Addiction: Substance Abuse Community
Advice and help for newbies trying to quit opiates
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This community is a place to share information and support with others who are trying to stop using drugs, prescription drugs, alcohol, tobacco or other addictive substances. Discuss with others, the symptoms of addiction, addiction recovery, ways to quit like tapering and cold turkey, and withdrawal symptoms. If you are interested in general "chat", please visit our Addiction Social Community.

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Advice and help for newbies trying to quit opiates

I post this every few days for the newbies to this site. If you have any more questions, post and we'll try and get to them..

This is a work in progress...something I've been working on off and on for the last couple of weeks. It's not considered complete, but has lots of info from lots of sources. If any of the "old timers" have anything to add, let me know and I'll add it to the document. I hope to use this to post a general "how to" every couple of days or so.

Listed below are suggestions for detoxing and quitting an opiate addiction. They are just suggestions compiled from the detox plans of people that have gone through cold turkey detox before. They are just that, suggestions, and any detox plan is best when done under a doctor's care. Consult your doctor before trying any of the suggestions below.
This is prewritten for anyone who is beginning, or planning on beginning, a cold turkey withdrawal to opiates. This includes drugs such as tramadol (Ultracet and Ultram) codeine (Tylenol #3, #4), Darvocet, Hydrocodone (Vicodin, Norco, Lortab and derivatives),  Oxycodone (Endocet, Percocet, Oxycontin), Morphine, Demerol. Fentanyl, and Dilaudud. There are many other opiates not listed, so if you don’t see it listed, you can still use these suggestions if it’s an opiate based addiction. None of these apply to benzodiazepine based addictions. These addictions should never be dealt with by going cold turkey. Always consult a doctor for a detox plan for benzos.

First of all, opiate withdrawals are uncomfortable, but rarely life threatening. You may think you’re going to die, but most of the withdrawal symptoms are just very uncomfortable. If possible, take some time off work or schedule a week or so in order to fully detox. You will honestly not feel like doing much anyway. Opiate withdrawal symptoms usually start 12-24 hours after your last dose. But, the timing of withdrawal symptoms depends upon the drug taken, length of time you’ve been taking it, and how you react to medications. The physical withdrawals usually last 3-7 days, with days 3 and 4 being the worst. Once again, this is all dependent on the person. You can expect these symptoms. Dilated pupils, diarrhea, runny nose, goose bumps, abdominal pain, stomach cramps, sweating, agitation, anxiety, nausea, vomiting, leg cramps, general aches and pains, and sleeplessness. This list is not absolute. You may experience all of these symptoms, only some of them, or other symptoms. Again, we are all different. Below is the famous Thomas Recipe. It gives some general information along with supplements that help with the withdrawal symptoms. The only thing I would add to this list is a blood pressure drug named clonidine. It effectively lowers the blood pressure and lessens many of the withdrawal symptoms. Most any doctor will prescribe it if you’re honest as to why you need it. Discuss dosages and frequency with your doctor.

Thomas Recipe:

1. Valium (or another benzodiazepine such as Klonopin, Librium, Ativan or Xanax). Of these, Valium and Klonopin are best suited for tapering since they come in tablet form. Librium is also an excellent detox benzo, but comes in capsules, making it hard to taper the dose. Ativan or Xanax should only be used if you can't get one of the others.
2. Imodium (immodium) (over the counter, any drug or grocery store).
3. L-Tyrosine (500 mg caps) from the health food store.
4. Strong wide-spectrum mineral supplement with at least 100% RDA of Zinc, Phosphorus, Copper and Magnesium.
5. Vitamin B6 caps.
6. Access to hot baths or a Jacuzzi (or hot showers if that's all that's available).

How to use the recipe:
Begin your detox with regular doses of Valium (or alternate benzo). Start with a dose high enough to produce sleep. Before you use any benzo, make sure you're aware of how often it can be safely taken. Different benzos have different dosing schedules. Taper your Valium dosage down after each day. The goal is to get through day 4, after which the worst WD symptoms will subside. You shouldn't need the Valium after day 4 or 5. During detox, hit the hot bath or Jacuzzi as often as you need to for muscle aches. Don't underestimate the effectiveness of hot soaks. Spend the entire time, if necessary, in a hot bath. This simple method will alleviate what is for many the worst opiate WD symptom.
Use the Imodium (immodium) aggressively to stop the runs. Take as much as you need, as often as you need it. Don't take it, however, if you don't need it. At the end of the fourth day, you should be waking up from the Valium and experiencing the beginnings of the opiate WD malaise. Upon rising (empty stomach), take the L-Tyrosine. Try 2000 mgs, and scale up or down, depending on how you feel. You can take up to 4,000 mgs. Take the L-Tyrosine with B6 to help absorption. Wait about one hour before eating breakfast. The L-Tyrosine will give you a surge of physical and mental energy that will help counteract the malaise. You may continue to take it each morning for as long as it helps. If you find it gives you the "coffee jitters," consider lowering the dosage or discontinuing it altogether. Occasionally, L-Tyrosine can cause the runs. Unlike the runs from opiate WD, however, this effect of L-Tyrosine is mild and normally does not return after the first hour. Lowering the dosage may help. With breakfast, take the mineral supplement. As soon as you can force yourself to, get some mild exercise such as walking, cycling, swimming, etc. This will be hard at first, but will make you feel considerably better.

