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  1. #1
    NoMoreOpiates is offline Member
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    Default Tapering short-term suboxone usage?? (question for jdude)

    So I ****in' finally kicked my tar smoking heroin addiction two weeks ago exactly. This is longer than I've ever gone since first becoming a full-on addict almost exactly 1 and a half years ago. But even in the time leading up to then, I was still using more recreationally but it hadn't become a daily habit. But I wasn't going two weeks w/o using. So anyways, at this two week point, it has probably been longer than I've gone without opiates in a long time. I've been feeling so good and I actual like life again. It's amazing how one's outlook can change so drastrically in such a short time after quitting.

    Now I have quit using herion and I'm feeling very confident about my effort to beat the **** out of this addiction this time because I've tried and failed in the past (like everyone).

    With that said, I'm not totally clean. I have been taking suboxone. But without that, I would have never gotten to the point I am at. My withdrawals would come on hard with violent puking as my very first symptom. It's horrible. So if suboxone wasn't there for me, I can almost guarantee I would have gone back to using just to not feel sick. Ugh...such a disgusting habit and I'm so happy that I haven't used in two weeks.

    I feel about a million times better than where I was just over three weeks ago.

    So I induced suboxone sucessfully after several unsucessful attempts. Since puking is my first symptom, I have to time taking suboxone exactly perfectly. I take it too early, I go into precipitated withdrawals and have used to alleviate that. And then other times, I've tried to wait, but the first bad symptom is puking, and once that starts, I can't keep a sub under the tongue because I'm puking/gagging for at least a good hour...so that resutls in me using because I got too sick and needed relief.

    But two weeks ago, I was finally able to sucessfully induce. I induced around 4-6mg. I took about a quarter of an 8mg, or a 2mg at first, waited about 30 minutes and didn't get sick and then took and 2. And then maybe another 1-2 mg a little later. I had finally ****ing done it.

    Day 1: About 5-6mg
    Day 2: Between 4-6mg
    Day 3: Between 4-6mg
    Day 4: About 4mg
    Day 5: About 4mg
    Day 6: About 4mg
    Day 7: 3mg
    Day 8: 3mg
    Day 9: 3mg
    Day 10: 2mg
    Day 11: 2mg
    Day 12: 2mg
    Day 13: 2mg
    Day 14: Maybe 1.75, it was a little smaller than a quarter of an 8

    So, that's what my schedule has pretty much been the past two weeks. I need to be able to get off the suboxone with the least amount of discomfort possible (I know there's going to be a bit for a year and a half/2 year opiate addict like myself.

    However, I've heard that 7-10 days is the best to use it as a detox agent. While I am using it as a detox agent, I'm also using it to ease cravings and to give my mind some time away from the habit of using, and suboxone allows me to maintain abstaining.

    But anyways, my plan is to use this for two more weeks and be done after approximately one month. So, I've got about 14 days to get my current 1.75-2mg dose that I'm currently at, down to nothing in another 14 days if all goes well. So those folk have a taper schedule that they can recommend for me for the next 14 days, please let me know. I've got a lot going on tomorrow and have to be active, so I'm not going to try taking 1.75 again, but am going to take a full 2. So that's day 15. What about 16 through day 28? How should I go about this and how can I expect to feel given the amount and duration I've taken the last two weeks, plus with what you'd recommend I take the next few weeks.

    I know there is going to be some discomfort, and I'm ready/expecting it. But I'm also PRAYING that it's no where near as sever as what I've felt experiencing true opiate/herion withdrawal.

    I'm so digusted with how much I hated life the last few months I was using and I'm so determined to ****ing destroy this addiction like it destroyed me for the last year and a half, two years.

    Any input, encouraging words, anything would be helpful. I'm on the road to recovery and just this week saw an addiction specialist therapist, and I've never seen a therapist once in my life. So I think I'm taking the right steps and am so determined this time...so that's where I'm at. I look forward to reading, learning, and benefiting from whatever words of wisdom any of you have to offer.

    Thanks for reading.
    Last edited by NoMoreOpiates; 02-10-2010 at 09:26 PM. Reason: Change title

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Recently Quit!!! Tapering short-term suboxone usage??

    Welcome NMO...congrats on the great progress. Not much more to offer or add. Your plan seems spot on so far. Reasonable reductions in reasonable time frames. AND a support system!:)

    If you notice,very much like a lot of us...you had/have a hick-up at the 2mg point. Up to that point your reductions every 2-3 days were great. Very common since the sub seems to be more effective at around the 2mg point.

