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PostPosted: Fri Oct 25, 2013 12:33 am 
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Hi guys!
My names Sarah, I am a 27 yr old student, and I very new to this forum. I have only recently posted something, but as of the previous week... there is something going on in my life that I have been keeping to myself and desperately need advice from my fellow addict community! This "issue" has caused me no small amount of confusion, and debate, and I feel very alone right now...
I have been on Suboxone for going on 4 yrs now, but my addiction isn't just with pain pills- to be honest it more had to do with "speed" like drugs. Thankful I never went as far down the rabbit hole as to try meth (the real deal in the upper world), however I did spend about 2 years of hell experimenting with Adderall. These orange pills were the devil, and while they began as a study aid (I was diagnosed with ADD in 2007- but then again, who doesn't have some form of ADD these days?!). The first few months on Adderall my life drastically improved. I had energy through the roof, I was social and confidant, but best of all, my grades stayed at a steady rate of 4.0 for an entire year! I balanced work full time and also juggeld 5-6 classes, something that would have been impossible without the Adderall.
Well, as we are all very much aware, something that seems too good to be true, usually is. And my addict mind didn't take long before deciding, "well, if I feel THIS good taking 1 pill a day, why not just take 2 or 3..or even 4?" Within no time, I was chopping up those pills and snorting them with a straw, taking anywhere from 100mg to 200mg a day!!! I went from a social butterfly, and a 4.0 student with incredible ambition and drive...to a hallow empty shell I no longer recognized. I'd lock myself in my bedroom for days, doing nothing and everything- moving around furniture, scrapbooking, writing stories and song lyrics,...staying up for days and without food, water, or any kind of communication with the outside world. Of course after exstended periods of time not sleeping, my mind began to play tricks on me (I am now aware years later I was going through something called amphetamine psychosis- terrifying, to say the least!)...I remember feeling like I had bugs, literally BUGS, crawling out of my ears, so I would spend hours messing with my skin and sticking tweezers inside my ear drum, hoping to get them out!
Anyways, eventually I sought treatment for the Adderall and pain pill addiction but it seemed while in rehab they were more interested and focused on the opied addiction. At one point, I even seen a doctor who insisted you could not physically become addicted to Adderall, and that within 3 days (and some good, solid REM sleep) I would be just fine. So, I was put on Suboxone, something my mom was incredibly confused about b/c I hadn't even USED pain pills in the weeks leading up to rehab. The downers only became a fall back when I was going through the Addie come down (awful, awful, awful experience I wish on NO ONE!).
Cut to 4 years down the road, and 4 years of sobriety (besides one little slip I had during finals week last year, but thankfully I was smart enough to realize how much I now hated that speedy high and never sought them out again). I feel very solid and confidant in my recovery, but recently I have been experiencing SEVERE boughts of fatigue... I'm talking, so tierd I am sleeping anywhere from 10-12 hours every single night, taking naps during the day, and actually looking forward to coming home after work just to hit the pillow. I seen a doctor last month and he did some blood work, checked my thyroid levels, etc. Things came back fine, so I went to see a specialist in Miami and did one of those sleep studies. It was there that I was diagnosed with CFS- chronic fatigue syndrome. I felt such a weight off my shoulders just KNOWING this fatigue was not in my head. If I had a freakin dollar for everytime a friend, family member, or my boyfriend said to me, "just eat healthier, work out more," I would be one rich woman!!
Problem is, now that I am diagnosed, what is the next step to take in order to live a "normal" life? I began doing exstensive research on line for days and days, looking into stimulants, and vitamins, and diets, and everything in between. I read thousands of blogs and stories from people suffering with CFS and fibro and narcolepsy. I asked my Suboxone doctor as well during my next visit, "do you think the Suboxone could be the reason I am so tierd all the time?" And he assured me that if anything, the medicine would be giving me more energy, more of an uppity feeling vs anything else. I agree with him bc after 4 yrs on this stuff, I come to realize the taking the films are about the only time I DO feel awake and alert (unfortunately that feeling goes away shortly after I swallow the medicine).
So, my question is this... I read about a new drug called Nuvigil. It is stimulant like, and promotes wake-fullness, prescribed specifically for people with CFS and narcelopsy. And although it is not in the amphetamine family, and has no history of abuse or addiction within its patients, I still have SOME doubts.
I was able to get a prescription for 150mg of Nuvigil (30 of them) and thankfully, they were free- the 1st script anyway. I thought to myself, this will just be a trial run, and began taking them as prescribed last Thursday (so today will be 7 days). I felt nothing at first, besides a teeny tiny jolt of energy, and was extremely disappointed. It wasn't until day 4 that the side effects disappeared (shitty side effects include migrane like head ache, and joint pain), and I was able to get through my whole day without the desire to nap. Best thing about Nuvigil: no come down or crash! If you forget to take it in the morning, its more like oh well, rather than an obsession to run back home and grab it.
It wasn't until day 5 that I felt the medicine kick in just like a small dose of Adderall would. My mind began scattering, and I started kicking into high gear- doing dishes, cleaning the house, going from this task to that task. I liked it, and this is what scares me. It was in no way as strong and powerful and euphoric, the way the Adderall was, but an upper is an upper. I am releaved there is something out there to help treat my CFS, but I don't want to go down that same road- a road I know all too well can only lead to pain, loneliness, and misery.
Is anyone out there also taking any kind of stimulant to help with ADD or fatigue? I would love to hear your experience... And I know this is a sight based around Suboxone use, but I didn't know where else to turn. I'm confused...do I continue suffering through each and every day struggeling to keep my eyes open? Or do I give this "miracle drug" (that's what people have coined it) a real try and see where it leads- with extreme caution of course.
Any thoughts would mean more than you know!!


