not having a care about what i was doing to myself after years of taking these things i was a pathetic state of a human being. I also suffered from extreme paranoia and terrible depression. over the last 5 years i tried to come off them by taking less each day but that would never last and i would be back up taking as much as i ever did after about 2 or 3 days.
my health was starting to suffer and i was waking up every single day with what felt like terrible hangovers which of course would mean i would take more painkillers to feel better. i had also been treating family members terribly by constantly finding something to argue about.
I had known for a long time that i needed to stop and came to forums like these and read as much as possible about codeine addiction which helped a lot. I must say that this thread was the point i decided to give it a proper go so thank you so much to the person who started it.
I knew i was going to have to do it cold turkey cos as i said taking less would only end with me taking more. The first week without them was a complete nightmare. i would take at least 10 hot showers a day sometimes just sitting in the shower for over an hour. I would also take hot lemsip drinks. one first thing when i woke and one last thing at night and would take brufen and paracetamol for pain relief making sure that anything i was taking had no codeine in it. The 3rd and 4th day was probably the worst for me and i spent most of those days in bed only managing to get enough strength to stumble to the shower to help ease the pain.
after the first week the withdrawal eased a lot and i could stop taking the lempsips, paracetamol and brufon. The cravings were still there but i knew i couldn't give in. to try and take my mind of it i just sat and watched movies or listened to music for hours a day for the next week which helped me a lot.
its been 6 months now since i last had any sort of codeine and i will hopefully never touch the stuff again. I can honestly say that i have not felt this good in years. no more paranoia and no more daily depression. I do worry that i have probably done real damage to my insides but im too afraid to go and ask for tests. right now i am just happy to be free of codeine and starting to enjoy life again for the first time in a very long time.
anyone who suffers from codeine addiction should read this thread from the start as i know that the persons blog thing really helped me. if you want to stop i can guarantee you that you can do it and your life will change. I know its a cliche but if i can do it then i know you can to. i honestly couldn't image a life without these pills and i will forever hate myself for wasting a very large part of my life on them.
found 4 tablets in my bg this morning and a feeling of anger came over me, that these white pills could have this much affect on me, i just flushed them down the toilet and had a good cry. i swear i will never ever go back on these pills again, need to start taking care of my kids. well im off to the doc will let u know how i get on.x
Stay at it!
The thread by Perfect-Angel for me is one of the most inspiring posts to read on this board. I too have some posts on here from when I have been struggling.. I'm much better now.
Just remember that it will end!
have slept for a couple of hours this afternoon, but still feel that i have no energy. cant go to work tomoz feeling like this.
im going to make the t for the kis and try and eat something, my mum and sister are coming round later, have to be strong, the way im feeling now i know when i see them im going to start crying.
I first started taking co codamol 30mg 4 years ago after having hip surgery and quickly realized that i was needing to take them 4 hourly to feel ok. If I didnt take them after 3 hours I felt so bad like headachy and flu and couldnt move. At first I thought I had a problem that i needed to take them for but 3 weeks ago I plucked up courage to go to the docs to ask him the question. He said I would have to stop the pills and he sent me for a full blood test in case it was something else causing my problems. I decided to go from ,my normal 2 pills every 4 hours or 3 if I am honest to 1 tablet for 3 days then the next 3 days down to half. I did feel at bit bad with some symptoms so on thursday afternoon decided to stop. I was at work on Friday and felt a bit out of it but no pain so I thought i was going to be ok. Saturday felt achy so called sick to work was off on Sunday and we went to the pictures to watch Iron Man 2 and I was beginning to feel very bad, so much achey pain in my back , cold inside and my head and neck was killing me. Last night tried some vodka which actually numbed the pain so I slept all night, but was due in work today at 8 am. I decided to give it a go but I was sent home today at 1pm as I couldnt function at all. I have been laying on the sofa taking 2 paracetamols and 2 ibrupfen whcih the doc had said was ok and to be honest it does definately take the edge off.
