Addiction: Substance Abuse Community
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Avatar universal

Quitting Hydrocodone Cold Turkey

Im 33 years old and I have been taking pain pills ( lortab, percocet,darvocet,ect ) for close to 15 years now. Im up to taking 10-15 today depending on what mg they are. Im wanting to quit. I tried to quit a few years back c/t and went thru serious withdrawl symptoms, even had a seizure. I have been taking 7.5 and 10mg lortab on a daily basis. I am not so much scared of the w/d as the effect that it has made on my body. Im afraid going c/t again will cause me to have another seizure, or worse yet cause me to want to commit suicide again. Last time i had such feelings of doom that i came very close to committing suicide. That is when I started taking the hydrocodone again. I dont know if I should go see my dr tomarrow and ask him to help, I live in a small town and pain pill addiction here is taboo. Im not sure if he will help me taper off or even give me something to help make it thru the withdrawls. I would love to go to rehab but currently can't. im a single mother of 2 kids and no family around to help, so no one to take care of my kids while i was gone to rehab. Someone please give me some advice, I dont have the kind of money it takes to go with sub treatment. Dont know what to do.  
27 Responses
Avatar universal
Hi, I'm sorry to hear about your situation.  15 years on these pills is a long long time.  I've only been on for 3 years and this is day 5 of being off them.  I'm feeling much better than the past few days but I couldn't imagine cold turkey after 15 years.  I did try a sub a few months back for only 3 weeks to try to have an easy way out of the withdrawels but after I got off that the withdrawels were worse I think.  I was back on Lorcets within a week. I personally wouldn't go that route if I knew then what I do now, not to mention the cost.  But, to each his own.  I don't think I would cold turkey either.  if rehab is no choice for you and I can understand why then I would definitely see a doctor about the correct way to come off of these, especially if you've had seizures in the past.  You don't want anything to happen to you coming off them this time especially with kids. Good luck to you.  If you ever need to talk I'm on here a few times a day.
631109 tn?1225301425
Hi arieal,

Sorry to hear you are having such a difficult time.  I understand your hesitation to talk to your Dr.  I was scared to tell mine too, and I live in a very small town too.  But amazingly, he just told me he was proud of me, would pray for me, and would help me anyway he could.  I chose to go the c/t route.  I was taking about 350mg of oxy for about 3 years.  It was hard to first 10 days but has gotten MUCH better since then.  Maybe you should talk to your Dr. about an anti-depressant to help you through this time.  I found that aftercare (for me NA meetings) was VERY important.  It was very helpful to talk to other people who have beat this demon and gotten their life back.  I would highly reccomend trying out the amino acid protocol if you can.  i think that helped me get back to feeling OK again quicker than the many other times I tried to stop.  Getting on something else (Sub) to get off of another thing just didn't sound appealing to me...and with all the horror stories on here I am glad I decided against it.  Please keep posting and keep taking it ONE DAY AT A TIME!  Don't think about tomorrow b/c we are not promised it, we just have to get through the day the best we can.  If it turns out to be a bad day, chalk it up to a bad day and try it again tomorrow.  It does get better and there is a way out of this.  And suicide definitley is not it.  That would just create more issues for you two kids to carry through their lives.  Try to think about the legacy you want to leave for them and what effect your choices have on them.  Not tyring to be preachy...just telling you some of the things i thought about that helped me through the days when I wanted SOOO bad to use again.

