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PostPosted: Tue Feb 28, 2012 10:25 pm 
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Hello I'm on the third day of taking 4 mg of suboxone. (fifth day of taking suboxone at all, started with 2 mg)

It does it's thing taking away opiate withdrawal and opiate cravings, but the side effects are starting to freak me out. When the effect of the suboxone is at it's highest around noon, I don't get this much, rather it gets worse the later in the day it goes.
It feels like my central nervous system is on full throttle, like in the beginning of taking SSRI pills or like taking speed. I have always hated and feared the effects of both amphetamines and SSRIs although various doctors have tried such on me for my personality disorders.

1. My skin feels "tight" and my sweat feels oily and greasy rather than wet. (This happens when I have been on amphetmine too)
2. My penis "crawls up" into the body and becomes shrunken, like when you're really cold. (Also happens on amphetamine)
3. My ears are ringing really much. I have had this both when I've had bad fevers and when I've taken amphetamines and some semi-stimulant/semi-psychedelic drugs.
4. I feel like my ears are hot.
5. I can't sleep AT ALL... not even for an hour. I'm wide awake as if someone is drilling in my brain. This despite taking big doses of zolpidem to try to relax (this pill is known as Ambien in North America and Stilnoct/Stilnox in Europe)
6. My muscles are tense, not cramping though, since i can relax them when i consciously think about them, but when I think of something else I start making them tense again.
7. I feel like concentrating is very easy, normally I have huge difficulties with concentration and task execution. It feels like I'm on Amphetimes!
8. Pupils are HUGE.

All these things feel really scary... it feels like my body is just boiling over.

Could this be something else to do with me quitting a long term opiate addiction or is it the suboxone itself doing these things? I can't stand feeling so stimulated, specially i can't stand not being able to sleep at all.
Does buprenorfin increase serotonin levels?


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 29, 2012 1:44 am 
Hey there. Congratulations in taking your first step on the road to recovery! The symptoms you are describing seem like you may be feeling some withdrawal from coming off your drug of choice. If I were you, I would wait another 2-4 days, and if I still felt as awful as you're saying, I'd call the doctor.

I hope you feel better soon!


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 29, 2012 2:47 am 
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NoAlibi wrote:
Hey there. Congratulations in taking your first step on the road to recovery! The symptoms you are describing seem like you may be feeling some withdrawal from coming off your drug of choice. If I were you, I would wait another 2-4 days, and if I still felt as awful as you're saying, I'd call the doctor.

I hope you feel better soon!


Ah forgot to mention, I had already both entered and passed most withdrawal before i started. I waited 7 days before I was put on suboxone actually, in my country you have to give a negative urine test taken under surveillance before you can start, and it took 7 days for me until there was no trace left in my urine. I was in a closed addiction ward in that whole week, so no I didn't take anything at all until I was ready, and even when I was ready I had to wait for the urine to be clean. I had passed the major withdrawal after just 4 days inside there.

I am going to contact the doctor of course but they aren't available everyday, even though I have to take the suboxone at the clinic every day, but I only meet a nurse there, and often the "people out there" know just as much or even more than the doctor about what to expect and how these things work.
Also I don't think any of the things I described were part of my withdrawal, except the big pupils, but now the pupils are much bigger, there's only a trace of iris around.
The muscle thing is also not the typical weird-ache-and-crawly-feeling-in-legs-and-arms that goes with withdrawal. I've gone through withdrawal to try to quit at home without help many many times before, it is never like this.
None of the feelings are at all similar to anything I've ever had from withdrawal. They feel like being speeded and having a CNS with dial on max.


