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Day 1 of cold turkey withdrawal about to commence.
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Day 1 of cold turkey withdrawal about to commence.

I have been taking on average about 5-8 Norco 10/325s per day along with 10/325 Percocet and whatever else the hell I can get a hold of since about March of 2009.  I recently got cut from my primary care physician for a failed drug screen because they found 2 different types of opiates in my system when the only one he RECENTLY prescribed to me was the Norco 10/325 even though he had in the past given me the Percocet, and I am also thinking that maybe there was a way to tell that I was taking more than I was supposed to.  Anyway, I just ran out of my last of the prescription earlier tonight and I don't want to have to live like this anymore...wondering how the hell I am going to get more pills when my s--t runs out, how am I going to afford to buy more from other people...just tired of it all, feeling like crap, spending my day trying to find more when I run out..it's just a waste of life and I want to be free of it.  I DO have a very back lower back injury and I am just going to make an educated assessment in saying that it will never be fixed.  I don't have the insurance for surgery, or traction appointments..no one gives a crap unless they have the right insurance..why should they.  It's a business.  I just want to get through this cold turkey withdrawal as painlessly as possible and get out of this BS haze I have been living in for years.  I can't get Suboxone and I have no doctor to even get it from now anyway so cold cut off is how it's going to happen I guess, and it's starting to happen now.  I am sweating really bad, my whole body is hot and my heart feels like I am about to have a panic attack or a heart attack, my nose feels like it is about to start running non-stop like I have a cold, my face is burning up, my legs are tingly, I feel like puking, I just want to get through this and I am wondering what the best way to do it is without snapping and treating everyone around me terribly, kids, girlfriend, family, etc.  I am a very healthy guy otherwise, don't drink alcohol at ALL, never smoked in my life, don't do any other drugs, etc. and fitness is one of my loves besides being a professional musician, so I really would just love to get back to what I love and out of this miserable existence.  I feel like I want to just get on my elliptical and "burn it off" as if that would be possible, I know it's not, but will forcing myself to do some hard core cardio help at all?  I feel like it might give me a damn heart attack now when it wouldn't normally since I AM in good shape...very muscular, have abs at 40 years old, in generally very good shape compared to even guys 15 years younger than me.  Oh, and I just noticed that another one of the withdrawal symptoms is that I tend to just ramble on about random BS and put my thoughts out of order...as you can see.  Does anyone have some good tips for me?  I can't just take something to put me to sleep for a week since I have things I have to do..so what is the best way to cope?  I kind of feel like hanging myself right now and getting it ALL over with...but I know it's just the withdrawal talking.  I am going to try and sleep now but I already know I can't while I am burning up like this, sweating, kicking and twitching...it really is miserable right now and I know it's not even the beginning yet.  Is this something that can put me in serious danger where I may need a trip to the ER for some reason?  Thanks for any help and input.  I really am done with this whole lifestyle.  I don't know how many years I have left around here and I sure as hell don't want to spend them like these last couple.
14 Comments Post a Comment
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Avatar_m_tn
Morning buddy... as you will read the first 3 to 5 days are the hardest. When i ct, i made sure to get everything on the Thomas recipe list. Its far from a cure, but it makes this journey tolerable. Im an exercise guy too, and this will help you after the fog lifts, around day 5 or 6. Keep on posting here, your story could help someone out! And the dry sauna is great too...
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1801781_tn?1373244154
Stay HYDRATED!  Being dehydrated makes everything worse.  Gatorade, boost, ensure work well.  IMMODIUM is and will be your best friend.  Take it liberally for the first few days.  I promise it helps  in all areas.  Treat the cold like symptoms like you would a cold.  Benedryl  helps with sleep and the cold symptoms.  Bananas for potassium.  Read the Thomas Recipe here for more info.  http://www.medhelp.org/health_pages/Addiction/Thomas-Recipe-Re-Posted/show/16?cid=66

Post here and often while you are detoxing.  I promise you can do it, but you have to cut all avenues of access.  Good luck..glad you came here.

