To visit our meeting/chat room

CLICK HERE!
 

Narcotics Anonymous Group
Message Board

Meeting Schedule

Tuesday & Saturday Night at 9 PM Eastern Time
Saturday Morning at 11 AM Eastern Time

Our chat room is open for general and supportive chat 24/7!

Click sign to enter, and put a nickname in the box above "connect" button so you have a nick we can get to know you by.

Members Login
Username 
 
Password 
    Remember Me  
Post Info TOPIC: Clonidine for withdrawals?


Member

Status: Offline
Posts: 21
Date:
Clonidine for withdrawals?
 


Of course I plan on asking my doctor about this - but you guys are also the ones who have "been there, done that" and are some of the best people to ask about these things!

As most of you already know, I'm an opiate addict (Vicodin).  I've been doing okay on my road to recovery but am still dealing with some bad withdrawal symptoms on certain days.  (I know this is to be expected as I didn't become an addict in one day).

My main symptoms these days are stomach cramping & diarrhea and I've been taking over-the-counter medication for relief when needed.

My other main symptom is feeling rather anxious & "on edge" in general - such as feeling like I'm unable to sit still, nervous, a little shaky & weak, sometimes hot & "feverish," etc. 

I heard/read that Clonidine has been prescribed for relief of opiate/narcotic withdrawals.  I was just curious if anyone knew if this was true and if it really DOES help?  If so, and if it has helped you with withdrawals, I have just a few questions if you don't mind:

1.  How long were you on Clonidine?  (How many days?)  And what was the dose?

2.  How long did it take until the Clonidine began to help with the symptoms?  (Is it something that works fairly immediately or something that you need to take for a certain amount of time in order for it to "get in your system" to be helpful?)

3.  What kind of withdrawals did you have that Clonidine helped?

4.  I've read that Clonidine is mainly for high blood pressure.  Since I've never had a problem with high blood pressure, should I not even consider this as an option?

5.  Finally, is Clonidine addictive or is it something you can just stop taking?  The LAST thing I want to do is replace one addiction with another!

Thanks SO much!!!!!!!

~Kris



__________________


Senior Member

Status: Offline
Posts: 131
Date:
 

Hi Kris.

I am an opiate addict and I was on a clonadine taper in detox.

1. It was a 7 day taper during the most acute withdrawls.
Day 1= 1 tablet
Days 2, 3, 4= 4 tablets
Day 5= 3 tablets
Day 6=2 tablets
Day 7= 1 tablet.

As you can see that it does owrk fairly immediatly but if you have been detoxing already for a few days you might be over the worst of it.

It did not take any wothdrawl symptoms away, but it did make it more comfortable and it kept my blood pressure stable.

It is for high blood pressure and it is reccomended to be under medical supervision while using it. If your blood pressure is too low you could pass out.

Clonadine is not mind altering nor is it addictive. It is meant for the short term for the acute days anyways.

The worst days for detoxing are the first 10. After that there are still symptoms, but it is much easier.
Clonadine did not help at all with the physical pain, or stomache cramps or diarrhea. In detox they handed out imodium and motrin for that.
I am not sure what day you are on, but I was told by the detox nurses that days 3 and 5 were averaged to be the worst.

If you have been detoxing for awhile, you might be better to just stay the course you are on.

You are doing great!
Remember that

__________________
Yes, I bought a ticket on the crazy train.....Good thing it was a return ticket.


Senior Member

Status: Offline
Posts: 170
Date:
 

hi kris, ive taken clonodine at times. my last script was givin to me by a doctor three years ago when my mother died . To help " take the edge off " i was given 30 the day before her funeral. i no longer remember that day or the day of the funeral as i took all 30 in 36 hours. GOOD luck with that.

 Anthony G.

__________________

" If  you have  built  castles  in  the  air , your  work  need  not  be  lost ; that  is  where  they  should  be . Now put  the  foundations  under  them . "

         Henry David  Thoreau



Member

Status: Offline
Posts: 2403
Date:
 

I'm also an opiate addict, and for me, real physical withdrawal as a direct consequence of stopping my using lasted only 4-5 days. Many a times, I've stopped using without any detox medication, and came out of it all feeling better as each day progressed after this initial 4-5 days.

My experience with stopping my using and physical complications in my early recovery has made me realize that these physical problems were not so much because my body was deprived of drugs all of a sudden, that it was not direct withdrawals or cold turks as such, since that effect washes off completely at the end of the first week itself.

