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How Long does Tramadol Withdrawl Insomnia Last?
How Long does Tramadol Withdrawl Insomnia Last?
I was taking an average of 300 mg of Tramadol per day for 15 months. I quit taking it about 10 days ago. The first few days were tough, and I was physically sick, but I am past that now.
At the present time, and for the last 10 days, I have had insomnia and only get about 2 hours of sleep each night. I went to the doctor a few days ago, and he gave me ambien to take. Last night I took 1 ambien, and nothing happened. I still couldn't sleep. This night I took 2 ambiens about 2 hours ago, and I still couldn't sleep.
Insomnia must be a withdrawal effect from the Tramadol, does anyone know how long this insomnia will last.
What your experiencing is PAWS (Post Accute Withdrawl Syndrome).After taking opiate like drugs like ultram your brain stops producing endorphins.It takes time for the production to get back up there.If you can try and go for a walk in the morning and again after supper and drink sport drinks like gatoraide ect.It can take a couple of months to get back to normal so hang in there and remember your better off now then you were when you were abusing...Good luck..Dave
I will get some gatoraid and start exercising more. It is good to know that my sleep will improve over time. I did sleep 4 hours last night, which is the best in almost 2 weeks.
I finally slept very well last night. 8 hours of undisturbed sleep. I did drink some gatorade yesterday and took a potassium 99 tablet from GNC. It has 99 mg potassium plus other vitamins (such as B, C etc.) I did not have restlessness at all last night, so I think I am on the upswing. Its been around 2 weeks since I quit tramadol cold turkey.
I'm new here and just stopped the ultram on friday, the 4th. Are you still taking the Ambien for sleep? I'm really terrified of life without the pills.
Hi--I just wanted to chime in on Tramadol, which really is a wonder drug for me. I take it for achy joints primarily, and because it makes me feel terrific. I began taking Tramadol in December 2005--over 8 months ago. I take one pill (50mg) when I do a "potty run" at about 5am. I'll take another one when I get home from work, about 5pm. About 9pm, I'll take a "booster" half pill. This combo works great for me, and I never feel the need to increase the dose. The couple of times that I took a pill for stress or something, it didn't even work.
Now the rest of my story. I used to drink pretty heavily, even bordering on alcoholism. I found that drinking and Tramadol almost cancel each other out, as far as helping my joints and feeling good. I have an endless prescription for it, and it comes free because of my job. So, since Tramadol is free (alcohol isn't) and there are no aftereffects (for me), I dropped drinking. Sure, I'll have a couple of beers here and there, but that's it.
So, the question must be asked: "Is this an addiction?" I know that it would be hard, psychologically, for me to stop, because the lack of achiness and the slight euphoric feeling are just as potent now as the day I started taking them.
Is a person who takes a mild painkiller everyday for migraines an addict simply because the painkiller allows them to go through the day without pain? I don't think so, but I'm certainly not an expert on this topic.
Would love to hear peoples' views.
try this drug called oxycodone it will make u sleep wonderfully! hahaha
Nervousness regarding Ultram for CNP
I must first start off by saying that I a new user of Ultram. About 6 months ago I was diagnosed with Chronic Non-bacterial Prostatitis, I am 27 years old. The Urologist basically told me to resign myself to a life of moderate pain and gave me a slew of RXs to fill, none of which were pain relievers. Prostatitis, as anyone who suffers from it knows, has varying degrees of severity and discomfort. To be totally honest, mine is considered relatively mild, and I have learned a few pain management techniques that help. However, I still find myself having a few bad days here and there. I was given a small amount of Ultram ER by my mother (who is a medical professional) to see if it would alleviate my symptoms. It helped tremendously...
I took it upon myself to seek out a source of tramadol (generic ultram) and found that it is readily available online. I was mildly hesistant about ordering it but, wanted to have some on hand to deal with the more painful days. I decided not to go to a doctor and beg for it, because, I am not aware of any doctors prescribing this medication to people for my illness. I decided to just go after it on my own. I recieved it and began to take it in the posted recommended dosages that I have read on many medical websites. My new concern is that since it works for me so well, that I will develop a physical and psychological dependence on it. Also I am worried that I will have to keep increase my dosage to dangerous levels to keep the same amount of pain relief. I am not a person who becomes easily addicted to things, but I am worried because after only using this medication for a little over a week now, I am starting to get excited about my next dose. The question is... Should I stop using it cold turkey, right now, before it becomes something that I cannot control? Or should I simply taper the doses off? I am worried about developing an addiction to it but, at the same time, it does work very well for my problem. Sleeping has become a little more difficult. I find myself sitting up until 2-3 in mornings now. I am worried... and to be honest a bit confused. Could someone give me a bit of informed advice on the subject. Thanks for reading...
