Hi All. New Here. 5 Days Into Sobriety...
Posted: January 30, 2017, 4:36 PM


Posts: 2
Joined: January 30, 2017



So I came to a family gathering five days ago and walked into an intervention. I haven't left my mom's since. I touched out the acute withdrawals with kava kava, chamomile, valerian root, unisom, and immodium. Those have passed. Haven't taken any vitamins or OTC meds in two days now. I'm feeling pretty good. Feeling the fog lifting. Singing and really breathing good for the first time in years. I just really don't have anyone around me that's ever been through anything like this so I thought this forum might be helpful. So yes. That's me.
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Posted: January 30, 2017, 4:48 PM


Posts: 2616
Joined: January 4, 2008



Welcome sing....congrats on getting some clean time...you have anything planned like NA or AA or IOP? Detox is the easy part...it's staying off that gets hard....glad your feeling well...

Con
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Posted: January 30, 2017, 5:46 PM


Posts: 2
Joined: January 30, 2017



It's so weird because the whole time I was addicted (I used heroin for about 17 months) I was horrified of withdrawals and detox. So I'll admit it's disappointing to hear that it gets harder than that. But I was miserable and feeling so stuck. There's no doubt that I miss the feeling, but everything that I couldn't feel for so long is feeling so good. I can sing again!! I had a terrible cough for the last 5 months and it left me within literally ONE day sober. It feels absolutely worth it right now. My family is very conservative and inexperienced with addiction so coming clean to them was extremely difficult. But I did it. It sounds like a really bad idea to undo all that right now. I'm going to start NA this week. My dad is talking to some guy about where.
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JonnyRock
Posted: January 30, 2017, 9:22 PM







I hate to say it but constantine is right. If you don't find something to focus on staying clean is very hard. I'm not far into cleaning up again as well. Every time I get clean I start to get bored and unfulfilled at some dead end job and before long I start using again. Community is VERY important. Personally I can't stay clean if I can't find fulfillment in my day to day life. I filled a hole in my soul with drugs and killed my boredom. I'm getting back in school this time around and I'm hoping that will be the help I need. I plan to get a career that will be something I love more than drugs. I also understand the conservative family thing. My family loves me to death and thank god they do but they just don't understand the struggle. That can be hard but lots of people out there do. Surround yourself with those people. Be ware though. There can be people in NA and AA that will relapse and are all to happy to drag others down with them. Stick to the ones with lots of clean time. Also stay out of relationships. That's a hard one for me but it never leads to good places. I'd wait till at least a year of clean time to even think about relationships. There are guys in rehab looking for an easy score. Hate to say it but it's true. Don'e let me scare you off though. There are many good folks there too. I hope you can keep it together. There tends to be a low period after the high of getting clean for me. It's a killer. I had to have my dad hide my car keys from me. I'm talking not in the house because I will find them if they are in the house. Good luck to you and your family. Don't repeat the cycle like me. It gets harder every time. Plus relapse is the most common time to over dose. Don't make your parents bury their baby. Be strong. Sobriety is so much better in the long run.
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Zachman51
Posted: February 6, 2017, 5:34 AM







Hello sing!

Congrats on getting started. Now, first things first.. find a clinical psychologist immediately and seek treatment with some sort of suboxone doctor. This is going to be a process of ups and downs, so be prepared for a learning process. At least a year on mananged meds. But clinical treatment is necessary. NA/AA is really a terrible idea. This isn't a moralistic illness that can be remedied with will power. This is quite literally a change in the neuro chemistry of your brain. The 12 step program, while noble in concept, quite honestly can be more detrimental to the patient's pathology due to many mistakes in the terminology, application of "treatment", and overall ignorance. Again, I'm not saying these people are "bad" in any way. But you wouldn't go to a friend or pastor if you had a broken arm, you'd go to a doctor to help find a clinical solution. People recovering need to realize that this illness should be treated with the same respect (actually exponentially more respect considering the complexity of recovery).