My other problems, physically, were more due to my body trying to adapt again to a normal condition and environment after years of abusing it with chemicals and thus making it dysfunctional. I realized I needed to give it time to respond naturally once again, as it does for any person. I did have problems of digestion, acidity, fatigue, sleeplessness etc. for a few weeks or months even, but in due course, my body settled down to a life without drugs, to its normal functioning. It just takes time. But these problems were not withdrawals.

Also, in my early recovery, there were mental and emotional problems, where I mimicked most of the symptoms of so many mental/personality disorders like depression, anxiety, restlessness, attention deficit, obsessive-compulsive behavior, fear, social phobia, boredom etc. With the help of the NA literature and what the other members in NA shared with me, I came to realize that these too shall pass and it does get better. I underwent regular weekly talk therapy sessions with my counselor (no meds) and started working the program with the help of my Sponsor, meetings and the fellowship. When I was 6-9 months clean, I started feeling better, and I became more and more healthy and stable mentally and emotionally as a result.

__________________
"If we do an honest examination of exactly what we are giving, we are better able to evaluate the results we are getting." Chapter 10 - Emotional Pain - NA Way of Life.


Senior Member

Status: Offline
Posts: 180
Date:
 

Clonidine is not addictive and its taper is designed not to address it as much as the goal of taking it. You are taking it for symptom management. As the days go by, the opiate getting gone, your body being deprived and needing days to rebalance all the neurotransmitters go by, you have less and less symptoms so you need less and less clonidine.

Think symptoms management, why you are having those symptoms, and how the medication helps. As the "why" goes away, your need for clonidine goes away.

Why a doctor would give you clonidine after a stressful or traumatic event is beyond me. Its not that kind of medication.

Catapress or Clonidine acts to stop any stimulation at alpha receptors in blood vessels, arteries, veins, etc. It also works in the brain as a central alpha receptor agonist (works against) so it helps with the withdrawals SOME.   As a nurse I've helped patients with clonidine in withdrawals and have seen it up close.

I used suboxone under doctor's supervision and I suggest you consider it. The key is as I already stated here SYMPTOM management. There is a danger with suboxone even though it is a partial agonist and not a full agonist like an opiate of getting addicted to suboxone. YES, that is a real risk. That is why it must be under close doctor supervision. The goal is success though and reducing the symptoms of withdrawals, does that make it more likely or less likely for you to succeed? For me, more likely.

Here is why it works well and you MUST have a symptom management mindset. Suboxone works fast. I mean fast. So as you start to have side effects/withdrawals you can wait a bit. See if you can handle them with a walk, hot shower, massage, relaxation, venting here, etc. And if you can, great. You don't need anything. If not and the side effects get away from you and its your first or second day, take 1/2 of the pill under your tongue. And in about 15 seconds, you'll start to feel better. But wait for it. If 1/2 works, you are done. If in 10 or 15 minutes you are still climbing out of your skin, take a 1/4. Then wait for it. You settle down, you are done.

After a few days you start at 1/4 of a pill. Wait for it. And if the withdrawals go away, you are done. And if the withdrawals come back, you walk, you hot shower, you bike ride, you vent, and if still not better, take 1/4 and wait just a few seconds.

You will start out on the first dose at a 1/2 pill and wait a couple of hours to take the other 1/2. So the first dose is a whole pill. Probably unrealistic to think that the first or second or even third day you can start to taper. But by the fourth day or evening of the third, you sure can. And you will be surprised how quickly you can taper down.

I took up to 8 vicodin a day for 14 months. Not a huge amount and not saying everyone is like me for the suboxone. I was given 16 pills to being with. I returned 9. For me I started tapering the morning of the third day. Took 1/4 on the morning of the 5th day and that was it. I didn't need any more the rest of the day or since. Saw the doctor 2 days later, gave him back what I had left so he could use them to give to a patient who was hurting financially and wanted to get clean but had no money as I had already paid in full for the 16. He appreciated it.

That is how you use suboxone to get OFF drugs. Your doses, days, needs will be different. But the concept has to be the same. SYMPTOM management and take the lowest dose possible to manage those symptoms. It works so fast, there is no risk in letting your symptoms ride a little and for you to see exactly what is needed. There is no risk in taking 1/4, waiting, seeing if you need another 1/4. They kick in right away.

