how much do you use daily it could rasie a flag
It might be a different thing from place to place, so my experience goes with my area and my doctor. First....are you addicted to hydrocodone and/or are you just trying to quit for whatever reason? Because if you are and you are going the Suboxone route, then you obviously don't need prescriptions for pain killers. In my area, just calling another doctor about pain issues won't work because all the different offices are linked and it brings up that my doctor alone treats me for pain and it's against doctors morals to treat patients for pain if there is already another doctor doing so because of this reason....pain killers.
If you are trying to quit, cold turkey is the best way to try. You need to be tough and determined, but it can be done and you will be better for it. If you are like some of us and can't do it that way then tapering is the next best way to go. Taper with your drug of choice is a planned, but slow manner. It won't get rid of withdrawls completely, but it will reduce them by quite a bit. If you are like me and are unable to go the cold turkey route or don't have the self discipline, then Suboxone is worth a try. Suboxone also greatly reduces withdrawls, but comes with it's own problems. You NEED a plan to taper off Suboxone right away. It will make withdrawl days bearable and maybe even get rid of them all together, but the longer you take Suboxone, the more chance you will have to be addicted to it as well. Suboxone should be used as a last resort, but if you choose this route, once you feel good which will be pretty quickly, then come up with a taper plan within the week or so and try to be off of it within the first month, 2 tops.
In all of these options, you ABSOLUTELY should involve your doctor. Preferrably the one who prescribes you the hydrocodone. Chances are they will do the Suboxone treatments, if not, they will probably be able to recommend someone for you. Don't let the fact that you may never get pain pills prescribed again bother you. If you were to have surgery or break a bone, you will be prescribed accordingly. Since I don't know your specific story I'll just say either way I hope you find the help you are looking for.
Most of the time if you go the suboxone route in will be kept in your medical charts, so yes if you went back in later on they would see that you used suboxone, which 95% of the time is used to get off opiates. If you go into the doctor and tell the doctor about your addiction and your looking for help theres no guarantee that you will be flagged as an addict, like you more than likely would with suboxone. The question is why are you already worried about getting pills in the future before you even quit, that just shows your not really ready, because if you really are you wouldnt care if doctors would be less willing to give you narcotics in the future. You should actually want all your doctors to know about your addictive personality so that you dont run the risk later on of getting addicted again. Im not positive that your automatically red flagged with sub, but most offices are linked up by computers now or a new doctor will need your medial charts from your old doctor and if they look them over and see suboxone they will probably put two and two together. Now if you got into some bad accident where you absolutely needed something for pain, your still going to get somethiing,they would just be much more careful about how much and how long you would be able to use, which is a Good thing. Listen you have to be fully committed to quitting if you want to make this work, whether you go see a doctor or do it yourself. Right now you just need to worry about what is the best way for you to get clean, only good things come out of getting clean, theres nothing bad except having to through w/d's, then cravings for a long time. You can do this, dont worry so much about the future, worry about right now. Good luck with everything I hope it all works out for you. Take Care.
Talking to a doctor about your addiction is most important. The disease is something that once you have will never be cured. You can only put it in remission and keep it there. Suboxone could be an option depending on your history. And if you ever suffer severe pain, of course you would be able to still get medication to manage it if your doctor thinks you need it.
But remember, the disease will still be there, so always telling your doctor you are an addict will help prevent a relapse.
