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Opiate Withdrawal
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Opiate Withdrawal

How long will it take for my "sleep clock" to reset?  I have been reading posts on this site for all 9 days of my withdrawal from Codeine.  One thing I haven't noticed a lot is referral to the use of other medications.  I was receiving lots of medication for treatment of my migrances (which have improved drastically over the last month).  Looking back, I am amazed that the doctors kept adding medications and that no one said to me "you're addicted and it is making you sick."  In addition to Motrin 3-4 times per week, I was taking the following Rx medications: Amrix 1xday(24hr release Flexaril), T3 (8-10/day), Topamax (took for 25 days~had a SEVERE mental reaction and was taken off immediately), Xanax 0.25mg (1 at bedtime) and Ambien (10mg at bedtime).  For 7 of the last 9 days, I was down to just the Xanax and Ambien.  Two nigthts ago I started substituting Melatonin for the Ambien.  Amazingly, there is no difference in number of hrs I am getting (about 4) or the quality.  When I went back to the headache clinic on Monday, I was very dissappointed that they wanted to start me on another drug~ not happening!  When I asked about all of the anxiety, depression and "fuzziness" I am having in addition to the sleeping issues, I was told give it another 2 weeks.  I really need to hear this from someone who has actually been through it.  I have lost some faith in the medical community, even myself (I'm a nurse) in the way I was allowed to get to this point without some type of intervention.  Just to give you an idea of how much I had access to, when I decided to quit the T3, I flushed almost 1K pills...that's a lot of access.  Thanks everyone for being willing to share on this site, it has been God-sent for me over the last week.  Hope you have some encouraging words of wisdom for me today!
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Avatar_m_tn
I am sitting here wondering the exact same thing.  I'm on Day 12 of detox after 1.5 years of use and sleep is still sparse.  I was getting 8-9 hours before, now its 4-5 tops.  Also still suffering from general lack of energy.  I felt like I had more energy in days 3 and 4 of detox than I do now.  I guess its the second stage of w/d, once you get over the initial cloud of being clean, reality kind of sets in.  I'm hoping after 15 days things get better.
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Avatar_f_tn
Me too!  Not being able to have a good night's rest undermines the detox in my opinion.  Not to mention that it also affects the reasons we were on the meds to begin with!  I am miserable and dread to go to sleep at night for fear of when I will wake up!  It helps to know that someone else is experiencing similar reactions.  Are you having any anxiety or depression?  I also wonder if the longer a person has been taking the opiates, means a longer recovery.  I had used T3 for probably 10yrs or more, but only at an abusive rate the last couple of years....
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1662770_tn?1314200163
Oh sleep is very slippery in the first few weeks of recovery.  Go to bed at the same time and get up at the same time and in a few short week (2) you will be sleeping at least a full 6 hours.  By the end of the 1st month you will more than likley be able to get 8-9 once in awhile. That was my experience anyway. Now I have to set my alarm. It does come back but it is just slow to return. I would try to stay away from the sleeping meds if you can.  Congradulations on coming this far stick with it and soon you will be sleeping like a baby.

Alot of your headaches can actually be rebound headaches from taking pain meds and you just didn't know it. That is why you are experiencing them less often.
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Avatar_m_tn
I'm not feeling anxious but I do feel depressed, for the first time in my life really.  I was never depressed before I started using opiates.  I used to look forward to coming home from work at night, where at this point i'm kind of dreading it.  I guess thats the malaise I read so much about on forums like this.  And you're right about the sleep -- I feel like its a mind-game.  I really just want to go to sleep as soon as I get home because i'm feeling depressed, but at the same time I know if I do I'll wake up at some god-awful hour.  