Now, once you have a plan set in place for a psychologist and doctor, start by making a ridged plan for yourself for positive daily "reconditioning". Some people already alluded to seeking a greater purpose for your life, that's the way to succeed. While extremely true, it's a rather abstract concept right?

So how do you get there? What's the solution? Simply put (and I'll be happy to help anyone as thouroughly as they'd like) a patient has to start by being proactive. Do!!! Structure, organization, and repetition are your friends. Start with something as simple as making your bed everyday and build routines from there. Exercise, exercise, exercise!! I cannot empathize this enough. Addiction changes the structure and functionality of the brain. A patient conditions themselves to seek reward with impulsive behavior, most often drug use. Exercising is the most healthy way to naturally release dopamine and serotonin. Cardiovascular (running, biking, anything to sustain increased heart rate for at least 30 minutes) exercise is essential. Don't start this tomorrow, start today and do it daily. This is your new best friend.

Make a daily plan. Before you go to bed, plan your next day completely. Start simple at first to not get overwhelmed. But slowly build tasks as the weeks turn. Even if it's time set aside to read,or watch tv (not too much as boredom is no good) write it down and follow it. Take control back! You are the author. Now, with that said, there will be times when you think about using. This is ok, it's natural as the patient conditioned use as a positive reward. Combat this methodically. In order to do this, write down a planned alternative response (PAR). Use as many pars as possible in those times of need. A good example might be calling a friend, taking a walk, playing an instrument etc.. whatever it takes to get you out of that headspace and back to task oriented thought processes. Do it! And have a plan in place beforehand. If you choose talking, focus conversation in anything but the drug and don't let go until it's managed. Activity is normally better than talking anyway, but some can do it.... just remember plan healthy alternatives. Plan, plan, plan.

This should be enough to get you started :) it probably already seems like a lot. But it's going to be ok. Just remember it's ok to embrace that this is a process. These things will take time. But if you're proactive and exercising immediately, you're on your way to health. Keep that momentum rolling. And if anything doesn't make sense, or you ever need any words I'll check back in.

Zach
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Posted: February 6, 2017, 5:51 AM


Posts: 2616
Joined: January 4, 2008



Dude...so....thanks for your input...but...this is your opinion...pls don't tell people what they GOT to do...or what is or isn't ...recovery is different for everyone. ..thanks
Con
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Posted: February 6, 2017, 4:56 PM


Posts: 15
Joined: December 3, 2016



I wouldn't suggest that anyone start Soboxone or Subutex unless THEY feel that they need it. IMO it's another drug to withdraw from eventually. If needed it can be a lifesaver, but if not needed, I wouldn't start. JMO
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Zachman51
Posted: February 7, 2017, 3:13 AM







A person with pathology related to opiate abuse is statistically probable to continue use if they don't seek clinical treatment. Suboxone is not a fix it drug. However, it does help when working with effective strategies to recondition the brain. This will take some time though, unfortunately, as memory and reward systems work against the patient's healthiest cognitive options for some time. See, the drug leaving the system and clearing physiological withdrawal is the easy part, like Con said. But the reason why it's so difficult to stay clean is the cognitive processes, executive function, and reward systems that regulate emotional response have all been severely altered with habitual abuse. That's why it's my opinion that we treat this as a medical issue with clinical professional help. In a harm reduction model(which is used with administration of management meds), a patient is statistically more likely to avoid a mess of troubles.

These are the facts. My opinion is based on empirical data and logic. Please help others by informing yourselves on this illness and then coming to a conclusion void of emotion. If you still want to disagree, that's your right. But I implore you to look deeper into this than what you've heard at a 28 day rehab or 12 step program. Some relative reading will be 1. Hebb's Law, 2. sensitized incentive salience, and 3. properties of the limbic system. These are a few resources that might allow you to understand why suboxone is a good idea while other methods of treatment (positive conditioning, CBT therapy, self empowerment, structure skill sets) are applied simultaneously. But it takes time and work to really combat it. Read the sources and hopefully you'll see why.

