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Addiction: Substance Abuse Community
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How long until I feel like a normal person again?

I am day 8 CT from percoset and feeling terrible.  So discouraged.
18 Responses
1235186 tn?1549261219
COMMUNITY LEADER
congrats on your 8 days. are you exercising?
what is feeling terrible? is it depression?
Avatar universal
Can you force yourself to exercise? Drink plenty of fluids. Walk outside.
Avatar universal
Congratulations by the way. Your doing great!!!
Avatar universal
Test
Avatar universal
Sorry. Having trouble with posting reply. i am trying to exercise every day. I work really hard one day with lots of resolve and then the next day Im a mess and I dont do anything right. Depression is huge. I take zoloft. Im shaking, my mind is racing, still have diareah, feeling helpless. I operated so well on percoset. I could do anything. Now Im failing at everything. Wife, Mom, work. I am just counting down minutes until I can take my sleep meds and go away for awhile. This is no way to live! How am I going to operate by Monday Morning?
1235186 tn?1549261219
COMMUNITY LEADER
did you take this week off from work? i remember we talked about that last week. hun you were on the pills for 3 years. it is going to take time to feel better. your mind and your brain are accustomed to having the pills. are you still using the immodium? the shakes can last awhile have they gotten any better?
you are not a failure. you are doing great. you made a huge decision to stop taking the percs. that makes you a great wife and a mom. you want to re-claim your life.
are you seeing a therapist? what are you using for sleep meds? please try natural supplements an natural over the counter one is alteril or sleep by nature made.
please try to be very positive each and every day. this will really help you. please post more often so we can encourage you.
i am praying for you
sending hugs
debbie
Avatar universal
HI SINGER MOM, I'M PRAYING FOR YOU TOO. I'VE NEVER BEEN THROUGH WHAT YOU ARE GOING THRU BUT YOU HAVE TO REALIZE YOU ARE A AWESOME MOM TO WANT TO GET OFF OF THOSE PILLS. ASK GOD TO HELP YOU OUT AND HE WILLL. KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK. YOUR TUFFER THAN YOU THINK AND YOU WILL BE GREATLY BLESSED FOR DOING THIS. HANG IN THERE. YOU ARE WORTH IT! LOVE AND PRAYERS COMING YOUR WAY, LUANN
Avatar universal
2 - 3 months. It will be here before you know it. Stay the course.
Avatar universal
can anyone make a suggestion on sleeping im detoxing and cant sleep at all
1235186 tn?1549261219
COMMUNITY LEADER
try natural supplements ,over the counter, one is alteril or sleep by nature made.
you should post your own question and you will get lots of support for your detox. congrats on taking a huge step to recovery
debbie
Avatar universal
Thank you for your kind words and support. No, I didnt take off work last week and I cant this week either. I think working and having to appear normal helps. When I am home by myself I struggle more and just want to take things so I can sleep.  But I have seriously wondered if there is any way I am going to get through this without some kind of temporary inpatient program. The shame in people knowing about this terrifies me. No one knows besides my husband and my doctor. I am a teacher and performer and my collegues would be shocked to know what is going on.
1235186 tn?1549261219
COMMUNITY LEADER
Hun don't worry about what others would think.the only one you need to be concerned with is you and your husband. Working and "appearing normal" does help. You stay focused on what needs to be done and gives you less time to think about how you feel. Please be patient. Take it second by second if you have to. You are getting better. By faith.keep your head up.time will be your healer.
Give yourself a little more time and see how you feel.if you have to go inpatient for a time there is no shame in that. You need to be well and if that is what it takes so be it.
Avatar universal
I am going through the exact same thing singermom....I'm a couple weeks out from you though.  the first 7-10 days will still stink, but it does get better... I'm having relapses of severe anxiety and shakes still.... I don't have a full answer for you, but I am having cramping, abdominal aches, sleeplessness... everything you've just stated.. I've got.  I can say one thing... for me it FEELS like its getting steadily better... but its almost torturously slow and frustrating.

I'm soooooo tired of feeling mechanical and fake... I just want the feeling to go away.... but I can't really talk to my wife because she's never been through this... If you want someone to go through this together with, feel free to PM me.  I am on here daily to see if anyone else might tell me how much more of this I need to bear.  
Avatar universal
Unfortunately, it takes  a long time to feel  like you did before you ever took an opiate.
The reason for this is because the opiate bonds to the opioid receptors and takes the place of your body's natural endorphins which normally supply the opioid receptors. The longer you take those opiate based drugs, the more the neurons, which produce your natural endorphins, die off, and aren't regenerated because there is no longer any demand for them.

When you stop taking the opiate, those opioid receptors are crying out for endorphins, which were supplied by the opiate drug you were taking, but are no longer available from your body's endophin producing neorons.

It takes time for your body to begin regrowing those endorphin producing neurons, and supply the opioid receptors what they are demanding.

It takes about 30 days for your endophin levels to return to about 45-50% of normal, and 9 months to a year for them to reach 95-100% of normal.
This is why you feel crappy when you first stop the opiates, because endorphins such as dopamine  just aren't available to control depression, energy, anxiety etc.

So just hang in there, you will notice small improvements each day, and will feel  much better in about 30 days.Meanwhile try eat the foods recommended that help those neurons regrow and produce the endorphins you need. Go for walks, keep yourself busy, socialize, as all these things help stimulate your mind and promote regrowth of endorphin producing neurons. A good multi vitamin, plus extra vitamin C also help you get some energy back.