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 29, 2012 3:09 am 
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It sounds like a case of naltraxone allergy. Maybe try spittin out the excess spit, that might help. Your dr. Woukd know best, maybe he would be willing to do a subutex trial. I read your intro post and it sounds like its difficukt to even get prescribed suboxone, but if you literally can't take it then maybe subutex will be a viable option. You have to take supervised doses right? So that takes out the risk of abuse right there. I thought maybe you were having precipitated wd but after 7 days clean theres no way...maybe someone else will have a better answer for you. Good luck

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 29, 2012 5:34 am 
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StillProdigy wrote:
It sounds like a case of naltraxone allergy. Maybe try spittin out the excess spit, that might help. Your dr. Woukd know best, maybe he would be willing to do a subutex trial. I read your intro post and it sounds like its difficukt to even get prescribed suboxone, but if you literally can't take it then maybe subutex will be a viable option. You have to take supervised doses right? So that takes out the risk of abuse right there. I thought maybe you were having precipitated wd but after 7 days clean theres no way...maybe someone else will have a better answer for you. Good luck


I just came back from the clinic today, I was luckily allowed to see the doctor for a minute, I told him I thought my dose was too big or maybe too small, but most likely too big, and I told him about all these CNS-stimulation-like symptoms, and that I recognize them from when I take Racemic Amphetamine (which I used to have prescribed for ADD type symptoms when I was younger) and from taking SSRIs which I always feel really bad from taking, how they feel specially in the first week or so. So he decided to try put me on just 2 mg today, I hope that helps.

I had thought about allergy, but I'm not sure what an allergic reaction feels like, I've never been allergic to anything.
I thought allergy always comes with skin rashes, itchiness, runny nose or stuffed nose, maybe I'm wrong though. Maybe there are allergies without rash and itching and stuffed nose. Because I don't have any of those symptoms. I'll ask him about this tomorrow. Generally they've decided never to use subutex in my county (Healthcare standards and funding, and taxes are at county level here with some subsidies from national level), it's not by law it's just by healthcare regulations in this county, so I will ask the doctor if he can make an exception, because I also have headaches that I think almost certainly comes from the naloxone.

I wonder though, is buprenorphine like tramadol in the sense that it stimulates serotonin production? Because this is how I got when I tried tramadol once in my years of abusing drugs. I'm very sensitive to SSRIs and Amphetamines and other substances that mess about with the serotonin system. I'll have to ask the doctor tomorrow, he wanted to speak with me about this but we could only speak very briefly today.


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 29, 2012 11:53 am 
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I really wasn't sure about your symptoms, but then I came to the very last one: PUPILS HUGE. That leads me to believe your dose is too low. That's a classic sign of opiate withdrawals. Which is interesting because you started at a pretty low dose. I also find it terribly interesting that you feel a time in the day when the sub "effect is at its highest". If you were really stabilized on 4 mg you should have a steady level and most likely shouldn't be "feeling" any effect like you describe. It's my utterly non-medical/non-professional opinion that your dose is too low.

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 6:43 pm 
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hatmaker510 wrote:
I really wasn't sure about your symptoms, but then I came to the very last one: PUPILS HUGE. That leads me to believe your dose is too low. That's a classic sign of opiate withdrawals. Which is interesting because you started at a pretty low dose. I also find it terribly interesting that you feel a time in the day when the sub "effect is at its highest". If you were really stabilized on 4 mg you should have a steady level and most likely shouldn't be "feeling" any effect like you describe. It's my utterly non-medical/non-professional opinion that your dose is too low.


It was not withdrawal, anyway the problem is solved, it seemed I had some strange reaction the first days on 4mg. Also we solved this unevenness between times of day (maybe I have a fast metabolism of subuxone or something) by simply letting me take 2mg in the morning while watched, and bring 2mg home to take in the afternoon, this way I get more or less the same effect during the whole day, and at this point I feel just normal all times of day.
I am sensitive to that sort of stimulant feeling effect, and it makes me unable to complete ssri treatments, and also makes me not want to take my concerta pills which i am supposed to take daily. I don't know why suboxone would cause that sort of sensation, maybe I just had a fever or something at the same times as I started taking suboxone.