Good luck, and God bless you.  Keep coming back and posting!!
230262 tn?1316645934
definitely talk to your doctor. Let him help you. Ask for some antidepressants for starters since you got suicidal last time. If you are already on some, you may need a higher dose for awhile then. Also ask about clonidine for BP if you think it will apply to you.  Why did you have a seizure? From my knowledge, WD from these type of opiates do not cause seizures unless its TRAMADOL or a benzo like xanax or its ilk. Are you prone to seizures otherwise?
I wish you the best of luck and please stick with this board through everything, it will be a HUGE HELP to you for support and info and friendship.  
Avatar universal
Don't ever take Tramadol, whatever you do.  That stuff causes seizures.  So for someone who has already had a couple, well it would be a bad idea to take Tramadol.  
Avatar universal
I had never had a seizure in my life, until two days after i decided to quit the first time. The dr's told me that my brain and body got overwhelmed by the fact that it needed the opiate i was so dependant on it and that is what caused it. I do not take anti depressents but I do have a prescription of Klonopin that im hoping will help me thru this and do the thomas recipe. thanks everyone for your support and your advice, Im going to my dr at 1:45pm tomarrow and I hope he doesn't just walk out on me or look at me like im a horrible person. I really hope that he will know the best way to help me get thru this. I will continue to post throughout my recovery, I am going to need all the support i can get.
Avatar universal
If the Dr. walks out on you or converses with you in a way that makes you uncomfortable, ask for a referral to another Dr. and move on.  But, it's also very easy to slip back into the lies w/ another Dr. if you don't fully disclose your addiction.  I became very crafty with my words to doctors to ensure they'd refill my script.  I was on hydros for just over 2 years and I was up to 10-15 by the end of my 1st year so I guess I can relate to the dosage you've become acustom to.  My withdrawl the first time I quit was almost unbearable w/o sugarcoating it.  It took over 2 weeks going c/t to get rid of the nausia, chills, headaches, bodyaches, diarrhea, loss of apatite, thoughts of suicide, etc..(I know, sounds fun)  Unfortunately, I wasn't back to sleeping a full night for almost a month.  Stay with it and keep talking to others for support.  I just joined this group a few days ago and it's helped out quite a bit with the mental part of the withdrawls.
653923 tn?1225944592
I agree, talk to your doctor before starting this. I stopped last week after 1 year of hydros and oxy, the Amino Acid Protocol really helped me, but I had help from a few good friends. JUst due to your seizure issue and depression, I would not rish without help. Read a lot on here. I went Cold Turkey and I didnt want a drug to come from another. Someone on here advised it was like trying to put out a fire with gasoline. It will be hard, I am almost 9 days and I have most all my life back. My depression was bad, I didnt want to llive, but these folks here really helped me. Do you have someone that can help with your kids for a week, that would surely help, but you should not be alone.... especially at night, that was my worst time.
Please be safe, take care of you so you can take care of your babies. Email me here if you need me...
Avatar universal
Last night was horrible, chills , sweats, legs hurting, naseau, couldn't sleep. Felt like i was going insane........i dont know if i have the strength to do this. I have no one to stay with me at night, Im all alone to do this. Part of me wants to ask my dr for another script and the other part says hell no lets get off this **** and get my life back....I hope god can give me the strength to help me get thru this.........very very weak
Avatar universal
Just try as hard as you can to get through the first 5 days and it'll be all down hill from there.  Obviously you'll still have withdrawl symptoms for the next 3-4 weeks but for me, after the first week, it was completely bearable.  If you're having problems sleeping, guess what, so are we!!  In a time of weakness, just jump on here and reach out to anyone of us that's dealing with the same issues because we're up at all hours of the night with you!  And once your symptoms start subsiding, you'll truly feel like a new person because your brain & body has been in a haze for the past 15 years.  Plus, once you get through day 1 and day 2 which for me were the worst, you want to keep pressing on because you don't want to go through day 1 and 2 again if you relapse.  Again, I was only on them for a little over 2 years but I was up to your dosage of no less than 12 a day but usually 15 so I can absolutely relate to your symptoms.  I really hope you were able to make it though the night w/o calling in the script.  Please keep us posted and forget this stupid drug, you can beat it!!
Avatar universal
well im almost thru day 1, i did go to my dr appt and he thought it best that i taper, I brought in my best friend with me to the appt. She has taken on the role of being the dispenser of the drug for me. He has me down to lortab 5/ 500 and i can only take 1 of them 3 x a day. He also has me taking the klonopin  2 x a day , one in the morning and one when i go to bed so that i can sleep. I have to see him on a weekly basis until we get me completly off these. I was going to go cold turkey but unfortantley after posting this morning i was rushed to the hospital with a seizure. So i have no other choice but to taper. atleast i have someone though that will regulate them for me and make sure im doing everything that im suppose to do. I know i can do this with my kids and my best friend by my side. And with all of you guys continuing to support me............ thank you all so much , I know i can do this with everyones support
Avatar universal
OMG THIS *****, My doctor h as tapered me to LOW , Im so sick , The tapering is not helping, and he is not listening , I cant make it thru this ...........someone please help me................I cant beleive he took me from a 90 to 100mg a day habit to 15mg a day period .....its like im not taking them at all, i hurt so bad all over its sad.....im so sick , my body aches, the anxiety is almost to much to bear.......plesae god someone help me
617347 tn?1331293081
please, don't lose the hope for you !

