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About to start tapering down on suboxone
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About to start tapering down on suboxone

Just to summarize our situation, my husband and I have been on subs for 3 weeks now due to years of a hydro and methadone addiction. I just want to let everyone who have been supportive to our situation know that we're about to start tapering down 2mgs per week. I'm excited to finally get this process started. I feel great now on the subs. Like this is what normal is supposed to feel like. we don't have cravings for anything and we don't have to take more than the one 8mg strip per day we're prescribed. I know it's not going to be a cake walk once we get low enough to jump off. But i'm mentally prepared. We're open to any other advice and support. It's very much welcomed. I'm so glad i found this forum. And i'm looking into finding an NA meeting close by that me and my husband can start going to. Thanks to everyone here...
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2218783_tn?1357574681
Congrats On taking your life back You sound very good I have no experience with subs myself but a girl in my group was on them and they saved her life, She has always said that aftercare was a very important part of her program and taking suboxone, I met her in my aftercare group so thats the only advice I have is set that up immediately and get started, I have been going now for over 8 months My DOC was percocet and My meetings have been the key to my recovery. Good luck to you and your Husband, Life is so much better now isnt it no more counting worrying about when you are low on pills.
I am glad you are doing well. God Bless you both! keep posting for support
10 Comments Post a Comment
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3517260_tn?1388880793
      Just wanted to bump this up so it doesnt get missed.Gets kinda slow here at night.......Sounds like you are on the right track.I was on subutex for a few months and ended up abusing them.So i might be the wrong person to give advice.Take your taper slow and get down to the lowest level possible......And then try skipping days before you jump....Patience is key with subs....
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2218783_tn?1357574681
Congrats On taking your life back You sound very good I have no experience with subs myself but a girl in my group was on them and they saved her life, She has always said that aftercare was a very important part of her program and taking suboxone, I met her in my aftercare group so thats the only advice I have is set that up immediately and get started, I have been going now for over 8 months My DOC was percocet and My meetings have been the key to my recovery. Good luck to you and your Husband, Life is so much better now isnt it no more counting worrying about when you are low on pills.
I am glad you are doing well. God Bless you both! keep posting for support
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3105263_tn?1363140825
thank you... it does feel great. i feel great. it's like i'm seeing things in a different light. i don't miss the counting and worrying about being low on pills. before the suboxone all we wanted to do was sit on the couch and enjoy our high. and it wasn't just affecting us, it was affecting our kids. Now when my husband  gets home from work in the afternoon, we take them to the park almost everyday. I'm doing so much more with them during the day while he's at work. And i can actually see a change in them. Like the see the difference in us. And that makes me happy and sad all at the same time. I'm not saying we were horrible parents when we were on pills. We were selfish though. Our addiction came first before everything. I'm mad at myself for whatever effect our addiction is going to have on my kids childhood memories. But we're doing everything we can to make them better. This is going to change all of our lives.
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1253584_tn?1332881554
Good for u. I took suboxone for three months to help me get off the methadone trap I was on for two years and b4 was addicted to drugs n alcohol for years. It worked good for me. When I got off the sub the wds were very doable for me.    Everyone's stories r diff though. Its a great idea to find sum Na meetings right away. That something I did not do once I got off the subs. I got no aftercare. Therefore I was always relapsing BC I could only whiteknuckle sobriety for so long. Its very important to get aftercare. Go into this part of your life determined, motivated and with a positive mind set. U deserved to have a life of freedom.

Keep posting here for support.
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4810126_tn?1409496012
Hi & Congrats to you and your husband,
               I just posted on your most recent question about elimination. I'm so glad you're not going to stay on Suboxone. It's a much more difficult kick than hydros. if you stay on it for any length of time. I agree w/ Ang_811, aftercare is everything. It can be particularly hard w/ a couple trying to stay clean if you aren't both completely determined to follow up. I've been there a bunch of times.

      We're here for you guys..All good things to you both
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480448_tn?1403547723
I feel great now on the subs. Like this is what normal is supposed to feel like.

That's great...that's what a person is SUPPOSED to feel like while on sub!

It's great that you are moving towards tapering, let me just share with you some important info.  For one, there's no huge hurry here.  The people who are most successful coming off subs (in my experience) are the ones that do a gradual and deliberate taper, being careful not to drop too drastically, and allowing time to stabilize in between dosage reductions.  There are so many advantages to that approach.

There is this misconception that a sub program should be VERY fast, that's absolutely not always true.  A GOOD sub program, that is incorporating therapy, tox screens, plans for aftercare outside of the clinic, and plans to taper could typically take 6-12 months, and that's OKAY.  Do not let people tell you that if you're not off subs within a month or two, that you're going to be making things far worse for yourself.  Now, people who end up stuck on sub for many years (who aren't choosing that as a long-term option)....yes, different story.

Doing it that way (a 6-12 month type program) allows a person to build their confidence by putting some "clean time" between them and their DOC, where they are able to function normally, while working on their recovery.  As long as people are using that time to work on themselves and their addictions, that's fine...that's how sub should work as a tool in recovery.  It's NOT just about using it solely to detox off the doc.  There should be stabilization periods in between dosage reductions, which adds time to the program, and that's where a lot of people disagree, telling people they should taper as quickly as possible.  NOT true.