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 06, 2012 12:51 am 
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Sweden, I think I know what your talking about when you say you feel as if youve taken a stimulant. After taking an opiate, the initial rush has always made me "speed"..Muscles tense up, alertness, and chattering in my head.. I remember experiencing this when I first started on suboxone at 16 mg/day, and I still get it today if I take 4-8 mg at one time. Glad you found a good dose and were able to spread it out thru the day. Hope everything goes well for you, and I wish you luck.

You mentioned you have ADD, and are prescribed Concerta. I was also diagnosed with ADD years back but refused to get on a stimulant, as i didnt like the side effects that came with them. However, Ive been having issues with my ADD, forgetfulness, and just doing silly things leading me to believe my ADD has perhaps gotten worse?? Im not sure but my mind seems to be distracted at times, and my job demands attentiveness, and I messing up at work could cost my life or someone elses..
Neways, Ive been thinking about talking to my doctor about my ADD, and perhaps medicating for this reason. Ive heard concerta is not a stimulant, and was curious if I would have issues mixing suboxone and an ADD medication.


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 06, 2012 3:41 am 
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OFT wrote:
Sweden, I think I know what your talking about when you say you feel as if youve taken a stimulant. After taking an opiate, the initial rush has always made me "speed"..Muscles tense up, alertness, and chattering in my head.. I remember experiencing this when I first started on suboxone at 16 mg/day, and I still get it today if I take 4-8 mg at one time. Glad you found a good dose and were able to spread it out thru the day. Hope everything goes well for you, and I wish you luck.

You mentioned you have ADD, and are prescribed Concerta. I was also diagnosed with ADD years back but refused to get on a stimulant, as i didnt like the side effects that came with them. However, Ive been having issues with my ADD, forgetfulness, and just doing silly things leading me to believe my ADD has perhaps gotten worse?? Im not sure but my mind seems to be distracted at times, and my job demands attentiveness, and I messing up at work could cost my life or someone elses..
Neways, Ive been thinking about talking to my doctor about my ADD, and perhaps medicating for this reason. Ive heard concerta is not a stimulant, and was curious if I would have issues mixing suboxone and an ADD medication.


My doctor knows that I have a concerta prescription and he wouldn't have put me on suboxone if there were known dangers of combining the two, however I have still not dared to take them both at the same day yet. I'm supposed to take concerta all days but I don't, I only take them days when I work or have something else really important that I must try had not to screw up, and not even all such days, because I really really don't like the way they make me feel. When I was younger (like 14-15) I was prescribed racemic amphetamine (known as Adderall in the US, the bottle in Sweden looks like a white generic bottle with a sticker saying "Amfetamin 5 mg"). Those had less side effects, and helped me more, but after some year of taking those I learned that amphetamine was a "drug" (something people get high from) and I refused to take it. (I was very very anti drug taking in my teens).
I later in my 20s found many of the unused amphetamine bottles and used them now and then to help me function better in college and with daily tasks. It really helped me a lot getting things done. It did give me many similar annoying speedy side effects as concerta, but not nearly as bad, and it didn't feel "dangerous" the way it sometimes feels when I've taken concerta, feeling that something in my body is about to break, like i'll suddenly get an aneurysm or whatever.
Anyway, now that I'm an adult there is no chance that they'll prescribe it to me again anyway, they almost never prescribe it even to children, much less to adults these days.
As for the idea that concerta would not be a stimulant, I don't know what they would mean when they say that. It is. Not much to argue about there really.


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 06, 2012 8:39 am 
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Hej! That's all the swedish I know :(

It's great things worked out for you in the end. Was a strange set of symptoms especially since they induced you after you'd already detoxed... but in some way it does make sense.

How do they run the program in Sweden? How much does it cost for you?


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 06, 2012 4:11 pm 
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tearj3rker wrote:
Hej! That's all the swedish I know :(

It's great things worked out for you in the end. Was a strange set of symptoms especially since they induced you after you'd already detoxed... but in some way it does make sense.