Thank you for your comments... I guess I need to explain the circumstances....I am seeking help for my 27 year old son. He has been taking (he says) hydrocodone mostly. He has taken percosets too. I knew something was up for a while, but he kept saying he's ok, not taking anything...well I finally got him to admit to taking pills. He says he was taking 5-6 hydrocodones a day. (the ones I know of are 7.5's) He went down to 1 and a half real quick and was pretty sick. He leveled off, and was at that level for about 4 days and he said he started feeling aggitated to much so went back to 3 for a couple days. He says he is going to try to go back to the one and a half, he works graveyards, and has 2 kids and a wife that is really hard to get along with. He never knows what kind of mood she is going to be in. We're not sure if she has personality disorder, or bi-polar, or what, but he says the pills help him deal with her, and keeps the withdrawls down. He started on them a few years ago because of a tree falling on his leg/ankle, he was a fire fighter. Recently he had had some acid reflux problems flare up pretty bad, his stomach and esophogus was really burned, so they gave him the hydrocodones for that too. He is trying to get off, and I told him I would help him, and I keep his pills so he can't take more than he should...he has to come to me to get them so he can taper down to get off. I am not sure and neither is he how long he should be at a certain dose, a week, 2 weeks? Then cutting out a dose each time he goes to a new level? He takes them in halves. ..the thing is I know that he could lie and get some from friends at his work, but he seems to be more honest with me now...but who knows. I really worry about him going up and down. I know it won't work that way. He considered suboxone, but someone told him he would be red flagged if he goes on it. He rides dirt bikes, and he was afraid if he got hurt he wouldn't be able to get anthing but tylenol 3...I told him that sounded like an excuse....I told him the same things you were all saying...that it is the last thing he should be worried about. I wanted to find out for myself about the whole suboxone thing so I can tell him whether he is right or wrong, and if it would be a thing that he may have to consider. I heard that if he gets down to, and stays at one and a half a day for a while, he may not be on enough hydrocodones to need suboxone. Not sure how true that is. He had had anxiety problems when he was younger and has tried paxil and xanax and another one i can't remember and he hated them, and they didn't help him much. He can't confide in his wife, if she knew, she would be horrible to be around trying to go through this. It is hard enough going through it without her yelling at him for it. He also can't take time off work, or he may lose his job. He has a hard time sleeping so he finally re-tried sleeping pills. His wife only lets him have about 5 hours before she leaves the kids with him. She tells him he doesn't need that much sleep. He needs to sleep so he can he rested for work. He has a physical and demanding job, and again graveyard doesn't help his sleep. Are sleeping pills an ok thing to take? I can't see any reason why they wouldn't, but I know nothing about these drugs. I want to help him, but I know I can only do so much....
You sound like a great mother. Keep doing what you're doing. At least he's being somewhat honest with you. Most of us addicts hide our problems from everyone. The advice you get from here is great mainly because of our experience, but we are not doctors and that's what it sounds like you need to talk to. Try and talk your son into seeing a doctor and go with him, so you too can get educated on the subject. If he truly is only taking 3 or less a day, then Suboxone really may not be the answer. Suboxone may only be needed when and if he quits taking them all together and is having withdrawl symptoms that are unbearable and it leads him right back to using again. I understand that his job is physically demanding, but using pain pills to help with dealing with his life is a addiction and a problem. Good new is, if he's only taking 3 a day, it's definately a workable problem. If this is true, then going to the doctor is the absolute best thing to do. I don't see why he would be red flagged as an addict if he only takes that many a day. It seems kind of silly to me that he only wants to take hydrocodone and is worried about having to take tylenol 3s. That kind of tells me he's not ready to quit and that's a very important part of all of this. Most of us have to hit rock bottom or be pretty darn close to it before we are ready to quit. Hopefully with a good and caring mother like yourself, he'll listen to you and realize it will be best for him to get help now.
Try and talk him into going to the doctor and discussing this with them. That's the first step. He tells you he takes the pills to deal with his problems, so that is a start that he at least knows a little bit that what he is doing is wrong. There are other medications out there that specifically deal with depression, so assure him that going to the doctor and telling them all of this will likely lead to alternative ways to helping him deal with the problems in his life, because pain pills sure as heck don't solve the problems, just helps him forget about them. If he's having pain from work, then so what if he has to take tylenol 3s? They are better than nothing. If his withdrawls are too bad that quitting is not an option then tell the doctor. Suboxone may be a good route for him. This is all a process and the only way he can get the correct help from dealing with pain to dealing with everyday problems in life is to get with a doctor and start this process. Otherwise if he continues to mask the problems, the process will never start and it will never end. The process can be a long one, so the earlier he starts, the quicker it can be helped. Also, continue to ask any questions you have here. Everyone combined can sure help you out. There is at least one person who will read your posts that has been through what your son has been through.