You might want to consult with your doctor regarding the effects of tramadol in your system. Ask about dosage, side effects specific to your lifestyle, etc. Hope this helps.
Last edited by futuredoc4u; 01-30-2009 at 09:23 AM.
I was taking an obscene amount of tramadol daily for multiple years. When I quit cold turkey I had insomnia for two weeks. But my case was extreme.
After that two weeks my sleep was back to normal. Anyone who's going through tramadol withdrawal currently, hang in there.
response to REZILUTION
REZILUTION, YOU WROTE:
Rezilution: I hope you are still reading here, even though it's been a few months since you posted. I wish I had seen your post as soon as you wrote it. The first thing I wanted to respond to is your statement that you're not the type of person who usually becomes addicted, with Tramadol you don't have to be a certain 'type' of person. Most people who become addicted to a substance didn't intend for that to happen, it just happens. It will effect your central nervous system the same as everyone else. You can become addicted to this medicine even if (as it was in my case) it doesn't work for you, you get no pain relief, you don't like the side-effects, etc. In my situation, all of these things are true. I am one of those people who experienced no pain relief at all with Tramadol (Ultram). I tried it a few times and told my doctor that not only is it not working, but I hate the way it makes me feel. I would be afraid to drive a car while on those meds.
Originally Posted by Rezilution
I took it at work and felt like I was in some sort of fishbowl... just kind of sitting there... staring blankly. I had trouble comprehending what people were saying to me, I was really spaced out. So... when I mention this to the doctor that I don't get relief from pain he says that's strange because it works for most people. So then I told him how it makes me feel so dizzy and spaced out... he said that's strange, like that really doesn't happen to others who take it. His suggestion was just that I start taking MORE of it. He said with longer use that those side-effects should ease up (even though, I already said it was ineffective for the pain)! Not all meds work the same for everyone, so I really don't like the comparisons to how it works for others.
Anyway... even though he wrote me a prescription for it every time I went in, I wouldn't take the stuff... but upon his advice I decided to give a try by taking it on a consistant basis, as prescribed , one 50mg tablet every 4-6 hours as needed for pain. I think I took about 4 tablets total a day. I did this for the next 2-3 weeks. I never realized any pain relief, and I was still totally spaced out all the time. I really hated the stuff. Because I didn't feel it was working, I cut back to just 2 a day.
Would you believe that I started having withdrawal symptoms JUST for cutting back?! I was shocked. So there I was.... kicking all hours of the night and waking up over and over again with restless leg syndrome. I tried to 'ween' off by reducing the meds and only having one pill at night, then only a half a pill. It didn't matter... I still had terrible withdrawals even though I was trying to stop them the right way.
Tapering absolutely didn't work for me! So after being down to just one half of a tablet and only at night for a few nights, I just quit taking them all together. If I was going to have withdrawals even with tapering, then I decided I'll just stop taking that ******** all together and just get it over with faster. I think today is my fourth day without any. My symptoms are insomnia (even with tons of stuff to make me sleepy), restless leg syndrome with kicking until I just have to give up and get out of bed, discomfort most of the day, nausea, etc. Are you willing to go through all of that when you're finally done with the devil that is Tramadol?
So there is my experience that I registered on the page today just so that I could respond to your post and hopefully save you the misery! I had been lurking at several sites about the troubles with Tramadol and it seems to me that even if it did help with your pain, unless your pain was chronic and couldn't be controlled by ibuprofen or something similar... to just RUN as far as you can from this stuff.
The worst part is that you didn't really have to 'sneak' around to get it. Doctors love to write prescriptons for this ********. It's touted as being a safe, and to quote many doctors, "non-addictive", non-narcotic medicine. It is not a controlled substance and extremely easy to obtain. I think even the doctors must not know what terrible things this medicine is doing to people, especially if they are prescribing it instead of narcotics for it's non-addictive qualities.
Anyway... I really, really hope you decided to not go any further with those meds. Your statement about 'being excited to take the next dose' worries me too... some people claim to get have euphoria when they're on it, some claim to have an increase in energy, etc.... making it harder for them to break away from it. But as I stated, you don't even have to like the stuff in ANY way for your central nervous system to whack out on you when you stop taking them. PLEASE ask yourself if this is worth it... please look for an alternative!