i was also 15 years with my Doc, try to eat a lot of bananas, magnesium and calcium for your body aches and rls..look for hotpads and even ice pads . Yu can buy OTC some stuff for the RLS, There is smething sold at drugstores to lessen the rls called rystlands or something like that, if anybody remembers the name, pls......

Those legs get really  crazy at nights and it's a torture. Drink green tea, gatorades.... i also found that valerian helped my stomach cramps quite a lot...

hold on, please....try to calm down, i know it's easier said than done, but try to take long breaths now... i wished i could help you better but i'm here with you,.
617347 tn?1331293081
aerial, i'm going for a walk with my dog but i'll be home tonight ( ok, it's almost 10 here for me  ) so feel free to pm if you wish... hope you feel better.
657930 tn?1225141271
hope yall are good... i beeen takin roxys 30 for two years now and im 18.. im tryna quit so bad but its too hard i dont think i have the power
Avatar universal
Just want to say to both of you that you CAN both get through this.. It is the hardest thing you will ever have to do but it is possible.  Please try to stay positive. withdrawal can be absolute misery and a living nightmare but it wont kill you..the first week will test you and bring you to the edge of sanity but stay strong.. when I was at my sickest I literally had to count the minutes just to make it through to the next one.. its so hard not to fall into utter panic when you are so sick but that is the worst thing you can do.. try to take walks and keep your mind off your misery -- keep posting on this site which was a saving grace for me when I was so sick.  Its good to know you are not alone - we have all been through this and many here can attest to you that you can make it through - I did and didnt think I could but was amazed by my bodies ability to withstand the sickness  - i wanted to die but I didnt.. I was miserable and angry and sicker than Ive ever been but I made it through - the day is coming where you will feel better... please stay strong and take care of yourselves..
Avatar universal
The end of day six detox cold turkey and i am going a little crazy. I was under the impression it would begin getting easier at this point but I feel like my wd symptoms are peaking. Averaging 1 to 2 hrs sleep a day. I used for 14 months of 40 to 80 mg day. Just trying to hold on and make it to tomorrow and hope I function normally in school and for work. This forum helps a little. Good to know my brain will eventually realize all is well and I will sleep again. just need to make it through the night.
Avatar universal
I've been on narcos 2 10mg pills for about 3 months now and i tried quitting today it was really hard i know i havent been on them for long but i still just feel like i cant live without them would yall recomend just going cold turkey?
Avatar universal
Hello, I want to join the forum because my addition is a secret. I might not write much in the begining bacause I'm scared. I' m alone and need to tell someone. But I can't tell my family or Fiance, this drug has already distroyed one family memeber. Question: Will I ever have as much energy when I get off  as I do now on the Hydro. My house is always so clean... Dumb concern I know.
2068894 tn?1331308760
I myself am on day 2, Cold sweats are making miserable and cranky. I do have a low mg prozac and xanax.  I wish I had a friend like you to talk too. I am ashamed to admit to my boyfriend especially when I need him to be there for me I know he would respond better if he knew. But I do not want him to think less of me. I was hoping maybe after a few days I would get past, as long as I dont fall back in the hands of pain killer.
After reading lots of different posts I am scared I cant manage weeks of this with out falling off the wagon. I know tapering would be a good Idea I was taking 20 mg in the morning afternoon and night and now nothing. But honestly I do not trust myself to not contiue to abuse them.
and like u I would hate to admitt this to my doctor. but I do need HELP nad ADVICE as well. how are you doing after 4 years
most posts i read say you never recover and always fall back in and then I sit here and cry anf wonder why it is I should try so hard if I am just guaranteed to fail again....
2045986 tn?1332436533
You will get over this. I've been clean and sober for 18 days after a 7 year on and off hydro habit, the last year being the most serious (4-5 10mg norco/day). The first week is tough physically, mentally and emotionally, but it gets much better. Try to exercise (gym, jogging, yoga, stretching) a few hours before bed, and take a hot shower with relaxing bath salt right before bed. Also, take up a new hobby, or an old one you've been neglecting since you've been using heavily. It will help repair the brain and get your mind off the cravings and such. I recently took up playing the guitar again, but it can be anything you want. Also, I found that I had a tough time emotionally getting off this drug. It was hard, but I had to tell my wife, my mom and my best friend. That gave me a wonderful support system, and also helped make amends with those that had suffered from my addiction. My last piece of advice to you Erica is try to do something for someone everyday, that in no way is of any benefit to yourself. I found that this drug had completely changed my disposition, turning me into a selfish, self centered jerk. If u follow these steps, I promise you'll be feeling better in no time at all, and back to your old self before you know it. There are a lot of gloom and doomers out there, saying there is no hope in trying to get off this drug. They are either very early on in the detox process, or they really don't want to stop. If you really want to stop, you can do it. You just have to be fully committed to it. If you need anything at all, please respond and I will give you my email address. You can do this. I believe in you. Good luck and god bless.
Avatar universal
Erica - please don't set yourself up with negative thoughts - our words ARE power and if you defeat yourself before you even get started it is easy to say "whats the point?"