So, tell him not to worry about being "flagged". Tell him to go to a doctor and if that doctor doesn't seem to care and doesn't seem to want to help, keep looking, there is a doctor out there who does care and will help. In the long run...even if he is "labeled" as a pain killer addict, tell him he will still be able to work and enjoy life without worrying about getting hurt. In fact if he likes to ride dirt bikes, that'll be a huge help in recovery. I enjoy my 4 wheelers and when I cleaned up, they were one of the many things that helped me. Worst case scenario.....if for whatever reason he gets flagged as an "addict", if he gets hurt or needs surgery, he will still get the medication he needs no matter what. So tell him not to worry about that. Honestly....being labeled as an "addict" can be a good thing. It will help him from destroying his life all together.
Lastly.....you are great for what you do. I wish I had the discipline to hand my pills to someone back when I was taking 20 a day. You keep doing what you're doing. A loving mother who cares so much about her sons addiction that she is educating herself about it all is a perfect thing for an addict to have. If by chance the doctor decides he needs anti-depressants or something like Suboxone or even Tylenol 3s....keep doing that. That's the best thing for someone like that. Good luck and I hope you both find all the answers you need.
Thank you for responding, it is nice to talk to someone about this who understands. My husband knows, and is supportive but doesn't get too involved, because he doesn't really understand what my son is going through.
My son says he is going to try to take 2 and a half pills for the day. I think the sleeping pills were helping so he was able to get some sleep. He said he felt a little sick but not too bad. So much of me wants to believe he is telling me the truth, but because he has lied before makes me leary. If he is telling the truth I think he is doing pretty good. He said he has gained weight, which is a good sign . He hasn't looked very healthy for a long time, everyone had been telling him he was losing too much weight.
About going to a doctor, I agree that it would be the best thing for him. I have talked to him about it a few times. Right now he thinks he will be fine, and that his problem isn't that bad. He tells me how he doesn't do that much so it shouldn't be too much harder to get off it alltogether. I would go with him for sure, So once they taper off and finally quit will he still expect to have some bad withdrawls even if he does it real slow? I work for a family Doctor, he is an M.D./D.O. He is a great person, but I am not sure if he helps people with getting off drugs. I have mixed feelings about going to him. I know my son may go to him if the doc is willing to help, but not sure if I should ask him. He has talked about going to a doc for help but changes his mind about it too. Everything you have said makes perfect sense to me, I just hope I can put some ideas in his head that will guide him to go see a doc. from what he says, I don't think he is taking them at the current time for pain, and he says he isn;t taking them to get high, he says he's taking them to stop the withdrawls.
I know he has some ideas that sometimes make so sense to me, and it is hard not to just freak out and say listen to yourself! I know I frustrate him when I have to question him about everything.
One question I have is how much is it to buy it on the street? For instance...how much can you get for 40-50 or 60 dollars? I just want to know how much he can buy so if i know he has a certain amount of money I may know approximately how many pills he could be buying
About your first question.....It really is different for everyone on the withdrawl front as far as how bad his situation would be. I think there with be withdrawl symptoms, but if he can successfully taper correctly and stick to it, once he is down to nothing, the withdrawl symptoms will be much milder than if he quit cold turkey right now. The benefit from going cold turkey is that within a few days he will be feeling fine right away, where if he tapers, then he will still experience the withdrawls about the same amount of time, they will just be easier to deal with.
As far as your 2nd question goes.....well...we can't talk about prices that pills cost on the street here on medhelp. I'll say this though. If he's spending that kind of money each day on God knows what, then you should be concerned. That much in a week isn't too bad, but still need to be somewhat worried. If only a month at a time, not too bad at all. Gotta remember this though......no matter how much it is, it's illegal. Or for instance if he's doing it through someone at work, and the wrong person finds out, he could be fired. So if you are concerned about him buying off the street, you may need to try and convince him to stop. Or, the only way he will is if he is caught by police or gets fired.
