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Trying to get off opiates
  1. #1
    Nolongerfooled is offline Junior Member
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    Default Trying to get off opiates

    My relationship with opiates started 20 years ago. I was working in a hospital and knew the dangers of narcotics, I'm an RN. I was having a lot of neck pain and my doc prescribed lortab. No biggie I only took them as prescribed. So I was diagnosed with collapsed discs in my neck and more powerful narcotics followed. I saw many many doctors but was not a surgical candidate. So more narcotics. At the most I was taking 300 mg/ day of OxyContin. My doctor told me I would not get addicted as long as I took it as prescribed. HA, what a misinformed person. I have finally decided I wanted to stop being a slave to the pills. I am off the oxys and tapering down with norco . I'm on my 3 day of 2 -7.5 norcos , tomorrow I go to 1 /day for 4 days then 1 every other day then stop. I feel better today than yesterday because I finally slept some last night. Can anyone tell me if the worst is over or will it hit me when I finally stop everything. When I asked my doctor about getting off the narcotics he ask me why? Why? Then he asked me if I thought I could do without them, I told I was sure gonna try!

  2. #2
    Hamscraps is offline Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nolongerfooled View Post
    My relationship with opiates started 20 years ago. I was working in a hospital and knew the dangers of narcotics, I'm an RN. I was having a lot of neck pain and my doc prescribed lortab. No biggie I only took them as prescribed. So I was diagnosed with collapsed discs in my neck and more powerful narcotics followed. I saw many many doctors but was not a surgical candidate. So more narcotics. At the most I was taking 300 mg/ day of OxyContin. My doctor told me I would not get addicted as long as I took it as prescribed. HA, what a misinformed person. I have finally decided I wanted to stop being a slave to the pills. I am off the oxys and tapering down with norco . I'm on my 3 day of 2 -7.5 norcos , tomorrow I go to 1 /day for 4 days then 1 every other day then stop. I feel better today than yesterday because I finally slept some last night. Can anyone tell me if the worst is over or will it hit me when I finally stop everything. When I asked my doctor about getting off the narcotics he ask me why? Why? Then he asked me if I thought I could do without them, I told I was sure gonna try!
    I give you kudos for weaning down and deciding to do without the pills!! I'm on Day 8 of a cold turkey withdrawal from 70-90 mgs of oxycodone for my back. I'm trying to manage pain with prescription NSAIDs.

    There are many people on here with experience with weaning and going cold turkey. I personally couldn't wean myself so I jumped at about 40-50mgs for a few days. Honestly the experience was built up in my mind to be worse than it actually was. It took about 3 days of feeling like I had the flu. Fourth and Fifth days were more mental. Six, seven and eight days now and I'm much better. I only took one day off from babysitting and had my third day scheduled off.

    Do you have a schedule in place for your jump day?
    Last edited by Anonymous; 08-14-2016 at 09:59 AM. Reason: wrong word

  3. #3
    Iluv2smile is offline Platinum Member
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    Yes most Drs don't have a clue..
    They are getting a quick lesson from the DEA when
    All the restrictions are being put on them..

    But I don't think you are completely out of the woods yet..

    It may not be as bad as cold turkey but just having opiates in your system
    Prevents your brain from producing its own endorphins..

    Can you just stop now?
    Many people on here have gone cold turkey and are through the wort 3-5 days ..
    Because your dose is so low those 3-5 days will probaly be mild..

    Plus you really can't assess your pain accurately while on opiates..

    I am 20 months clean and have more pain now than I have ever had..
    I am a RN also ICU so very physical ..


    But excedrin
    Motrin
    Exercise
    All work better than any opiate ever did!

    The pain won't kill me
    But the pills will..

    Plus the pain is not 24/7
    Taking pills was..

    Research rebound pain ..
    And
    The Thomas Receipe on here minus the benzo..
    Are supplements that Many of us used ..
    I still take ..

    Laughing
    Exercise
    Sex
    Extra protein
    Feeling proud

    All things that force the brain to produce its own feel good chemicals..

    Do a little research on the brain on opiates..

    Interesting info!

    I will post the Thomas Receipe for you..

    Please keep posting it really does help!
    Plus you give others hope .

    That is the secret to staying clean!
    It truly is a gift in this day when there is such an opiate addiction epidemic..

    You will be ok!

    Take care
    Bette


    Here it is!

    https://www.drugs.com/forum/featured...Thomas+Receipe
    Last edited by Anonymous; 08-14-2016 at 11:00 AM.

  4. #4
    Nolongerfooled is offline Junior Member
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    Thank you! I need all the encouragement I can get. This is all very new to me. As far as a jump date it's 3 days from now. I went to one pill yesterday and had a rough night. My husband is also stopping his Norco at the same time so we are trying to support each other.
    Good luck with your path. Your tougher than I am , I can't do cold turkey. Stay strong.
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  5. #5
    Catrina is offline Diamond Member
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    Welcome!

