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Help! Weakness after rapid taper
  1. #1
    brandon3993 is offline New Member
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    Default Help! Weakness after rapid taper

    Hello, I was on prescribed heavy-duty meds for 3 1/2 years, did a rapid 10-day taper and then totally quit, like this:
    5 days using 36mg Suboxone
    5 more days using just .5mg (one half of a milligram) Suboxone.
    Then quit.

    I am now Day 10, totally clean.

    Here's my 2 symptoms I need help, thoughts, opinions, advice with:

    1.) I am having "phantom" w/d symptoms in the middle of the night (skin feeling "amped up and crawling"), but as soon as I move around, it disappears.

    2.) During the day, I'm a TOTAL weakling! I just now tried washing some dishes, and I had to immediately go lay down for an hour!

    Is my weakness a normal symptom of 3/12 years heavy use? Or is it a symptom of the small amount of Suboxone?

    Thank you!!

  2. #2
    Thisweekforsure is offline Advanced Member
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    Wow that is a huge and fast drop. I am not surprised you feel terrible. I have no experience with suboxone. Maybe others who do will stop by and give advice. But from my getting off opiods, feeling extremely weak is a normal symptom. Time makes it better.

  3. #3
    Catrina is offline Diamond Member
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    Welcome!

    That might sound or seem like a small amount of sub but it's not. It's a huge amount. Sub is many, many times stronger than any other opiate (aside from methadone) and its half life is a lot longer too. The half life of short acting opiates is as few as 4-6 hours, extended release opiates around 12. The half life of subs is as much as 72 hours. Just to give you an idea of just how strong sub is, I've seen people on these boards with years long habits of 400mg/day of oxy and they are able to get stable on 4-6 mg/day of sub. Because of the long half life, the amount in your system builds rapidly. It's best to taper slowly and it's a bear to jump from until you are below .25 (1/4) of a mg/day and more people than not taper even lower than that before stopping.

    You've done incredibly well getting through 10 days. Don't throw that away. You are apt to be weak and lethargic and will probably still have trouble sleeping and being restless especially at night. Things will begin to turn around though so stay strong. What you're feeling is probably a combination of having been on high doses of opiates for a few years but I suspect the intensity and the duration is mostly due to the huge amount of sub you took. It'll turn around and will be worth every minute of it. No looking back. Just hang in there.

    Read around some of the threads here where folks post about their sub taper. You'll see that nothing you describe is surprising.

    Peace,

    Cat
    Thisweekforsure likes this.

  4. #4
    brandon3993 is offline New Member
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    Thank you for your kind words, Thisweekforsure!

    Catrina - Thank you for your super-supportive post! However, I'm wondering about when you said that 36mg of Subs is a "huge amount." Is that really true?

    I didn't mean 36mg daily -- rather, that 36mg was spread out over about 5-day-taper, stabilized (felt good) the 6th day, then quit (except for the half milligram spread over about 3 days).

    So, all in all, I used a grand total of around 36.5mg suboxone.

    Is that still a huge amount? Sorry for the repeat questions... I just SO much want this weakness to be over with! And any insight or suggestions will be so much appreciated, thank you!!!
    Catrina likes this.

  5. #5
    Iluv2smile is offline Platinum Member
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    That is a big dose..
    I thought you meant 36 mg a day too..
    But 36.5 over 5 days is better.
    Still the half life is longer than other opiates.

    But it will get better..
    Sub is strong
    Many of us used the taper on here
    And got down to
    0.125 mg and did skip days because of the half life.

    So just keep going
    It will pass
    Rember some days you just have to
    Act as if you feel ok..
    One day soon you just will!

    It is worth every single bit of pain
    To be free!
    Take care
    Bette
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  6. #6
    Catrina is offline Diamond Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by brandon3993 View Post
    Thank you for your kind words, Thisweekforsure!

    Catrina - Thank you for your super-supportive post! However, I'm wondering about when you said that 36mg of Subs is a "huge amount." Is that really true?

