... ideally down to none
Opiate Withdrawal - if I only take 50-70 mg of hydrocodone a day, but can't seem to go lower and?
- 4 May 2012 by napolean
- 5 November 2014
- drug dependence, opiate withdrawal, hydrocodone, withdrawal, opiate
Added 4 May 2012:
should i try to see a suboxone doctor? or just keep trying to go down to none? i dont think 50 or 70 mg a day is that much but my doc says it is. she even mentioned whether she might have some duty to report me as an impaired professional, except i'm not impaired so i dont think she's going to do that. i want to get clean but it's really hard to take less than 50 mg a day.
What's hard is making the decision to get clean and then sticking with it. Also not sure how you're getting to 70, but if your taking that much acetaminophen every day it's not withdrawal you'll have to worry about, it's death from liver poisoning.
As for getting off, as I said, if it's really what you want, you'll find a local recovery group, even an AA meeting would do you good, matters not it's not alcohol you're struggling with.
Now, if you cut back by 5mg a day every 14 days until you're down to 25, then you can start cutting them in half to get to 20, 15 etc. At this point your Dr should help you along, usually Valium as you get to 2.5 a day then off, then off the Valium if you do not abuse it.
Again, the group will offer you support and accountability, you'll have a much harder time with this without that, and by cutting back too fast. Sure, it may take a few 6-8 months months, but you'll be clean and ready to join the real world (whatever that is).
Dedication, support, time and patience. Hope this helps.
I loved Balbanese's answer. I did want to talk a little about suboxone. Now, I am not sure what type of professional you are, or if you get drug tested. Certain jobs in the medical field and hospital employment screens, DOT jobs, and trucking jobs will all likely check for buprenorphine, so keep that in mind. To me, it was a miracle medication and I also did the recovery therapy. I was able to taper off of it, I had a great dr and counselor. To me, it is the least amount of down time if you have responsibilities. You have to go into withdrawal for 24 hours after your last dose of short acting opiate, it's not fun, but it is doable. Then you are given a quiz at the drs office, they assess your COWS score and if it is 26 or more, they will give you your first dose. Somewhere between 20 and 45 minutes later, you start feeling the withdrawal relieved, at an hour later much much better then usually at the 2 hour mark, better than you have in years.
I would suggest taking the day off while you withdrawal and the day of the appt, although you may feel fine before you leave the drs office, it gives you some time to decompress. You can also taper off what you are taking now, and Balbanese gave you a pretty good schedule. I was taking even less lortab/perc than you are, and I never could taper off those. Didn't have much problem tapering off the subs. I wish you success whichever way you decide to proceed. Patti
Hello napolean, & welcome to the site. You can either go with the tapering or go to a good suboxone doctor. I agree with balbanese that the amount of tylenol you are taking is probably a bigger problem than you realize. You didn't give the specifics on what is pill is like 10/500 or whatever. The first number is the amount of the opiate, & the second is the amount of tylenol. If you can't seem to get past 50mg a day, you are probably trying to taper too fast. It is reccomended on a taper that you drop 5 to 10mg per week. I think you would find this will work without having the withdrawals associated with too fast a drop. If you just stop cold turkey you will have withdrawals. If you find a good suboxone doc you will still have to be in withdrawals for about 2 days before starting the suboxone. You have to make up your mind that this is what you really want to do for yourself, & not for your doctor. It doesn't work that way.
You are on a high dose whether you believe it or not. It is reccomended that you not take more than 4000 mg of tylenol a day, & my own doctor has a fit if I take more than 2000 mg a day. Figure up how much you are taking & think about the damage it is doing to your liver. That alone should give you the added need to quit this habit of yours. I wish you all the luck in the world. if you decide on the suboxne route, please go to Pattishan61 in the friends part, & read her profile. She is our subs expert, & tells you all you need to know about suboxone use. Good luck to you... Mary
aloha, hang in there and keep comming to dc. ive struggled with so many different tapers, and am on another one again. reducing 5 mg per week, i was trying all different ways recommended and failed each one. excersizing helps tremedouly and it was really helping me, but with my new job im just so pooped i dont even have energy to think. its not easy, its uncomfortable at times and very discouraging, but dont ever give up. there is a plan out there and it will be a success. dc is one of my main supports but with the web problems i barely get any of my posts out. takecare and know that you are not alone, leanne
If you can avoid taking suboxone please do. I cold turkeyed off hydro (taking 10 to 12 7.5 mg per day) a year ago. My doctor at the time suggested I taper as follows. On days 1 through 3, take one less than I had been taking (so 9 for 3 days). On days 4 through 6 drop one more. days 7 through 9, drop one more, etc. The hardest part was when I was down to two a day. I saved one for the night so I could get sleep. I still had w/draw symptoms, but they only kept me up for 2 nights or so. Towards the end (when I was taking 2 to 4 per day) I had stomach problems and restless legs for about 3 to 4 days and had a tough time sleeping during that time frame. However, once I made it down to one per day, the symptomps were gone by the time I completely ran out. w/draw symptoms for hydracodone is far easier than the w/draw symptoms of suboxone in my opinion. It can take 2 to 4 weeks to get subs out of your system and therefore you have longer withdraws.