    Continue what you've been doing,just adjusting the reductions to .5mg each step.

    The tar H seems to bind stronger/longer to the receptors. Usually folks in that arena need to be on the higher end of the COWS scale before induction. Basically more of a time issue...to be on the heavier side of WDs. The determination you had ,having experienced precipitated WDS and kept trying will pay off well.:D

    If you're using the 8mg pills, you may have an issue with dividing the doses smaller. Just crush the 'sub crumbs' into piles of dust. Then divide as needed. You can funnel the dust under your tongue with the fold of a match book or piece of paper.

    As far as post jump...your plan will have minimized the acute stage. Whatever discomfort you may experience will be minimized...just may hang around a little longer. Planning pays off. Clonidine at post jump can help, but with the resolve you displayed so far, you may not need it. If sleep starts to get sporatic around the 1mg point, try some melatonin or valerian. Both need a little time to build in the system.

    One hint...if you're dosing the same time every day,change that time as you get closer to jumping. Even by an hour or so. That will help give you the mental ammo for the 'familiar' time to be dose free.

    Congrats again on the progress!!:D

    Jay
    You can't solve problems by using the same kind of thinking that caused them in the first place.

  3. #3
    NoMoreOpiates is offline Member
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    Default Re: Recently Quit!!! Tapering short-term suboxone usage??

    Jdude - Thank you very much for your response. So just continue what I'm doing? Based on your recommendation, I've just devised my schedule. Here's what I'm going to attempt to do which sounds completely reasonable based on your recommendation.

    Today (Day 15) - already took my 2mg
    Day 16 - attempt 1.5mg
    Day 17 - 1.5mg
    Day 18 - 1.5mg
    Day 19 - 1.5mg
    Day 20 - 1mg
    Day 21 - 1mg
    Day 22 - 1mg
    Day 23 - 1mg
    Day 24 - .5mg
    Day 25 - .5mg
    Day 26 - .5mg
    Day 27 - .25mg
    Day 28 - .25mg
    Day 29 - DONE

    Also, thanks for the tips about the "sub crumbs", saving them, and funneling them under my tongue. That sounds like a good idea and I wouldn't have thought about that. And you assumed correctly, I only have access to 8mg pills.

    I'm happy to hear that my discomfort will be minimized (despite the fact that it will still be there). I expect a bit of discomfort and I'm confident I can handle that. What I couldn't have handled is non-stop puking/dry-heaving and everything else that heroin withdrawal would bring out in me.

    As far as when I jump, I don't think I'll have access to clonidine, which is unfortunate, because I've read that drug really can work wonders. I do, however, have some valiums that I've saved up that I think will help, and I have a few ambiens too, so those will definitely help with sleep. And please don't worry about me developing any sort of addiction to benzos. I've always been able to take an occasional valium or xanax and have never felt any desire to take that regularly. Not to mention, I've heard benzo addiction is even worse that opiate addiction, and there's no way I'm going to make decisions that would allow my body to get addicted to another substance. I'll opt for sleep-deprivation before I start taking benzos with any sort of regularity. I've learned a lot during my time as an addict, and it is the most horrible way to live - addicted, dependent and being a slave to something/anything. Gross!!

    Now, about Melatonin...
    I actually purchased some a few months ago when I was wanting to quit and was stocking up on stuff I might need. Quitting then never happened then, go figure, so I've got an unopened jar of 60 5mg Melatonins in my medicine cabinet. Is it true that Melatonin takes some time to build up in your body to be effective? If so, would you recommend I start taking it tonight? That way when my sleeping really starts becoming affected in the upcoming weeks, that it will then hopefully be effective for me. And actually, I've been having a bit of trouble sleeping ever since I quit and have taken Tylenol PM a number of times over the past couple weeks. Perhaps Melatonin is a better sleep-aid substitute than the Tylenols? How much should I take - two 5mg pills/night to start? More/less? And approximately how many days will I need to take it before it will really aid with my sleep.

    "One hint...if you're dosing the same time every day,change that time as you get closer to jumping. Even by an hour or so. That will help give you the mental ammo for the 'familiar' time to be dose free."

    Question about this...I have been dosing the same time every day. The first week approximately, I was dosing twice a day. My afternoon dose was generally 1/2 of my morning dose (ex. the days I was taking about 4, I'd take close to 2.5-3mg in the morning, and then the rest of that half (half of the 8mg sub) of the pill in the afternoon to make up 4mg total for the day). However, since getting down to my 2mg dose, about 5-6 days ago, I've only been dosing one time in the morning and it has been working totally fine.

