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How do you know when you're addicted?

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Old 09-24-2010, 08:18 AM   #1
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How do you know when you're addicted?

I really like the way any kind of narcotic cough syrup or pain pill makes me feel. I don't take them every day but if I had them I would. I feel better when I take a couple of pills a day. But I can function without them. I work full time and have a home and family. I don't think anyone knows that I take stuff with no medical reason. It's mostly codeine or hydrocodone. I worry that I'm addicted and should stop but at this point, it isn't negatively affecting my life. I just wondered what other people's experience might be. Can you be a "social druggie" like some people are just "social drinkers"?

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Old 09-24-2010, 08:50 AM   #2
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Re: How do you know when you're addicted?

If you are asking the question chances are you have recognized a pattern evolving in your use of narcotic medicines. I suppose one could be a so-called social user/drugger but it generally all adds up to the same conclusion. Addiction. Addicted to narcotic pain meds and asking for advice on how to detox off of them. You obviously know you like the feeling and you are taking them just to get high. That tends to be a problem. You are damaging your body by taking these things when you do not need them. Your tolerance will build and you will have to take more and more and the more you take the easier it is to bcome accustomed to that feeling you get. As a matter of fact codeine and hydrocodone are highly addictive. There are people all over this board practically begging for a way to get off of them. I worry, because if you ever need them legitamately the meds will not react the same way as if you had not been on them. It would take a higher doseage to relieve your pain, for example. Hope you can get something out of all this. Sincerely,searchin

Old 09-24-2010, 12:18 PM   #3
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Re: How do you know when you're addicted?

Hello Ferdy

Welcome to the Addiction and recovery board. I am glad you came here because now is the time to ask questions before full blown addiction has its grip on you.

Addictive behaviour is apparent when we cross the line and use pain killers for any reason except legitimate pain. If we are not using them for a true medical reason, there is a problem. If this behaviour continues, a much bigger problem will come about. Our brains and bodies quickly become dependent on these opiates for that 'feel good' feeling. When we feed our brains opiates to feel good, we allow the brain to stop producing the natural chemicals that allow us to esxperience pleasure and feeling good. We teach our brains to depend on these opiates and, eventually, it becomes so hard to function at all without them. What feels good now will turn eventually to depression and isolation. We lose the ability to cope with life naturally and begin to live not for pleasure, but to feed the addiction.

I have traveled this road, Fergy, and it is a torture trying to regain our lives once the addiction has grabbed us. Please don't play with fire this way. Stop while you have been smart enough to ask questions and before you are begging for help to get off the drugs.

A gentle correction about the drugs not affecting your life negatively at tis point.... you have already become a bit of a liar as you do not let anyone else know what you are doing. Lying to ourselves and others is a behaviour that creeps into every addict's life. Lying by ommission is none-the-less lying. If we can not hold our behaviour up to the light of day, if we become closet people with secretive behaviours, then something is definitely wrong with what we are doing.

Heed your own doubts about your behaviour with the drugs. Think long and hard and judge yourself with total honesty. I wish you well as you come to a decision.


Old 09-26-2010, 02:35 PM   #4
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Re: How do you know when you're addicted?

My advise: stop while it's still easy to. I was in your situation a few months ago, & now am having a really hard time stopping. What gets me w/ these types of meds is when I get really sick, or my back pain flares up, & I start taking them every few hours to get through the illness or whatever - then when I'm feeling better it's hard to go back to the amount I was using before. Because of course, to deal w/ the sickness or back pain I have to take bigger doses because of having raised my tolerance by taking them when I didn't necessarily need them.

BTW, having a decent supply of these meds is often the difference maker for people in this situation, you're fine till you for whatever reason end up w/ a larger supply than you're used to & start to think, "I can take [x amount] of this right now, I have extra". Your tolerance goes up, your body & brain chemistry starts to change. A few days of taking the meds for legitimate reasons - should they arise - & the next thing you know you're having withdrawals when you try to stop.

One last comment - I think hydrocodone is a great pain reliever & cough suppressant. Use it for that alone, so it will be available to you for that use if you need it. Just my 2 cents...

Old 09-26-2010, 04:45 PM   #5
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Re: How do you know when you're addicted?

You may think you are not hurting yourself right now but you are hurting others. In order to get these meds you have to lie to a doc to get them. This makes it harder for those chronic pain patients who truly are in pain and need them for real pain. Like the others hae said I hope you stop for yourself and others before it becomes a problem and you cannot stop on your own.

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