I was an idiot and started taking percocet for an ongoing back problem after breaking my addiction to hydracodone. Stopping percocet was a lot more difficult then stopping hydracodone, so I went on suboxone. Boy was I stupid. I wish I would have just sufferred through the 5 or 6 nights of percocet withdrawal instead of getting on suboxone. It's very hard to wean off of, although I am slowly weaning off it now. If you are going to cold turkey taper from hydracodone, I would suggest finding someone who can keep you accountable and possibly even hold onto the pain meds for you and give it to you according to your tapering plan. Otherwise, you'll always want to take just one more. Good luck, and know that it can be beaten. Your dose is not that high. IT's going to be painful for a few days during the tappering process, but I promise you after a week or so of being completely off it you will feel like a million bucks... trust me I've been there!
I have been taking my prescribed 10/500 four times a day. I began takin hydro six yrs ago and the dose I am on has been titrated over that time. About a year ago I had to move to another state so during that move I took more than my prescribed dose to "get through" the move.
Let me digress and tell you why I am prescribed pain meds. It is for a hip implant surgery that went terribly wrong. It left me with one leg being almost 3 inches longer than the other. For the first two year NOONE in the med profession would admit to this and I finally stomed in and demanded that that measure everything. Had to threaten litigatin but they finally concluded that it wasn't in my head. By then... it was too late and I will live with this condition the rest of my life.
Previously I had been told that it was in my head and that peoplesometimes felt they weren't balanced after this surgery... yeah right. Back to the subjuect though. But I must use a cane and you can imagine the orthopedic nightmare my entire body has become. Oh, and I am 54.
So after the move I could not return to my prvious dose. I had to use a minimum of six per day. After a few monts of running out and going thru wd for a week of every month I convinced my dr that it was time for an increase, which in truth it was. I went to six per day. I am not happy with this. Going in I knew that I would need this medication the rest of my life and I was determined to keep my tolerance as low as I could for as long as I could in between increases.so I wanted to go back to four per day and keep the increases in reserve. Four per day got me through and kept my quality of life reasonable. I didn't want to go to six for many years from now. I had NO idea how hard it would be to go from six to four. Sounds easy. But my functionality is now affected if I don't take all six.
I heard that you cannot taper "down". Is this true! Missing those two per day is like not taking ANY. This is insane!!! I have even tried to reset by taking one a day for a week. The result was that I lost a week of my life and went right back to six. Then I realized I needed help.
Then one day I turned to God... wait... this is not a sermon..continue to read! I prayed and the next morning I got up without any meds! I did takeone at lunch. Another at sis pm, and another at eleven (bedtime) . I won't go into detail because,as I said, I am not preaching. I am back to four per day. More functional than ever. My point is that whether it,s your higher power or or meditation you need help with these medications. Mine was God. It was not determination or willpower. It was something that gave me the psychological strength to handle this. It was something I beieved in completely. Believing is different from hoping. Any belief system is just that... BELIEF. Once you start believing ( not hoping, wishing, willing it tol happen) belief means it will. It is a psychological leap when you believe. Everything else has a built in skepticism that is destined to fail.
After believing you don't search for remedies that worked for others but not for you. This is not mind over matter. This is finding something you truly believe in and once established it can't change. I hope I helped and I hope nobody took this as a sermon. Everyday I wake up I KNOW I will get through breakthrough pain or anything else.
- Hydrocodone Information for Consumers
- Hydrocodone Information for Healthcare Professionals (includes dosage details)
- Side Effects of Hydrocodone (detailed)
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