    So I wake up about 90 minutes before work starts at 9am for me, and I've been taking my dose then. So I dose pretty close to 7:30am daily. So you're saying that as I get close to jumping, to push this dose time back a little each day? So, for example, the week prior to jumping, on day one of that week, maybe dose at 8:30am instead. And then 9:30am the following day, then 10:30am the following, etc.? That make sense, because I'm letting the half-life wind down an hour more every time I push that back an hour. Very good suggestion, I never would have thought to do that.

    Well again, jdude, thanks for your well thought out response and recommendations. I've read a bunch of your posts on here and you seem to be extremely knowledgeable and helpful on this subject, so I trust what you say and I'll be sure to keep you all posted on my progress. It felt really good to speak to a therapist earlier this week, and I think that using this forum to get some stuff out will also be helpful for me...because what I'm starting to learn is that nobody can sucessfully do this alone, and the more support systems I can build up, the better my chances are for continuing with my recovery.

    So, I've got a good day planned and I'm going to get to it. It has now been a half of a month since I've last used, and I think that's f'n awesome!! I'm so happy for myself, and have been just so much happier with life in general. Recovering addicts really are not BSing when they say life is so much better on the other side. After even only a half of a month of not using and testing out this other side, I can already see that. The addiction had been so strong the past year, but now I'm getting strong...and I can tell that my strength is going to beat the crap out of that disgusting addiction. GO ME!! :)

  4. #4
    NoMoreOpiates is offline Member
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    Default Re: Recently Quit!!! Tapering short-term suboxone usage??

    As far as today is concerned, I took about 1.25-1.5 mgs a couple hours ago and am feeling totally fine. This was also at least a couple hours later in the day than when I had been dosing. I didn't feel bad before dosing and I wonder how long I could have waited before feeling the need to take a little sub. It's hard to take an exact dose when you get into splitting up quarters of an 8mg pill. When I split the quarter to try to make it 1mg and 1mg, it didn't break evenly, and one side was definitely was a little larger. It was probably 1.2 on one side and .8 on the other. I took the bigger half and then I chipped a little more off. It would be nice to have the 2mg pills to break up, but I feel like I'll manage just fine with estimating my dose...especially since I plan on only taking this for about a month total, and I don't sense my body will be used to it enough where I'll feel any difference between .2 mgs if I can't dose with the exact intended amount.

    So anyways, I'm still doing well, and now I've officially gone way longer than I've gone without opiates in years. It's amazing how hard I thought it was going to be to not partake in my habit every day. When your addiction is strong and you're using every day, it's so very hard to image not participating in that act every day. How was I going to be able to sit and relax at home and watch TV or a movie without smoking tar? How was I going to come home from work and not get high? When fully addicted, imagining not using is so amazingly hard to imagine. It's amazing how strong that addictive voice is in your head. It was like tricking me into thinking that my life would be very difficult and it would be hard for me to do things or relax without getting high. Well, I didn't do much Friday night because I had to be up early Saturday, and I was completely content just sitting around and watching TV without getting high on dope. Separating myself from the dope for over two weeks has had such a tremendous effect...and I know it now. I really DO NOT need that in my life. I don't at all. It makes your life worse in every single way imaginable, at least that how it was for me towards the end of my addiction.

    Getting to where I'm at right now really hasn't been terribly difficult because I feel like something clicked in my head this time, I don't know exactly what, but I am so determined to keep this up after experiencing how significantly better I've been feeling since quitting tar. The only thing that hasn't been better in my life is my sleep...and that's to be expected, and I can accept that for now. But other than that, I'm starting to like things again which I once liked, but lost interest in once becoming an addict. It's so nice to actually have some real emotions again. Opiates really f*ck up your body and your mind. I don't think you can even begin to comprehend how much they destroy every aspect of you and your life unless you've been there, and have moved on from it. My revelations and what I've been thinking about has been significant; and I'm happy to be coming to all these realizations because what I've realized will most definitely keep me motivated to continue my recovery from that mother-f'n disgusting drug.

    Alright, well, have a great day everyone. I'm off to a Super Bowl party this afternoon and am looking forward to enjoying it without being high on dope!

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Recently Quit!!! Tapering short-term suboxone usage??

    Congrats on your focus and determination Nomoreop's !

    For me anyways atm my determination is i believe, whats going to get me thru this opiate fog ,


    Did you enjoy the super bowl ? i was pleased to see the saints win !


    Could help New Orleans with their healing !