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Avatar_f_tn
Hi Sweet Daddy,
I am very new to this board but I have been following it for awhile and this is what I have learned. There is a Thomas Recipe at the bottom of the page that helps a lot with the withdrawal. Try to get as many of those supplies that you can. Yes, exercise and sweating helps eliminate the toxins. Taking hit soaks in Epsom salts will help with the aches and pains. Drink Lots and lots if water and/or Gatorade. Try to eat when you can, Imodium (immodium) will help with the stomach issues and Hylands Restless leg can be purchased at the drugstore. The everyone is different but most say the worst is over in 5-7 days. You will feel like you have a bad flu. Ultimately the best thing you can do is find some type of aftercare. AA/NA because believe it or not the physical withdrawal is the easy part. Staying clean is harder dealing with the emotional aspect of needing/wanting the drugs. Stay on this board, you will get support from some great people with more experience than I.
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Avatar_f_tn
You can do this. I don't think you'll need a trip to the ER, but I'm no expert. You may feel like you want to go. Maybe it's the fight or flight thing kicking in. You may feel panicky, try to stay busy. It helped me to not think too much about it. Just went about my day. Check in on here often, these people are great when it coms to support. Think of how much easier it will be not to have to make sure you have enough pils, or carrying them with you when you go somewhere so they don't wear off. What a pain in the neck that whole thing is. You're on your way, don't give up! I have faith in you, commit to this and you will be free!
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717842_tn?1349254050
Thanks for the comments everyone.

Here is a little update:  
I woke up around 2pm and was burning so hot and sweating so bad, I had suicidal thoughts, it was terrible.  The best way to describe what I felt is that every single pore in my entire body was opening and closing like tiny venus fly traps looking for "food"..or in my case, opiates that my body has been getting a steady supply of for the better part of 3 years.  It was like my body was attacking itself looking for even one taste of any kind of opiate.  I broke down and found 2 Tylenol 3's in an old bottle and it did nothing other than make me feel like a bag of **** for breaking down and taking them in hopes it would help my symptoms subside for even a few minutes. but compared to a daily spread out dosage of 50-70mg of either hydrocodone or oxycodone or both together, 2 Tylenol 3's was like eating a couple of Skittles.  I know that the mental fight is going to be a tough one, even more so than the physical one.  
    Part of my problem other than my lower back pain (which is noticeably worse now that I'm not loaded up on vicodin all day) is that I am a professional musician, not a band musician, but a composer, producer, piano, orchestrator, etc. and I have become a believer that I almost can't be creative anymore unless I am F'd up on pills, so therin lies part of my mental fight that I am involved in added to the physical discomfort of cold turkey withdrawal and, now, the re-introduction of the true level of my herniated lower discs plus the arthritis involved since I don't have the haze of opiates in my system.
    More of my symptoms today were a complete and total loss of strength and energy.  I am a very fit kind of guy, I added a pic of me for my avatar to kind of show you what I look like "fit-wise" just to convey to people that I am used to being very active and my diet is normally very clean.  I haven't had alcohol in years, never smoked a single time, and I love to be able to push my body to look better than the average 40 year old..well until I just don't care or have the energy anymore..and let me tell you what..today, I could not have possibly cared less about anything.  I couldn't stand up without feeling weak, my back is killing me, I tried to drive and had no business behind the wheel with my dizziness and double vision plus head ache, I feel like I was in bed and someone dropped a cement block on my stomach and it knocked the wind out of me, like my body was giving up, like imminent death was upon me...I know it all sounds so damn dramatic but I can only describe it as such....I am a pretty mean and tough looking guy, but today I laid in bed and accdentally (it was on Netflix already cued up) watched some episodes of Grey's Anatomy and cried like a little girl and then felt embarrassed and then I felt like I needed to apologize to people for things I did 25 years ago in school "sorry I tripped you and your books fell out of your hands back in grade school" you know...that kind of stuff and then I was thinking of reasons to not just wrap a rope around the garage rafters and then around my neck and jump, just because of all the emotional ******** and physical symptoms I was having.  

