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  • Quitting methadone with sub taper

    Ok, so this is my first post. Been lingering for a while, checking out thread after thread on this site and others. And finally decided to make the leap. My story is I've been an on and off (mostly on) opiate addict for about 15 years. 2 and a half years ago I admitted that I couldn't quit on my own so I started going to the methadone clinic. I started at 30 mg like most do, and went up to 50 mg after about a week. About a year or so ago I started tapering myself down and have been at 10 mg for about the last 6 months. I am supposed to go to the clinic tomorrow, but I decided two days ago that that would be my last dose. So tonight is officially the end of day two for me. I suppose its a psychological thing, because I could go a day without dosing all the time until now, and yesterday (day one) was worse than I expected, Today was a little worse, some mild cramping and been sneezing and runny nose since early yesterday. Its quite possible that my dose on that last day was not a full 10 mg, but I didn't think it would make that big of a difference anyway.

    But after going through threads and success/horror stories from everyone, I decided it was time to end it for good. No more worrying about what hell I'll have to endure if something ever happens and I couldn't get my done. No more being a slave to it every day. Initially I was considering just going cold turkey from the methadone, but really didn't like what I was reading from those guys, so I started searching for alternatives. That's when I came across Robert's taper plan on here and it made perfect sense. I acquired sub this evening and plan to start tomorrow morning instead of going to the clinic. I feel like I can be disciplined enough to taper effectively using the minimum dosage. I saw this as a place where I can share with others and solicit advice from those of you who know a lot more about this short term regimen than I do.

    I also see how the psychological effect of sharing with others and receiving encouragement from others seems to have helped those whose stories I've been reading. With a lot of will and God's help I will be able to say "I made it" soon enough. I would really appreciate any advice anyone has to offer.

    Btw, did the COWS assessment a couple of times today, hoping I would be able to hit 26 and dose, but I've been around 16 all day.

  • #2
    hey Mr.Jones
    So glad you made it here! I know what a night mare you have been going thru!! I been there a couple times!!!
    well be here to help you along when ever you need us...
    Melinda

    Ps.. I love your screen name!
    Last edited by Anonymous; 08-18-2014, 08:27 PM. Reason: forgot something

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    • #3
      Mr jones- welcome here
      Good luck to your new venture. I too, had enough and was ready to not be a slave to the pills anymore. Oh was I ready.
      There is great help here. I'm still fairly new here, but there are folks who have been around, and have proved Roberts tried and true Taper Method.
      I am on day 3 of no subs.... I couldn't have done it without this group.
      Good luck with reaching 26!!! I hope it comes quicker so you can get started.
      Have a good night

      Rose

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      • #4
        Thanks Melinda, I really appreciate it. I always heard meth was the worst to come off of. No way I'm doing that if I don't have to. I suppose it works out better this way though, because if I'd started out on sub like I was advised, I'd probably be eff'ed right now.

        I like the 8 week average completion time on this plan. Long enough to get past any meth acute withdrawals, I just hope the detox from sub isn't extremely long after that amount of time. I wonder if a crash schedule would be just as good given my relatively small dosage to meth. Anyway, thanks again Melinda. Its good to know so many have done it before; maybe I can feed off that.

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        • #5
          Thanks Rose. Congrats on Day 3! That's great. Its weird, the minds power over the bod isn't it? I know with each post I read, I feel more empowered.

          I quit (then quickly relapsed) just prior to joining the clinic. I went to my In-laws' house on Lake Huron (love it there!!!!) for two weeks to get off of dilaudid and roxy's. I took a 1/2 oz of weed and started driving the 10 hr trip. Not once over those two weeks did I ever have the first withdrawal symptom (maybe a runny nose for a day or so). But my mind being occupied like that really helped. Of course, as soon as I got home it was on. But now, since I have not iv'ed or anything in over two years, I think I am ready to do it for real.

          Did you do the same plan or no? Again, great to hear you're on day 3. Keep your head down and DRIVE ON!

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          • #6
            Hi, Mr. Jones: Sounds like you know what you are doing and are going good so far. Remember the 26 is NON-NEGOTIABLE, especially with methadone, you don't want to invite precipitated w/d. The induction is really important, make sure you are ready (subs cut). It will take around 4-5 days or so to make sure you are stable and before you can begin to drop. NO, there is no crash schedule. Suboxone is as strong as methadone, but much easier to taper from than methadone, making your landing softer. For NOW, just think about the induction and getting stable. As far as hitting 26 on the COWS, that can take awhile with methadone because the half life of methadone can range from 48-72 hours. So stick with the plan for now and assess yourself honestly on the COWS. Please don't start the sub in the morning if you aren't at a 26, it sometimes takes around 3 days with methadone.

            You already met some good people here! I'm sure Alex will be along at some point, or Kat. Stay Strong.

            Peace,

            Iloerose (glad you came to the boards!)

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            • #7
              MrJones - You are in the same position I was when I made the switch to suboxone from methadone. I wanted off the methadone becaue I was abusing it, and heard it was much easier to taper off the subs than the methadone, and that was very true.