After withdrawals, the fight has just begun. It is as important to have a plan for recovery as it is to have a plan for detox. Some people swear by AA/NA and the 12 step process. Others take the private therapy route. There are many options, and there is truly something for everyone. Whether you attend meetings every night, group meetings every week, or therapy every other day, find a support system and work on your recovery. The withdrawals will be the most physically challenging part of your recovery, but the mental part that comes afterwards is just as hard. The best defense to relapse is to have a plan and stick with it.
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14 Comments Post a Comment
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256169_tn?1191688915
Good info.....Thanks for taking the time to post it.
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Avatar_f_tn
Thank you so much!
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Avatar_f_tn
Thank you! :]
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222369_tn?1274478235
Very welcome to all of you!
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Avatar_m_tn
I think i asked you this once. Have you asked MedHelp if they would paste certain things like the Thomas Recipe or what Clonidine is and what it's used for and post these in the front like other forums do.The front being before the newest post. You post every couple of days but it slides down so fast it's gone in a couple of hours. I know when i came here i needed some quick answers to calm down.
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222369_tn?1274478235
I know the forum takes our suggestions, and you can email them and suggest some things. The problem I think is two-fold. First, my post isn't "medically" cleared, so there may be liability problems if MedHelp posts it as a "sticky". Secondly, I don't know if MedHelp forums can even do that. It would be nice though.
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222369_tn?1274478235
I had over 30 days, relapsed, went 14, relapsed, and am now on day 16 or 17 I think. I am going to get 30 days if it kills me...then 60..then 90...then I'm stopping counting!!
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Avatar_n_tn
I need serious help now this damn opiate ******** is ruining my life I wanna be me again if i dont have some vicodin perqocet oxycodone morphine oxcicontin lortab hydrocodone #1 i cant function at all! #2 im an ******* #3 all i think about is where im getting my next fix #4 i spend atleast a thousand a month if not more #5 my family suffers- arguements with wife- my son wants me to play but i cant get off the couch on & on I could go about the strain it puts on the fam #6 I stay up all night just a poppin those babys like its nothin and i dont sleep! I cant do this anymore i dont have insurance and i want to get help maybe rapid detox i dont know i have tried to quit but my will power sux if anyone knows where i can get like state or govt funded help in upstae ny PLEASE let me know! My father had 4 back operations when i was a kid and my mother has had 2 my father died when i was 15 from drinking alcohol  and eating perqocet my mother almost died last summer because of a hole in her stomach caused by taking to much vicoprofen honestly ive been taking opiates since i was like 14 i would steal my mothers pills frequently now im paying for it dearly             I NEED HELP
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230262_tn?1316649534
dang, i feel like Im wearing my preachers robe this morning here, LOL....i know its  SUnday morning and all but.....lolol.......lots of people need help this morning i guess

VicoPerq..-- please read as many posts as you can here. You are not alone and there is help for you. All you require is the desire to really quit and it sounds like you are at that point finally and that is the most important thing!

Others will be up soon and be able to give you better advice. I dont mean to peter out on you here but my oldest son just woke up and i need to get off the puter here and fry some eggs and sausage up!

Hang in there and please stick around this place, it  may just save your life!
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Avatar_n_tn
Thanx Buddy! Eggs Sound good!
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460948_tn?1232305722
I sent you a message, check you inbox!!
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Avatar_m_tn
Hang in there vic I know the whole ordeal and am dealing with ct withdrawal right now. I am 7 days into it and it is getting a bit easier. Ewad, post and try to keep your mind occupied as much as you can stand it. I know my attention span is very limited right now but is getting a bit better. Mike
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452063_tn?1324078516
You sound like it' time you want to try quitting...It only gets worse when you use. I'm on day 9 again and feeling pretty good today. I was sick for 4 days and started to feel better physically. Some hours are good and some bad...kinda an emotional rollarcoaster right now but today is good. Keep reading and posting. You'll get support and believe me your not the only one in this boat to hell. Good luck. Corey
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Avatar_n_tn
hey i read what your going thru and i cried.i'm a mess too.my mind is in a blur.i havent had anything for pain for 4 days now and the withdrawls is something else.i was always a pothead and then got on pills and it has destroyed my life.i'm getting ready to send my kids to live with their dad and i cant seem to think straight!my mind is all screwed up and i'm not sure if sending them away is the best thing to do!?force yourself to go thru the withdrawls.you did this to yourself just like i did.i'm forcing myself and its hard but,you can do this.FORCE YOURSELF!be sick for 6 or 7 days and dont ever touch another pill again.TAKE YOUR LIFE BACK!!I AM NO MATTER WHAT!good luck to you and your family you can do this!
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