I tapered off ativan for the first 8 days of the withdrawal. 2-2-1-1-1-1/2-1/2.  So I was actually sleeping better early in the detox because I had more ativan in my system.  Now I have nothing "helping" me so-to-speak for the first time in a long while.  Its obviously something my body needs getting used to.
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Avatar_f_tn
Saw a definite improvement after day 24.
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Avatar_f_tn
Thank goodness!  I appreciate your honest encouragement.  I think only people who have experienced this can truly understand how to help other people.  I know for sure that my medical interactions provided little in the way of support (other than they were happy that I did this, even though they like to taper over FIVE MONTHS!).  I am seriously considering tapering the Xanax now as no more than I am sleeping, I think I could do that on my own...suggestions?
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1742952_tn?1311171186
it will take up to atleast 4 weeks,just hang in there,you'll be glad u did,
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1579159_tn?1388706849
Well, i am 26 or 27 days clean, and i still cant sleep,and my engery level drops around 3pm, i wake up and toss and turn every night.  I have not gotten more than 4 hours if im lucky.  On weekends i use to be able to sleep until 9:30-10am, I am not a morning person at all, now i am up and out of bed the latest 7:30am.  I hope we can get some sleep soon though......Dane
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Avatar_f_tn
Sleep is one of the last things to return to normal ......I found melatonin 2-3 - 2mg tabs about 2 hours before sleep........then I used diphenhydramine (benadryl) abot 45-60 minutes before trying to sleep. that (along with warm shower) was the best otc combo that I discovered. The ambien just doesnt hang on (it has short half life of only a few hours).  or overpower the WD's emough to be effective at this stage.
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Avatar_n_tn
Hey, I just wanted to add to be careful with the benadryl.. I get RLS really bad sometimes on it and from what I've read, that is common.  
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Avatar_f_tn
Last night was better.  I went down to 1/2 Xanax and could not tell a difference in my sleeping, but at least it is a start getting off of that too.  Still tired, which I pray is contributing to the dull/fuzzy feeling.  Another day closer to feeling normal, I hope.  Thanks everyone!!
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Avatar_m_tn
Today is day 13 of my detox and my sleep jumped from 4 to 7 hours from night-12 to night-13.  It wasn't the peaceful consecutive hours - it was still sweaty, oft-interrupted and full of wacky dreams - but nonetheless today is the most rested I have felt since I started this journey.  I just took a 5mg melatonin 2 hours before bed.  I stayed away from the Benadryl because of coiledraven's warning.  Last thing I need is RLS coming back.

I'm optimistic that it will keep getting better from here on out.  I could get a benzo from my sister but I feel like that would only be detrimental in the long run.  Best of luck...
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Avatar_n_tn
Hey, I wanted to add to what I said before. OTC sleep aids can give you RLS as well because they're first gen antihistamines. Hope that helps some folks.
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Avatar_f_tn
Last night was better....maybe up to 5, but the same as overthepill, not consecutive but better none the less.  Today is day 12 for me, so you have given me something to look forward to.  I am hoping my ability to consentrate will soon return.  I don't see how people would be able to do this and work at the same time! They get cudos from me!
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Avatar_m_tn
Glad your sleep is improving.  This morning (day 14) I actually woke up after 7am after going to sleep at 11:30pm.  I did have a dream that woke me up from 4am to 5am but I managed to get back to sleep for the last 2 hours.  I feel like waking up to sunshine is a huge step forward.

Also I had the energy to do 3 loads of laundry last night, which seemed like an impossibility earlier this week. Things definitely getting better.  I might do away with the L-Tyrosine after today - at this point it may be giving me more anxiety than it is helping my mood.  I read in the Thomas Recipe that he used it for about 2 weeks.  Keep up the good work!
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Avatar_f_tn
I am so happy to hear that you got 8hrs of sleep....very encouraging.  Are you having any trouble with being "foggy". I can muster up the energy to do things, but part of the time I feel disconnected from my environment.  I don't feel like I can do anything that requires concentration or creative/critical thinking.  I work in a highly stressful healthcare environment but could not have functioned in it over this w/d period. I feel like when I stopped the opiates, I lost my "edge."  I really, really need it back.  I just found out about the L-Tyrosine this morning.  Since I am so close to being out of the 2 weeks AND I really don't need anything to make me more anxious, I think I will skip that step.
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Avatar_m_tn
I'm with you on the fogginess.  I can "look the part" right now, but if I have to get super involved in a critical issue at the office its a struggle.  Its like I can't get past the surface of the problem.

I also tend struggle when I get home from work.  Thats when I used to do the most of my "damage" if you will, so now I just feel an emptiness when I get home.  