              I hope you listen to Iloerose because her post above was perfect in my opinion. But be prepared for it to take LONGER than 3 days before you're ready for the induction. I put myself into precipitated not once, but TWICE because I got in a big hurry with the induction, and at first didn't use the cows. Once I tapered down to 10mgs of methadone, used the cows, got to that 26 score, my induction was a complete success. I was then able to taper off the subs and I'm now free and clean over a month!

              The most important piece of advice or suggestion I can give you is to wait, wait, wait until you get to that 26 score. It took me nearly 90 hours before I was there due to the very long half life of the methadone as Iloerose pointed out to you. It's a loooong time to wait, but absolutely necessary. It may not take you that long - that's why the cows is so important. Please don't get in a rush like I did and induct too soon. Precipitated withdrawal is no joke I assure you. I was sicker than I've ever been in my life - twice!

              Here's the link to my thread if you would like to read some of it ----

              https://www.drugs.com/forum/need-tal...ump-65786.html

              I received massive support along the way from these guys and the reason I made it. You will also and have already seen that happen! Just take the advice and suggestion from those in the know. I'm no expert by any means, but do have the experience of doing what you're attempting to do now. I will help all that I can, but the main thing as I said is to wait out those symptoms, get to the honest 26 score, then you can safely induct.

              All the best to you and hope you have as much success as I have had.

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              • #8
                I will agree with Randy35 about tapering suboxone being easier, and about waiting long enough to take any suboxone. I heard the transition from methadone can be very tricky. I was only in the single digits (maybe like 2mg) when I was stupid and took naltrexone. That was bad enough, I can't imagine having done it at 10mg.

                I have heard of suboxone dr's (that know what they are doing) give comfort meds for all the days you have to wait. Maybe that is an option from your regular family dr?

                If it were me one I thought I hit 26 I would still try to wait it out a little bit to be safe but that is me.

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                • #9
                  Precipitated W/D is different for everyone. I hopped on Subs a day after taking my last 10mg methadone, with no problems. The naltrexone doesn't really even come into play as long as you take it sublingually.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by MrJones View Post
                    Thanks Melinda, I really appreciate it. I always heard meth was the worst to come off of. No way I'm doing that if I don't have to. I suppose it works out better this way though, because if I'd started out on sub like I was advised, I'd probably be eff'ed right now.

                    I like the 8 week average completion time on this plan. Long enough to get past any meth acute withdrawals, I just hope the detox from sub isn't extremely long after that amount of time. I wonder if a crash schedule would be just as good given my relatively small dosage to meth. Anyway, thanks again Melinda. Its good to know so many have done it before; maybe I can feed off that.
                    Hey Mr Jones... you bet meth is the hardest to come off of..but I think you got this...Roberts taper plan is a good one ... but I bet you could do it faster that that being that you are on a small dose of meth!!! keep us posted on how you doing!!
                    melinda

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                    • #11
                      Mr.Jones: Follow Randy's advice and stick with the plan for the COWS 26 no matter what. Stay the course.

                      Hey, Randy: Good to see you over here in the sub boards you have quite a bit to contribute here!!!! You have given great advice to many already!

                      Peace,

                      Iloerose

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                      • #12
                        Thanks everyone. You guys are awesome. Looks like I'm not getting any sleep tonight. I gotta get up in less than 3 hrs. I'm at 21 right now. You bet I've got the subs cut and ready, just sitting there saying please eat me, lol. Thanks a lot Randy; you're an inspiration. Gotta do a few things tomorrow morning; not looking forward to that. Guess I'll try to sleep. Thank you all.

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                        • #13
                          Hi there. Welcome to the forum.

                          I can't add much at this point to what's already been said. Getting to an honest 26 on the COWS is absolutely imperative, especially with methadone. I went through precipitated withdrawal many years ago. It was beyond awful.

                          Robert's induction/taper plan works great if followed correctly. You shouldn't have any trouble stabilizing and tapering, especially since you've never been on Sub before. My saga (lol) is quite different: I made the huge mistake of allowing my Sub doc to keep me on Sub "maintenance" for many years...all the while still abusing full agonist opiates and then going back to Sub when the pills would run out. My taper has been very lengthy on account of my long-term Sub use. But I'm thrilled to say that I'm at the very end now -- today was my 2nd day of a 3-day skip. My last Sub dose will be Wednesday, then it's jump time! I'm nervous, but also very excited to be done with Sub.

                          A very important aspect of recovery is having a plan in place to stay clean. Have you considered addiction counseling, AA/NA, etc?

                          How are you feeling now? What's your score at this point?
                          We're here to help you through.

                          Kat

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                          • #14
                            Mr jones-
                            Yep, I did Roberts taper plan too

                            Today is day 4 off and just looking forward.

                            Good luck getting to 26!!!! I will check back on you. Take care

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                            • #15
                              How are you doing today? Let us know what we can do to help you.

                              Peace,

                              Iloerose

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