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Tramadol Withdrawal
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Tramadol Withdrawal

Hello All,

I have just recently quit taking tramadol. Here is my story... Originally, it started when I was about 18. I used to take them from my mother (...not smart, i know...) when I was a waiter. I would go into work and feel extremely lethargic and unsocial. I was only able to take them once or twice a week, but that gradually increased as I became braver in taking them from her. No energy drinks, vitamin B pills would help for more than an hour or so, then I was back down further than before. The tramadol would not only wake me up, but also gave me the confidence to talk to people there. I now know that this euphoria/courageous feeling was caused by the SNRI effect. I wouldn't take everything at once, but started - from the beginning - to spread them out to get the feeling for as long as possible.

Eventually, I found a source on the internet to purchase them, and began to take them everyday. At it's height, I was taking about 600 - 700 mg a day. I have tried to quit in the past with varying degrees of success, but a few events (viral meningitis, broken bones, dry socket on a removed wisdom tooth, etc.) brought me back to them. I haven't been able to tell my doctor about my problem, but I am aware that I am fully addicted to the drug.

Right now, I am just starting the second day of withdrawals. I can prevent myself from ordering them and/or going to a doctor for a prescription, but the depression is the part that is really getting to me. What I am really worried about is whether or not I was depressed prior to taking the pills, and if that is what made them so appealing to me. As previously stated, I wasn't really in it for the "high" but for the happiness it gave me.

My real problem is that I am at least moderately intelligent, and that I can trick myself into everything. I have taken depression tests, and was completely honest, but I am not sure if that is just my mind working me. I am really at a loss here...feels like I am spinning my wheels and not getting to the point. I guess my main questions are:

-  can I really tell if I am depressed or if it was just that I liked the tramadol so much that I convinced myself I was/am.

-  Are there any ways I can be tested without being able to fool myself?

-  Also, I have read that St. Johns Wort is a SSRI. Can this be substituted to bring back that "happy" mood, and/or are there any risks with dependency?

I just want to say thank you to whoever has read this far down. I am not sure of what to do. I really do not like the feeling of losing control to a substance, but I REALLY enjoy the effects that Tramadol gave me.

Thank you,

D
7 Comments Post a Comment
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4522800_tn?1401478594
Hi..I just wanted to welcome you..I will leave this up to the trams people..I will say however, being honest with the DR is the best deal ever..You will be able to get alot of these guestions anserwed...Most are a sleep right now or tying to sleep...I will PM someone who is just getting up OK..Hang in if you do get clean..We can help with the detox stage..
vickie
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1551327_tn?1389046959
Hello and welcome to the forum,
You described the feeling that most of us experienced when we first started taking our own drug of choice.  At first it aids you in dealing with social discomforts and insecurities then it turns on you.
I understand the depression that you are feeling.  All of the insecurities and anxiety associated with social problems that were not dealt with before you started coping with the Tramadol come back and they are not alone.  NOw you have regret that is added from you beating yourself up for being addicted in the first place and your multiple failed attempts to quit.
St Johns Wort is not an SSRI and I consider it a personal choice as to if you want to take it or not but I have experience with it and it did nothing for me.
I know that you can work on this.  I do believe that you are a very intelligent person and that can hurt and help you.  You can be your own worst enemy if you are not using your intellect to your own benefit.  
Like I said earlier you likely have some issues to work out from your past and it is a process but you can do it.
What do you use as a creative outlet?
I write poetry and am working on some books now.  Although the pills helped me stabilize my mood and took away alll of my insecurities.....it also took away my creativity and compassion.  I am bipolar and I cycle a lot.  I have PTSD and both of these things cause me to be very unstable and even push me to the point of self harm sometimes.  It is very chaotic in there.  However I would rather have to cope with all of this and be able to have the ability to love and laugh then go through my life numb from the pain and absent of emotions.
Welcome to the forum and please keep coming back and let us offer you support and encouragement as you go through this.

Larry
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Avatar_f_tn
Hello and welcome!  The anti-depressant properties in Tramadol are what seem to cause the dependence problems for many of us that have taken it; whether we started on it for pain issues or for depression.  I had a pretty heavy tram addiction for 15 years and the emotional part of withdraw was difficult.  Once I stopped taking the tram for about a week (you don't want to take both at the same time), I started 5HTP which has seemed to help me (started at 300 mg per day, now down to 100 mg).  There are other things you can do as well to help with warding off the depression; exercise has been absolutely HUGE for me - those natural endorphins are awesome.  Eating right and keeping yourself busy are important too.  I also really agree with what Bub said above about how the pills rob us of our creativity and compassion.  After awhile the "numbness" just takes over and days, months, ever years slip by.  Please don't place that online order.  The online pharmacies are another whole issue . . . I ordered from them for years and always had that nagging thought about what was really in those pills I got - but my addiction told me to ignore it. And the $ I spent - OMG what I could do with those now!!!  If you are concerned about the depression, have you ever talked to your dr. about trying an AD (NOT with tram)?  There are other options - please consider not placing that order.  In a day or so the nasty w/d will start to let up and you will slowly start feeling better.  In the meantime, stay close to this site and keep posting.  There is tons of information here and lots of people with experience that are ready to help with suggestions and support to get you through this.  You can do this - don't place that order :))
Julie
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Avatar_f_tn
I know exactly what you mean about the happy part.  I never really felt high, but when I took norco, I felt happier about all the crap going on in my life.  It just won't last though.  I would talk to a doc about an antidepressant, but tell him about the tramadol, as I think the two together are not good.  I've only just joined the site and the people on here are so encouraging.  I wish you the best.
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Hey! and Welcome!
Congratulations on your decision. First, it is completely normal to feel depressed and w/o energy right now. You sound pretty self-aware and that's a real plus! You can do this! As FourJays stated above - and she has real experience w/ this drug - Tramadol has anti-depressant properties AND opiate properties so it's as if you're coming off both. Rebound anxiety & depression are common when discontinuing Tramadol. What I would do, is to hang in there until your emotions start to even out and you start climbing out of this -- give your body/mind a chance to re-regulate/heal. After that, see how you feel. You might just surprise yourself. If you still have major bouts of depression, go to an integrative doctor or Naturopathic Dr. if you don't want pharmaceuticals mediating your life! As posted above, exercise really helps w/ endorphin, dopamine,etc. production and sleep. Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate to flush those toxins and combat the  runs -- 2 to 3 litres per day. If you are taking any other drugs don't take St. John's Wort. It's been banned in France and several other countries because of interactions. I'd suggest L-Tyrosine, A good plant-based liquid Multi-Vitamin/Mineral or at least a liquid plant-based B-complex. D3 helps w/ mood as does the sun. Melatonin & 5-HTP will help w/ sleep. It's a process. Be patient w/ yourself and try not to worry about the depression or what's down the line The more time you put between you and the drug - the more you'll be able to feel these natural remedies, though, it's important to start them now to help w/ repair.
Stay in the moment and treat yourself well. You Deserve it & You CAN do this, We're Here for you. You're welcome to PM me any time.
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Avatar_m_tn
Update --- Thank you everyone for all your kind words. It has really been encouraging over the past few days. I have not had any trams in almost 2 weeks now, and I am feeling much better already. I think that you guys were right in saying that the my mind probably exaggerated those memories of being  depressed because of the state it was in during the w/d. Thank you again for everything. Reading what you have posted gives me courage to keep going!
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Avatar_f_tn
Congratulations to you!  Great post - it is really nice to hear and inspiring as well. Hopefully your positive story will help someone else trying to make that decision to quit.  Thanks for the update and keep it up :))
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