I'm really edgy right now, extremely tired, cranky, frustrated... and angry that the prescription was ever given to me in the first place. Someone needs to make doctors more aware of these problems, I think I'll start with mine. I still have several refills of this stuff waiting for me at the pharmacy as well as several bottles at home... and I will never take another one of those nasty little things again! I read on several pages that many want to quit but their symptoms get so bad that they start back up on it because they can't take it. Does any of this sound good to you? Just type the words "tramadol withdrawal" into a search engine and start reading. I wish you the best! Please post back on here with how you are doing.
I just recently stop taking tramadol over 2 days ago and i haven't slept more than 3 hours straight the last 2 nights.And of course this being my third night i still can't sleep.This absolutely bites.If i would of known that this is what i'd be going through after coming off this ******** i would of just dealt with the pain.I had been taking 4-6 50 mg. of tramadol a day.So anywhere around 200 to 30 mg a day for the past 2 years.I had tried to stop taking it a few times with no luck.The tapering method didn't seem to work.So i got fedup with being hooked on this evil,evil pills and just stopped takin them.I have been an addict my whole life and have never had withdrawals like i have had with quiting tramadol cold turkey.
Going on my third day, i feel a little bit better.I dont have the stabbing aching muscles like i did the first 2 days.I still feel very sore and aggitated most of the time.I have had a few fleeting moments where i felt somewhat decent.
Honestly i'm not sure where i'm going with this.I just wish i could sleep.My wife thinks i'm crazy for quiting cold turkey.She said i should of tapered off of them.I tried and couldn't.She takes tramadol and vicodin in an obsurdly amount.She's gonna have a rude awakening when its time for her to quit.Maybe she'll realize i'm not just making this ******** up.
Tramadol WARNING and other ramblings
[QUOTE=Fedupwithtramadol;235049]I just wish i could sleep.My wife thinks i'm crazy for quiting cold turkey.She said i should of tapered off of them.I tried and couldn't.She takes tramadol and vicodin in an obsurdly amount.She's gonna have a rude awakening when its time for her to quit.Maybe she'll realize i'm not just making this ******** up.[/QUOTE]
Hi Fedup! Glad to see that I'm not alone (or crazy) with the not being able to taper. It wasn't a matter of self control at all, it was that if I changed my dose in ANY way... my body reacted by giving me the wonderful restless leg syndrome all night. I couldn't figure out why just tapering off wasn't working... extremely frustrated that I couldn't come off of them in an easier way. It's also EXTREMELY frustrating that I only took the nasty things for 2-3 weeks!!! My God! What kind of poison is that stuff?! It's hard to keep track because of the insane loss of sleep, but I think this is day 7 for me without the "Damnitall" (Tramadol). Also, I kept thinking that it will get easier each day... that hasn't been true for me either, it actually got worse each day! I hope that yesterday was my "peak" day because I'm really stressed out now.
Let me tell you that last night, I was soooo desperate for sleep. I was so tired I thought I was going to just fall on my face. I got into bed and within minutes the seemingly involuntary kicking and thrashing around started. I actually cried yesterday because I'm losing so much sleep and becoming so aggravated. I tried to trick myself into sleeping by just curling up on the frontroom floor to see if I could just pass out there. No deal... just rolled around and had more fits. So here I am... I managed to get not even a few minutes of sleep last night... nothing! =( I'm also very upset because there is no clear cut day for when I'll feel better. I read some boards where people said they had withdrawal for 2 weeks! Some were even still struggling after 30 days... this is just unbelievable.
The quick fix to end that misery would have been to just get that evil little bottle back out and 'just take one' so that I could maybe get some sleep. I was too afraid that if I just took one, that I would have to start this process all over again and I definately don't want to back peddle back into that h*ll. The anger I feel at that medicine is what has enabled me to get to day 7 without caving into it (that and praying, I'm not a real religious person so I don't always remember that option... but I think it helps more than anything else to get me through it!). I have extreme anger at that medicine! Get angry at it, stay angry at it... it is the enemy! Life is NOT supposed to be like that. Pathetic!!
Sorry for the long, rambling post. I'll close now. I really just want to help anyone who is thinking about taking that medicine to FORGET about it! If your doctor tries to write a prescription for you, just refuse it. I think most people who are suffering with this had a doctor tell them this medicine was a safe alternative to narcotics. Don't fall for it! I wish I had a dollar for everytime a doctor prescribed something and convinced the victim that it was safe.
