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Still looking for answer on SSRI - Opiate Recovery

I am a newly recovering opiate/adderall addict for 3+ years and am having major depressive issues that I have been seeing a doctor for.  Originally I wasn't able to sleep for about 4 months after originally detoxing, anxiety and depression I assume where the main reason along with lingering physical issues.  It was so bad that even after 4 months a had to take 3 10mg ambien to fall asleep (they were prescribed).  I was put on 10 and then 20mg of lexapro and I after 6 weeks or so I can tell its working by the lack in libido and decreased racing anxiety but the depression and overall "dead brain" feeling is inescapable.  Are there better SSRI's that help target people recovering from opiates/adderall abuse?  I know there is Wellbutrin, Effexfor, Paxil, Zololoft, etc. Any of them work better than others?

9 Responses
Avatar universal
Just a quick comment, I know my username has tram in it for tramadol but that wasn't the opiate I was abusing the last 2 years.  I know its a bit different in its chemical nature so I wanted to bring it up.  I was using DHC/codiene/adderall
Avatar universal
Each SSRI is a little different and each one works differently for different people. For me, Zoloft put me in the hospital because it increased my anxiety to the point I was in a full on panick attack. Paxil worked great for me though - no issues and no anxiety!  Paxil was horrible for a friend of mine though. The reality is, you may need to work with your doctor and try a few different medications before you find the one that works best for you.
Avatar universal
Thanks for the reply.  After doing some further research I didn't realize the differences between SSRIs, SNRIs, NDRIs, etc.  Because of my prolonged Adderall use it might be more of the lack of dopamine that keeps me in this prolonged depression, in which case I guess Wellbutrion (NDRI) would be better.

My family doctor kinda ***** and no matter how many times I go in they just say "well sometimes it takes a bit longer for the lexapro to kick in".  When I wasn't sleeping for days at a time even after months of being clean they wouldn't give me even trazadone, they would ask stupid things like "do you watch TV before bed".  I am thinking of going to an addiction specialist, not for a quick med fix but just a better understanding of why I feel even more depressed as time goes on.
1742220 tn?1331356727
ive been on lots of SSRI's and drugs in that family over the course of many years.  I used to take Prozac some ten years ago or more and now I'm back on it.  I came off of a ton of Vicodin among other things and the Prozac has worked great.  I didn't do well with Wellbutrin; had a bad reaction to it.  I've been on Lexapro, Celexa, and several others.  I still get something like that feeling you're describing, I think.  However it is much less intense and less frequent.  :)
4522800 tn?1470325834
Hi!
I think in your post before or someones, I had replied about a few AD meds and the Wellburtrin does work on the norepinephrine and the dopamines  in the brain. I too came off the Methadone that I was snorting with Adderral & taking a benzo at night, almost 3 yrs ago. I got the dones prescribed, but bought the Add off the streets. The Adderral hits the norpinephrine, just  like coke/crank. Speedy type ones. The Adderral does this if you do not have the ADHD. It will wire you up.

I was just like you and went through a longer physical w/d then just coming off the other opiates.  Most Addiction does come from the Dopmines/Neurochemicals that goes into the brains Pleasure Centers, causing use to want to do this over & over because of the Pleasure, whatever it may be.    

I went on the Wellburtin and then one that hits only the Serintoin after I had about 10months in. I did not like the way they made me feel. They made me flat-lined out. However, after I had over a yr, I had lost most of my family and my dog all in a 90day period and then had a Heart Procedure. I did go on the Lexapro and it was the only one that did not make me feel so flat-lined, BUT now I gave it up becasue I did not like how it made me feel later on after I had eased up a bit with my Grieving.

You can get something called Sam-E or the other one that I can not remember how it is spelled (HTP-5) or something like that. Ask the Pharmacist about a natural mood enhancer.

There are all kinds of vit/min that also will help re-build the brain, sort of speaking. There are foods that will help lift the Dopamines. This info used to be right on the right side on this site.