Folks who use suboxone to stay hooked, they never taper and go up and up and up not down and down and down.

Then by design the suboxone program you are following is going to taper because you symptoms will taper as the opiates get out, your body recovers, and you come back to life.


AND AND AND work your recovery program. Suboxone is not a substitute for the work we must do.

My humble opinion of course....


-- Edited by imikens at 11:29, 2008-09-25

__________________
"I'm not well known outside of my cluster"


Senior Member

Status: Offline
Posts: 180
Date:
 

tahir,

You described PAWS perfectly.


http://www.interventionctr.com/paws.htm

__________________
"I'm not well known outside of my cluster"


Member

Status: Offline
Posts: 5
Date:
 

as kitizzy said, the clonidine won't take away the withdrawal, but it will make it more easy to bear. and it is not addictive, mood altering, none of that. it is NOT an opiate, it just fills the same receptors. it tricks the brain into thinking it's an opiate. it's a very safe way to make kicking a little easier. and i just wanna say, if anyone is taking suboxone (as someone had mentioned that) please follow a plan that you and your doctor develop. it's not a safe idea to take this much one day, less the next, then oooh today i think i need a lil more, then tomorrow take close to nothing, then the next day take your prescribed dose, etc. don't go by what you "feel like" you "need," go by what your doctor prescribes. if you think it is too much or too little, call and make an appointment with your doctor. we're not doctors, and we shouldn't pretend to be.

__________________
"change or die."


Senior Member

Status: Offline
Posts: 180
Date:
 

"it's not a safe idea to take this much one day, less the next, then oooh today i think i need a lil more, then tomorrow take close to nothing, then the next day take your prescribed dose, etc. don't go by what you "feel like" you "need," go by what your doctor prescribes."

Sorry bree but that is wrong.  That is precisely how you use suboxone to come off an opiate.  Titrate down until you no longer need it based on managing your withdrawal symptoms.

Yes, under doctor's supervision.  Totatlly, absolutely, completely.  But what you describe as "not safe", is exactly how suboxone is used for this opiate withdrawal thing.  Folks who are titrating down suboxone do not then also need to think what they are doing is "unsafe" when it is exactly the point of the medication.

Jim


__________________
"I'm not well known outside of my cluster"


Senior Member

Status: Offline
Posts: 131
Date:
 

I agree with Bree. It doesn't matter what dug you are on. It needs to be perscribed by a doctor then you need to follow the dose he perscribes. We are addicts. trying to adjust a medication on our own could be dangerous....ESPECIALLY if we were pill poppers in the first place.

-- Edited by kitizzy at 00:34, 2008-09-26

__________________
Yes, I bought a ticket on the crazy train.....Good thing it was a return ticket.


Senior Member

Status: Offline
Posts: 180
Date:
 

Just to clarify, YES, doctor supervision. NO, do not do this on your own. However the medication under doctor's supervision is by design intended to be tapered as I posted. That is exactly how it is used and why as a medication to deal with opiate withdrawals it is valuable. ANY other kind of prescription, any thing that is NOT designed to taper, is DANGEROUS as you will get addicted to the suboxone exchanging one addiction for another.

It is totally safe to taper it based on managing your symptoms. That is in fact the ONLY safe way for addicts coming off opiates to use the medication. Anything else is UNSAFE for us addicts. Otherwise you will join the many others who are now addicted to suboxone and simply can't get off it.

Then you'll be seeing these folks: http://suboxone-addiction.com/

-- Edited by imikens at 10:53, 2008-09-26

__________________
"I'm not well known outside of my cluster"


Senior Member

Status: Offline
Posts: 136
Date:
 

I'm an opiate addict myself. I didn't detox with anything. Prtty much just suffered through the pain and misery of kicking. The anxiety was terrible, a few things that got me through it:
* Meetings!!!!!!!!
* Fellowship!!!!!!
* LITERATURE!!!!!!!!!!
* PRAYER!!!!!!!!!
* An Ipod with my favorite songs (wore my headphones EVERYWHERE!!!)
* The phone (calling people I knew where going through it too)
* My faith (not picking up no matter what and believing it'd get better!)
* My Willingness (knowing there was something better in store if I did the work of today)

Guess what???

It didn't kill me. It got better. I totally appreciate those withdrawl days today, knowing full well that I NEVER EVER want to go back to that hell.