And, everyone is different too, it's SO important that each person in a sub program keep the dialogues going with the doctor about what feels right for them as far as the taper goes.  Some DO prefer a more fast track taper, when others take it a bit more slowly.  There's no "right" or "wrong" there.  Also, I will say that people who were on a more comprehensive sub program that was a little longer (a year or so) tended to be much less likely to relapse.  The people who used sub for a month or two, only to detox themselves off their DOC often ended up back in the clinic within a few months.

When you taper down, you can expect to feel some mild w/d symptoms during the first few days after dropping your dose (usually 3-4).  When I say mild, I mean tolerable...nothing a few tylenol cannot take care of (for headaches, muscle aches).  If you are feeling much more intense w/d symptoms, you are either dropping the dose too drastically, or not allowing enough time to adjust after bumping down, or both.  That's when it's necessary to regroup with your doc.

The first few drops, when a person is still on a significant enough dose (anything above 2-4 mg/day), should be fairly easy.  After about a week of the reduction, you should normalize again, and feel like you felt before on the sub.  The actual stabilization period is about two weeks...that's the approx amount of time needed for the body to readjust, even though most people FEEL perfectly fine after just a few days.  

The drops that become more difficult is when you get down to the lower doses (usually anything under 2mg).  That's when you're most likely to feel some more uncomfy w/d symptoms.  That's the point when the dosage reductions should be much smaller.  At first, it's very likely that a person can drop down a significant amount and feel very little...whereas, closer to the end (the jump off point), the harder it is..therefore why it's important to only reduce by small amounts (you will discuss this with your doc more specifically...as we obviously can't give specific instructions).

Just as a guideline, for your info, the jump off point should be as low as a person can taper down to.  The lower the dose a person manages to get down to, the easier the w/d will be.  The doc I worked for recommended a person tapering down to at least 0.5mg/day or less before stopping all together, and that worked pretty well for most people.  The people who insisted on trying to jump at higher doses usually struggled much more.

Sub detox doesn't have to be a nightmare, and you WILL hear lots of horror stories.  Most of them come from people who didn't taper in the most optimal way, or were in a big hurry.  As you can see (from ang's post above), there are also POSITIVE experiences out there as well.  I saw many people successfully come off sub, it IS possible.  The quality of the clinic and sub doc have a lot to do with that too IMO.

Remember that people are much more likely to seek out a forum like this to share a negative experience versus a positive one.  That's just human nature, and that goes for anything...bad experience with a doctor, an antidepressant, an auto repair shop.  People who have had good experiences don't usually think to get online to share their stories, not as much as the bad ones anyway.

Best of luck to you...take your time, ask questions, and go at a pace YOU are comfortable with.  There's NO requirement that says you HAVE to taper off within a certain time frame.  Feel free to PM me anytime.

Lastly, I can NOT stress this enough, utilize this time, while you are stabilized and being maintained on sub to do as MUCH work as you can on yourself.  You need to be hitting meetings, developing a solid support system, seeking out therapy, learning all you can about the stages of relapse, how to identify it, and what to do about it if you think you're at risk.  You can never do too much, but you CAN not do enough...and THAT is where MOST people go wrong.  The sub can be a great tool, but it's only one small aspect of your recovery..YOU have to work the rest of it, and know you're going to have to commit to your recovery for the long haul.  The people who use sub for detox only with no aftercare involved almost always fail.  It's a mindset that the sub was all they needed, but then, once it's gone and those cravings come back, they have NO idea how to handle it.

Best to you...I'll be anxious to watch your progress.  Keep posting here, you'll get so much info and support.  Support systems are SO very important.

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2218783_tn?1357574681
That was the BEST Explanation I have ever read about SUBS and thats exactly how a girl in my group did her program with SUBS I actually saved your post and emailed it to her. You are always so great at explaining on the forum, I myself never used subs I white knuckled it with cold turkey off percs. Which was hard but I did do it and still continue to grow each day, I am very happy and I and very involved in my aftercare program.  I hope your post is read by many people who are on subs or thinking about it as a choice. Maybe it could be put in the health pages . I always read your post because I do learn alot from them Thank you :) God Bless you  :))
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480448_tn?1403547723
Thanks so much for your kind words!!
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4522800_tn?1405696702
WOW I have changed my feelings toward the subs since I joined here..Know I see why maybe I should of done this instead of going though the h** I went in...nursegirl would of the subs helped the adderral and benzos too? If so I did get them for 4 days but I did 8mg to 4mg to 2mg to 2mg and just stopped because I was stubborn and wanted all my poly drugs out of me...
Ileanni.....
Being that said I am sooo pround of you and your husband.. You positive look is just going to be a big blessing for you two....Keep us posted on your recovey and when you feel a little funkie !
God Bless vicke
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2218783_tn?1357574681
I seriously think you should put it into the Health pages copy and paste I would put it under treatment for subs or testimonials . You worked for a doctor right that used this method?
My friend just emailed me back and said that she did her program on subs exactly how you described and it was her doctor that helped her and yes she thought as a former heroin and pill addict it was very important info that should be available for people to read.
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