meds, and you're wise to not be using any illegal drugs, and not drinking as well, since it sounds like that was an issue as well. The Adderall and clonazepam are very heavily abused, and if you have an addictive personality, those pills will get you in trouble as well. I never used either of those while I was on opiates, but then when I got out of rehab, one doc gave me a script for the Klonopin, and damn I even loved that for a while. My goal is not to be off all medications, but just take the ones that have turned my life around, letting me live a good life, with a steady job, and time for my PS4 instead of waiting on the "dope man". Getting your life back on track is the focus, and I firmly believe suboxone helps thousands work towards that goal. People are very uniformed about buprenorphine products, mainly b/c there's too much bad press out there, and not stories like people on this forum, who are back to thriving in life. Work with your docs on your meds, figure out what will work for you, to get you back on track, and happy and content with your life. Sometimes we have to ignore people who were once close to us, b/c they can't understand, and won't even try. Bottom line is, this is your life, you want to survive, first figure out what that looks like, and work towards that, then as people see you getting better, trust has a better chance to come back.


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 25, 2016 6:49 am 
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Hi everyone, I'm back. haven't posted for a while. Been pretty depressed and kinda doing nothing with my life at the moment. I'm still having problems with my Zubsolv/Suboxone not working as well as in the past. Ive spoken with my doctor and since he upped my dose to 1 1/2 zubs a day,the 5.7/1.4 tabs. it has helped a little bit. Something is just not right still, Ive been on suboxone for a long time and my dose was 4mg in the AM and 4mg in the afternoon. I stayed at that dose for 2-3 years and nothing changed ever. Every day was the same I would take my morning dose and feel good and continue with my day. Now I can take the whole 5.7 in the morning and I still don't feel right. I'm already wanting more by 10 AM. Some days I end up taking 2 per day just to make it through the day. My doctor told me that the 5.7/1.4 Zubsolv is supposed to be equivalent to an 8mg Suboxone, but I don't think it is. I feel like I need double the amount I'm used to taking to feel ok. I'm having Really bad Cravings also and I'm fighting myself pretty hard not to use again. I told my Doctor I was a little better with the dose increase, at the time I was a bit better. Its still not helping me like it always has and I'm afraid to tell the doctor or ask him to increase the dose again, he didn't really want to up it the first time I asked. Ive been all over the web looking for info or a solution to this and cant seem to get anywhere. Ive found a bunch of similar posts on other sites, but no real answers. Some say it could be that ive built up a tolerance from being on it for a while, Some say I could be taking too much and less is more, I feel like Ive tried cutting down and got nowhere. I'm feeling hopeless like my suboxone is just gonna stop working completely. I cant function without Suboxone/Zubsolv I hate to admit that but its sad but true. I gotta figure something out cause I keep running short at the end of the month and that's making me feel like more of a addict having to buy more, I might at well just get some oxys instead at least I know I would feel good for a little while. I'm so stressed out about this, its making me pretty mad that I cant figure out whats going on. The one and only thing I can come up with is asking my doc to switch me back to Suboxone. Ive tried the new generic tabs and they are worse than the zubsolv, The only thing that somewhat works are the Suboxone Strips, but I doubt my insurance will cover them. Next month I'm gonna ask to go up to 2 Zubsolvs a day amd hope for the best,and deal with it. Just don't think my Doc will do it. Maybe?


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 25, 2016 1:54 pm 
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Hey Harley,

My advice would be to just be honest with ur Dr about how ur feeling. I think our fears of our Dr thinking we're just "seeking" more medicine than needed or them thinking we're lying comes from bk when we lied so much to get more medicine to get high....hope that makes sense. It was really hard for me in the beginning to tell my Dr things because I was so paranoid that he thought I was just trying to con him into giving me more. I totally understand that fear of asking the Dr for something like that. But honestly ur Dr won't know how ur truly feeling unless u tell him and u definitely don't want to relapse because of that. Just make him understand that ur feeling off on zub and feel the doses aren't exactly feeling the same as the strip and u have been taking more to keep up with that. He may or may not up ur dose, but it won't be because ur lack of trying. I think it's worth telling him/her.

Something u said really resonated with me. U said if I'm feeling this bad maybe I should just use again where at least I feel good some of the time. Do u know that's exactly what I said to myself before my last relapse before I started suboxone? Those exact words is what I said to myself and I listened to it and took a horrible dark turn. I was so depressed and miserable being completely clean out of rehab and I just had enough of the misery. I felt that at least if I used, I'd feel better a little bit which is more than I'm feeling now. U got to get up with ur Dr and figure this out. It can definitely be fixed and ur recovery is so worth it.

