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PostPosted: Sun Feb 28, 2016 8:36 pm 
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I have been on suboxone for a year now and this month I ran short of my meds, well the addict in me decided to get on heroin for 4 days and then switch back to my suboxone until my Dr appointment and boy was I in for a surprise. My last dose of heroin was Friday night around 1 a.m. I went to bed at like 3 am and slept till about 4 p.m. on Saturday and when I woke up I didn't feel too bad and I was contemplating on whether or not it was safe to take my suboxone because I kept reading about precipitated withdrawals well I contemplated in till about 5 o'clock and I took a little piece and within 10 minutes it shook me and sent me straight into precipitated withdrawals and I was in the worst pain of my life.


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 28, 2016 8:40 pm 
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I wasn't done with my story and it posted but anyways I took more suboxone and it only made it worse. Finally I remembered lopermide and had a friend grab me some immodium fast. Once I took 5 of those within 15 mins I was out of precipitated withdrawal and went to sleep. I woke up and took my suboxone and felt better but not great. I am so tired of this medicine controlling my life and I'm scared to death to get off it and on top of it I have no support, no family, no friends. I'm so alone and I will lose my apartment if I don't work every day so I feel doomed. I hope to find some comfort here


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 28, 2016 11:34 pm 
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I know you want support-- so I don't want to come across as anything else. I certainly don't mean what I'm going to say in that way. There IS a way out--- but it takes a long time. Everyone wishes there was some way to just cure addiction-- to find the right program or read the right book or take the right drug, and suddenly go back to where we were before using. You have to realize-- that dream is just not possible. You will never be the person you were before addiction. Of course, none of us can go back in time to the person we used to be, in ANY sense of the idea. Once you have kids, you can't go back. Once you get married, it is very hard to go back. Once we lose someone very close to us, or lose a parent, it is hard to go back. Addiction, like those other things, is an experience that changes who we are.

The good news is that with buprenorphine, you don't need to be ruined by opioid dependence. But understand-- it is not the medication controlling your life-- it is opioid dependence controlling your life. I recommend you get that very clear in your head, because you can't get on track if you are struggling against the one thing that has the possibility of helping you.

I recommend that you seek the following path: Learn to stick to a stable dose of buprenorphine, stay on it for at least a year AFTER you are stable on it, and only then, CONSIDER tapering off. I have had many patients taper off buprenorphine and do well. They almost always are on it for several years-- and at that point, something happens in their minds where they have an easier time tapering. If they taper earlier, or if they are forced off, they have two battles--- the physical one and also a psychological one. But at some point, many people lose the latter, and tapering because just a physical issue where they have to deal with the fatigue and sweats.... but not the cravings.

I don't know what it is that gets them there, but I think it has to do with age, time on buprenorphine, and developing a life that has no interest in using again-- i.e. a life with other interests, maybe career or family, and no struggles with other drugs. They have healthy ways to deal with stress, and they do things that are good for them-- exercise, get on a regular sleep schedule, and hang with sober people who live the same way.

The challenge for you now is to get on track with suboxone/buprenorphine. Get disciplined about dosing-- for example NEVER take it with you-- ALWAYS leave it at home. Dose at most twice per day-- half in the AM and half in the PM. Period-- no exceptions. Have NO contact with anyone who uses or sells heroin-- no exceptions. If they use, they cannot be in your life-- even if we're talking about a parent or brother.

If you take the film, write the date on each one with a black magic marker (on the wrapper)- i.e. March 3, march 4, march 5, etc. That way if you take one from a different day, you can see that you are hurting yourself. Read up on proper dosing, and notice that many people do fine on 4 mg of suboxone per day-- so you are probably taking extra for NO REASON. Your first mission is to get on track with dosing--- and after that, developing the rest of your life.

Finally, if by some chance you never stop buprenorphine and you are still taking it twenty years from now.... That's OK. It would not be the end of the world. But you DO need to get to a point where it works for you, like it CAN work for you. Stop planning on how to stop it--- and instead, focus on how to benefit from it.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 29, 2016 6:16 am 
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Hiya Thatgirl!
I'm so glad you found this site. This site is a great resource for ppl wanting information and support.
You are lucky to receive a msg from the fabulous DR j.
He has covered the important things needed for success.
Firstly, I just want to make sure you are familiar with the "ceiling effect" with subs?
It's really helpful to understand that taking more will have no effect if you are already on a moderate dose and you may just be adding to any unwanted side effects.
Its really important to find the right dose for you and I'm wondering what that is currently?
If you are on an adequate dose, You shouldnt have any physical cravings.
If that is the case,you are left with psychological urges. Are you engaged in any other support for addiction? Meetings can be a good way to socialise and relate to ppl.
Work keeps me out of trouble also.
Hope to hear from you again,


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 29, 2016 7:03 pm 
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I juggled heroin and Suboxone for a long time. Thankfully I only once experienced severe precipitated withdrawal from Suboxone, and that was from injecting it 48 hours after using heroin.

It took many years of trying to get clean, but I'm now at a point in my recovery where I can be stable on a low dose of Suboxone and not experience any significant urges to skip doses or use heroin. I also had a couple of significant periods off maintenance altogether, doing the NA thing.

I think that, for relapsers like myself (and evidently most heroin addicts fall in this category), persistence is the key in getting eventual recovery. And staying alive of course. Once you're dead you're outta chances. No matter what keep picking yourself back up and keep trying to stay clean. And yes, I do believe Suboxone is clean. The times I've believed Suboxone to be the same as or equal to using heroin are the times I've ended up with a needle hanging out my body.

The other thing is that... if you're like me, you will find that each time you put your heart and soul into staying clean, you'll get a bit better at it. It is also something you get better at with age I believe. This is for two reasons. Addiction is progressive, and as such it gets more severe and painful the longer you use. So while you end up more dependent the longer you use, the lifestyle, health effects, alienation from family and friends etc all get worse to the point where the only option is to change. Also, each time you try to get clean, you can better identify the things that work for YOU. Recovery isn't one size-fits-all.

And you gotta stay alive. Harm minimisation has an important place with this. Try not to use alone, halve your hit after you've had a break, avoid mixing gear with benzos or other depressants.


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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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