Today is the day

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So I've finally had enough, I've been taking co-codamol for almost 10 years now. In what ever form I can get hold of, over the counter or on prescription. I'm so sick of this addiction ruling my life, having to go all around the area to different pharmacies and worrying when I don't have many pills left. I have to stop this and I have to do it now. I've just thrown my last pills in the bin and now worrying if that's a mistake, if I should be cutting down rather than cold turkey?? I was taking 4 at once and usually taking around 20-30 pills per day.

Anyone any experience of cold turkey, what should I expect. I've managed to keep this a secret from friends and family so I have no one to consult

Thank you

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15 Replies

  • Posted

    Hi claire

    I myself went cold turkey and started end of october last year and havent looked back. It was the best way for me but obviously not for everyone.

    Its determination and motivation that is the key to beating this and if you have it then you can do it. Whether its cold turkey or weaning off.

    Keep us updated to let you know how you get on

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  • Posted

    Hi. I'm going cold turkey at the min one weeks now it's hard I can't say

    it's not you get aches and pain in your body I have flu like symptoms

    at the Min and when I get up in the morning for work I just feel I could

    get back in and stay their all day

    you always think of getting some more tablets but try and

    stick to it I do take a couple of anadin

    For the headache I'm only a week in I'm giving it a good go try it or try

    And cut back I did not get my prescription of 30.500

    I got them over the counter low dose for one week then cold turkey I'm

    Not kidding I feel like rubbish but it's got to pass I'm sure

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  • Posted

    I would play it by ear. Magnesium baths helps with ws from opiates.

    ​You have done really well to be determined to stop this poisonous substance from ruling your life.

     

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  • Posted

    Hi Claire

    Cold turkey is hard especially if you have to work etc. For me it was sweats,shaking, constant trips to the toilet,unclear thinking, aggrevation etc Tge restless kegs and body aches that go along with it are horrendous.

    I found it much easier to taper off, cutting down by one each time I took them.

    The second time I cane off them I was taking N+ as well as panadeine extra. I found by accident by switching to Panadeine Extra alone, I could come off it with no side effects at all.

    I still have to use it from time to time due to a back injury but try to get by on regular panadol. I steer clear of the ibuprofen based products because personally I think it is the issue.

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    • Posted

      Codeine metabolises as morphine in your liver, which is why we get the "high" and supposedly the dependence. I have a broader knowledge of some pharmaceuticals due to my studies and job, I do know my body works differently to alot of people in the way that for eg, Phenergan is supposed to help calm people, for me it has the opposite effect. I have been taking Duramine for 3 months now and it has done nothing.

      I can take or leave everything with codiene in it, except Ibuprofen and codiene products. These are the ones I have issues with. Like I said above I have no side effects when I stop taking Panadeine and codiene, but have all the side effects when I stop N+.

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    • Posted

      Thank you all for your comments, nice to know I'm not alone in this horrible addiction.

      Had a particularly crappy day at work yesterday and found some soluble pills in my locker and just had to have them. But now all my supplies have gone and I'm going to really try to get off them as its taken over my life and I can't have that. Not had any for a good few hours now which is an achievement, head feels like it's going to explode but I've taken some ibuprofen and going for a nice walk with the dog!

      The journey begins xx

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  • Posted

    Hi Claire,

    ?              I am in a similar situation as you are.I started taking co-codamol about 5 to 6 years ago for pain in my feet whilst I was at work.At the start I was taking the prescribed dosage.After a couple of years I had built up a resistance to this so started taking a few more at a time first of all for the pain but then for relaxation.I read on of these forums that codeine can block the endorphins in your brain which can lead to depression.I think this is what happened to me as about a 9 months ago I started to suffer from depression.I was taking 4 to 5 co-codamol at a time as these briefly alievated the feeling of depression.I was then prescribed tablets for this  and eventually in July they seemed to work as the condition lifted although I was still taking co-codamol.I tried to come of it several times but failed once after stopping for a month.My doctor would readily supply them on request so I had no problem getting hold of the 30/500 mg tablets and then if I ran out buying the 8/500 over the counter.Looking online I have come to realize that I am an addict which is something I am truely ashamed of. Anyway 13 days ago I decided to stop taking them.The initial reaction was unpleasant to say the least.I was waking at night soaked in sweat,upset stomach, severe anxiety verging on panic attacks and the obvious craving for codeine.To combat this I have been walking alot and this weekend gardening.I really hope I have beaten this addiction this time as the reactions have decreased the last few days.I am still taking medication for depression but I hope to come off this soon as well.I am 61 years old but was reasonably fit going surfing,cycling,walking,swimming,gym and anything to keep the fitness level up.I don't smoke and only drink alchohol occaisionally and try to eat healthily.As you do I want to get my life back on track.I wish you all the best in your endeavours to quit this and hope sincerely we both succeed. Best Wishes.Tony.

