Took some codiene after 3 weeks off

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I was doing so well but in the last 5 days i was feeling so low and depressed. I was doing 30 dhc daily and just stopped and have taken some time off work.

I already take citalopram and amitriptyline for depression and headaches/sleep.

I had 6 yesterday as had had enough of feeling low.

My gp doesnt know and i cant/wont access help through him for a number of reasons.

Im in recovery from alcohol and heroine, although i obviously feel ive relapsed with getting hooked on dhc.

My head is wrecked and dont know what to do.

Should i try and maintain 6 a day for while as im guessing i should of tapered to lessen the effects.

My girlfriend kniws so i can at least speak to someone.

I dont want to go back to square 1 but dont fancy the low i had without nothing in my system.

Help please as really dont know what to do for the best.

I thought it would be easy.

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7 Replies

  • Posted

    Hi john 

          As a ex methadone addict i can sort of understand your situation ....and as you know opiate addiction and recovery is no walk in the park .... however i went through sheer hell for 6 months after kicking methadone 

          alot of the problems with opiate recovery are not physical ... you have done that part,however its the mental side which affects you and this can include .. depression,resentment,hostility and paranoia .....

          but taking more opiates to aleviate the feelings may work but it simply extends the final recovery ... granted its not easy but apart from a benzodiazepam such as valium theres no real releif to these feelings 

          are you in recovery from heroin and alcohol at the same time ? ... if so then this shouldnt of been allowed ... ive been through DT,s and a librium detox from alcohol ( mainly white cider ) on several occasions and combined with opiate recovery this would be,well to put it simply "not nice"

           what alot of drug and alcohol workers dont realise is how opiates and alcohol "really" affect the brain and body ... they are in the business ( which essentially they are ) to give you medication for your specific addiction and then ( as fast as they can ) discharge you from their service .... support is given but not as indepth as it should be ....

             have you been offered methadone for your heroin addiction ... allthough ive quit this ( as i never took heroin and got the methadone on the street and was only ever scripted near the end ( at around 15ml)  i would still see it as a worthwhile medication and i know guys who are on it for life with no problems ... it can be a lifesaver for some 

             if i was your gp/doctor i would stabalize you on the 6 x dhc your currently taking ensuring you were not feeling any side effects of withdrawal symptoms then reduce you by half of one tablet per month ... this is slow but ensures your brain and body has time to adjust each month .... it would take a year to come off 6 x tabs but the reduction would be allmost painless and in combination with support and counselling you would feel a hell of a lot better after that year 

            however thats just me... you could even reduce by half a tab every 2 weeks reducing the overall recovery to 6 months .....and if the reduction is too fast you simply increase to the month reduction ( as above ) or even every 3 weeks 

            in summary recovery isnt impossible but its also not easy ... your brain has used opiates as a "cushion" for many years in some cases and when this "cushion" is removed the brain is sent into overdrive and the world looks and feels a more stressful place .... simple little problems that meant nothing when on opiates will now feel like the end of the world ....it can be very scary even for the hardest and toughest of people 

            my advice is seek help from the local drug service ( google "FRANK" for your local service ) but dont let them tell you how its gonna happen ... its you doing a recovery so its you that should have the most input into the recovery 

            i wish you all the best in what you do .... but please keep posting so i can see your progress 

                  best wishes mate 

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    • Posted

      Hey thanks Brian.

      Ive been in recovery for 13 years.   Had lots of trouble with my teeth last year and got a taste for pain killers.  Im so gutted and feel low.

      I swapped addiction back in the day from H to alcohol and detoxed from alcohol only when i stopped everything.  

      I think a slow taper may be required and feel i havent given this withdrawal enough respect as the lkw feeling was getting unbearable.

      Im just gutted about thinking of being physically dependant again and having to go back to work being essentially no different

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    • Posted

      I must agree with Brian, he knows what he is talking about : )

      Do a slow taper of no more than 10% every couple of weeks or a month. You won't have the severe depression, anxiety, etc., that come with withdrawal if you do it that way. You will be able to go back to work, but by tapering slowly it should not affect your performance. 

      I am glad you have support from your girlfriend. Support is important, and relapse is normal. Don't kick yourself because of it. 

      If you were able to kick heroin and alcohol you can kick codeine, I promise. But slow and easy may be the best way to improve your life and function. If you have the will, taking half a tab away each month should be no problem at all!  

      Take care of yourself, eat well, go for long walks, talk to people... I have suffered from depression, and it can be worse than addiction; but withdrawal will instigate it, even in those who have never suffered before. This makes it hard, because all of a sudden one can find themselves out of control of their emotions. So, do it slowly, it will help, and not make you any less successful in the challenge if it takes a bit longer. You are not going back to work "no different", you are going back to work having made a decision and a plan to stop using. 

      Good luck John. 

       

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  • Posted

    Hey,

    just an update.

    I ended up using more and more DHC over 10 days and went up to 14 pills.  I was making excuses up about why I was taking more than i needed and decided to stop again.

    I went cold turkey again the 1st day.  The second day and today my third I have taken 3 each day.

    Im just starting to feel rough this afternoon and was the same as yesterday.

    I am hoping that my tolerence will come down and I start to feel better using just 3 each day?

    I have some Quetiapine and are using them along with my  Amitriptyline to sleep.

    My hope is that i can stay on 3 in the morning and become stronger as the weeks go by and start to reduce from 3 to zero. 

    I had an awful night last night and braved a shower, i started to shiver that much I thought I was going to fit.

    I havent felt to bad today and Im hoping that the 10 days using wont be as bad as coming off last time.

    I have started self help groups and im using my Councillor and if in 3 weeks I dont feel better with my depression my GP is considering a meds swap.  he doesnt know about my codeine and Im not confident telling him as its too close to home on a number of levels.

    Im aware that codeine causes depression and im questioning my medication being swapped.   

    I still feel it will be or have the possibilities of being an improvement as I havent been happy for years on citalopram, he is thinking of Mirtazapine and says its more of a seditive which sounds better for me at the moment. 

    I know im being risky with the combination of pills im using but just need a break to carry on with my recovery and get back on track.  

    I appreciate your help

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    • Posted

      Quick update

      The last 2 days ive felt absolutely rubbish.

      I have uo the dose to 5 and still feel low.

      I just seem to be clutching at straws and nothing is helping this horrible addiction to dhc.

      Im sick of feeling physically unwell.

      I feel trapped in limbo land and if it wasnt for my son i would be fully relapsed.

      Why cant i feel stable on a set amount each day?

      Having a night with just my amitriptyline tonight.

      Ive had enough

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