  6. #6
    NoMoreOpiates is offline Member
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    Default Re: Recently Quit!!! Tapering short-term suboxone usage??

    Well, keep up that determination then, befree. You can do it, we all can if we're determined enough. And yes, I did very much enjoy going out and hanging out with friends at a Super Bowl party without having to get high beforehand. Plus, I was happy to see the Saints win too!!

    Well, as far as the subs are concerned, I took about 1.5 yesterday and again today and have been totally fine. I'm wondering if I should just go down to 1mg tomorrow and maybe try to jump this weekend? I dunno? Or maybe it's better to get down to about .5 for a few days and then alternate days before jumping? I'm not sure how to do this, because I really want my w/ds to be as minimal as possible, and the longer I stay on this, the longer they'll linger, so should I just try to jump this weekend. Maybe take 1mg tomorrow, and .5-1mg Wednesday, .5 Thursday and then just deal with it this weekend? I don't have anything goign on, so I could afford to just lay around if need be. Plus I have several valiums saved that would help though the weekend. At this point, maybe I ought to just play it by ear. If I can keep reducing and still feel fine, then why keep taking them? Then again, I don't want to get ahead of myself. It was easy to go from 2mg down to 1.5 the past two days, but what, it's the 3rd/4th day when you feel the reductions, just like it's the 3rd/4th day after jumping that you really start feeling the PAWS? What to do? What to do?

    Well, I can tell you that I'm definitely attempting to take 1mg tomorrow, and I'll bring an extra .5-1mgs with me to work, in case I notice the drop while at work and can take a little sub to feel relief and get through the rest of the day.

    I'll keep you all posted. And anyone who has experience using suboxone from anywhere between 2-4 weeks wants to chime in with their experience and what you did, and how it worked for you, please share...

    Thanks.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Recently Quit!!! Tapering short-term suboxone usage??

    Personally,I'd stay the course with the plan you outlined above. It's very reasonable. As far as feeling fine...that's great news and progress.:) Just remember you're not only decreasing the dose when you taper....you're allowing the half life to wind down. That part you can't rush.;)
    You can't solve problems by using the same kind of thinking that caused them in the first place.

  8. #8
    NoMoreOpiates is offline Member
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    Default Re: Recently Quit!!! Tapering short-term suboxone usage??

    Quote Originally Posted by jdude View Post
    Personally,I'd stay the course with the plan you outlined above. It's very reasonable. As far as feeling fine...that's great news and progress.:) Just remember you're not only decreasing the dose when you taper....you're allowing the half life to wind down. That part you can't rush.;)
    Gotcha...I trust your advice. I'll keep with what I've outlined above, but I might just do three days at 1.5 and 1mg instead of the 4 days for each that I listed above. You're right, and I should keep taking and decreasing the sub to let the half-life wind down, but to also keep the cravings away and give me even more time getting used to living life without smoking that nasty f'n tar.

    I think I was getting a little ahead of myself because of how good I've been doing and how well I've been feeling.

    Revised thought:
    Mon/today (day 17 on sub) - took 1.5mg this AM
    Tue (18) - 1.5mg
    Wed (19) - 1mg
    Thur (20) - 1mg
    Fri (21) - 1mg
    Sat (22) - .5mg
    Sun (23) - .5mg
    Mon (24) - .5mg
    Tue (25) - .25mg
    Wed (26th day) - .25mg
    Thu (27th day) - nothing
    Fri (28) - should hopefully not feel it this day
    Saturday/Sunday (29/30) - Deal with feelin' it on the 3rd & 4th days
    Monday (day 31, 1 month off tar) - A completely opiate-free life begins!

  9. #9
    212d is offline Member
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    Default Re: Recently Quit!!! Tapering short-term suboxone usage??

