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PostPosted: Fri Jun 20, 2014 3:27 pm 
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This post is my opinion based on what I've researched about myself. There are also 2 interesting links to scientific research about RDS and Suboxone treatment at the bottom of this post. It helps give me answers where my doc either can't or won't. I often scour the Internet looking for reasoning and understanding of why I'm an addict. What is "physiologically" wrong in my brain? Well, go to any psychiatrist and they might say it's some sort of 'chemical imbalance', but when you ask what chemicals are exactly out of balance they can't tell you. Instead they pull out their newest edition 'DSM IV - Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders' and guess as to how to treat a person's mental affliction based on what this book says. I have yet to visit a psychiatrist, so I am basing my statement from other peoples responses. My cousin suffered 2 loses in her life. Her mother died of cancer and her brother committed suicide from alcoholism and depression. My cousin went through this within a months time. She had a mental melt down and her psychiatrist put her on a multitude of SSRI anti-depressant meds and most all had worse side effects than benefits. She eventually got hooked on opiates and is now receiving Suboxone treatment. Why are opiates so good at treating depression, anxiety, etc? I think it has more to do with dopamine and less to do with Serotonin, Norepinephrine, GABA, etc especially in people who are addiction prone. If there were only a base map of the correct balance of these brain chemicals in a normal mentally healthy person or a way to test for and treat these imbalances. Why aren't there any definitive in vivo screening tests given by psychiatrists that can determine what brain chemicals are deficient, so proper treatment with SSRI, SNRI, SDRI, etc can be prescribed to totally ELIMINATE the debilitating mental symptoms of depression, anxiety, etc which often lead to alcohol and drug abuse by self medication? This really puzzles and bothers me.

Sadly, there are no neurotransmitter deficiency blood tests available that I know of. If there are then I'll be the first to ask to be tested because everything I have researched points to me being genetically deficient of "dopamine". I'm hoping to soon see a specialist psychiatrist to be tested for "Adult ADD" since I never was tested for as a child because ADD wasn't known back then. I was tested and do have Dyslexia, a learning disability that goes hand in hand with ADD and even autism. I went to a special Saturday school to help treat my Dyslexia. It helped, but I'm still plagued with being an under-achiever, lack of focus to complete daily tasks, chronic procrastination for even simple tasks like showering, total disorganization, and the list goes on. I'm also on Suboxone which I think is slightly exacerbating these symptoms or is it? Hopefully I can see an ADD specialist in my state soon. What put me on this path to seeking testing and treatment for ADD is a video on YouTube by Dr. Edward Hallowell where he explains that genetic lack of dopamine in a persons brain is the cause of learning disabilities like ADD, Dyslexia, etc as well as bi polar disorder and drug and alcohol abuse. It was an eye opening experience listening to what he said in that interview.

Today, I was scouring the Internet and ran across 2 interesting and very informative scientific articles on the use of Suboxone(Bupe/Naloxone) and the link it has to dopamine and the reward pathways in the brain. Reward Deficiency Syndrome is probably the reason why we all self medicated with opiates to change the negative psychiatric impact low or imbalanced dopamenergic, serotonergic, etc pathways in the brain had on our lives. If people are as motivated as me to find out more why they may have such a love affair with drugs and alcohol then these 2 articles will be an interesting read, albeit scientific read.

1. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3682495/

2.http://www.lifeskillsu.org/campus/campu ... iency.html


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 04, 2014 5:27 pm 
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Very interesting subject avinlo. I also believe that constant use of opiates lessen the bodies production of natural dopamine which puts us all in a vicious cycle of using. At least for me it seemed like whenever I was off opiates for a period of time the world looked black and white, or maybe dull is a better adjective. Then taking some pain meds or whatever contained the opiate, it seemed like I was given a nice pair of colored glasses. The world looked wonderful! Suboxone has that effect too and that's why it works so well.