    I am 20 months clean and have more pain now than I have ever had..
    I am a RN also ICU so very physical ..


    That's a part of Bette's post. She's pretty incredible! Just wanted to take the liberty of editing this sentence though. I know from having followed Bette for a few years that she meant to say that she has less pain now than when she was using. I also know this because it's most certainly true for me too.

    I agree with Bette. You're on such a low dose now that I doubt it's doing you much good in terms of pain control and only delaying the start of your physical recovery. Can you consider just stopping? The mental part of it at this point is apt to be worse than the physical. You may be a bit lethargic but not necessarily. You've come a long way, Baby! I really think what's left for you is just finishing to break the habit. The habit of taking something.

    Are you sleeping OK? How long did it take you to get down to 15mg/day? I'm curious to know that because it does make a difference if you tapered over months and months (or years) or if you did this over a few weeks. My advice, however is the same however long it's taken you to get this far. If you'll feel better mentally to reduce one more time to 1 7.5 pill a day, then do that. BUT there is absolutely no reason to begin to take one every other day. Really! I can't think of a single reason to do that except to give yourself permission to take one. I'm not saying that in a mean way. I totally understand why you would want to do that. It's like a safety net knowing that if you can get through that day without one, you can take one the next. I promise the best way to finish this up is to just stop.

    You can probably expect for it to take some time to get some regular sleep patterns back but it won't start to happen without being completely opiate free. We just have to let our brains wake up and begin to produce it's own feel good chemicals. I, just like Bette can attest to the fact that with a little bit of time, my pain was and is better controlled with Excedrin for headaches and Aleve for back pain. Again, just like Bette suggested, find and read about rebound pain. Long term opiate use simply doesn't work. Period. They are sometimes necessary short term post surgery or for an injury, but long term they just stop working and cause so many other physical issues.

    I hope you continue to post updates. You'll get support and you can offer your support based on experience to others here that could really use it. You're not the only nurse among us. Actually I've seen dozens of them since I joined this Forum and there's a few still actively posting now.

    Update us. Hope we helped in some way.

    Peace,

    Cat

  6. #6
    Nolongerfooled is offline Junior Member
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    I wish I could cold turkey but I am following my doctor 's plan and for me I think it's the right thing. However I only took one yesterday so I may put them down in 2 days for good. Yes I have found I have all kinds of aches and pains the opaites were hiding. I have been reading other post and saw the Thomas recipe. I will pickup some more of the supplements. Thank you for your kind words and encouragement. I will do more research!

  7. #7
    Nolongerfooled is offline Junior Member
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    I am not sleeping well at all the RLS is bad. I weaned from 300mg/day to 60mg/day over a period of several months, maybe 3 months due to my doctor closing her office and going to work for the military. She left me twisting in the breeze so I started weaning down while looking for a new doctor. The new doctor thought I was taking way too much and cut me down to 30 mgtwice a day. I was on that for another 3 months. Then I weaned down to 30 mg/ day and from there to where I am now . So I did it over a period of several months with no ill effects. I have not found anything that doesn't require an rx for my RLS. So I am exercising, getting out every day and pushing through. I will beat this dragon!

  8. #8
    Iluv2smile is offline Platinum Member
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    Thank you Cat
    I meant less pain..

    It is controlled by excedrin or Motrin..
    My dr prescribed Meloxicam (?) it is a 1 time a day Motrin..

    I usually forget to take it but on the days that I do ..
    It really seams to work..

    Have you tried Hylands Restless leg over the counter med that lots of people have tried
    And day it works great..

    Bette

  9. #9
    Smilingstorm is offline Senior Member
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    Welcome to the boards. You are in very good hands with those that replied. They know their stuff! Just wanted to let you know one thing that was said above.. I am in less pain now than I was while taking my pills. Actually, it's kind of hard to really articulate how much my mind has jumped from "pain" always to only thinking of pills without the horrendous pain.

    Anyone know the science on this?

    So many of us went cold turkey. Very grateful I did. Prolonged WD would be very difficult!
    Last edited by Anonymous; 08-14-2016 at 05:18 PM.
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  10. #10
    Smilingstorm is offline Senior Member
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    Can I ask one question? Do you want to go off of all opiates? Are you done?

    I am just rereading. Not judging or trying to be intrusive. But it helps us help you if we know your intent. Are you weaning and tapering because your doctor is making you? Trust me, we all have been there. Either that or money, connections and legal issues bring us here. I'm just trying to understand your mindset. Also, can you expand on the norco use for your spouse? Are you both wanting to go clean?