Is this normal?  

Again, thank you guys for all your input, I am fighting the urge to just get a few more vics to TRY and taper off rather than go CT like this, but I know it can only lead to me sitting there and taking 2 at a time so I feel "good" and then all this crap is for nothing, so I'm not going to do it, but man, what a mental war it is...and this is only day 2 coming up now.
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717842_tn?1349254050
What did you do for the complete lack of energy and weakness?  Should I wait a few days to try and take any type of energy supplement that might add to the monster hot flash spells and sweating I am having?  Should I force myself to try and do some cardio or just wait a few days.  I am used to a clean diet of protein supplements and egg whites, etc.  I couldn't care less about my diet now...I'd eat a pizza and a gallon of ice cream right now and then I'd probably be sick and bring it back up.  This just *****.
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Avatar_m_tn
Today I'm 9 months clean.
27 years ago I stopped drinking - I'm an alcoholic. Then 12 years in to my "sobriety" I found pills, and off I went. 15 years later I decided that I'd had enough. Actually, the shame, lies, deceit...it all finally caught up with me. One morning when I was shaving I couldn't look at myself in the mirror (really, this happened. No added drama). I had already taken a couple of pills, so I flushed the rest. That was January 2nd of this year. January 3rd was my first day without pills after a two year run on Norco 10s - 10 a day. And by the way, I'm a musician too. A drummer. Haven't played much; jams here and there. Always high.
I'm writing all of this because I want you to know that I used like you did. 15 years of putting any kind of pain pill in my mouth, with a final two year Norco finale.
The DIFFERENCE between us is I made a decision to quit; I had pills, I flushed them. Even had refills available and canceled them. You are being forced in to quitting because you have run out - can't get any more, for now anyway. You know in your heart that you should stop; but is now the time?
The physical symptoms you write about, all of them. are normal. On day 3 of my detox from hell, I was looking for a zipper so I could unzip my own skin and step out of it. And as you've already found, the physical side of detox is nothing compared to the mental. And the longer you're in withdrawal, the worse the mental struggle gets. The voice that you've already heard - it whispers "just one won't hurt; just one so I can relax, get some rest", etc.
So many addicts get through the physical hell, think that they've "won", and then find that the work for recovery has just started.
You have to decide if you want to get clean, or just want to make it until you can get more meds.
If you truly want to stop, then this is the right place for you. The detox will be hard, but if you don't stop now it will still be waiting for you down the road, and as you get older, it gets harder.
Finally, if you do decide to taper, then you'll need someone you can trust to hold, hide, and give you the meds per the taper plan. Most of us can't taper because if there are more pills in the house, we'll use.
Make your decision. Let us know. There are several things that you can do to help make the detox livable...Keep eating, drinking water. If you can't eat, try drinking Ensure. If you're visiting the bathroom alot, get a drink that has electrolytes added. You body need nourishment. If you don't eat you will get weak, and will thus feel worse. Keep posting.
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Avatar_m_tn
P.S. - Just read your latest post. Stay away from energy drinks/supplements. Again, if you can't eat, drink things like Ensure. Try a fruit or vegetable smoothie, protein shake. When you can eat, then eat like a pig. Healthy food, but eat. Put any fitness/weight program aside for a while until you're eating (and keeping it down) on a regular basis. I consumed a bunch of carbs.
Then, when the energy level is starting to return, start doing MILD exercise...Walks, bike rides, etc.  Be careful. Don't overdo.