I actually had a doctor prescribe Effexor to me once for my pain! She couldn't figure out the source of my pain so she figured it must be in my head. She apparently decided that my pain was from depression and anxiety (which I didn't have either one so her comment really confused me) and convinced me that Effexor would be good for me. (4 years and a few MRI's later, a different doctor finally found the problem) My God... don't even get me started on that Effexor hell either, even though I only took it for about 3 weeks. She was willing to prescribe EVERYTHING BUT a pain pill to me! Even gave me a 'migraine' medicine when I've never had a migraine headache. I took that medication and then felt like I had been hit in the head by a truck. I took it a second time and the exact same thing happened. I still don't know why she would write all sorts of horrible prescriptions and not look for the real problem. I'm rambling again... sorry! I'm slowly learning to be my OWN doctor.
Wishing you all the best.... stay strong! I'm not out of the woods yet, but I think I can see the path! Hoping for better days for us all!
I wish you both the very best of luck! It is an absolutely horrible drug to get off of! But staying on it is even worse. I've been addicted to all kinds of opioid pain-relievers, and tramadol was hands-down the worst for me. There is NO WAY this drug should be prescribed the way it currently is; it is far too easy to get and a true danger to people.
The sleep does get better over time. I know the lack of sleep and the restless legs drive you crazy. I had some luck with Benadryl for sleep when I was detoxing. Hang in there, and it WILL get better.
Take care, and please keep posting.
Fedup with the insomnia
Well day four seem to be a bit better.I had a general aching throughout my body most of the day.But i did force myself to mow my yard.Even though it took every ounce of energy out of me and left me frustrated.
So here i am back on this forum,it's 2:22 a.m. and i'm wide awake.I just did a shot of some cold medicine.I heard somewhere that dextromorph...something or another might help with sleep.I let you know tomarrow.You can only hope.
I think for alot of addicts, anger is a driving force when you finally quit your drug of choice.It helps motivates us to keep going through our struggles.There is a light at the end of our tunnels.There will be better days.Staying postive through this brief hell is extremely difficult.But i know personally it will get better.IT WILL!!!!I never expected this hell to go away that easy,but I guess i didn't expect the withdrawals to be this intense and extreme.
My anger towards TRAMADOL will keep me pressing on.
So if anyone who reads this is considering using tramadol.DON'T DO IT!!!THIS DRUG WILL NOT BE EASY TO STOP USING.Its a fact.If you don't believe me google tramadol withdrawals.Actually you don't even need to type the whole word tramadol.A million webpages will pop on your screen on it's nastiness.
Thanks for the previous posts.You can bet i'll be posting again.FEDUP!!!!!!
Last edited by Fedupwithtramadol; 05-03-2009 at 01:48 AM.
I hope you got some sleep last night. It really can be so frustrating. I think harnessing your anger is really positive. No one wants to be enslaved to this or any drug!
Keep up the good work, and keep in touch!
Thanks for the encouragement MaisieC. I can't tell you how many times I clicked the 'refresh' on this page in one day... just needing so much to hear from someone who is going through this or has been through this, and also feeling like I have to keep checking back to prevent anyone who might want to start Tramadol from ever taking that first pill.
Fedup.... stay Fed up! You're doing great! Don't forgive the enemy! I know the lack of sleep is driving you crazy because I'm still in that phase myself. I tell you, if I could at least sleep at night my problems would be more than half solved.... missing out on all this very much needed sleep is what's making this so much harder than it needs to be. I've actually been having disrupted sleep for weeks now because of that retarded medicine... but now that I'm completely off of it I'm just not getting much sleep in any form. Not sleeping is so frustrating and it makes the days just last forever and emotionally takes it's toll.
Today is day 8 for me. After disrupted sleep for several weeks, very little sleep for several days, then down to no sleep at all for a few nights I was really starting to feel like a basket case. I've tried to keep somewhat of sense of humor in all of this, even joking to my family to just call me "Twitch" for now because of the weird and jerky arm and leg movements from out of nowhere. I've tried not to take out my frustration on anyone... not even the dogs. If I'm really feeling bad I just run off to my room and cry and pray for a bit then come back out and try to be ok again for a while. At night, as soon as the stupid flailing around and kicking starts, I get out of bed so that I don't disturb my husband's sleep. It's been a miserable several days/weeks!
So... since I had NO friggin' sleep whatsover for a few days I just knew that last night was going to be my night. I knew that if I slept that my whole day was going to go soooo much better. I was even hoping to be able to get out of the house and go see a movie, but I knew that it was all based on if I was able to get any sleep or not. I was looking forward to bedtime, even though I was a little nervous about it I felt like I stood a really good chance at getting some sleep. Shortly after midnight I took one and a half Ambien tablets. When I felt them starting to work I laid down in bed and hoped for the best. So far in all of this, not even Ambien would knock me out... but I could feel it working this time. Ahhhh.... I FINALLY drifted off to sleep around 1:00 am.