How do they run the program in Sweden? How much does it cost for you?


The program is usually hard to get into, you need proof (by urine samples) that you've been an addict for at least 2 years. Pill addicts are generally not admitted, but I guess my case was so extreme they had to admit me, they've never had a codeine addict ever before.
The program is part of the publicly funded healthcare system, it costs mostly through taxes. But there are still fees, but they are subsidized to be very low.
It cost me some because you have to get on withdrawal in a locked ward. That costs 80 kronor (slightly less than 12 USD) per day and I was in there for the whole time monday-to-monday (8 days) that I stayed there it cost 480 kronor (~70 USD).
The meds are covered by tax money through the healthcare system, so I don't pay for the meds. If I get to a stage where I get the meds from a pharmacy and can take them home (this only is allowed if you have taken it for a year) then it costs some money but all meds are still subsidized, and after you pay a certain amount within one year you don't have to pay any more for you prescribed meds the rest of that year. But I'm supposed to get weened off subuxone before a year has passed.


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 06, 2012 9:24 pm 
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So no long-term maintenance in Sweden? That's interesting! I kinda understand the reasoning behind needing to prove addiction for 2 years, because while it prevents people getting on the program needlessly, it also sounds a bit risky? There are some new addicts who are incredibly high risk of harm to self/others.

Do many people abuse Sub in Scandinavia like people say? I've heard that many prefer buprenorphine to heroin up there?

Here in Aus we have free detoxes run by charities such as the Salvation Army, Uniting Church. They receive some public funding. I did a number of detoxes for no $. Thank God for the Salvos! Of course there's the private ones which cost like $1500 a DAY, mainly covered by private insurance.

I have to pay $5 AUD per day for my Sub, regardless of what dose I am on. And I go to the pharmacy around 3 days a week now.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 07, 2012 7:53 am 
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tearj3rker wrote:
So no long-term maintenance in Sweden? That's interesting! I kinda understand the reasoning behind needing to prove addiction for 2 years, because while it prevents people getting on the program needlessly, it also sounds a bit risky? There are some new addicts who are incredibly high risk of harm to self/others.

Do many people abuse Sub in Scandinavia like people say? I've heard that many prefer buprenorphine to heroin up there?

Here in Aus we have free detoxes run by charities such as the Salvation Army, Uniting Church. They receive some public funding. I did a number of detoxes for no $. Thank God for the Salvos! Of course there's the private ones which cost like $1500 a DAY, mainly covered by private insurance.

I have to pay $5 AUD per day for my Sub, regardless of what dose I am on. And I go to the pharmacy around 3 days a week now.


There is long term maintenence, but you have to fail and relapse after time based suboxone treatments a few times before they decide to put you on long term maintenence or put you on methadone.
Yes the 2 year thing does cause harm, specially because it requires 2 years of PROVED drug use. So if you just come to an addiction clinic and say "I've been using heroin for 10 years" then you can't get on any substitution program, unless you have given them a positive drug test at least two years earlier. But even if you can prove that you have taken a positive drug test over 2 years ago, you most often have to try some abstinence based treatments a few times first and only if you still relapse after several tries (which of course almost all opiate addicts going into abstinence based treatments do), then you can be eligable to try to get on a substitution based treatment.
However if you screw up and relapse during a substitution based treatment, the treatment will most likely be terminated and you will not be allowed to apply for treatment for a year. Which is really backwards from how things ought to work. There are some really good doctors who care a lot and will work hard to try get you back on the treatment, but most just follow the regulations that say that a patient who relapses during treatment must be dismissed from the treatment and banned from trying it again for a year.
The Swedish drug policy is officially opposed to harm reduction methods of any type, we are the only western country that doesn't have needle exchanges for example, even in Iran they have needle exchanges but nope not in Sweden.
"It should be hard to be a drug user" is the official line. We do have some of the lowest rates of drug use in Europe, but still we have some of the highest rates of drug related deaths.
All parties from left to right in the Swedish parliament write in their party programs that they oppose the idea of harm reduction, and they even try to push this Swedish way of what they think is "tough love" on the EU community. When ever there is a vote about some drug related issue in the EU, Sweden is ALWAYS on the side of more restriction, less chances to try harm reduction methods, less chances to increase substitution treatments and so on. If we weren't in the EU and had to follow various EU rules about human rights and health care standards, we probably wouldn't even have allowed substitution treatments.