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    • Posted

      Hi tbtbtb

      This is very similar to what I experienced. I was wondering how you are feeling now and if you have recovered from this very nasty harrowing experiece. Thanks.

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    • Posted

      Hi Jane,

      ?            Thanks you for your interest in my problem.It does help that other people are having the same experiences.As regards the co-codamol after nearly 2 weeks of stopping taking them the craving has subsided considerably.I actually have a pack of 32 of the 8/500 tablets which remains unopened.I am taking setraline and mirtazipane for depression and I am thinking that all these tablets are interlinked with one another either blocking or accentuating  the others.At the moment the depression has gone but until I stop the medication I won't know if it is the tablets or I have just got over it which has happened in the past.Have you stopped taking co-codamol recently and if so how have you been feeling?At the moment I am cautiously feeling good about myself as I really think I might have succeeded in stopping this time.Regards,Tony.

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    • Posted

      Hi

      ​No problem. I stopped the codeine and went cold turkey 3 years ago. Then was off it for one year then a GP put me vback on it for osteoporosis. I took one tablet a day then realised that I did not really need it . I stopped it. Then I go sciatica, guess what the new surgery prescribed codeine. I took it very reluctanctly in very small doses and gt a bowl problem necessitating hospital admission , enemas, ct svans, gastroscopy and colonoscopy. The surgeon blamed the codeine for these signs and symptoms. I did not take any. Then four months ago I took half a tablet 15 mgms for sciatica. The next day I felt suicidal so decided that I would never take that muck ever again. The withdrawal from 15 mgms ws terrible but it taught me that even a minute dose of this terrible drug is very detrimental indeed.

      ​I did not even crave this drug that is the irony. Had I done so then I could blame myself instead of drs.

      Persist in keeping off thispoison, it is a treacherous drug and over prescribed.xx

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    • Posted

      Hi Tony, thanks for your reply. It is reassuring that other people have gone through this. I'm starting to stop tomorrow. Three pills per dose instead of 4 and as few doses as I can manage.

      I can honestly say that my addiction hasn't caused me any mental health problems thankfully but I can understand how it could cause depression. You get yourself stuck in a rut, a viscious cycle of feeling crap and taking more to feel better.

      But I will stop this, it's just going to take time. Keep it up, sounds like you are doing great! Xx

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    • Posted

      Hi Claire,

      ​              Thanks for your kind words and support.Your method of gradually tapering off the tablets is probably to be recommended more than my method of just stopping outright as for the first few days it really is hell.You have my best wishes and please let me know how you get on.Regards,Tony.

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    • Posted

      Hi everyone and wow, I could have written your stories, most people have gone through the exact same things, the battle of trying to get off opiates and then when you finally decide enough is enough and either taper down or go CT.

      For those that don't know my story, I was addicted to pain meds in the 90's, went cold turkey for a couple of days, would never do it again, the restless legs and the feeling of not being able to sit or stand still and wanting to scream was horrendous. I eventually got off them and then 10 to 12 years ago found the NP and started taking them.

      August 2015 I ended up with an ulcer that grew over the gastric outlet, (the doctors didn't know at that point and I had to wait to see the specialist which was in February last year), no food was getting through and basically my stomach was filling up like a bucket, this went on for months and then ended up in hospital, all up, 6 weeks, after many colonscopies and endoscopies and the surgeon trying to stretch the gastric outlet where the ulcer was, he could only stretch it so far before it started to perforate so they decided to remove half my stomach, had to reattach my bowel with some sort of object.

      On discharge I was still on 3 lots of morphine tablets, eventually got them down to one lot but I got addicted to them. I had NP here (from before the operation)  but didn't touch them for 2 or 3 months. I explained to my doctor that I was addicted to them who then made me see him every 5 days then 7 days to get the prescription (morphine tablets 5 mg's) but I was going through them within a day then within 12 hours so stupidly I started taking the NP again for the days I ran out of the prescription.

      I'm so ashamed and like all of you, sick to death of going to pharmacy after pharmacy, keeping track of how long since I last went to pharmacy and keeping track of pharmacies that ask for ID, drawing money out of the bank, not just for the NP but petrol too.

      Also I have osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis and luckily no longer have that many attacks since taking glucosamine every day of the year for the past 5 or 6 years but did have one last week and no pain killers got rid of the pain.

      The opiates USED to give that lift which helped with the depression but only for a short period of time, then my mood would go so far down.

      I've been in the stage that you mentioned for quite a long time, not wanting to do anything, anxiety, no appetite, weight loss, lost interest in things I used to enjoy, etc.

      I prefer to read your stories of getting off them, the determination you all have. If I keep reading the stories on the people like me who are still taking too many each day I will never get off them because that sort of gives me the "OK", they are still battling with the NP so I'm in the same boat"....So I think it's better I read your stories, stories of success and stories of determination to get rid of this addiction that takes over your life.

      Thanks for listening.

      Sue                                    

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