The best you can do right now is suggest for him to seek help. If he's not ready, he's not ready. The only time you need to show some tough love is if it is really effecting your everyday life. So if he's ruining his life and those around him, that's when you need to show some tough love and tell him "you need to get help, or else". Unfortunately, addicts usually need to hit rock bottom before they really think they need help. You know him more than we do, so maybe you can find a way to get to his heart, so that he realizes he may need help, because rock bottom is where he'll end up. Find some more things on the internet about real life stories about others who were like him that hit rock bottom. For instance there are many heroin addicts who started just like he did. Just taking pain pills for pain...then to deal with life....then they realized heroin was easier to get and stronger and BAM...rock bottom. I'm sure he'll think that could never happen to him and he would never do that, but do you think all those heroin addicts who started by taking pain pills thought they would end up on the street sticking themselves with dirty needles? I doubt it. And although that's the worst case scenario, it's probably good to monitor his situation. Stay involved and hopefully he'll come around and realize it's not worth it anymore. That's how a lot of us were....we just got sick of being in that fog.
Again....you are doing a great thing by holding his pills and giving them to him when he needs them. Otherwise he'd be like all of us and taking them freely. Good luck.
He is taking 2 and a half to three right now a day. About how long should he stay at that before he cuts down again? He is having trouble with the anxiety, and the cravings.He said he thinks he needs to take one, then he wishes he wouldn't have taken it. I have been talking to him again about going to a doctor, I told him about not worrying about being flagged, and that made him feel better, but I know he is nervous about his wife finding out. He said he's thinking of tyring the suboxone because of the anxiety and the craving, but is afraid to get the prescription because of his wife. I have heard people can be on it for a long time, and some not. What is the average time people usually stay on it? I have been concerned about him buying pills. I don't know who he has gotten them from before, and I have talked to him about it alot. I hope in the near future he will decide to go to the doctor. I know he has bought pills because he didn't know what else to do and was afraid of going to a doctor, and even more afraid to tell someone he needs help. I know that is an excuse, but I think he is getting closer to the idea of getting help from a doctor. Thanks again for your help!
2 and a half in a day is a pretty low amount. No matter the amount, if he's been taking them awhile, it still doesn't feel good when you quit. Maybe set a plan with him. Maybe make him feel comfortable and go real slow. Cut maybe a quarter of the pill or more out every few days, then do it again. It's kind of up to the person. I think in his case it's best to figure a rate out that will work best with him. If it takes him 5 days to adjust to the taper, then do it every 5 days. His dosage is so low right now, that 5 days a taper still won't take too long. When you set a plan, let him know that he's only going to get that amount each day and when a taper day comes around, it's going lower. When he asks for another pill then let him know before hand that he's not going to get another pill until the next day. His body will get used to the dosage within a couple days. Hopefully you both can find something that works and can eventually get to nothing. I hope that maybe he doesn't have to tell his wife, but if the problem continues, it really probably would help to get it out there. I know it helped me to clean up once I told those close to me. Good luck!
Well I talked to a counselor at a treatment center today which has a suboxone dr. there. The program sounds great because they have counselling as part of it there. If he just went to another suboxone dr. (which I checked out too) they recommend a counselor, but said that many wouldn't try that hard to get into one...my son would be one of them. They have them meet with the dr. and then with the counselor. They say they monitor them much more than just going to a dr. I think he will get alot out of it. I just don't want him to change his mind, so I am trying to get him in asap. He is alittle nervous, but alittle relieved too. I hope I am doing the right thing with directing him more towards the suboxone route, but honestly I don't know if he can do it on his own, and I know I can't make him. I know he knows it is for the best to get off the pills, and that he does want to get off them. I just hope it works. I also hope he opens up to the counseling. They recommend that they stay on the suboxone for about 6 months to a year... do you know anyone who has been on it that long?? Another good thing is he won't be looking to buy them from who knows who, and since the suboxone won't show on work routine drug tests, he will not have his job threatened by his use of the hydrocodone.
I know it is not a definate thing that he will never use again, but I feel we have to try. I know is it is draining for me, but I still feel like I can't give up on him. I often have thought I wish someone would have interveined with my brother when he was younger, maybe he'd be in a better place now...but I realize that that's not always a guarentee either, but i can't hurt. He is still using god knows what and he is 56 years old.
Well we'll see what next week brings...hopefully the better things.