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 27, 2013 11:03 pm 
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Since no one has yet to respond, maybe I'll expand the question a bit (like my last forum). That seems to help.
Is anyone currently taking anything else combined with their Suboxone, whether it be for ADD or chronic fatigue? If so... do you feel this is "using".
I have been taking the Nuvigil medication for about 2 weeks now, and can feel its effects kind of "evening out". It gives me that jolt to get up out of bed and get through my day, which right now is a God send! But like I mentioned, I had such problems with Adderall/amphetamines in the past that I'm very skeptical taking anything that gives me false or artificial energy.
Did anyone else experience problems in their using days when it comes to the upper family of drugs? I know most of us on this forum were pain pill/downer specific but if anyone had other addictions I would love to hear any input/experience/story you'd be willing to share!

Thanks so much guys. Hope everyone has a nice Halloween this week :)


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 28, 2013 10:42 am 
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Hi, I Here you. I really do. I am an addict, I am on bup. and have been since suboxone was out. 3 years ago I was prescribed Adderall & Serqoquel.

Like you my life changed so drastically it was astonishing to myself and all around me, even when I stopped the daily life an addict has and started to ask myself what to do now, I have money, I now have friends again, etc.. Something was off, missing, that empty hole. So I sought a Psychiatrist help.

He is a great doctor, he cares, and he diagnosed me with ADHD/Bi-Polar. This is quit commmon in addicts I was told. I was 11 or so when the teachers at my school started to tell my parents that I was problematic. I wouldnt care waht they where saying or do my work, as I couldnt keep to 1 thing for even 20 minutes. I was prone to mood swings, somtimes none at all other times up down all damn day. Move forward to 15 and my family physiciaN told my parents I needed medication I was this new word going around "add" my parents are hesiotant to take an aspirin let alone the scary controlled substance, so when the doc told them it was, that wat thhe end of that. So when I finally got onto 1 I knew that they where right, my parents wrong. It still makes me wonder how my life would have been if I got the needed treatment. I think I would not have left school at 10th grade, and 15 or 16 years old. I know it actually..

In the first year year and a half of taking it, I gave myslef an education in network security and IT. I learned and got certified in Linux (multiple certs.) I learned database intrusion detection and security.,, I was MS certifited in half the time it usually takes. I could conetrate so well ands absorb the knowledge with ease, it weas truly remarkable..

I did all that in a year and like you I maintained perferct scores. I even on the side taught myself bash scripting. Then it stopped working...

I thought maybe if i took 1/2 more, 1 more, 2, now 3, shit im taking 4-5 30mg adderall's when I wake up, that is after my body just shuts down from lack of sleep afterf a few days. Then I would eat another 1 at lunch and 1 more aorund 4pm. The worst is whn I learned how well my other med put me to sleep no matter if I was on 200mg of it and tweaked out. Thats when I justified it to myself.

I was shattered. I was doing the same shit I did when I was running around trying to scrape a few bucks up for a vicodin but in a different way. I guess what I am saying is that although I didnt seek out meth or adderall on the streets I was acting like I was but I knew I am an addict and I shoud have known better, any drug that gets me high or any sense of euphoria i will abuse...

I stopped the circle of it, it was hard, but I knew from my many years of the mary go round that "This to shall pass". I told my doctor about it, I felt he should know he is to good of a doc to loose over it. He took me off the Adderall and gave me Strattera.