For most of us that have used for a long time it does take SO much time for the Brain to flip back and fire up. My flip came in about 2 and half yrs or more...Heck, I am still trying to heal. I think the older we get the harder it is. Maybe I will never know what normal is because of using off & on for over 40yrs. What a DRAG!!! Can not take it back.

I do wish you the best and Pray you can find a balance. Diet plays a BIG role in how we feel. Take it easy and Congrats on your Clean Time!

PS. I did put some info in my Journal way back about Addiction and the Brain. One was about the Nature of Addiction and the other was Addiction and the Brain's Pleasure Pathway: Beyond Willpower. I do have some great info on the Dopamines too and so much more!!!
I wish you the best!
Avatar universal
Thanks VIC, you know I always thought the opiates where the main issue because of the physical withdrawals you face, but considering I was basically taking a speed ball everyday with the opiates/adderall I think it did a number on my brain.  The Lexapro made me feel medicated, but not like I don't feel any sadness type medicated.  I wouldn't mind feeling lethargic as long as I was depressed and felt so hopeless as well.  I go to the gym, I have to slam a super-caffeinated drink for motivation but I usually feel pretty decent afterwards.  Its the only time of the day I usually call people back and talk to them, otherwise I just kinda want to lay around depressed. My doctor actually told me to start taking the adderall again to help with the depression, I have been taking it here and there but know its not the right thing to do.  I don't enjoy it as much without the opiates mixed, I feel kinda strung out to be honest and hate the mental comedown.  

When is science just going to invent brain transplants so us addicts can be normal….
4522800 tn?1470325834
LMAO..
I call it putting a new tape in the pleasure center.

It is so great that you are going to the gym. This will help build the endorphins and serotonin and so forth in the brain back up. I too get on the couch potato side of life, and then maybe get a rush of happy energy and go out to my gardens and such. Or feel like talking to someone. I think I am getting better at almost 3 yrs, but I had lost my Family during my early Recovery and my Dog who was like my child, and then some friends. Ended up with 2 Heart Procedure..This ALL Suckkked.. It felt like I went to sleep at the age 20 and woke up being almost 60..lol I am laughing a bit, because it all does make us a stronger person or a pissssed off one..hahaha

Please do not start messing with the Adderral if you do not have the ADHD, or if it wires you up. I too liked it mixed. Would not touch alone. What a Drug Adderral is!!!  You DO w/d from it too..

I am going to go and watch a Western now..Yesterday was my natural Energy day and I got lots of things done. Today is couch potato day..ha!
Be Safe & Be Careful.

PS. I sent you a PM regarding changing your screen name. I was named this by EvolverU when I had just put my initials on as my screen name at first.
Avatar universal
Thanks again.  I too lost many friends and just (this week) lost my GF of 9 years because I am just not the same person right now in my recovery stages and she doesn't understand it doesn't happen overnight.  It is weird how when you get sober its like you are starting life again and can't remember what you did the entire time while you were using.  I worked a lot of overseas contracts the last 10 years on and off so I have been back and forth from the US to the Middle East many times which makes all this harder (I maintained my addiction the last 3 times I was overseas).  So not only am I readjusting to being home after another year away, I am readjusting to being home and trying to stay sober.  Its extremely eerie and I get overwhelmed with the mess I left for myself to return to.
4522800 tn?1470325834
Yes, I was just telling someone about, when I used to drink many yrs ago, I would call all my long distance friends so drunk and get a 300.00 dollar phone bill and did not even remember what we talked about..Shiiiitt!!! Told a Operator one time that they needed those Breath things on the phone so it would not work for long distance when we were drunk.

Yes, the readjusting thing too! I came home after 45 days of w/ds (w/ds still on) and nothing seemed real in my house. My Hub & my Mom (who lived on property before her death) seemed like strangers. My clothes and jewelry and all my pics and such, seemed so unreal..It was the STRANGEST feeling I have ever had. HEY!! Wake UP! Smell the Roses now..lol
Bless us ALL!!
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