Ask a million questions to the doctors. I'm going to be honest with you. At 2 and a half pills, a 6 month Suboxone plan sure seems WAY TOO LONG. Personally, I was at 20 pills or more a day and when I went to Suboxone, I was out of the fog and feelin' great in 2 weeks. Maybe ask them if there is a shorter plan. What I do like about it is the counseling, that sounds great and will greatly reduce the chance he'll relapse. But 6 months? To me the risks out weigh the reward, because at 6 months he'll most likely be addicted to the Suboxone. And he's only at 2 and a half pills a day. Most prescriptions call for 4 pills in a day. Going to a counselor for 6 months to a year sounds great, but taking the Suboxone for that long doesn't seem right. If that's there plan, then get it in writing that at the end of the 6 months he'll be off the Suboxone without any withdrawls, so if it happens they will be responsible. Otherwise, see if they'll do a shorter plan on the medication, but yes, the counseling for as long as possible would be great. Either way, I think it's great what you are doing for him and I hope it all works out.
He hasn't seen the doctor or the counselor yet. So I guess what he told me isn't definate, but he did say that most people that aren't on it for more than 6 months don't do as wellstaying off the pills, and that they have seen higher sucess rates when on at least a year. I think the counselor may have been giving a general idea of the time frame but i am guessing about that. It does seem like a long time if he isn't taking that much,but he says it helps the phycological part of the addiction to be on that long. I guess we'll find out how many he has been using for sure and see where he is addiction level is at. The counselor did say that it all depends on his situation, and they will know that after he gets his history. I will definately ask about being on it for that long though, because I don't want him to have a hard time getting off this too. I know he can't do this by himself and stay off. He says the cravings are so hard. I am not sure as to his strength and will power....maybe he will surprise me. At this point I want to believe him when he says that he has only been taking the up to 3 pills of hydeocodone, but who knows what he has taken. I know he has taken perkocets because he told me he bought niacin to flush his system for a few hrs. in case he needed to take a blood test. I know he has lied about stuff because later he finally told me what really is going on, which i understand because he didn't know how much he could really tell me. I hate that it has gotten him into the having to lie, and learning how to get away with it for so long. It seems like that in itself will be hard to stop. I hope the counseling will help with that. I guess it has to be a relief to finally tell someone though...someone who cares.
I have some questions for you,.... ( Sorry, I have never been through withdrawls so please forgive me for being so dumb when it comes to this stuff) How long were you on it? How was the tapering? I have been reading about the induction, I read where it says you have to be in the state of moderate withdrawl, so when is that? I also read that they can feel better with in 15 to 30 minutes, or as long as 2 hours, also that you have to stay at the office for a while after they give it to you to make sure you do ok on it. Did you have to stay for a while after your first dose? How did you feel right before and right after the suboxone was given to you? I do understand why they have to be in withdrawl, but really don't know what to expect quite yet. They have it so they come to the center for a week or 2 weeks to get their pill every morning to make sure they are taking it and they are doing ok, some people do it that way for a long time. He said that they don't have to have a prescription for it this way. If the dr. thinks he doesn't need to come daily after a week (give or take a little), They will write out a prescription for it and make the counseling appts. as usual. Does any of this sound like what they have done with you or anyone else you may know? There is another dr's office I called and they said they do all the work up stuff then they give the prescription and they recommend seeing a counselor, but where it isn't part of the treatment, I think it would be harder to get him to go to counseling. I feel asking you these questions may help me to know what to ask them. . . I am trying to help him plan when he can do this, with his job, wife and all, and when I can be there. I sure wish his wife was a more supportive person. It would be less stress on him and me. But for now we have to do what we have to do to get him healthy mentally and physically. Again thanks for your help! You've been great!
I'm starting to like our daily talks! haha Here's what happened with me. I was taking 20+ hydrocodone 10/325 pills a day. Granted, I was only prescribed 120 a month, so that's just 6 days worth at my worst state which meant I would have to buy more, or during a certain period of time I would take longer lasting drugs like morphine and oxycontin by buying it off the street until I got popped for a drug screen at work and tested positive for methadone. Could of been worse.....during that week before I had also taken some benzos and oxycontin and hydrocodone, so I could of tested positive for both. I didn't get fired, they have a drug program you go through for the first time you get caught which meant I would be taking monthly drug screens which didn't mean I would quit taking pills all together, but that I could only take hydrocodone. Well, it's just too hard to support a 20 pill a day habit so I was thinking about quitting all together and one day my personal doctor mentioned Suboxone. I never admitted to him I had a problem, I just told him that sometimes I would take a day off from taking hydrocodone and I would feel a little "edgy". Once he mentioned Suboxone (and I knew what it was since naturally I had taken it before) I was in. A week later when I knew I would run out of my prescription, I made an appointment.