Ok... I started this post in the middle of the night because my sleep was accidentally disrupted by my husband. I typed out all of my angry words on here to get it out of my system but didn't click 'submit'. Got a few more hours sleep just a little bit ago, then came back to the computer to see what all I typed previously. Good thing I didn't submit because I was on a major angry rant. My husband didn't really do anything wrong but because of my fragile emotional state I felt very upset that I was awake again. I just deleted about 5 angry paragraphs.
I'm feeling a little better now after getting a little more sleep. I noticed that while I was in my state of elevated aggitation that my symptoms became more exaggerated. I was twitching more than ever with some episodes of weeping. I wanted to share that with you all because I found it interesting that my state of mind really effected my ability to cope with the symptoms. Trying to stay in somewhat of a good or 'positive' (hate that word sometimes) state of mind can be really beneficial to your progress. Keep your symptoms in check and don't let them be bigger than you are.
For those who may be tempted to fall back due to not sleeping... just get it through your head that you are NOT going to sleep right any time soon. Try when you think you can, but don't let the lack of it ruin your progress. Just imagine that you are taking a camping/survival trip alone in the wilderness, without a tent! That's how I've felt. Even with people around I've felt very much on my own lonely island. Isolated with my suffering... and no cozy tent to climb into for rest. Just me against the elements, and this little island devil (aka Tramadol) chasing me around everywhere I go! I'll never book another tour on this island! Next time, I'm going to Disney!
Oh, gosh, you have all my sympathy here! You were just NOT in a good place to have someone mess with your sleep, even if he didn't mean to.
Withdrawal really does put you in a precarious position emotionally. I think that's a good observation and really helpful to share with people. The lack of sleep, the ********ing twitching, everything else.... I also happen to think that tramadol withdrawal is especially bad in that regard because of the drug's antidepressant action. On top of the physical symptoms, which are bad enough, your poor brain is missing the serotonin and norepinephine effects. I think that just makes it a much bumpier ride, and I totally relate to the weeping and generally heightened emotions. You just have to HANG ON and tell yourself that you're going to feel better. It really does take determination and resolve.
When I finally got clean, it was a couple of weeks before I was sleeping through the night, and I needed Benadryl to do that. But for a long time I was doing things like waking up too early, waking up not feeling rested, and having "weird" sleep. It was a couple of months before I felt I was sleeping as I used to, with great relaxation and comfort. But you have to take that as it comes, and things do improve little by little.
I love the island metaphor! Yes, next time Club Med or something!!!
Hang in, and take care.
Getting ready to lay down... feeling so horribly nauseated though, to the point that I may actually throw up. This is my 8th day and I didn't throw up before, just had some nausea. Is that normal? Or am I getting sick from something else? OMG... someone please pray for me... I don't feel well at ALL.
Well... it's morning, it took quite a while to fall asleep but I finally did. I don't know where the horrible nausea came from, but I'm feeling a lot better and it seems to be gone at least for now. ::::making another positive note to myself about prayer so that I might remember to do that more often:::::
Once I went to sleep last night, I don't think I even moved in any way. I think I woke up in the exact same position that I went to sleep in. One of my dogs even slept beside me all night (and he doesn't do that when I'm kicking because he's pint-sized).
I wanted to let everyone know that I'm feeling a lot better so far on day 9 so that they can know they have better days to look forward to. I'm still groggy from not getting as much sleep as I should probably have.... but this time I didn't wake up due to WD's. I simply woke up early due to my normal pains.
I was originally typing a longer message last night then started to feel so sick that it ended up being the only thing in my message. Plus I took an Ambien so the less amount of time I spend typing after that, the better!
I did manage to make it out to see that movie last night and I really enjoyed that... but I have to admit that I did eat movie theater food that could have made me feel sick. I had a box office hot dog, loaded with relish, mustard, onions, and jalapenos. I also had a ton of less than fresh theater popcorn with that fakey butter stuff they put on it, and a giant Mr. Pibb. I can usually eat any sort of 'bad' food I want and get away with it without any problems but maybe the timing wasn't right for it that night... it was my first meal of the day because I had lost my appetite previously. That's another weird thing that's happening... I keep switching between loss of appetite and increased appetite. My body has been downright confused about everything after taking that stupid medication!