I am hoping that this day is the worst cause I feel that I just cant take anymore, no position on the sofa or the bed makes the pain in my back go away. These pills are evil and I too like everyone else had them stashed everywhere in my locker at work or in the glove box or old handbags. I deep down knew I had a problem but didnt want to deal with it, seamed pointless and just didnt want to go through the pain i was already getting if i didnt take them every 3 hours.
I now cant wait not to be going to the chemist to write out my repeat then go to collect it worrying that the doc has stopped them. I have moved house 3 times and it is so hard to get that repeat again at a new docs with the calculating lies I had to tell. We move house in 6 weeks to live by the coast our new dream life so to be free of this curse will be so good and I WILL NEVER NEVER NEVER AGAIN TAKE ANY THING WITH CODINE IN THE DESCRIPTION.
Keep strong everyone you know its the only way
Think I am going to call the doc again today check on them blood tests just in case these symptoms are not the codine and something worse, but from what other people have posted I think I already know that this is probably the codine withdrawal. I am supposed to be going to the kiss concert at the NEC tomorrow night , so hope i am able to go, cant believe I feel so c**p still.
Going to try and get some more sleep now, house is a mess but i just dont have any energy to get up and do anything.
will post later let you all know how i feel , hopefully alot better that now.
i know in time i will get back to being my old-self, just going to take it day by day. but i know one thing i will never ever take codine again.
if anyone is going through withdrawl at the moment, please, please stick to it wil get better, i know at the moment ur feeling pretty low, but it will get better, this forum kept me going when i was withdrawing, i kept reading and reading if over and over and its getting me through this.xxxxxxx
Found a site today called so i joined it and found heaps of info including a herb called valarian which apparently works wonders when u are with drawing from codeine and aids sleep, so i ordered a bottle. I love chatting away on here it seams to make sense of what is happening inside my body. I am day 6 tomorrow and so so hope I am much better so I can go to the kiss concert.
night for now
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Last night was not good I had the feeling i was alone even when jason came home i just felt so depressed and did one of my crying episodes. Found some hidden pills so i binned them cant even stand to see the packet it makes me feel sick to think i just popped them things like sweets , even though right now i would really kill to take one.
Gonna have a bit of a rest now , no point in over doing it as i may not make it out tonight, will keep you all posted as to how i got through the evenning as its my first time out without pill help.
Let me briefly explain my history... I had been taking codeine sulfate or codeine phosphate (or some other form of opiate: hydrocodone, oxycodone, morphine sulphate, methadone, etc.) for the past two years. On average I took between 300 and 400 mg a day -- divided into two doses, one in the morning and one in the evening. On weekends it would be more. It started with my husband and I taking a few pills to "unwind" after work. Then it snowballed from there.
Note: I was taking pure codeine. I am extremely concerned to read about people taking codeine with acetaminophen. This is poison in high doses and causes severe liver damage or failure -- with little to no warning. If you are taking anything with acetaminophen I urge you to read about cold water extraction techniques, explained here:
I look back and don't know how the heck I made it through life these past few years. I am a working professional. My job could be rather stressful and soon I was taking codeine at work. I went in day after day clutching my pill bottle and watching the clock for the time I could take it. I weighed next to nothing... the codeine kept my appetite at bay while providing faux energy. But as we all know doing this was just a recipe for disaster. Some weeks I would have a mix of pills and would have to get by on maybe a dose that was too low for me... I'd wake up anxious and go to work with withdrawal, sitting through meetings anxious and sweating like crazy, running to the bathroom every five minutes, wanting to go hide and cry.
It's a long time to live like that, being a slave to the drug. There was no way I could quit cold turkey because of my job. I didn't have an option of taking time off to go through massive withdrawal. I did not want to contact a doctor because I was not prescribed this medicine and I didn't want "drug abuse" on my medical records. With the help of my husband I took matters into my own hands.
Around X-mas time of 2009 I took a break from codeine and was taking methadone, just because it was around. So come January 2010 (nothing like that New Year's Resolution) my husband started me on a slow taper from just under 200mg that lasted into February. He was dropping my dose every few days by 50-30 mg.
