Codeine addiction.

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I was diagnosed with nerve root compression of my lumbar spine by MRI in 2006. The Dr prescribed me co/codomol 30/500. And I am still taking them to this day. About 2 years ago I learned that I couldn't function without them. They don't stop my pain anymore so I started taking over the counter Ibuprofen and codeine 12.8/200mg. This has gradually crept up to 24 tablets a day. So with the 8 co codomol I take I'm taking 547mg of codeine a day! It's my dirty little secret.  I can't function without that daily dose. And the first thing I do on waking is to swallow two co codomol and 4ibuprofen and codeine! I am so ashamed of my secret. Nobody else knows. I just can't tell anyone. If I don't take my full dose of daily codeine throughout the day, I get terrible withdrawal symptoms. I'm nervous/anxious/have cold sweats and terrible cramps and get panic attacks. Anyone else in a similar situation? Please get in touch. 

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  • Posted

    Latchy you need to talk to your GP asap before you kill yourself or suffer from liver failure! He could then refer you on to a specialised service to help you withdraw safely. Having said that I know it's all too easy to get addicted to codeine. I don't take cocodamol but codeine on it's own for rheumatoid arthritis. There are days when I have to be strong and not take more than 8 a day. I'm tempted regularly.
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    • Posted

      Thanks for your reply Matron. I had a recent blood test at hospital and all my bloods came back normal.  I know I should pluck up the courage to talk to my Dr but it has really taken a grip of me. I'm seeing my GP at the end of the month, I will have to tell him. I can't go on like this it's so scary.
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  • Posted

    Well done on making the appointment. GP's so readily prescribe codeine and co codamol. Personally I think because it's cheap to prescribe. The worrying thing is the amount of people who become addicted. You only have to read the forums on this website to see how prevalent it is. The introduction of repeat prescribing made this worse. I get it prescribed to be reviewed once a year. By then the addiction has taken over! Good luck and I'm pleased your blood tests were ok
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    • Posted

      Thank you Matron. It is far to widely prescribed. I have to go to the Drs every 6weeks. He never questions me! That's the scary thing. I think we should be like America and codeine shouldn't be allowed to buy over the counter. I've read in other forums where some people take upto 100 ibuprofen and codeine a day. I don't want to get that stage. That's why I made the appointment to see him sooner. 
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  • Posted

    Sensible. I don't know how some people are walking around reading about the huge doses they take, and like you normal blood test results. I often wonder how my liver function tests are within normal limits knowing how long I've take codeine and other analgesics. We must be very lucky.
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  • Posted

    Im in the exact same situation as you I got 224 prescription and but the 12.8 at least twice a week I have built up an tolerance to them and without them I an sweating irratavle stomach cramps emotional leg cramps I have tried tapeting off them but I always give in I feel like me on them and without I feel awful I never knew how addictivr they were and I am so ashamed to tell anyone and to afraid to go cold turkey
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    • Posted

      Samantha I do feel so sorry for you. We feel ashamed for becoming addicted to codeine but it's time doctors took responsibility. They are the ones who sign the prescriptions without a thought. I think they do it in their sleep, not checking as to how many we are taking. It could be that they are just too busy to keep checking or it's easier to keep us quiet and reduces appointments!
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    • Posted

      I completely agree I was put on them besrly four yeard ago have never had a review or to check I still need them or are suitable for me and im stupid cause I have a fear of going and saying im addicted incase they take me away from them.i feel so ashamed I have a young daughter and when I was pregnant never touched a obe the minute I gave borth I took 6 and was back to square one I want to get cleab because im not even gettig th "high" I used to I take them to feel relatively normal. Im a full time carer aswell as a single mum and I really cant go cold turkey I have to many responsibilitys but then I wonder if im just making an excuse. Iv tried and failed many times I just wonder how many unsuspecting people have fallennin this trap
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    • Posted

      Hi Samantha. Just read your message. We're not alone. There are thousands and thousands of people addicted to codeine in the uk alone. I can't believe I've had co codomol 30/500mg prescribed at 224 every 4 weeks for 9 years. Yes it helped my severe pain at first. After a couple of years my body became tolerant to them so I introduced the ibuprofen and codeine. I never exceed 8 co codomol but have recently found I need more and more ibuprofen and codeine to control the pain and to get that addicts high. I feel like I'm taking a legal kind of heroin! Totally ashamed of my secret, i do partly blame the Drs and online pharmacies though. I order my ibuprofen and codeine from 18 different online pharmacies. My co codomol 30/500 I get every six weeks when I go to see the Dr (3xpost dated prescriptions) that's 672 co codomol tablets every 6weeks. When I wake I have cold sweats and feel like I am going to pass out then go extremely hot from head to toe. I take my first fix of the day as soon as I wake 2 co codomol 30/500 and 4 ibuprofen and codeine 12.8mg. I actually chew them all to get an instant fix as I feel so ill. I leave the bed folded back as I get such horrid night sweats and the sheets are soaked. The Drs so I've read on other forums are often understanding and legally can't let you go cold turkey as that itself is dangerous and can evoke fits. My appointment is booked with my GP for the end of the month. All I need is the courage to tell him about my dirty secret. I can't go on like this with my addiction to codeine. I really am an addict and I was told that at a narcotics anonymous meeting I went to! 
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    • Posted