You asked if people abuse sub here, yes they do. I've been offered to buy it a number of times, never wanted it though. I've never heard anyone say that it would be better than heroin or better than any other regularly used opiates and opioids.
The opiate addiction scene here is almost entirely heroin. There pill market for painkillers is very small, and is almost entirely about tramadol. There are people like me who buy foreign codeine pills online, but it's a very small part of the opiate problem, and most people who buy those are heroin addicts who are trying to quit or stay low for a while. My doctor said he had never had a patient who had codeine as his main addiction to such a degree that it would even require the patient to stay for detox, never mind substitution treatment.
The reason why this part of the opiate problem is so small here is probably that there is very little problem of overprescription of pain meds here, actually it's probably the other way around, the idea that you would take anything stronger than paracetamol for things like having your wisdom teeth removed or a gall bladder surgery seems very strange here, the use of addictive pain meds is very very restrictive. Also we never had those over-the-counter codeine-mixture pills like you had until some year ago in Australia.

I know about that because I was in Melbourne three times in 2009-2010, and the way I didn't go into complete withdrawal every time I went there, was because I would taper down my dose the weeks before traveling, bring a reasonable therapeutic dose travel matching the time I was to stay, that no customs would ever bother with (even though they did ask me once what I took it for), even though that's just like half a day's use for my normal level of consumption. And then while I was there, buy plenty of those mixture pills, even though it's a super-tiny dose in each. It's a bit scary because they're all mixed with dangerous substances, but my liver is healthy, and I'm not prone to bleeding so I was not afraid.
But since I took the maximum safe dose of the paracetamol+codein pills, plus the max safe dose of ibuprofen+codeine pills, plus one of those 25 mg pills that I brought from home every day, at least I didn't go into any major withdrawal and was able to enjoy my time there. A friend there told me recently though that they have stopped selling those over the counter pills now because of the widespread addiction they cause.


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 16, 2012 4:47 pm 
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I'm sorry, but learning about the drug treatment rules and regulations in Sweden just left me absolutely exhausted! Yikes. I am thankful to have the type of program that I do in California.
A couple things: First, to the person who asked about the safety of stimulant use while on Buprenorphine- I am not a medical professional and only speaking from experience so there's my disclaimer from here out, but- YES stimulants can and are used while a person is in Sub treatment. There are a whole plethora of reasons a doctor WOULDN'T do it, primarily being because it is an addictive substance and that is generally avoided while in treatment, but it depends who you are and who your doctor is. However, it is safe!
To the OP: I was curious to know about your active addiction; i.e. your DOC, how much you used, etc.? You might have already said it so I apologized if I missed something.


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 16, 2012 6:07 pm 
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bella468 wrote:
I'm sorry, but learning about the drug treatment rules and regulations in Sweden just left me absolutely exhausted! Yikes. I am thankful to have the type of program that I do in California.
A couple things: First, to the person who asked about the safety of stimulant use while on Buprenorphine- I am not a medical professional and only speaking from experience so there's my disclaimer from here out, but- YES stimulants can and are used while a person is in Sub treatment. There are a whole plethora of reasons a doctor WOULDN'T do it, primarily being because it is an addictive substance and that is generally avoided while in treatment, but it depends who you are and who your doctor is. However, it is safe!
To the OP: I was curious to know about your active addiction; i.e. your DOC, how much you used, etc.? You might have already said it so I apologized if I missed something.