    Sincerely,
    Stormy
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  11. #11
    Iluv2smile is offline Platinum Member
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    Stormy
    My answer about the always pain is strange ..
    When I was using pills I was always thinking or looking for pain because
    I could justify taking a pill or 4.. Lol

    Now if I have pain my first inclination is to get up and move around..
    So there is really no mental payoff in me having pain
    So I seem to have less!

    I still have pain!
    But it won't kill me!

    The pills will ..
    Maybe not today
    But I would loose everything I have worked my a$$ off for!

    I finally know that in my heart of hearts!
    Just not worth the risk!

    Plus I love my life!
    Not oerfect but I can change the things I don't like..
    When I was on opiates the things I could change
    We're dependant on my mood that day
    Which was dependant on my pill intake ..

    Far to many variables..
    Today
    Only 1 requirement !
    Stay clean!
    I can definitely do that!
    Bette
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  12. #12
    Smilingstorm is offline Senior Member
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    Amen, Bette! I hear you! It's so odd how I was in more pain or as you say, searching for the pain to justify the pill. Back surgery, multiple knee surgeries kept me thinking nothing else would work. Actually, I had a rheumatologist try to explain it to me.. But I didn't listen. She wasn't writing the script anymore so I tuned her out. She was so right! Hindsight.

    Sorry to take over your post. I'm fairly a newbie and and find it very interesting that I am only understanding this now!
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  13. #13
    Nolongerfooled is offline Junior Member
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    Smiling storm Yes I want to go off all opiates, that is my goal. My doctor recommended this plan and he knows me pretty well. I actually asked him to help me get off the pills. He was perfectly happy writing scripts. My husband has been prescribed Norco for 6 years I think 4-6/ day the 10/325 and he is having other side effects like low T and kidney stones so he wants off opiates too. I know it may sound odd and even unrelated but it is related. We both want to be free of the hassle of numerous doc visits, being made to feel like a criminal and finding a drug store that can/ fill the script. We travel full time in a 5th wheel and opiates keep us tethered to our home state. We want to be gone for months at a time not weeks. Hope this better explains my situation.

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    Nolongerfooled is offline Junior Member
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    Had a weird thing happen today and was wondering if it's normal. I was just sitting with friends watching tv and I got a really hard muscle spasm in my chest. It was so painful I could barely breathe and lasted about 12-15 minutes. It has stopped now but was kinda scary. Anyone had problems with muscle spasms in their chest?

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    Nolongerfooled is offline Junior Member
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    Bette I will try to find some Hylands tomorrow. Do you know where to get it? CVS? GNC?

  16. #16
    Iluv2smile is offline Platinum Member
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    CVS or Walmart .
    I hope it will help ..
    Cuz RLS sux..
    I had it before ..
    Take care
    Bette
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  17. #17
    Nolongerfooled is offline Junior Member
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    Had a good night last night. I actually slept and no RLS, yeah! Today I am stopping my taper. Today is the day I stop completely. I wish I could say my husband is doing as well. The RLS finally hit him and it's taking a toll. However he is going to one pill today. We ARE kicking this demon!
    Last edited by Anonymous; 08-15-2016 at 09:44 AM.

  18. #18
    Thisweekforsure is offline Advanced Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nolongerfooled View Post
    Had a weird thing happen today and was wondering if it's normal. I was just sitting with friends watching tv and I got a really hard muscle spasm in my chest. It was so painful I could barely breathe and lasted about 12-15 minutes. It has stopped now but was kinda scary. Anyone had problems with muscle spasms in their chest?
    If that happens again get a full glass of water, not too cold, approximately room temperature and drink it down. If the pain immediately stops it was an esophageal spasm. If it does not stop go straight to the ER.

    If it stops it is still a good idea to mention it to your doctor next time you see him, or if it doesn't happen again, still tell your doctor soon. Episodes of severe chest pain always need to be investigated to rule out cardiac problems.

  19. #19
    Nolongerfooled is offline Junior Member
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    Thisweekforsure. Thank you. I didn't think about it but I have trouble with my esophagus and spasms, they have never been as painful as this was. In my experience you can drink or eat anything if that's what it is. I have had a complete cardiac work up not long ago. That is why I didn't think it was my heart. Thank for the input.
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  20. #20
    Smilingstorm is offline Senior Member
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    Hi! Congratulations on day 1! You can do this! I promise. It's not going to be a walk in the park.. But it isn't half as bad as we make it out to be in our minds.

    About the chest thing. I wrote on day four or five about being really worried about my heart. I do feel it's anxiety. Our minds are so powerful. The next few days, try to not drink caffeine. Eat bland easy foods if you can. Drink lots! Gatorade water non decaf beverages. I love Hylands restless legs but I also love their "nerve tonic" in the morning along with L-theanine chewables. At night I took Hylands "calm". I found them at whole foods. I still have a bottle at work of nerve tonic. Haven't needed it but it really did help and heck.. I kind of like having bottles of b Complex and homeopathic pills instead of opiates.