    I didn't mean 36mg daily -- rather, that 36mg was spread out over about 5-day-taper, stabilized (felt good) the 6th day, then quit (except for the half milligram spread over about 3 days).

    So, all in all, I used a grand total of around 36.5mg suboxone.

    Is that still a huge amount? Sorry for the repeat questions... I just SO much want this weakness to be over with! And any insight or suggestions will be so much appreciated, thank you!!!
    Well that's much better knowing it was 36mg over 5 days but yes it's still a big dose. What compounds that is the long half life of around 72 hours. So...for the sake of argument, if you took 8 mg on day 1, you may have only metabolized +/- 2mg leaving around 6mg still in your system when you dosed another 8mg on Day 2. At that point you might have had as much as 14mg in your system and continuing to add to it each day that you dosed after that. You get the picture. By the end of 5 days you have far more than whatever you took that day. Short acting opiates clear your system in around 3 days as opposed to it taking as much as a couple of weeks with sub if you took them for those 5 days only. For those who have taken them for years--well you can imagine--and that's why the best way to use subs is by taking the smallest possible dose to keep you stable and slowly and steadily reduce allowing the sub that is built up to gradually leave. Not that any of this matters for you now. You're all in and have too many days behind you to do anything but move forward.

    I know that feeling so weak really sux. I was that way too. I'd manage to get myself in the shower and by the time I was done, I had to sit wrapped in a towel to find the strength to then get dressed. Drink as much as you can. Anything will do but vitamin water, Gatorade or something else that will help to replenish electrolytes will make a difference. It's easy to become dehydrated and if that happens, it makes all of the symptoms worse. If you don't have much of an appetite, make sure the foods you do choose are healthy ones. Protein, protein, protein. Protein shakes/smoothies are a really good choice. Easy to make, they taste good and they're good for you. You can find protein powder at most grocery stores, GNC or even Walmart. I used Almond milk (less fat and calories), protein powder, fresh or frozen fruit, a little bit of raw honey and ice and blend. Sometimes in the morning I'd add 1/2 cup yogurt. Try to keep busy and keep your mind occupied. Rest when you need to.

    Have you thought about what you are going to do now to stay clean? I don't push any particular recovery program. I just know that it's important to have something in place. Meetings, therapy, something. Nothing changes without change. That much I know for sure. This can be an exciting time for us because it gives us the opportunity for a complete re-do. Many don't get that chance. Create new healthy habits. Do things for yourself and for others that will make you feel worthy.

    Please continue to post here on your thread. It really does help to share what we're going through and if you are able to inspire just one person or give the courage to just one person to face their own recovery, the few minutes it takes to drop a line here is well worth it. Read and post on others' threads too. Whatever you give, you'll get back three-fold.

    You're doing awesome. One foot in front of the other and just keep going!!

    Peace,

    Cat

  7. #7
    brandon3993 is offline New Member
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    Cat, thank you for your reply!!! Wow, lots to think about!

    I am now on Day 17 clean. Not to sound whiny, but I'm getting *extremely* p**sed off at myself because I am STILL WEAK !!! Last week, I had to REST for an hour after my shower in order to get dressed.... THIS week, I can shower AND get dressed... but then I have to rest.

    I don't understand it. Is this weakness from my 3 1/2 years of Opiates? Or is it the 36mg Subs I took over that 5-day period, seventeen days ago?

    Last night, while trying to sleep, I could swear that I could still feel those "amped-up-tingly-painful-skin/body" withdrawal symptoms. They were mild, but after 17 (seventeen) days?!?!? Those w/d symptoms should be DONE-WITH, right???

    If I were to venture a guess, maybe, just maybe, what I'm going through is my own body getting rid of the last billionth-of-a-milligram of Suboxone! And that any day now, things will get better fast.

    I sure would appreciate any thoughts, comments, corrections, or anything!
    Last edited by Anonymous; 08-26-2016 at 11:24 AM.

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