Anyway... thanks again for your responses Maisie and I hope to hear from the others as well to see how they're doing!
I just wanted to update today and say that I am having totally random symptoms and ups and downs on day 9. Last night I went from feeling some sort of weird nausea to a full-on very sick feeling... my head and ears felt suddenly very hot, I got rather dizzy, and barfing seemed imminent. I managed to go to bed and sleep without barfing and was trying to write it off as having eaten bad food. However today, that weird nausea keeps creeping back up on me. Sometimes it's just lightly in the background, then suddenly I'll feel like I have to get up and RUN to the bathroom. I kept salivating a ton and tried really hard not to get sick, I just kept spitting into the trashcan. The feeling finally passed, but it just keeps coming and going.
I am having moments where I feel 'okay', then some where I'm feeling pretty good and happy with my progress and thinking the worst is over, then BAM... another totally random symptom will just come from out of nowhere. I go from feeling wide awake to feeling like I'm going to pass out from being tired. From feeling hungry to feeling like I'm going to throw up. From having a slightly elevated mood to feeling really down again. And my head and ears suddenly feeling very hot!? WTH is that about?!
It makes me feel a little depressed because I had a fairly good day yesterday so I thought I was pretty much out of the woods but I'm still having weird random symptoms popping up whenever. I think (and hope) that I am over the worst of it, as I have been able to get some sleep lately. The insomnia has lessened and the restless leg syndrome has mostly stopped, although I do have some twitching in the day and my muscles still sometimes feel restless.
I don't feel as bad as I did, that's the good news. And since I felt NO desire to ever start back up on this medicine I didn't really worry about getting rid of what was here... but I'm actually so mad at it that when I accidentally found a bottle of it while looking for nausea medicine I went ahead and dug around everywhere and found 4 bottles of it (most of which had never even been opened yet because I never liked to use them anyway) and threw them all out due to the anger and disgust I feel towards the damned things. It made me mad to see the word Tramadol!
I'm thinking they should trademark a new name for it to give unsuspecting consumers a better idea of it's real potential, such as Damn-it-all, or Trama-demon, or TRAUMA-dol, Trama-diablo, TRAPadol, Tramafications (which there WILL be ramifications!), TramaLIEdol, TraMADol (emphasis on the MAD), The Traminator, yes... I'm just having a good time now. The ideas keep coming.
Ugh, you're having a bumpy ride. That's a drag. You might actually have a little bug, you know. Or it might be your body still adjusting. Just hang in there, and you will gradually feel better and better. I'm glad you dumped all the pills you had! No point leaving that junk around. I hope you have a good night's sleep tonight!
Take good care!
Oh, I am so glad I found this thread tonight!!
Maybe I could join your little peer support group you have going on here? Haha!
I've been on Tramadol for about three months now. I was "addicted" to Vicodin in the 18 months prior to using the Tramadol for the first time - I have chronic back issues and a twin pregnancy I carried full-term two years ago really made everything so much worse! I had been on Vicodin since the day I gave birth to my twins - after the c-section, I *accidentally* discovered that the Vicodin they'd prescribed me for the post-surgical discomfort was actually the first drug that had ever helped my back. For the first time in about 8 years I remembered what it felt like to not have my back hurt at least a little bit!
But anyway - I digress - back to the Tramadol. Right around this past new year, I ran out of my prescription for Vicodin and couldn't get back in to see my dr to get a new script. The only appointment I could get was with a different doctor at the same clinic. I went to my appointment and the doc asked me if I'd ever tried "Ultram"? I'd never heard of it, so he went on to explain that more and more doctors and patients were turning to Ultram for pain relief because it was non-narcotic and "non-habit forming". Sign me up!!
So I start taking Tramadol and I like it because while it helps to relieve my back pain, it doesn't make me feel drunk or "high" like Vicodin does. I start tapering off on my Vicodin and upping my Tramadol dosages. A couple of weeks later I was having some really bad days with my back pain so I found myself reaching for the Vicodin instead of the tramadol. After a day or so of this, I find I can't sleep anymore at night! I have restless legs and my body just jerks out of the blue just as I'm falling asleep. I feel like my skin is crawling; it feels like every nerve in my body is on fire.
This was a few days ago, and it didn't occur to me until just TODAY that I was feeling this way because of the Tramadol. That's when I started looking up withdrawal info and found this thread. I'm so glad I found it!!