    We can help you through.. I know you have lots of experience and knowledge though your profession.. It's helpful. But honestly so much of our dependence is mental and physical. We are here to get you through it.

  21. #21
    Nolongerfooled is offline Junior Member
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    Smilingstorm thank you so much. I am doing pretty good on day 2 free of opiates. Did not get to the store for Hylands yesterday but I am going today. By far my worst symptom is the RLS. My husband is not doing well at all. He is having lots of stomach symptoms. He is still on 2 pills🙁. I am going to see if I can find him something for it while I'm at the store. Any suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks everyone for the support it means a great deal to me.

  22. #22
    Smilingstorm is offline Senior Member
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    Congrats on day 2! I didn't experience what I think the normal RLS is.. My body and mainly my feet just burned. I mean ice packs needed kind of burn. I used a fan and still use a fan at my feet. Directly on my feet.
    Bananas, immodium.. I actually think the cheaper generic works better.. For your husband. So much cheaper and seemed to calm my bathroom issues much more so than immodium.

    Proteins are supposed to help but I am a veggie so I can't really relate!
    Lots of fluids for both of you! It's not easy when you don't want to eat or drink anything. But it helps!

    Hang in there!

  23. #23
    Nolongerfooled is offline Junior Member
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    Smilingstorm
    Thanks for the input. I finally got some Hylands today and am looking forward to trying it tonight. Husband is not good. May have to take him to the doc or ER if things don't change. I also had another chest pain attack, but this time I took some tums and it went away. So I guess it's heartburn.
    Last edited by Anonymous; 08-17-2016 at 06:49 PM.

  24. #24
    Iluv2smile is offline Platinum Member
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    Wow day 3 ..
    You are almost through the worst.
    I am sorry your husband is not doing as well..

    If he can just hang in there..
    This will be done
    And neither of you have to go through this again!

    I swear it is worth it!
    To be free!

    Is amazing!
    If he gets dehydrated
    He will absolutely feel like crappp..

    Maybe they can give him some fluids..
    That will help..

    Hang tough!

    Bette

  25. #25
    Nolongerfooled is offline Junior Member
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    It's day 5 YEAH!!! I know I have a way to go but I don't want a pill at all. The fatigue and lack of good restful sleep is making me cranky but I am getting out every day and trying. Husband, poor husband, he is sick. It's not just wd he has something else going on. He is maintaining on 2 pills/day which it good. Two 7.5 norco is not much and as soon as he is over the stomach bug he will stop. The nurse in me knows it's not the wd., he has gone off them before and it was never this bad. My biggest problem is weakness and fatigue. How some before I will have an ounce of energy? Everyone has been so supportive and helpful and I do want to thank you. It's 4 a.m. And I can always talk to you people!!!!! Thank you.

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    Hello Nolongerfooled

    Congrats on your 5 days clean... The low energy and fatigue is one of the hardest parts because want to get up and do something anything and it just seem to drag out.....

    You had a great suggestion, get out of the house even if it's just a walk around the block or to the mail box let the sun shine of your face... It work wonders for me..

    To answer your question about the fatigue and low energy it does come back but slowly, each day you should be feeling a little better physically.....

    I found when I fought the fatigue by doing the opposite of just letting it take me over.... I felt better just to take small walks or picking up my house...

    I hope this helps you... It get slow here on the weekend...

    Have a nice day!

  27. #27
    Nolongerfooled is offline Junior Member
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    Foolishness2016 thank you! I continue to get out at least once or twice a day and I can feel the energy just a bit. The sneezing is driving me nuts. I always sneeze 3 times. Strange. This is day 6 and I am not going back! I know in time I will feel normal again. My hubby finally broke down and started taking 3 pills a day and slowly his stomach/ abdominal symptoms are going away. He will try again next week. That fact is we only have so many pills left so he will have to make it next time. He really wants it and in the past he has stopped several times. He will do it! Good luck to all it's worth the struggle!

  28. #28
    Iluv2smile is offline Platinum Member
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    The fatigue is the worst .
    I used Milo gtts in my water
    They are next to Gatorade at the store..

    It helped with the energy and to drink more water!


    I hope your husband feels better soon
    Stomach issues sux ..

    You are doing great!
    It does get better!
    Bette

  29. #29
    Nolongerfooled is offline Junior Member
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    Happy day 8! Is sneezing part of this crazy ride? I swear I have sneezed 15-20 times a day for the past 6-7 days. I went without restful legs last night. Things are looking up. I hope everyone is doing well.

  30. #30
    Smilingstorm is offline Senior Member
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    Yep sneezing is very normal! Especially day 8! I couldn't shake the sneezing, yawning, gagging or goosebumps for a few weeks. But I take all of that over the night sweat, tummy issues, twitching, no sleep and burning feet any day. So proud of you! Day 8 is really an incredible feat.

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