Strattera is not a narcotic and doesnt stimulate me or get me high, however it woks very well at helping me concentrate. I was back, I was getting firther educated, and it has turned it around again.

My adivce to you is take it from an old timer, this to shall pass. Just hold tight and know tomorrow is 1 more day. The depression that comes from stopping Adderall will fade, your mood will improve. Try asking about non stimulating add therapy.


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 28, 2013 7:23 pm 
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I wish I could help, Sarah. I haven't responded because I don't have any real experience in this area.
I guess you could say I am kind of in a similar boat. Opiates have always given me the energy I needed to get through the day and perform at my best. Now that I am off all opiates completely, suboxone included, I am learning to figure out other ways to get that energy sparked. It's tough though; it really is. Me and "uppers" don't work. It's not my cup of tea (other than coffee :wink: ) so I don't have that option nor do I have any experience with it. Things have gotten better for me gradually but I don't feel like I'm all there yet.

Hopefully you get some other replies in addition to hpchris. Good luck!


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 28, 2013 9:07 pm 
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SarahW504 wrote:
Since no one has yet to respond, maybe I'll expand the question a bit (like my last forum). That seems to help.
Is anyone currently taking anything else combined with their Suboxone, whether it be for ADD or chronic fatigue? If so... do you feel this is "using".
I have been taking the Nuvigil medication for about 2 weeks now, and can feel its effects kind of "evening out". It gives me that jolt to get up out of bed and get through my day, which right now is a God send! But like I mentioned, I had such problems with Adderall/amphetamines in the past that I'm very skeptical taking anything that gives me false or artificial energy.
Did anyone else experience problems in their using days when it comes to the upper family of drugs? I know most of us on this forum were pain pill/downer specific but if anyone had other addictions I would love to hear any input/experience/story you'd be willing to share!

Thanks so much guys. Hope everyone has a nice Halloween this week :)


I wouldn't be too concerned about whether others consider you taking the armodafinil you are prescribed as 'using' or not. So long as you are taking it as prescribed, you should be fine. You should tell your doctor how it is working for you, any side effects you have, and also let them know about your history with amphetamine abuse if you haven't already. With your history though, it is important to make sure you are extra careful. If you live with someone, you might want to consider asking them to hold onto the medication for you so that they can give them to you only when you are supposed to take them? Just an idea.

I hope this new medication helps you with your CFS symptoms and you can get back to feeling normal again. It is definitely a promising drug. Good luck!

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 31, 2013 12:43 am 
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Aw thank you guys- really! I get such a natural high coming on here to discover that people have not only read MY story/post, but took the time out of their day to respond. So heartfelt (and right now, I could use outsiders input more than EVER).

HP Chris- your experience was extremely interesting me,...I read your post several times. I agree with you about wondering what life could have been HAD your parents put you on ADHD medications when you were young. There are so many misconceptions about this disorder, and countless beliefs about ADD and ADHD being "made up" or an excuse to go to the doc and get "legal speed". And although there are those out there who do seek out Adderall and other similar medications, I too have always had the same troubles concentrating and staying motivated and on task. Its like you know the potential is in you somewhere, but there is this brick wall up, blocking all that from coming out of you!
....I was wondering.... my doctor spoke to me about non stimulant ADD meds last week, and Stratera was actually one of the main ones we discussed. Would you mind sharing with me your experience with it? For example, how is it different than the effects of Adderall- and also, how is it the same? Is this something you would recommend for a person struggeling with fatigue (does it promote wakeful-ness I mean)?


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 01, 2013 9:47 pm 
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Hi Sarah. I hope things are going well with your new medication. (Nuvigil)

As you said, Strattera is non-stimulant ADD medication, and from what I have read it seems ADD is the only condition it is approved for. So I don't know well it would help with chronic fatigue, though it does say insomnia is a common side effect. Tiredness and fatigue is also a possible side effect, so... I guess it could go either way. It does sound like Strattera would be a good option as an ADD medication for someone with a history of stimulant abuse. There are two studies on PubMed that showed monkeys will not self-administer Strattera (atomoxetine), which means it likely has a low abuse potential and it lacks those stimulant effects you would get from a stimulant like Adderall. (I didn't post links to the studies as I don't know how you feel about monkeys being experimented on, but they are actually real studies and they can be found by searching 15283948 or 15526000 on PubMed)

I am sorry I can't help you out more with your questions as I have limited experience with these types of medications. So mostly all I can tell you if just based off what I have read. If you aren't getting many responses here you can always try a Google search as I am sure there is tons helpful information out there.

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