About the stimulant thing, I never used stimulants as a drug on my own, but I have had amphetamine prescribed and now I have concerta prescribed, but I have a hard time taking it, because it makes me feel so awful. I didn't take anthing like that when I had all those things I described in the first post, I just meant it FELT like I was on speedy drugs. I only take the when I really really need to have a day of not screwing things up, even though I'm supposed to take it every day that I go to school/work, but I just feel too bad from it to take it that often, even if it might help me function better.
I seem to be very sensitive to any sort of stimulant effects, even SSRIs make me speeded and my pupils get so big that there is almost no iris left, and my muscles cramp and spasm and i find it hard to swallow liquids, and i feel really anxious, but I also do function better as in getting daily tasks done, so oon the outside I look like I feel better cus I can be more presentable and more productive, but I actually feel worse from all such things and I hate taking them.

The speedy effects that I got in the first days of taking the suboxone stopped after just some days, and I don't get them anymore. However I had a problem with very big anxiety and panic in the evenings (I think not related to the suboxone thing really) and big urge to take benzoes or something like that to calm me down, so they asked me which SSRI/SNRI I had the least bad reaction to, and I said Cymbalta, and they put me on that. Now I've been on that for three days and I am super speeded and it feels horrible, my eyes look like I'm on shrooms, there is almost no iris visible around the pupils, and my head feels like there is an icicle stuck inside it, and my ears are ringing and my face is blushed and my legs are cramping. But this is the start phase, you always get bad side effects the first weeks on these meds, I just seem to get them really bad, I'm really sensitive to any type of CNS stimulation it seems. So now I feel even more like taking benzoes, and I'm really scared that if I do and they find out that I did, they'll terminate me from the program, but I did now anyway this evening because my cramps were so bad and it felt so dangerous and I had such anxiety I just couldn't stand it anymore.

Anyway about your question about my drug of abuse (I think that was what you asked) I don't know the abbreviations like DOC or OP, but I mainly used codeine, in my bad periods I used something like 1000 mg twice a day, which is equal to about 90 mg of morphine, twice a day so 180 mg of morphine a day, which is a lot. I also tried using actual morphine pills and I used oxycodone at times, but I always felt I liked codeine more even though it's supposedly a "weaker" drug, even though that depends of course on how much you take. The good thing with codeine though is that after 800 mg in most people, and about 1000 mg in me, you don't get an increased effect since the liver can't convert any more to morphine, this limit varies a lot between people since it has to do with how much of the CYP P-450 enzyme called CYP2D6 you have available, and this varies a lot between ethnic groups but also even just from person to person within even a family. In the last year I didn't take that much (never more than 350 mg in a single dose, and never more than 500 mg per day) and I gave all the codeine I bought to my parents who'd lock it up in a safe and give me a certain dose every day and make it lower and lower, however when I got too low, I'd relapse and secretly buy some more, then I'd do the whole thing over again, in the end I decided to seek help to quit the codeine addiction.

I also abused the sleeping pill zolpidem (brand name in america is Ambien) a lot, this is not an opiate or related in anyway to opiates, it works similarly to benzoes, binds to GABA but much more specifically to GABAa, and doesn't feel much like a benzo to me. I don't perticularly like benzoes, I find them useful for managing anxiety and I have boughtthem illegally but I was never addicted to them, but to zolpidem I was very much addicted and I took it as an anxiety pill even though it's meant to be a sleeping pill. Some people get really strange effects from zolpidem and I did too in the beginning but now I just feel calm from taking them, it helps anxiety so much better than benzoes for me.

I was always open to my family and to doctors and others with a right to know, about my addiction problems, I think that helped how quickly I got help after asking for it, and how they trusted me with bring home some of my pills (not the suboxone though) so quickly, cus I always tell them the truth, sometimes I feel like a fool for tellling everyone the truth because it often isn't in my best interest, I'm just really childish and simpleminded when it comes to morals of right and wrong, I often regret it but in this case I think it has helped me more than it has hurt me.


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