You are doing great, and will feel better with each passing day, So hang in there!
52704 tn?1387024397
it was about two weeks before i felt human and about a month before i had the energy to begin even mild exercise. if i had known then what i know now i would have forced myself to exercise sooner, because exercise turned out to be a really important part of returning my brain chemistry to "normal"

after abstinence, diet and exercise were probably the most important things to the physical side of my recovery.  i became (and remain) convinced that it was brain chemistry that lead me into active addiction and brain chemistry that kept locked in that downward spiral.  healing my brain chemistry was critical to any hope of recovery.

diet has a huge impact on brain chemistry.  there are some really good books on diet and its role in recovery: Nutrition In Recovery by Margaret Soussloff; Eating Right to Live Sober, by Katherine Ketcham; Seven Weeks to Sobriety, by Joan Larson; Healing the Addicted Brain, by Hal Urschel.

part of diet is the issue of supplements, especially amino acid supplements.  there is a large and growing school of recovery that believes that neurotransmitter deficiencies keep us prisoner to our addiction and in some instance lead to the abnormal use in the first place. this is discussed in some of the above books, but perhaps the best battle plan is presented by End Your Addictiion Now, by Charles Gant.  In Chapter Four there are a bunch of fairly short questionnaires that will tell you where you are deficient and what you need to take to fix it.  You can buy the supps you need at stores such as GNC or you can get it pre-packed at www.nupathways.com (which is connected to Dr. Gant)

it's really important to address brain chemistry (and quickly) because we otherwise fall into a funk of "i can't live like this" that seems as bad, if not worse, than the addiction problem we're trying to escape.  i remember feeling so hopeless and so completely screwed . . . it was clear to me that i had painted myself into a corner and that there was no way out.  

but that wasn't the truth -- that was just another lie of my addiction. that lie kept taking me to the false solution of "just a little will make me feel better, and i WON'T let it get out of control this time."  i may as well have said "i'm going to step out of this window and i WON'T let gravity pull me down this time."  the only difference is gravity doesn't pull you down harder and farther each time.

a trusted addiction professional once told me that if he could only recommend one book on recovery from addiction it would be Staying Clean and Sober, by Miller & Miller.  that book helped me greatly.

my first sponsor gave me a book that i've read at least six times now. it continues to help in my recovery and i've given away numeroud copies myself . . . The Spirituality of Imperfection, by Ernest Kurtz and Katherine Ketcham

you mentioned in patient treatment like it's the end of the world.  it's not.  for years after i knew that i was addicted and in real trouble, i completely rejected the idea of in-patient treatment.  i was just so absolutely positive that it would be the worst thing in the world and was to be avoided at all costs . . . i had to protect my reputation and i felt like "i caused this problem all by myself, so it's up to me to fix it all by myself."

however, i was never able to see the true dimensions of my problem.  by the time i recogonized that my shoes and maybe the edge of my pants were getting wet, i was actually in way over my head.  so, i kept trying to fix a problem myself, which by the time i realized it was a problem was already beyond my ability to fix it myself.  accordingly, i kept failing and trying again, vowing to try harder, trying harder, but failing, and trying again, vowing to try harder . . . . all while the beast i think i'm fighting is actually being fed by and growing stronger from my efforts.  

in-patient rehab was the best thing that ever happened to me. if i could have believed that back when i first realized my feet were wet, i might have saved myself from a lot of hard things . . . but that wasn't my path and i think i needed the hard things -- i know i don't regret them now.

my point here is that rehab isn't bad and most folks who go to rehab don't regret it.  i don't know anyone in sustained recovery who went to rehab who now says "i wish i hadn't gone" or "i wish i had waited, and gone a little later."  instead, we seem to view it almost like a second birthplace.

it gets better.  it gets much better and it's all worthwhile.  

whatever you do, don't change your clean date.

CATUF
2294
Avatar universal
This reply is to luckytwice.

I see you know quite a bit about the endorphin timelines etc.  This is a concern of mine as well as when I quite I would like to get back to "normal" quickly.

For 16 months I have been taking daily anywhere from 5mg to 20mg of hyrdo.  A relatively low dose, but still there..   Would such a low dose also affect the levels of endorphins your body produces?  Would I still be producing enough to get me back to "normal" in less than the year and 30 day levels you outlined above?
1200450 tn?1317500467
Texas, I just wanted to let you know that I was on a low dose of hydro for 1 year. I was on 2 -4 a day most often I would only take 3. My brain was effected a lot! I had all the withdrawal symptoms and lots of depression and low energy. I'm still feeling it and today is day 18. However, the last two days for me have been MUCH better. I'm still feeling good today. So I'm guessing the worse is over. While your brain chemistry will be effected, I'm thinking the length of time will be shorter. I thank god every day that I quit at such a low dose sooner rather than later. It may have saved me long term suffering.
Avatar universal
I am on my 12th day clean of oxycoton.  The first 7 or 8 days were awful.  Hard to sleep, muscle aches.  Anyway, I tried to put the pills out of my mind and just told myself that I was sick and I would be better in a few days.  Try to think of how you feel as if you had a bad case of the flu.  You are almost over the hump so don't give up now!  You will feel better tomorrow and you will feel better each day.  Drink lots of water, get around positive non-drug people.  You don't have to tell them what you are going through.  Just being around good people will help.  I have some Ambien to help me sleep.  If you are having trouble sleeping, ask a doctor for some sleeping pills.  For me, nights were the hardest.  Read the book of John in the Bible.  It really helped me.  Wishing you the best.
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