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717842_tn?1349254050
Thanks man, yeah I feel what you are saying about "is this the time".  I actually have a few avenues for getting some more pills but I know in my heart that it IS time and I know if I DID go get those pills I would just be prolonging the inevitable and as you said, the older we get, the harder it is to get through this.  I have come to the realization that what I am going to need more than anything is mental support for the fact that I feel like I NEED something to make me feel happy again, like I give a s--t about anything anymore, and of course, we all know that a nice fat dose of an opiate will give us that temporary feeling of happiness, but at what cost?  Lying to friends and family, making symptoms look worse to doctors to get better meds, spending 1000s of dollars on the "street" when prescriptions run out, the feeling of guilt and hate for myself when I do all of these things, putting off life one more day to just take "one more pill".  The whole lifestyle is crap, and it's a dead end and a waste of talent on my part.  I think I would rather just deal with my disc problems and live with it than live with a whole new set of issues that opiate addiction brings to the table..which it has.  I almost don't even remember what it felt like to just wake up in the morning and walk outside under a nice sunny day, feel like writing music because I felt creative...now it's "man I need to get my mind in the zone just to get any music work done for my job".  I want to be back to that old musician that I vaguely remember back in the late 90s...I had emotions and I used those emotions to write music.  Now i have no emotions, almost like a damn zombie.    I want to get back to that euphoric feeling I used to get just thinking about going to the gym, or taking a ride on my Harley, or hearing a chord progression that made me feel good.  My whole life has turned into nothing but emptiness, and completely emotionless, and selfish...which brings the guilt.  Everything just really seems bleak and desolate right now.  I do want to quit and I know it's going to be a fight.  Everyone around me deserves much better than I am giving them now.
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1926359_tn?1331591739
Hey SWEET DADDY-
You are totally right that your life of riding the pill roller coaster is the definition of insanity.  It's time to stop, you're ready to stop, I can hear it in your words.  They resonate.  So good- stop.  Your choice, your terms.  You are taking your life back and reclaiming your soul.  And from one artist to another- and one recovered pill addict to another, your creativity is BARELY being tapped high.  You have no idea how powerful, how infinite it is when you are sober.  You gotta trust.  The part of your brain telling you that you can't create music unless you have pills is the addict part, not the artist part.  Your artist is inside DYING to be set free from the opiate haze.  You're gonna have to just trust me on this one.

As for the physical- yeah, it s*&^#.  But it is a small price to pay for your soul back.  Take good care of yourself.  Treat yourself with love, and compassion- this is the key to getting your life back.  Your emotions are a BEAUTIFUL thing.  You are in for some tough times, but you are also in for some indescribably beautiful times.  I look back on my detox days (nearly one year ago) with fondness.  I know it sounds crazy, but I wouldn't trade one moment of it.  I discovered a lot about myself.  The journey to sobriety is an amazing experience- and one that you deserve.  You deserve to be happy and healthy and drug free.  It's a choice.  As for the pain- I have terrible chronic pain issues that I manage now in a holistic way.  It took a long time to find the right balance, and it ain't perfect, but it's a heck of a lot better than stumbling around in an opiate haze.  
You can do this.  You are doing this!
Be proud of yourself and just focus on one small thing at a time.
Oh- and I am an exercise freak too- give it a week and then do as much cardio as you can take.  Also, if you have access to an infrared sauna it will speed up your detox process and feels sooo good.
Most importantly- HYDRATE.
Sending support,
Lu
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Avatar_m_tn
Good...Good, good. So now we can get to work (or you can get to work, we can help). Some of the things you just wrote could have been taken directly from my earlier posts, i.e., making symptoms look worse to get better meds, lying to friends and family (I took pain meds from my mom during her last week of life) and wishing, always wishing, to be back to the natural, euphoric state, before I put that first pill in my mouth. Now let me jump ahead - life without pills is wonderful. The natural high from everyday living is much more powerful, and lasts longer, than any jump I ever got from a pill. Granted, there are good days and bad days, but as I've written many times, for me any bad day clean is soooo much better than my best day using.