    Hey.... I'm out here on the east coast...so i don't know much about tar....but i've been on the IV heroin subutex tapdance for 7 years....I've been clean for about 6 weeks now off of both.... I've detoxed different ways...anyway i'm happy for you that you have stopped the heroin but being on suboxone and being on nothing is a huge difference....at least up to three months I have found out from past tries getting clean.....i don't mean to burst your bubble for how good your feeling, but suboxone's half-life is 37 hours....So it basically stays in your system for 7-10 days...I find that those days suck bad, but with clonidine .02mg 3-4x a day, vitamins, fluids and muscle relaxers and a good attitude that anyone can get through it....IT does suck and for me severe lack of energy, sleep problems, and frequent and urgent urination are the most profound...this is my experience...different people have different symptoms as i'm sure you know...For me the hard part is after the 7-10 days without the suboxone in your system and its just u and no opiates...I NEEDED TO FORCE MYSELF TO DO STUFF, EXCERCISE, MEETINGS, ETC...AND I STILL DO...I still am depressed hence the reason i joined this site...Anyway...taper .025mg every 4 days...than if you want when you get down to 1/4 of one mg...take it one day...than take a day off...than take it again...than 2 days off...so on and so forth until you have four or five full days off....i always dosed in the morning but changing times by an hour may be a good idea to get your mind ready........You could do it like that if you have the time & patience....i've done every which way...this time and i don't recommend this and i hope i don't get in trouble for this...and i know its dangerous....i did an 8mg 4mg 2mg 1mg detox four days...Unfortunately by day 3 off the subs i was dying and did about 80$ worth of junk to get through the worst of the sub withdrawal....I know this is and was stupid but i suffered the two or 3 days after that...i couldn't get out of bed...but i havent used since....that was right after new years......I guess my point is and you know this; is anyway you taper your still going to go through a period of physical discomfort, just to what degree matters on how your body is and if you know what works for you....but from my experience getting over the physical withdrawal is the easy part....IT'S WHEN you have to deal with stresses and problems without your immediate feelings changer readily available...may god be with us both...i know ill need him......

  10. #10
    NoMoreOpiates is offline Member
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    Default Re: Recently Quit!!! Tapering short-term suboxone usage??

    Thanks for posting, 212d. And that's awesome that you've been clean for 6 weeks! Keep it up. You've come this far and I'm sure have gone through the hardest part, so I hope it continues to get easier for you from here on out.

    Trust me, I know that I'm not going to get out of this without feeling a little ****ty. I can imagine it was bad for you having been an addict for 7 years, and no doubt it will be bad for me, but I'm praying that my body heals quickly since I have a quick metabolism, and I used for a "relatively" short amount of time - I was only a 1-2 year addict, as opposed to the 5, 10, 20, or 30 year addict.

    Speaking of dealing with feeling ****ty, I definitely haven't felt ****ty the past few days, but I definitely have felt a little bit less energized since dropping my dose under 2mgs. I took about 1.3-1.4 today, I would estimate. I had half an 8, and tried splitting it in half, but i ended up breaking off what looked to be exactly 1/3 of the half pill - so about 1.3. In addition, I've noticed having a couple cravings of the past few days. These do pass in a short amount of time, but my mind definitely has been thinking about it more the past few days than I had the first couple weeks. Also, as I lay down now, my legs are starting to feel restless and achy. It isn't horrible, but it's a little bit uncomfortable. Regardless of all this, I'm thankfully too clear headed at the moment to even consider acting on such cravings. No matter how strong that drug is, when I'm thinking clearly, I know I'm stronger than that f'n addictive voice that sometimes creeps into my head.

    All things considered, I'm still doing really well and am so proud that I've now almost gone a week longer than my longest time attempting to quit since first becoming addicted. I think today is day 18, and previously, the longest I had gone was 11 days. Each of these days off the heroin have all been better than the good days on heroin in the many months leading up to me quitting. I've got another appointment tomorrow with the therapist I saw last week, so that should be good for me...and I'm going to try to start going to the gym again beginning later this week. ::Yawn:: I'm tired, I've slept about 5-6 hours each of the last two nights. I've woken up at 6am the past couple mornings and have been wide awake. I don't need to get up for work until 7:30-8. So yeah, maybe I should try going to bed if I'm starting to yawn.

    Have a good night/day everyone.

  11. #11
    212d is offline Member
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    Default Re: Recently Quit!!! Tapering short-term suboxone usage??

    Thanks man...im gone to bed to..im exhausted....more snow and blizzard conditions out here in jerzey....ugh...depressing.....get some rest...ill talk to ya....keep fighting the fight....and try and stay positive...though sometimes it does seem super hard.....goodnight man....

  12. #12
    NoMoreOpiates is offline Member
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    Default Tapering short-term suboxone usage?? (question for jdude)

    jdude - if you read this, how do you recommend me properly dosing when I get below 2mgs? I only have access to the 8mg pills, and the past few days I'm estimating that I've been taking about 1.3-1.6mgs, but I really can't be sure. Plus, I have some crumbs collecting that I'm guessing are anywhere from .4 - .8 mgs...but I really have no idea for sure. Any recommendations for accurately dosing at low does when you only have access to 8mg pills to break up?

    Thanks.
    Last edited by NoMoreOpiates; 02-10-2010 at 09:28 PM.

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