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Hello, new member. Long-term opiods chronic pain patient self tapering

Bookbag

Greenlighter
Joined
Apr 19, 2019
Messages
39
New member, old lurker. Have been meaning to introduce myself but life has been busy under covid19 lockdown.

I'm a long term chronic pain patient. Car accident in my 20s had me put on oxycodone back when opiods weren't considered an issue. Insomniac too on various valium scripts from time to time.

Forced to withdraw from opiods when I moved to a country where very strict rules around drugs (death pentalty) exist. Even people dying can't get access to pain meds :(

Went for five years on no pain meds and lived with the pain but I was in a tropical climate which helped. Drank too much though and the booze was very much moonshine like. Not great but got u drunk

Fast forward, go back to my home country and am injured again and put on opiods again. Return to the tropical country with my new family when my kid was one years old, and tramadol is the only pain med on offer. It was Prescribed to me by a very kind orthopedic surgeon. Tramadol helped me get my body moving again. Physical rehab, physio, and daily walks so me slowly heal.

I've now been on tramadol (again) for four years but am back in my home country which has a more developed health system. They put me on Lyrica which messed with my brain. I tapered off very high doses of that and it was the worst. It took so much willpower to do it. They put me on gabapentin. I tapered that and quit it just as of two weeks ago

I've been tapering from tramdol now on and off for two years. I stopped and started previous tapers coz of life and just resignation in thinking I'd be on it for life. This site taught me otherwise so thank you!!!

I was on a 400(-50)mg dose and self tapered. After many stops and re starts I decided to bite the bullet and taper while in lockdown due to Covid19.

I went from 400 late last year to 300 to 250 earlier this year. Now I'm finally into the 100s. My aim was 175 by the end of this month but I'm lower than that.

My injuries have largely healed. I'm still in pain but I'm using Acceptance and Comittment techniques to cope.

I'm still on a prescribed dose of 20mg oxycodone per day SR. I've self tapered from that this month and am now down to around 14mg a day.

As of today I'm on my lowest tramadol dose in four years. Today I've had 105mg. No gabapentin. I've taken a small dose on valium to get me through and remained stable in the oxycodone dose of 14 mg (7mg twice daily). Haven't taken second dose yet maybe I'll even try 5mg

I aim to be off tramadol. For good. Then deal with oxycodone with another taper. At least with oxy I will only be dealing with an opiod withdrawal over an SNRI withdrawal.

Overall, I've been on a bunch of various opiods for 15 years with a five year forced break after living overseas where you literally cannot get them.

There's a thin precipice between addiction, dependence, pain, mental health, and suffering. At times I wonder how much my pain meds were masking the emotional pain of being chronically in pain all the time? I do have trauma in my past, violence, and am recovering from hypervigilance. Im still learning about myself and the lack of coping strategies I had.

Sorry if this is rushed. Just wanted to introduce myself
 
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Psycho_Logic

Bluelighter
Joined
Jul 20, 2020
Messages
95
Location
Trying to find my self but unable so far.
Hi Bookbag!

Welcome to the forum. I feel your pain. Physical and emotional pain are very much connected and it sure felt good when I used opioids cause they took away the emotional pain also. I went through tramadol withdrawal myself and even though it was just 6 months of use It was not a pleasant experience. Those SNRI effects really get you. But in my case I was over the worse in 5-7 days and did not taper properly. Seems that you are doing really well and are turning this covid lockdown mess into something very productive. Props for that, you are doing a great job. :)

Once again welcome to bluelight!
 

madness00

Sr. Moderator: NMI, MH, CD, SLR
Staff member
Joined
Aug 8, 2018
Messages
10,962
Location
New England
What's up @Bookbag - hows it going?

There's a thin precipice between addiction, dependence, pain, mental health, and suffering. At times I wonder how much my pain meds were masking the emotional pain of being chronically in pain all the time? I do have trauma in my past, violence, and am recovering from hypervigilance. Im still learning about myself and the lack of coping strategies I had.
I think the pain meds could have been masking emotional pain, too. When you taper off do you experience heightened emotions?

We are all still learning about ourselves and adapting our coping strategies as we change.

Bluelighters are by and large available to talk to so don't hesitate in reaching out in whichever manner.

Peace, and welcome to Bluelight!

Oh, and as Psycho_Logic said, really great that you've been able to taper and make it this far through COVID.

Best to you.
 

Bookbag

Greenlighter
Joined
Apr 19, 2019
Messages
39
Hi Bookbag!

Welcome to the forum. I feel your pain. Physical and emotional pain are very much connected and it sure felt good when I used opioids cause they took away the emotional pain also. I went through tramadol withdrawal myself and even though it was just 6 months of use It was not a pleasant experience. Those SNRI effects really get you. But in my case I was over the worse in 5-7 days and did not taper properly. Seems that you are doing really well and are turning this covid lockdown mess into something very productive. Props for that, you are doing a great job. :)

Once again welcome to bluelight!
Hello thanks for your reply. I really appreciate it. It's not been easy but feel I may as well give it a go. Am surprised it's happening and that I've come this far. Last night I only ended up taking 2mg oxycodone after all. The slow tapering seems to get better and easier the lower I get

I recognized this link last year between physical and emotional pain. While my physical pain sure was real I can't deny it had accompanying mental pain just at having to modify so many aspects of my life and to have everyday activity hurt, hurts emotionally too. Tramadols anti depressant like qualities I do wonder I they masked some of that pain. That's said, I'm feeling happier and less moody the lower my doses get I basically feel much more balanced
 

Bookbag

Greenlighter
Joined
Apr 19, 2019
Messages
39
What's up @Bookbag - hows it going?



Hello. Thank you for your reply. Yes I do think the pain meds could have been masking emotional pain, too to a degree. When you taper off do you experience heightened emotions?

We are all still learning about ourselves and adapting our coping strategies as we change.

Bluelighters are by and large available to talk to so don't hesitate in reaching out in whichever manner.

Peace, and welcome to Bluelight!

Oh, and as Psycho_Logic said, really great that you've been able to taper and make it this far through COVID.

Best to you.
Yeah I've learned that the pain of being in pain all the time manifests emotionally especially some thinking like oh what if u didn't have these conditions how would my life be, all that crap. Then I'd get trapped in toxic positivity which did nothing for me. Acceptance and Comittment techniques have been a huge help to me. I use it for mental as well as emotional pain. And when I'm upset about a pain flare I use the same techniques rather than hope a pain med will make the physical (and accompanying) mental pain go away.

Re heightened emotions, I'm actually finding that my mood has improved a lot the lower my taper gets and that I have far less ups and downs. I'm waking without being in some kind of withdrawal too so I can get up, make breakfast and chill before taking a dose. I feel finally like I might be on the right track.

I didn't think I could do it, tapering tramadol. I thought I'd be stuck on meds for life. But it really is happening now. I hope I can keep today's dose just as low. I'm not going to push for a further drop just today though as I dropped about 50mg in the past 2-3 days. I'll try remain stable at this dose a day or so.

Oxy SR, I only took 2mg. Which is 1/5 of my usual nightly dose I reserve for possible tramadol withdrawal and for the pain I get through the night. Daily exercise seems to really be an important factor here too
 

Bookbag

Greenlighter
Joined
Apr 19, 2019
Messages
39
I don't know much of anything useful but you sound to me like you are doing great. Cheering for you! 🙂
Thanks so much I really appreciate it. Well today is still going well. Still on 105mg today by the evening. Valium had helped. Leaving it stable at 105 for a few days and then I'll see how I go from here. Oxy down to 12mg all day too so far. It's finally happening
 
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