So, here's what I'd suggest. Keep in mind that what I offer is based on my personal experience - what's worked for me thus far.
During the next few days, as I said above, keep fueled. Again, eat. If you can't, then drink Ensure, etc. If you're visiting the bathroom frequently, then buy a drink that has electrolytes added; keep hydrated. As soon as you can eat, consume as much as you can keep down. You're body has been/is going through hell. You've got to keep it fueled.
And as you know, around this time, as the physical symptoms seem almost unbearable, your head goes in to overdrive. You'll start justifying using one pill; just one. Try to keep your mind busy. TV, stupid movies. I spent hours on this forum. You have about three or four days of really hard detox to endure; on about day five, it gets better, although I started eating the afternoon of day four. Once you can eat you're on the way. Add some exercise; increase everything little by little.
You'll find that one day you feel great, and then the next day be back in the pits. All normal. You'll have a hard time sleeping, but it does come back.
Now, while all of this is going on, you have other things to do. Since you have legit pain issues, you really need to talk to your doc. Can you manage with OTC meds? If not, get your doc to help. If so, then you HAVE to cut all sources. Cancel scripts, refills; delete your dealer's number. Bottom line, if you can't access pills, you won't take them.
Next, and this is hard (I've gotten a lot of crap about this step lately), tell your secret. If you don't, you may relapse behind it. Tell your doc, spouse, close family, close friends, dentist. These people will be a critical part of your support system in the future. If you don't have a secret, you won't use behind it.
Finally, get some sort of after care. NA meetings and the like. Very, very important. Going to meetings will keep you grounded; you'll get support, you'll be told when you're full of bull.
I failed to get clean for 15 years; I'm 9 months clean now. What did I do different this time? All of the above. Those three steps are the foundation of my recovery.
Well,I'm off to dreamland. I'll be checking on you. Seems like I've been on here since I found this site nine months ago.  
If I could get clean, I see no reason why you can't. Really.
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Avatar_m_tn
Wow...Lulu is one of the people who helped me way back when. I owe her and a few others everything. Listen to what she suggests.
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4019906_tn?1349419544
im on day 4 of a rapid detox and also using the thomas recipe. yesterday was pure hell. having xanax for anyone going thru a ct detox or rapid like me always helps produce sleep. i hadnt sleeped a wink for 2 days and finall got my dr back home in hawaii to call me in 15 tablets. and i so know the heart attack feeling, and panic attacks. i get them all. i moved from hawaii my home to texas for my husbands job offer and my dr back home agreed to mail me my prescriptions. but his new nurse wont even let me get him on the phone, so by no choice i went from taking 14 or more percocet 10/325, to vicoden, 60 mgs a day in a month and a half. isnt it illegal for a dr whos prescribed me these meds to just cut me off? a part of me wants to turn him in. im told that hes suppose to continue to treat me and give me something that he can call in to help with this fast taper. but l call and his nurse refuses to put him on the phone. either way i want to continue this fast taper, with the use of the thomas recipe. but sleep is key. for the first few days its called to produce as much sleep as possible which is what will get you thru the worse of the wds. i too bable, lol, it comes with the detox part. i hope you can look up the thomas recipe. it cost less then 25 dollars for everything . take alot of salt hot baths, that also helps. take care, leanne
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Avatar_m_tn
For the first few days just eat what you can. The ensure drinks were the only thing I could get down. Then graduated to soup. Then bananas. The 3/4 days were by far my worst. Fatigue was crazy, so i took the boards advice and hunkered down with movies and the internet. My worst symptoms were sweating coupled with insomnia. Then fatigue, obviously related. We have similar usage, mine was a little higher but you can do this! My energy did return, and i think l-tyrosine helped. My biggest trick was that I constantly said to myself, " this will work" whether it was a hot shower, an ensure, or a natural supplement. Mind over matter!
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