So - I would have thought that weaning off Tramadol gradually would have been the best option, yet so many of you are talking about how it either just simply "doesn't work" or that it doesn't soften the symptoms at all. Is that the case for everyone? I'm terrified of quitting cold turkey - I've had to withdraw from the Vicodin twice in the past two years and I can't imagine how awful this must be if it's worse than that!!
Basically, because now I'm terrified... has anyone here gradually weaned off the meds successfully?
... You know, it makes me so angry that this is going on. The doctor who first prescribed it insisted that it was non-addictive and perfectly safe, and the second doctor agreed totally. It's like they pushed this medication on me to "save me" from the evil addictive narcotics (vicodin and percocet, which is what I typically take for my back pain), not realizing - or caring? - that they have pretty much guaranteed another addict in the making by pushing this on me and other patients like me.
I'm sorry - I rambled on and on there - but I'm floored. I didn't expect to find anything like this tonight when I hopped on the computer to do some research into tweaking my Tramadol dosage!
Welcome to the board! I'm sorry you're going through all this! I think we can help you here.
Yes, people can and do taper off tramadol successfully. Some people can't do it, but it's MUCH BETTER if you can taper. In fact, going cold turkey can be very dangerous because of the risk of seizures from tramadol. It's not the benign little drug that the doctor told you it was. So here is a link to a taper schedule:
You will see that this person was at a high dose. You can use this taper schedule as a model for yourself and adapt it to your own situation.
You will definitely have far fewer symptoms if you taper off gradually than if you go cold turkey.
So don't despair! You'll be OK. Check out that link and think about your own taper schedule. You've got plenty of support around here.
Take care, and check back in soon, OK?
Response to 21months
Jump right in! I'm new here too, and it sounds like you got here the same way I did. I went from taking Tramadevil consistantly for 2-3 weeks to cutting back because I didn't really feel it was working... only increased dosage because the doctor told me to. Looking back, I can now see that I was having other symptoms at the time that I was taking the Tramadol, I just really didn't link it to the meds. I was extremely aggitated... I often refused to answer the phone when it rang... I didn't want to talk to anyone and it was really for their benefit. I felt majorly unstable. I just blamed it all on PMS, thinking it was a little out of the ordinary and lasting too long, but still thinking that had to be it. I told my husband to quit calling me from work because I am just going to get 'ugly' and the conversation isn't going to go well. Sometimes I do have ********py PMS and ********py moods... but this really was extreme.
Anyway...I cut back on them because I didn't like them ... they just made me feel 'stoned' and confused but didn't help with the pain. When I cut back was the same time I started having a worse time sleeping. My sleeping had already started to be disrupted, but now I was twitching and writhing around all night to the point where I just had to get out of bed. I was confused about why this was going on... it took several days for me to think that it could be Tramadol... but how could it be that when the doctor told me how safe and non-addictive it is? The next day I went ahead and increased my dosage back up and hmmm.... that night I slept. That told me alot! So I decided that this stuff truly is ******** and I'm just going to ween myself off. Well... the weening process went horrible because my body didn't seem to appreciate ANY sort of adjustment to this medicine. The restless nights continued even though I tried to slowly reduce.
Not being able to figure out why this weening isn't working I started searching online and that's when I found an entire world out there of Tramadol victims! I am more than angry about this medication and the doctors who write the prescription like it's aspirin and never bother to tell people about the possible side effects, withdrawals, etc.
Well I was so downright miserable while trying to ween that I realized that if it's going to suck that bad anyway... I might as well just completely stop it and end this misery faster. That's what has worked best for me... but even the thought of 'feeding' the Tramadol monster by putting another pill into my body made me feel angry... I wasn't willing to apease that beast! I was going to cut it off at it's head and wait for it's body to die! It's working!
You have been on this medication longer obviously but I'm not sure how much it matters... seems like everyone suffers no matter how long they were on it, some I know who have problems were only on it for 7-10 days. I know from my extensive reading that there are those who are trying to slowly ween off of it.. it's a personal choice for everyone. However, those who are weening a lot of times just feel like they can't take the jump into cold turkey because it's too hard... but I see a lot of people still suffereing unecessarily because they are weening but still having withdrawal the entire time.
They have to do it in whatever way is best for them, so you will have to do what's best for you. Some were able to kick it on their own (most were), some used methods in the privacy of their homes to help reduce symptoms like the "Thomas Method". Others just get lots of exercise, drink water, take vitamins and supplements and pray... and yet others ended up at a detox center or visiting a detox specialist for help. It CAN be done, you CAN do it... I am a weak person who can't say no to a cigarette, and I am kicking it. I just want to encourage you by saying that you do have the power to do it, but don't feel bad for a minute if you need the help of a doctor (if you can find one who will listen to you... since most are in denial about the addictive quality of the meds). Don't feel bad if you feel you need to ween... it's a personal decision that only you can make, but I want to let you know that it is possible to do on your own if you decide to brave it... and you can find lots of support on this and a few other sites!