__________________
"We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars." ~Oscar Wilde~


Member

Status: Offline
Posts: 2403
Date:
 

imikens wrote:

tahir,

You described PAWS perfectly.


http://www.interventionctr.com/paws.htm





Isn't that amazing that at times what the medical/psychological fraternity takes years to research and devise, we addicts just know it all from our own experiences with addiction? biggrin

 



__________________
"If we do an honest examination of exactly what we are giving, we are better able to evaluate the results we are getting." Chapter 10 - Emotional Pain - NA Way of Life.


Member

Status: Offline
Posts: 9
Date:
 

Hey everyone,

Im a pill junky aswell, atleast one that is fed up with the life of opiate drugs, specifically oxycontins.

Ive been on them for longer than i would like to remember.

I think im just about done with non medical opiate use. Its a stupid drug that basically lets you die for a little while and come back to life, pretty much how i see it.

ANYWAYS, Clonidine is f'n great. It masks most of the withdrawal coming off opiates (painkillers, oxys, wutever) by dropping your blood pressure, calming you down, just enuff to get over the worst, including the cold sweats fever chills, etc...

For body aches, im taking advil, and it helps.

Im going on my 2nd day now (from taking 2 to 3 80mg oxys daily) and im not looking back.

__________________


Member

Status: Offline
Posts: 9
Date:
 

be good. stay clean.

__________________


Newbie

Status: Offline
Posts: 2
Date:
 





-- Edited by August on Wednesday 3rd of June 2009 07:21:28 PM

__________________


Newbie

Status: Offline
Posts: 2
Date:
 

August wrote:





-- Edited by August on Wednesday 3rd of June 2009 07:21:28 PM




 



__________________


Newbie

Status: Offline
Posts: 1
Date:
 

I think that the person who said that there Dr gave them clonidine to "take the edge off" when her mother died made a mistake. Your Dr probably gave you Klonipin which is an anti-anxiety medication similar to xanax and yes that can be addictive.
Clonidine is used for blood pressure as others have said but also helps with opiate withdrawal.
Im in a situation where I have been on a steady daily dose of suboxone for over a year now. I had struggled with pain pills and the suboxone helped me get away from reaching for that junk but now Im finding myself in a situation where Im struggling to get off of the suboxone. I was able to taper off of it in the winter where i didnt have any typical withdrawal symptoms BUT i did get pretty depressed. That I could have dealt with BUT I also felt this agonizing discomfort/pain in my chest area and down my arms. Almost like an aching feeling that i have never felt before, not even when withdrawing from narcotics. It was weird and not the "usual" kind of opiate withdrawal aches and pains and its not my heart bc I did get that checked right away and everything is OK in that arena.

Does anyone know what Im talking about?

It wasnt classic pain/aching from opiate withdrawal- i know what that feels like very well! It was tormenting almost and It was soo unbearable that I had to start taking the suboxone again and now Im nervous to try to taper again. My Psychiatrist had no words of wisdom and actually always gives me a hard time when I speak to him about coming off my meds. Its time though... the suboxone has served its' purpose and now I want to be drug free bc part of me doesnt completely feel "sober" bc I am still "addicted" to the suboxone even though it doesnt get me high.
I remembered about the clonidine and I had used it originally to withdraw from the narcotics so Im thinking that I can continue to taper off the suboxone and when i get down to the lowest dose and every other day then I will see  how I feel and use the clonidine if any withdrawal symptoms linger. I pray that that feeling in my chest and arms doesnt come back. I know my body has to re-balance and remember how to make me feel good without a substance doing it all but Im not sure I can tough it out with the weird pain I got the last time.

OK one day at a time.... if anyone has any words of wisdom or understands what I am talking about with stopping suboxone, I would love to hear from you!!! Thank you!

Peace,
Hudson



__________________


Newbie

Status: Offline
Posts: 1
Date:
 

Hi Kitizzy.

Im using pain medication for a chronic pain, which I got tolerated to, and my Dr. and I are trying to switch to other medications of another family. I would like to ask you:

1. When you write that you took 1 tablet on the first day and four therafter and so on... what clonidine tablets did you take? 0.1, 0.2 or 0.3?

2. Did you take said tablets in divided doses during the day?

I would appreciate very much your input.

Ted.



__________________
Page 1 of 1  sorted by
 
Quick Reply

Please log in to post quick replies.

Tweet this page Post to Digg Post to Del.icio.us