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Hello everyone.

I am a recovering opiate addict.

I'll tell my story of using.

I started when I was 13-14 and it ended about 9 months ago when I got onto suboxone and got my life back. (I realize suboxone is not a cure, I am currently tapering off of it.)

I started using Vicodin a few times a week and by the time of my 15tg birthday I was using heavily and daily. I had become addicted. My father and grandmother are also opiate addicts and they would provide me with the opiates whenever I needed them.

When I was 16 I got pregnant and I was able to taper down and get onto Tramadol, a synthetic opiated, and quit. I didn't want my baby to be born addicted. But during childbirth I was given a very strong opiate and I relapsed.

I used every day since then until the suboxone. I was using fentanyl patches. I would buy 3 100mcg/hr patches a day. I would be wearing one at all times, changing to a fresh one daily. I would immediately chew up the old patch, since there is still quite a bit of fentanyl in the patch after you take it off. Especially since its supposed to be work for 3 days and I only wore them for one.

After putting on my new patch, I had 2 other new patches, I would cut them into pieces and "cheek" them throughout the day. Basically you stick it to the inside of your cheek.. After a while I'd just chew them up.

Now if you don't understand how strong these fentanyl patches are them I'll explain a bit about them. Fentanyl is 100 times more potent than morphine. So 100mcg (thets MICROgrams) of fentanyl is equal to 10mg of morphine. And these patches are designed to deliver 100mcg per hour into your system. And I was getting that plus whatever the ammount was in the pieces I'd chew throughout the day.

I tried to quit cold turkey. That didn't go well. I swear it was worse than the heroin withdrawals I had been through before were! Fentanyl withdrawals are just obnoxious! Lol.

I went to a detox facility that used suboxone. I stayed and was on suboxone for five days. I began to withdrawal from the suboxone 4-5 days after my last dose and I was miserable. So I relapsed.

I found a suboxone doctor and got on a maintainence dose. I've since been tapering. I started off at 24mg/day about 9 months ago and am currently at 4mg/day.

I know that the suboxone won't cure me. So I am going to see a therapist. I am doing the things I need to and learning the things I need to in order to stay sober after I get off of the suboxone.

My plan is to do a long and slow taper and taper down to .5mg or less. Then quit. My doctor will prescribe me comfort meds when it is time to quit the suboxone so the mild withdrawals that I will have won't bother me.

I don't really have a question. Just wanted to share my story.

Feel free to share your opini

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Welcome!  I was on suboxone in the past and I am personally SO glad you are down to 4 mgs.  In my opinion, people are often prescribed a higher dose than is necessary, and it is great that you were able to get down to 4mgs over nine months.      Your plan to taper slowly is a good one.  

 

I think as doctors get more and more familiar with suboxone (I believe it has only been used in the USA since about 2000) the dosages may be lowered. Of course, everyone is different, but that should make it easier to get off at the end.  Glad you're doing therapy; it is an important part.  

 

 

Just wanted to say congrats on getting off the fentanyl.  You've made a really choice to get sober.  It's hard but SO worth it.   

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FlamelessCandle,

Thank you for your response.

It was a very big change in my life. And I am very happy that I made that choice.

It was not easy transitioning (or inducting as the sub doctors say) from fentanyl to suboxone. I was started off at 16mg/day if suboxone, but still had withdrawals and cravings. So my doctor upped the dose to 24mg/day.

I started out dropping 1mg/3days until I found my lowest comfortable dose. Which was 8mg. I then did a much slower taper from 8mg to 4mg only dropping 1mg every couple weeks or so. And when I get down to 1mg I plan to cut that in half before quitting.

Thank you!!

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I understand that fentanyl is a very very strong drug, so I see more clearly how you had to start off at a high dose.  Anyway, the best of luck to you.   

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FlamelessCandle,

Yes fentanyl is a very strong drug.

When I started suboxone I was initially put on 16mg. I stayed at that dose for a couple of weeks long enough to "stabilize" because my doctor told me I needed to before he'd change my dose. But at 16mg I was still having horrible withdrawals.

Finally after 3 weeks of suffering my doctor upped my dose to 24mg and my withdrawals and cravings had dropped to nothing!

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