14 days off Dihydrocodeine-PAWS

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I have been on some kind of Opiate for 2 years. Lastly Dihydrocodeine for a year. 8 a day but sometimes up to 12 (30 mg, no paracetemol). I did a fast taper dropping 1 a day until none. Strangely and gratefully, the withdrawal wasn't bad at all. I had very minor stomach upset, sneezing, and no energy at all (also some depression). I managed about 6-7 hours of sleep a night and took nothing but magnesium at night in case of RLS and to help with sleep. The minor withdrawal lasted only a few days. I was very surprised by this and still have a hard time believing that i wasn't sick as a dog. I think i've been lucky regarding that and am grateful. The thing that is really bad is that PAWS has hit hard. I'm exhausted all the time. Absolutely wiped out. Along with this is depression and anxiety. I am able to function well for the most part but the PAWS is rough. Strangely, on day 5, NO DHC, i felt pretty normal. The next day, FULL PAWS. I know that all there is to do now is wait for the PAWS to lift a day at a time, exercise, eat healthy etc... I am hoping that because the withdrawal was so much less than i thought it would be or expected, that the PAWS will lift over the next couple of weeks. Is this a reasonable wish or is it likely to be months regardless of the minor withdrawal? Anyone else have a similar story?

Thanks ahead of time.

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6 Replies

  • Posted

    I tapered from palexia/tapentadol last September, I was on 4 x 75 mg per day, I dropped 1 dose per week for 2 weeks then hit a wall so decided to give myself a week off and start again, it was hell and thought I would just drop the last 2 together thinking I would be over it quicker but that's not how these meds work. I suffered in total 7 weeks withdrawals then the PAWS kicked in and I had never heard of it before, for me it was another 3 months and still now get the odd day where it sneaks up on you, I still suffer badly with RLS every night.

    Everyone's experience will be similar but time scale is hard to Judge as this crap likes to play with your mind, just don't give into it it's an amazing feeling to come out the other end and kick its butt, good luck 😊

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  • Posted

    Thanks Caroline. Sounds like your ride was rough and i'm glad you're out the other side. The RLS sounds bad and i'm sorry you are still having it! Congratulations on quitting! :-) I had no RLS and very few WD symptoms other than slight stomach upset, some sneezing and exhaustion. Slep 6-7 hours a night. It was a complete shock that it wasn't bad and i know that this is not the usual. We'll see where the PAWS takes me in terms of time but i am wiped out daily. Now worse then when i stopped altogether. I feel more exhausted than i did on day 5. Thanks for your reply and i hope the RLS eases off.

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  • Posted

    Well done! It's an amazing achievement getting this far-great to see you've come so far. I'm now nearly 6 months off DHC and the PAWS has been bad, my mind up and down, sometimes sucking me deep into the darkness, and the exhaustion! Oh my gosh, it's been grim. I felt fine to begin with and it just got worse and worse. Here's some of what I've done...got a basic 'tired' batch of blood tests done to rule out anything significant / easy to deal with such as anaemia, low vit d, etc etc. (they were fine, sigh, life would have been so much easier if it was something easy). I've slept a lot, but that didn't really help, but also trying to get a more balanced life - getting out when I can, etc. The one thing that does seem to have helped is taking large-ish doses of B12. I've been taking it for about a week and have finally seen a big change in my energy levels. No idea why, not even sure why I started taking them, but gosh I'm glad I did. I've also gone through counselling over some of the things being triggered by the dark PAWS and that's helped. I'm also having to adjust o different levels of pain etc now I'm not on pain meds, which isn't overly fun but the pain is definetely better but different. Weird times. Oh yes, how could I forget, I'm trying to do as many *fun / enjoyable* things as I can to boost the old endorphins in the brain and it helps.

    Hope it goes well. Hang in there. It does get better. Your brain and body will gradually adjust and slowly the darkness will shrink and go. You're doing reallyn really well.

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    • Posted

      Thankyou Pumpkin1. It's great to hear all of your info and i appreciate it. Well done to you too! 6 months is amazing!

      Yes. I'm zonked at all times and anything i try to do i run out of steam.

      It's been the worst part for me. I'll try your suggestions. Thank you for them.

      Can i ask you how much you were on and for how long?

      I'm just trying to guage things and it's an uphill struggle.

      Have a great weekend Pumpkin1! and thanks again.

       

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    • Posted

      Gosh, I was on so many pills for so long..DHC was 240mg (so 8 a day) for 'just' 6 years. Occasionally when the pain hit 'hell' levels I would take up to 480mg for a day or two, but that was only every 3-6 months. I was lucky to be able to control the use to just these levels but even so the withdrawal was a horrific horrible hellish experience! Hang in there 

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