I have a sister who is 3.5 years clean after 7 years of opiate use who has been the rock for me.  She knows every feeling I have described and assures me they will cease with time.  That's what i'm hoping.  Its depressing that after 14 days this is what still occupies my brain for a majority of the day.  I feel like i'm free, but i'm not.  I have zero desire or intention of going back to the pills, but still really really wanting things to feel normal again.
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Avatar_f_tn
Oh, that is so very encouraging.  I just hope to clear up more sooner than later.  It must be nice to have someone to talk to about this and especially someone who truly understands!  Keep reading, it looks like 4 weeks is a big marker and one I am looking forward to.  I was told by the headache clinic to take Melatonin 1-3mg, does more really help?
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Avatar_m_tn
I can't tell if the melatonin helps or not to be honest.  I take a 5mg about 2 hrs before bedtime, and although my sleep is improving daily I can't say if its the melatonin doing its work or my w/d symptoms easing.  I know from taking melatonin in the past that it definitely makes for more vivid dreams.  That is not a good thing for someone who wants restful sleep.  At this point, I figure the tradeoff is worth it.  I'm definitely not laying in bed for long before I pass out.  Its staying asleep that is the real challenge.  I suggest giving it a try if you are going to stop using the xanax.  
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Avatar_f_tn
Hey! i saw ur post and had to laff because there's got to be like five or six about the same thing when does sleep come back!  i'm at day seventy something and sleep still comes and goes BUT when i do sleep its a good solid restful sleep.  i got totally stressed and crazy over not sleeping and i think it made it worse.  SO my advice to you is this, just relax and realize that sleep takes some time to come back.  get something you like whether your thing is books, movies, cleaning whatever and keep yourself occupied.  i tried all the sleep rememdies and nothing worked, you like me need to realize that our brains receptors are messed up from the drugs and it needs to heal.  it drove me crazy but i promise it DOES get better.  best of luck to you!
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Avatar_f_tn
Thank you so much!  When sleep comes and the fogginess goes away I will feel like a new, awesome person!  Thanks for sharing...I really need to hear everday that it gets better!!
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Avatar_f_tn
Yeah, last night 11-4...that is the most so far. Plus, I was able to go back to sleep at 4 till 7.  WOW!!  If it wasn't for a yappy puppie at the neighbor's behind me, I may have slept all the way through!  Also adding some of the protein/AA recommended for breakfast today.  Thanks everyone for all of the encouragement!  Day 12 and am so thankful that to be getting free from this awful addiction!
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990521_tn?1311909908
The sleep cycle is a tough one.  It will totally depend on how long you were on opiates and how long you have been off of them as well.  For me, when I detoxed from Suboxone 2 years ago, it took me about 4-5 weeks to start feeling "normal" again.  But don't fret, your brain has to heal and that's the reason things seem so screwed up.  Try taking a nice hot bath before bed, that has worked for me.

Unfortunately, after nearly 2 years clean time, I just recently relapsed on Tramadol.  I had the worst restless legs and anxiety, but I am about 10 days out and am finally starting to see an improvement, but my relapse was not that long either.  

They to stay off the benzos, they can help short term, but can be very addictive as well.  Keep a positive attitude, exercise, and try to go to bed at the same time each night and you will find that you will start sleeping 15-30 more minutes per night as things adjust.  

Best of all, keep posting.  There are a ton of great people on here who can give you advice and support.  Best of luck to you.
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Avatar_m_tn
Day 15 and I really feel like i'm turning a corner.  Things are definitely starting to feel normal again, and the detox is consuming my thoughts less and less.  I go hours at a time now without really thinking of it.

I will say that week 2 of Detox was not easy.  It felt longer than week 1 in some ways.  Its a mental battle that you have to fight through and i'm glad its over.

I got good sleep last night.  Woke up a couple times and tossed/turned, but still was able to stay asleep until after 7am.  Thats major progress from just a few days ago. Best of luck to everyone.
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Avatar_f_tn
Today is day 13!  Yeah, almost 2 weeks.  Last night I was not able to get to bed before MN (I have teenage sons).  But then I slept until 530am.  I still think this is improvement!  The sun was almost up when I got up this morning!
Overthepill, I think the second week was as hard if not harder than the first week.  
Salsinator, thanks for the encouragment.  I am so sorry you are having to start over, but at least you know that it is worth it. I think the only way to stay free of them is to completely remove any type of access.  I am still so mad, I wouldn't think of taking one right now. I am sure I will have to cross that bridge at some point, but right now, I just have to take it one day at a time!

Thanks everyone!
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