Now, I've taken Suboxone in the past in many different states of withdrawl. It does work the best if you're into withdrawl. Most doctors say about 24 hours into it, but really it doesn't matter how long into withdrawls you are, just wanna be into them. I saw someone post that if you have 3 symptoms, then it's ok, I think that's a good gauge to go by. It doesn't take too long into withdrawls to be having cold sweats, restless legs, and having to go to the bathroom. For me it's about 14-16 hours after my last dose of hydrocodone. So I literally timed my appointment with my doctor about that long afterwards. Once at my appointment they gave me 2mg worth of Suboxone. They monitor you because my doctor told me there were cases that people were a little out of it. Not feeling real bad, just a little woozy. Everyone acts different with any kind of medication. Most people feel fine after 2mg of Suboxone. I felt ok, and he sent me home with a prescription. 16mg a day. Honestly, that was more than enough. I would of been safe with 8mg a day even at that first week. That's why I say to make sure they don't give him more than 8mg. I'm sure he wasn't taking more than 20 a day where I was, so 8mg should be good. But, again, everyone is different, so in this case you may have to trust the doctors. It's like you said...they won't know until they know how much for how long he was taking. Just let him know it'll be for the best if he's honest 100% with the doctors that way he gets the help he needs. Once prescribed, honestly I was feeling great in about 2-3 weeks.
If you're choosing between taking him where he'll for sure get counseling or just to a regular doctor, the counseling is the most important. Experts say that without aftercare like counseling, drug addicts have next to no chance at staying clean. So might as well give him his best odds. If he says he'll get conseling on his own if he goes to the regular doctor, then either way should work. I would hope his wife would be more supportive, but it sounds like you're being as supportive as 5 people would be, and that's another great thing for an addict to have. Good luck and I'm still here if you have any questions. If I don't answer in this post, feel free to send me a message through my profile. Good luck, I feel positive that whatever road you both choose, it will work. God Bless.
I didnt really read this thread, just the post.. But.... taking Sub to get off Hydrocodone is like going from the frying pan and into the fire...
""Can going to a doctor and either getting help tapering off hydrocodone, or going on suboxone make it so you cannot ever get prescriptions for painkillers again? Does it mark you with a red flag? How can i find a suboxone doctor in my area. ""
i actually want my doctors to know i have had a problem with opiates in the past, honesty keep me clean sometimes
I am someone who used to be addicted to pain pills n no they do not flag u if u don't bring it up or say u go to the hospital or a medical center for a real reason and u are really in pain they will prescribe u what they think will help but no u can still get pain medicine there's a little thing called patient conceality where with out u signing a release form no one can get your medical records now if u go to the same doctor u get the suboxone from for pain meds u probably won't get anything but they usually only flag someone If they think a person is selling or abusing drugs or making fake scripts. So no they should not flag u because I was on the methadone program for my addiction n while I was on the program I broke my finger and the medical center have me pain meds n knew nothing about my being on the program. You will still be able to get them but if you really are ready to quit only go that way if u are really In pain and make sure ur will power is strong so when the pain is gone the pills are gone too!!! And always remember u can quit because people with worst habits then u didn't and so can u. I did and now I'm 7 years clean. And use this saying it always helps me if u are having a hard or bad day during ur recovery from addiction and if u are religious u can add god or who ever u want to add in. It's called the Serenity Prayer! (God) or ( __?__) grant me the serenity to except the things I can not change, The courage to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the diffrence! I hope my knowledge of this can help u! If I can help at least one person it makes a great diffrence!!!!
Hydrocodone goes for about 3-5 bucks a pill, percocets are almost always 5 bucks a pill unless they are the 30mg then its about 7 bucks. If your son is using 3 a day it should only be costing him a max of 15 bucks a day.