I hope u get this straightened out and start feeling better soon, just hang on and it will get better. Now I'm not saying ur gonna relapse or anything like that, I just remember that feeling of being so desperate to feel better ur mind starts telling u crazy stuff. Let us know how it goes ok? Good luck :)

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 25, 2016 2:32 pm 
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Harley, you said you're not doing much with your life right now- what about work or hobbies? Just getting some oxys will make you feel guilty afterwards, and you'll have wasted money, and if you get them off the street, then you also risk getting busted. In active addiction, we would never worry about getting caught, but you sound pretty clear headed- so don't do something that's risky. I agree with Jen, that you should ask your doctor to up the dose, if you think that's the issue, and that it will help. Too many times in my active addiction days, I'd hit up doctors, and I'd push them for more and more, so why not discuss with your doc increasing the dose (to accomplish something right- helping to stay out of active addiction habits). Have you looked into any recovery groups, medication is only part of the solution, you're reaching out for help on this forum, but sometimes face to face discussion and interaction with people help with the recovery process. I'm just throwing some ideas out there. You have to play an active role in your recovery, which is a daily battle- some days are easier than others, but when you start talking about getting some pills, you're already sliding into relapse mode- even if you have taken anything yet. An addict's mind will tell him what it wants to hear (get pills, have fun), and you have to remember how far along you've come. There are on-line meetings available, which is an option. I believe you said you have a therapist, so I would think they would be working with you in terms of addiction issues.


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 25, 2016 9:07 pm 
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Wow, Harley! I have to say that I think Jenn and Todd have hit the nail on the head! First of all you do need to fight for your recovery! You are worth it! Also, you are slipping into a dangerous frame of mind.

It is time to take stock of what is going on in your life besides your meds. Are you working? Do you like your job? Do you have hobbies? Do you spend time with friends? Your father is obviously not being supportive and I have to suggest that you keep his negativity out of your life. Do you have a support system? I don't believe that the problem is with your meds. I think the problem is that living life on life's terms is hard and you aren't talking with anyone about that.

I sincerely believe that you need to find a good addiction counselor or at least a support group. Unfortunately, you can't rely on a pill to make you feel good! It may seem that the medication is no longer effective, but it probably has more to do with what is going on in your brain. We can help change our thoughts and behaviors with the help of a good therapist. I hope you will take my advice and find someone you can talk to. It may do you a world of good and it certainly won't hurt!

Amy

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 26, 2016 5:06 am 
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Hello Harley!
I love everybody's advice so far!
Your Dr is there to help you, remember you are paying for a service and have every right to express what you believe is helpful or not.
Just be truthful, the switch continues to leave you struggling.
I think many of us fear being received as "seeking" but please don't let this deter you. You are not using your DOC, your not seeking other drugs, you simply need an adjustment to your existing dose.
In the past I have increased because I felt it wasn't holding me physically ( experiencing some WD symptoms before next dose ) and psychologically I felt I was still obsessing over using and my dose.
Good luck!
Please keep in touch!


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 30, 2016 8:31 pm 
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Hey Harley. I too have bipolar disorder and am on treatment for it, along with my Suboxone treatment for opioid dependence. I've found that for me, certain medications can speed up my metabolism of Suboxone. Were there any changes or additions to your other medications when you noticed the Suboxone wasn't holding you like it should be?

Personally, when I was on Effexor, Cymbalta, and to a lesser degree Pristiq, Luvox, Lexapro, I noticed I needed higher doses at twice-a-day interval rather than once a day because I was just burning through my Suboxone that much faster.

It may be worth noting any medication changes that occurred and assess whether it played a role.

Also don't feel guilty if you need a higher dose because of increased metabolism. Even if you take more Sub, the levels of Suboxone in your blood won't be any different.

I would also be wary of attributing your bipolar disorder to your past drug use. Such a viewpoint can lead one to blaming one's self for their illness. An attraction to using drugs is much more likely to be a symptom of mental illness than the cause of mental illness. If drugs actually caused chronic mental illness, we'd see their incidence increase over recent decades when recreational drug use became more prevalent. But incidence has remained the same as it was in the first half of last century. So don't blame yourself. Drugs can definitely trigger mental illness, but the evidence indicates that they don't necessarily cause it.

And if your Dad is giving you grief, perhaps keep your distance from him. It'd be more likely he'll change his viewpoint as a result of attending some kind of support group or seminar that's open to medication assisted recovery than by arguing with him.


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 30, 2016 9:21 pm 
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Hi Harleygm, two of my favorite things! I just had a bad experience with zubsolv. Are you having problems with film too?

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