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  • Chronic Pain & A Taper Plan, It's Hard But...

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    Old 02-03-2005, 06:46 AM   #1
    Denster's Avatar
    Join Date: Jan 2005
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    Chronic Pain & A Taper Plan, It's Hard But...

    Hello out there!
    From: a consistent Vicodin dose of 70mg per day w/binge runs of 100mg per day for approx. 1-1/2 years To: "current dose" - 10-15mg per day, working a physical therapy plan - never stopped working - WD's I can manage - & yes, it is hard but -- Every method of cessation, or simply returning to a theraputic dose is "hard!" When chronic pain is thrown into the mix, a taper off plan can assist w/pain while CT often results in unbearable "rebound pain." From the start, remember why a pain med. was prescribed. What was/is the injury, illness, - & can you summon up the strength/desire to stop drugging & start healing? A taper plan requires structure, a belief in yourself, & a very proactive "I can, because (I need to) get healthy attitude. This attitude eliminates many of the false notions associated with a taper plan. "It just doesn't work, I always take 1 extra, it is so slow, it is prolonged WD's." Oh really?? In my case a taper allowed me to minimize WD's by degree, & adjust to new, lower amounts of opiate in my system. I chose to do this and "1 extra pill" was never an option!! Sciatica & low back/hip pain from an injury are very real, yet I really do respond to a tiny amount of Vicodin, physical therapy, & Ibup. Chasing a "buzz" was eliminated by choice BEFORE I started this plan, & those among us who do have pain issues can redirect energy away from the high and "substitute" healing & feeling well for that 30 minutes (whatever) of Vicodin "pleasure."
    Cliches are tossed around like a fricking frisbee & it is pathetic!! If another person's reaction to (your well considered recovery plan) sounds oddly negative, IGNORE IT!! It is about you! - Person A.'s reaction to a taper plan is NOT indicative of "anything" related to you! You are an individual 1st, (ALWAYS!) and any good Dr. will address your addiction/abuse recovery plan with pain as an important consideration. Further, you are typically your own best Dr. - & you understand your pattern of abuse & pain threshold better than anybody! "Too tough" was to me, 4-5 days of WD's & NO pain management! CT with chronic pain, (surgery looming soon!) just never worked for me, but it might work for you. Try it, ya never know!
    Beyond this Bd. (a great place to share ideas, offer/receive support) there are avenues for research that address EVERY aspect of tapering off of pain medication! Go there, you have a computer & you desire necessary & positive changes. Awareness, research, and a belief in whatever plan you choose is absolutely required in a self-actualized, proactive recovery plan. I knew I could taper off when I focussed 100% on my taper plan.
    "A taper plan is hard" as is cold turkey, rehab, the use of other drugs to detox then quit that drug etc. - It's all "hard" & if chronic pain is a real factor, a taper off plan is viable! You are not person A. B. or Y. - you are unique & you present w/issues (pain) that other methods of recovery may not address. The tradeoff, =s precise, structured constant decreasing amounts of a drug, (no more buzz) w/minimized WD's & an awareness of your injury v. another method which may/may not allow you to keep working, exercising, etc. "Choice" - a very underrated component of any recovery plan. Every "I finally found MY way" type of post makes so much sense. Trial & error, - use your own verbiage, it is simply true. We recover in a manner that is consistent with who we are, - our individual pattern of abuse, our very specific & sometimes very serious illness or injury.
    An M.D. friend (oncologist) recently chose to stop taking a "ridiculously high" (his term) 1 yr. daily dose of Oxycontnin. He had severe knee pain after surgery didn't go well, to put it mildly!! (bone infection) His complicated plan - "a very sm. hydro. supplement, 10mg Vic. 3xs per day w/2.5mg valium every 10 hours for the "creeping crud" his "medical term" for wd's - he slowly worked this medication plan down until he was prepared for another knee procedure. The man is snow skiing again, (great athlete!) & takes Ibup. "if needed" for pain. He wanted his life back & a taper plan, another knee oper. & intense P.T. were PLANNED to make this happen. He also "enjoyed" the opiate buzz, but THAT had been getting harder & harder to find! I'm using the same basic approach, with adjustments that suit me. I'm 100% convinced that many others can too.
    It is easy to get lost in recovery verbiage, micro-search, & basically stall until "outside forces" i.e. work, family/friends, Dr.'s etc. are impacted by your drug abuse. Stall long enough & BOOM! - you are left w/"options" as provided by your HMO, or worse, you still do nothing! That "nothing" choice is yours, & you own it! My 1st instinct was to quit CT - a few too many times! No regrets, I simply chose a method that did not work for me. I had made the decision to recover and that is all that I needed. The "road ahead" is a bit too far ahead as I view each day & moment as a gift that requires my full attention.
    I chose wellness & a taper plan simply made sense. With CP & a need to keep working, you do what you gotta do, and a thoroughly researched, proactive, "this is my plan" attitude can take you a long, long way!! Yes you can, we can - always keep trying!
    "Left coast psycho-babble?" Nope, - common sense.
    Best wishes to all!!

    Last edited by Denster; 02-03-2005 at 08:19 AM.

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