People with addictions can manage their illness extremely well with the right tools. And I'm really not trying to use information as an argumentative tool to "win" some online battle. I want this information to help win someone's life. I care very much about spreading informed awareness. This is the best available strategy in modern medicine currently.

Zach
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Posted: February 7, 2017, 4:07 AM


Posts: 2616
Joined: January 4, 2008



Ok...thxs...as for me...self knowledge doesn't do a damn thing..never did..methadone was the only thing that ever kept me clean. ..9 years of it...and as soon as I got off. .I used..subs are in essence. .the same ..but to each their own

This post has been edited by constantine on February 7, 2017, 4:10 AM
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Posted: February 7, 2017, 1:18 PM


Posts: 529
Joined: October 15, 2016



true on is right about that Methadone is the only thing kept me clean last 2 years and yes while on methadone i consider my self clean :)
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Posted: February 7, 2017, 2:20 PM


Posts: 243
Joined: August 18, 2016



Methadone is what has kept me clean for over three years. While it isn't a magic bullet, it allowed me to have relief from the constant craving, the awful obsession about using, and it gave me space in my head to begin to think about other things than drugs.

While I know people's opinion's on medication assisted treatment vary, I think we can all agree that for a huge portion of addicts an abstinence only, 12 step model was not enough to keep them clean. Many have found relief with medication and I wish more people would be open to their use. After all, we would be horrified if we treated bi-polar disorder or ADHD (which are both brain based illnessses with huge behavioral components, much like addiction) the way we have treated addiction. If we told people with these other illnesses to abandon medication and professional therapy for a peer=based 12 step program, we would be horrified.

Hopefully, we will come to a point where people are less ashamed to use medication. As Con said, it was the only thing that kept her clean. It has been that way for me too. I do not doubt that 12 step groups benefit many, but I do think they should be put in the proper perspective. They were never meant to be the only "treatment". They were designed to be a peer-based support group to help eachother stay sober/clean...and peer support is very important. While it can be found in 12 step programs, for people who do not care for them, there are many other, non 12 step alternatives that are becoming more popular as people are starting to realize that a one size fits all model of recovery is not effective.

What Con said about the getting clean being easy is totally true. A lot of us experience a "pink cloud" when we first get clean. Unfortunately, most of us experience post acute withdrawal syndrome (PAWS), which is the nasty cluster of symptoms like intense cravings, lethargy, soul-crushing depression, anxiety, inability to sleep etc. which can last well over a year. I believe it is this syndrome that leads most of us back to using. Anyone can survive a 5 day rattle, but my god, when symptoms drag out for months and months, it can become unbearable! I think this is where medication (in my case, methadone) is the most helpful. I can do much more work on myself and my life if I do not always feel like I am trudging in uphill in cement!

All that said, not everyone in recovery wants to use medication. That is their right and I for one am nor going to tell them that my way is the right way. It is the right way for me, but to another person it may be the wrong thing. Unfortunately, we each have to find out what works for us. I do hope that eventually the stigma against medication assisted treatment will stop. Until then, I will continue to do what I am doing and be grateful for my medication that allows me to be comfortable while changing my life for the better.
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Posted: February 8, 2017, 7:45 AM


Posts: 529
Joined: October 15, 2016



every time i stopped i had period of extra happiness as I call , super active behavior ,I would be everywhere doing all kind of things from going to kitchen just to make cup of tea but ending up cleaning fridge thoughtfully or going out and hopping down the road while listening music on headphones .. great feeling but it didnt last for long maybe first 3 months then i would go in opposite direction feeling depressed without much will to go out or do anything , i would have to literally push myself every morning to have shower ,make up etc and go to work ,Thanks God for medication is all I can say..i tried to run on dry but i would always go back to H! So just over 2 years ago when we had enough finally not only I got methadone but Trazodone too (i use those as sleeping pills but its antidepressant) I am trying to tell you dont be ashamed to see your doctor and ask for help if you feel like its not going well for you ..pls
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