Report back and let us know how you are doing!
I just want to repeat here that going cold turkey off tramadol is potentially DANGEROUS. It's NOT a question of personal style or personal preference. Going cold turkey carries a real danger of seizures, so it's not recommended. Not everyone who does cold turkey will have seizures, thank God. And some people have an easier time with tapering than others. But if you can taper, that's the way to go. Why take the risk of a seizure?
True Maisie... the scary thing is that the only info a person can get about any of this seems to be through forums instead of their doctor! Since the medical community seems to be in complete denial about this wonder drug, the needed information just doesn't seem to be available... so we're having to rely on the experiences of others to know what to do for ourselves!
So... I've mostly come to understand that most of the seizures seem to occur when people are taking higher doses than they should. There were several cases where people promised their family members that they were no longer using these meds, when in fact they were sneaking and taking them and ended up having seizures... causing them to then end up at a neurologist for seizures but not telling them they are taking the Tramadol.
And apparently now others who will have seizures for trying to stop too suddenly. Wow... sounds like not matter what, you may just get a seizure! I didn't have any seizures by it was similar in experience when I sitting there with a blank stare on not understanding what people were saying, Thinking back... I wonder if that could have been some sort of mini-seizure?
Ok... goodnight all.... the meds gave kicked in thy're the boss now!
I got to sleep...6 1/2 hours straight.
Well i finally got to sleep more than a few hours the night before last.I don't know if it was from pure exhaustion or the fact i pushed myself as far as i could.I was just glad i finally passed out.I felt very rough when i woke up though.And i took every ounce of energy to get myself moving.I had a big job i had to start today,so i guess that was somewhat of a motivator.I not sure if i have a head cold or have some kind of allergies going on.But,my head felt like a big old balloon all day.Spaced out and unable to concentrate.My only saving grace was my job.I am a painter and the house i am working on is a beautiful 3 story house set on a small private lake.The serenity of my surroundings helped me out alot.The breeze,sunshine,and clean air.It helped me think about all this ******** with my withdrawals.I have moments when i fell very good and then out of nowhere i fell every aching muscle in my body.I do feel like i'm starting to come out of the woods though.It's a mind set and if you keep pushing yourself,you will eventually overcome this demon.It does get better.
Mysticated,sounds like you got a bug or maybe even a bit of food poisioning.I am actually kind of grateful i have this head cold going on while i'm going through this.It gives me an excuse for feeling so darn ********py.And it's easier to explain to people that you feel under the weather than to explain your withdrawaling from a NON-ADDICTIVE DRUG.
I really don't want to discourage anyone from quiting tramadol by posting all my aches and pains here in the forum.But it does help to release some frustration.People need to realize that this drug ALTERS YOUR BODYS' CHEMISTRY.It does take time for your body to restore itself back to normal.
For any new person reading this thread looking for answers on withdrawal symptoms,the best thing to do is not Psyche yourself into thinking you can't get away from Tramadols grasp.YOU CAN DO IT.Some of the best things in life are worth fighting for.Your life is worth fighting for.
As far as tapering off of tramadol, i would of liked to have done so.But my script was about out and i really didn't want to get another refill and keep going the way i was with Tramadol.I made up my mind and just stopped using it.So,if you feel like you can't quit cold turkey.Try keeping a logbook with your script and write down how often you take it,when you take,why you take and how much you take it.Talk to your Doctor and tell them your concerns about this drug.If they seem oblivious to it's nasty side effects,tell them to do some research on it's withdrawal symptoms.We need to make more people aware of the horrible,horrible things this drug does to it's users.
And remember your Doctor does want to help you.They take an oath to do so.It's their job to help you feel better.
Enough rambling,it's almost 2:00 am and i need to try and sleep.Good luck everyone and wish you a better day tomarrow.
I'm glad you got some sleep. You're headed in the right direction, definitely.
You know, I've had terrible allergy symptoms myself! I think it's a bad year for that. And I know what you mean about being grateful for being sick! I think it also helps with getting your mind off the withdrawals. Being sick is "normal" and something we can relate to. One of the worst parts of the withdrawal is constantly mulling it over. Having other symptoms can be a good distraction.
What a mess, right? This drug causes so many problems. Hang in there, everybody.