I know of another person who suffers from RLS, and has since birth. For years the doctors keep saying it was in their head. This persons father and sister all had it too. Finally they come out with a medication called Requip which was a variant of the drug they give Parkinson's patients. It affects the dopamine levels in the brain. She tried it but it made her too tired. It was by chance that this person took some vicodin and realized her RLS disappeared while on it. So now she takes hydrocodone, not for pain, but for the restless leg syndrome. Go figure that one out!

All I want is my Mu receptors to be happy and full! :D

r

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 04, 2014 10:45 pm 
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I haven't yet had a chance to read those links avinlo, but I find this topic absolutely fascinating and will be sure to read them tonight while I've got a couple hours free. I, like Rule, undoubtedly believe that the reason I chronically relapsed time after time, even after making it thru WD plenty of times. I tried many different anti depressants, anti anxiety meds, sleep aids, even considered maoi's seriously, but the dietary restrictions and other lifestyle restrictions and possible medication interactions kept me from going that route. without the opiates, I was a depressed, unmotivated, recluse of a person. even things in life that would've excited or exhilarated most people left me unimpressed and flat. it wasn't a pleasant existence. I thought I'd found the ticket with the opiates, but tolerance took care of that notion for me, and pretty quickly I realized I couldn't afford financially the burden that tolerance brought about, nor the constant ups and downs that go along with uncontrolled active addiction. not to mention the risk of going to jail, over dosing or losing my children, and probably my sanity... just trying not to be miserable, ughh! horrible way to live.

since starting treatment with buprenorphine,I no longer struggle with these miseries. I eat well, sleep well, feel like my emotions are very much in balance now, no more crazy manic highs, and horrible depressive lows, no more chasing an unaffordable and unattainable high. I'm able to normally engage with my kids and family and do the stuff I love to do again. I do still have some social anxiety problems, but nothing I'm really stressing out about too much. mostly, not quite knowing what to say, or make conversation in social settings with people I don't know well, beyond the good old " hello, how are you doing, oh I'm fine thanks", etc. but after that I sort of fold up and don't know what else to say, so I usually try to exit quickly before the beads of sweat are noticed on my forehead, lol....but I have a wonderful psychiatrist and I'm working on this and several other issues with him, including some PTSD, that I hadn't even realized was there until we really got into some serious sessions, but I'm progressing all the time. I absolutely do not believe I'd be where I'm at right now if not for buprenorphine. there's def something there, imo! I forget what company it is, but bupe is being studied as an anti depressant, as Dr J, says, let's see if the same damn stigma applies to buprenorphine the antidepressant as there is with bupe the maintenance agent, ha! and since being a patient taking it, I can certainly see how it could be of benefit to people who are suffering with debilitating depression or anxiety disorders. thanks avinlo, for starting this thread, it's incredibly interesting :-)


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 06, 2014 12:22 am 
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What I forgot to mention was that the grey world w/o opiates doesn't last. Romeo can give his opinion on that one as I never got longer than a month or so before relapsing. People in the 12 step AA meetings said it can take a year. But hey, what do we expect? A free ride to normality in a few weeks?

rule

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PostPosted: Sun Jul 06, 2014 3:17 am 
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you're absolutely right rule, I've heard Romeo and several others say the same thing. no free rides with this opioid addiction crap unfortunately, yea u feel physically alright, even great in a few months to a year, with plenty of hard work, exercise, meetings/therapy, etc. I think that's where Suboxone is an awesome medication for those who either won't or cannot get through that time period without relapse, and until those, myself included, even think they can get through that period successfully, if ever, it's in my best interest, anyway, to remain on bupe. I'm glad so many different forms and generics of the medication are being studied and becoming available. the more choices there are, the more people can be helped. for some if one product doesn't work, there'll be others to give a try. we're all just trying to stay alive and maintain a decent/ good quality of life with this disorder. my quality of life before was in the can, and it's not any longer, thank goodness. We are worthy of that too :-)!


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