The point is, I got off hydros, I'm 39 days today and you can too.  I second everything Tommy said in the post above.  Once the worst part passes - you are in the worst part (days 2,3)  every day will get a little better.  After a week you will be much improved and you'll improve every day after that.

For me continuing to take these pills just isn't an option in my mind, I could probably take them (I didn't abuse my script) in another month, they would work temporarily and then I'd be right back to the same spot I was.  I don't want that.

Just keeping sayin "I can do this" over and over - fake it till you make in the words of another member here.

You posted on kind of an old post - please get some support and feel free to post a new question - you'll get more response that way.

If you want to reach out and private message me, feel free.  I've been down hydro road and I know what you are going through.

Wishing you peace!
Avatar universal
I have been contemplating getting off my hydro for a little while now and reading and decided to start today.  I have talked with my doc about becoming addicted to this drug but because I don't abuse my script and sometimes have extra my doc really doesn't take me seriously.  There are times I force myself not to take my pills cause I really didn't want to admit my problem either and hey I could go almost a whole day without taking the pill.  But what a crappy day it is without the drug.  So today is my first day of detox from this drug and feel lousy but hopeful you all seem very supportive of each other and reading the post at times are helpful and then sometimes scary cause the withdrawals see horrible ... strength and time it seems is the cure for this habit
Avatar universal
hello eveyone.  starting my cleaning now.  today is tues and I.havent had a hydro since monday noonish.  I was taking 7.5 mg 325 norco.  I was taking three at a time ny choice not by order.  pleasehelp
617347 tn?1331293081
welcome here, dusty !!!! could you please start a new thread ? this is an old one and with a new thread, members will see your post better and you will get all the support you need !! and congrats on your decision and your clean time, btw
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