      I hope you find the courage to tell the dr and strength to fight it. It basically is heroin an opiate  it turns into morphine which is a form of heroin I think. I think going to the drs is the best option tbh o would just find it very difficult to stop buying the otc codeine to get some sort of "high" and that is where we need willpower  its all well and good tapering off and drs cutting them down slowly but not if im goin to buy more ibuprofen codeine. and yes we are addicts I convinced myself I wasnt because it is legal and a dr give it me but I know I am deep down. Its to the point where im lookibg up cwe to cut out the paracetamol and get the instant high. Or look online for codeibe linctus then the next day im looking at things to help withdrawal synptoms. I never thought id ever be an addict iv never tried drugs and here I am in a rut totally dependant on this its so degrading 
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    • Posted

      The night sweats and cold sweats are awful I stopped cold turkey when I was pregnant and I had diarrhoea, stomach cramps, leg cramps constant sweating nightsweats night tremors restless leg sydrome being sick insomnia and when I did sleep id have night tremors migraines anxiety and very iirratble
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    • Posted

      Hi Samantha. I had terrible night sweats last night. The bed was soaked. All in the washing machine. I must get withdrawal while I sleep! Had dreadful nightmares too. I'm totally ashamed of this addiction especially as I used to be a health professional! It's ruined my career and it now controls every aspect of my life. I need more info on tapering off. It's soooooo difficult.
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    • Posted

      There are alot of websites to help you I tried startong on my regular dose for a week and cutting a tablet every week when I got to four tablets and thought I was doing well I ran out panicked and brought some. There are also a few otc medicines ti help with some of the withdrawel symptoms im the same at night I read they dont start til after 24hours what aload of bs mine start if I havent took any for 3/4 hours I think they mean the other symptoms. I have 4 30s wheb I wake and 2 hours later have 5 ibuprofen which has the same codeine as 2 30s. If I dont have the four in the morning I am very iratible . Lately I dont feel like doing much without the "high" the thought of going towb or any simple task terrifies me unless iv had my fix. It so shameful and I completely understand how you are feeling I think you are doing really well to stick to the 8 500/30s . There should be alot more warnings about codine and it shouldnt be so easily accessible
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    • Posted

      I just got my post dated prescription. 112 cocodomol 30's. Was so excited as I'd run out and taking 2 solpadeine max and 5 ibuprofen and codeine 12.8. I've managed to accumulate 5 boxes of ibuprofen and codeine 12.8s from various online chemists. That should do me for a week. It's costing a fortune though. It's really out of control. I just can't function without them. Next dose 2x 30 mg cocodomol and 3 ibuprofen and codeine 10.30! I'm like a kid with them, getting all excited about my next fix. It's so disgraceful  
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    • Posted

      Hello Latchy. What do you mean by a post dated prescription? Not being funny. Just wondered. I'm like you counting the hours then minutes until my next dose but I try and stick to 8 in 24 hours. Doesn't always work though. I take just the codeine not co codamol.
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    • Posted

      Because I don't any longer go to my Drs every two weeks anymore he gives me 3 prescriptions to last 6weeks. Each one dated for two weeks later as I'm on 5x5mg diazepam as well. He monitors those but not the codeine! Hope that makes sense Matron
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    • Posted

      Yes it does Latchy. Thanks for that. I get 112 codeine every 4 weeks but request online to my GP surgery. It's just so easy to get them
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    • Posted

      I think your actually doing really well it may not feel like it but trying to stick to your dose or going slightly over it is actually really good im not saying its any easier to come off them but shows you have the will power x
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    • Posted

      I know its just awful. I cant remember a who I was without them anymore but I know without them now om someone I dont want to be if I could just force myself through the withdrawels I would but its so easy to pick up a pill and make them go away iv heard alot of people get put on another drug for the withdrawals but then get addicted to them 
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    • Posted

      I know patients who've detoxed successfully but they still have to be strong as they do get withdrawal symptoms but they are managed by professionals who do their utmost to get you through it as painlessly as possible. The last thing they want is for you to give up. It's definitely worth a try.
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    • Posted

      Yrah u need to be strong and also ideally not have anything major to do the thought of working ehilst withdrawing or goin to a fanily even illt is quite daunting
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    • Posted

      Oh well I've been awake 24 hours now, just couldn't sleep. I've been good. Only had my cocodomol 30/500 every 4 hours. However I'm on pretty strong tranquillisers for a couple of days for my back pain. Hope I can continue like this for a few days and try and get into a routine. Frightened though when the tranquillisers run out tomorrow!
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    • Posted

      hi before i got given codeine phosphate my doctor told me that they were very addictive i told him that due to my accident that i had years ago i was put on df118 which is very addictive  pain killers but now i only take codeine phoshate  when i really need to meaning if am in alot of pain with my hips and legs and i can,t sleep thats when i take them yes any tablet in any form is addictive . you really do need to go and see your gp  he or she can then decide on what s the best way to go for you good luck trake care 
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