I've read of some people dropping this way or also by cutting 10 percent of their dose every so many days until it's gone. THIS IS DO-ABLE. It takes longer than most people would probably like -- because when you want it over, you just want it to be over. But it does minimize the suffering of a cold turkey withdrawal. Yes, I had symptoms but they were relatively mild. Nothing a good distraction can't fix.
Most importantly though, you need support. You need someone who is "in control" to give you your dose every day. My husband was this person for me and now I am that person for him.
At the end (and from what I really remember), I was lowering by a few milligrams every few days. I was at a point where I was taking 7 mg a day for a few days and then every other day! Yes, it is possible! On Feb. 6, 2010, I took my last pill. I kept a record of how I felt after that, which I share below:
DAY 1: Mild nausea, body aches, anxiety. (Sunday, Feb. 7)
DAY 2: Anxiety from medium to bad most of the day. Mild nausea, diarrhea, and occasional body aches. (Monday, Feb. 8)
DAY 3: Hint of anxiety. So far so good at 10:17 a.m. (Tuesday, Feb. 9). I am feeling nausea and hot/cold, diarrhea now at 12:25 p.m. Got to come home early from work because of snow. Blessing in disguise. Then I took a nap on the couch from 5-7 p.m. It's 10 p.m. and like I have the flu. I should eat soon.
DAY 4 (Wednesday, Feb. 10): Snow day. Slept in but had a hard time sleeping and have anxiety. Slight nausea around 1:30 p.m.
DAY 5 (Thursday, Feb. 11): Anxiety -- not too bad, diarrhea -- not too bad, slight nausea once this afternoon. BAD BAD headache this evening but that could have been from not eating. Now I'm really crabby. Here's to irritability.
DAY 6 (Friday, Feb. 12): Still a little irritable. It's not cool waking up that way... already in a bad mood to start off the day. Ugh! I have diarrhea and the hot/cold thing going on but again nothing terrible that I can't work through. I am here again after all. :) I was really sore come night time. Especially in my spine. I was weak and exhausted. I was also still irritable (very) and wanted to be left alone and not touched. I took some benadryl to sleep and was able to sleep ten hours into Saturday.
DAY 7 (Saturday, Feb. 13): Feel rested... a little groggy. I think this should be over now.
So as you can see, everything was pretty mild. It was like going through the week with a slight cold but totally manageable. People say that day 3 or 4 is the worst, but in my case it was day 6. I took Immodium for the diarrhea -- which is an opiate that doesn't pass the blood-brain barrier. This is a godsend during withdrawal and should be used liberally. It can cause you no harm. I took ibuprofen for the body and head aches. I drank lots of water and hot tea, took hot showers and napped a lot. Smoking marijuana helps too. To me, the worst part was the mood swings and depression. I am not saying this is easy by any means, but it's better than the alternative.
By March 2010 I was feeling "normal". I gained 20 pounds back! (I was so tiny no one even noticed my weight gain.) I don't wake up anxious anymore, I haven't felt nausea since then. In fact, I am feeling more in control of my life than ever before.
I mentioned before it's now my husband's turn. We just started him on a 10 percent taper from 200 mg. I have him scheduled to be done on July 10. We are not being as aggressive with him as we did with me (50 mg was way more than a 10 percent cut). The pills are locked up. I get them out of a safe and give to him every day. These are the only pills we have left and will not obtain any more. If you are interested in this schedule, let me know and I will post a copy.
If you truly are ready to stop, all you need is a solid plan. Don't feel bad if the plan ends up taking a month. At least you will be in control and on the road to being clean. Each time you take less and less you will feel like the end is in sight.
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If you are interested in harm reduction go to your favorite search engine and search the following terms:
Bluelight Harm Reduction (drug education forums and real world experiences)
Cold Water Extraction
Erowid (online drug reference library)
It pains me to see so many uneducated people killing their livers with acetaminophen.
Yay. Not one URL posted.