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  1. #1
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    Pain reliever addiction

    After the first week I found the pain fairly tolerable, and stopped taking the pain meds, and got back to life's routines. Inability to engage in athletic activity led to boredom. "I have this big bottle of pills, and nothing better to do..." So every night, after I put the kids to bed, I'd settle down in front of the TV, pop a couple oxycodone and an oxycontin, grab a bag of ice, elevate the knee, and veg. Mrs Babar could put whatever crappy show on the TV she wanted, and it didn't matter. Hey, "Survivor" is pretty interesting when you have a nice warm buzz.
    Well, the pills are gone. Now I find that I can't go to sleep at night no matter how tired I am. I'm up till 4:00 am, I dose off, the alarm goes off at 6:30. Needless to say I'm tired and irritable as hell. No other physical symptoms, I just can't fall asleep. Anyone else go through this? How long can I expect this insomnia to last?
    "If you can dodge a wrench, you can dodge a ball!"

  2. #2
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    Sorry, no idea, really, I tried to stop taking them completely as soon as possible. I think I was off them completely 4-5 days after surgery, only popped one just before I went to bed a day or two out of surgery. In fact, I've probably still got a pretty big bottle of them laying around somewhere. I'm not helping, am I?

    You probably should talk to the doc or pharmacist about it, maybe they can help. I'm sure you won't be the first person to pose this question to them. Way, way, way back, whenever I couldn't sleep, my Mom would have me drink a cup of warm milk. I have no idea if this does anything, or if it was just a placebo, but it seemed to work.

    I'm sure others will have better suggestions (couldn't be worse, really), but I'd try to avoid any solutions that involve other drugs, prescription or otherwise. Too easy to let it spiral down to where you're depending on them (as you've already found out). Good luck.

  3. #3
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    Big E just wrote nearly exactly what I was goin too...I only took 'em for a few days, still have a bunch left, blah, blah, talk to yer doc, and don't take any other meds to help you sleep.

    When you can't sleep are you craving for them (the pills)?
    Waste your time, read my crap, at:
    One Gear, Two Planks

  4. #4
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    Thanks guys. I don't really feel any craving per se, in fact the feeling is like that of having 2 or 3 espresso shots or some other kind of stimulant, only I haven't taken anything. There's just an inability to fall asleep. I do have some stressfull life situations going on right now which could be contributing. Usually my insomnia takes the form of sleep, then wake, then can't get back to sleep. This is new. I went for a long bike ride outside the other day hoping that fresh air and activity would do the trick. No luck. Well, I'm tired right now. If I can't sleep again tonite, you'll see about ten more posts from me here. Thanks again for the replies, this is bumming me out a bit.
    "If you can dodge a wrench, you can dodge a ball!"

  5. #5
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    Oct 2001
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    well, if it makes you feel any better...I'm not sleeping either. And the only thing that I'm addicted to is skiing. Winter. Snow. Storms. I go to bed all tired...then as soon as I close my eyes, I start thinking about skiing, this epic once a decade once a century storm cycle we're having now, all the lines the KW crew is hitting and I'm not, the Bro's that aren't shipping, etc.....and I wake up. I get all amped. I get up. Get out of bed. Do something productive. Hell one night I was on the trainer at 3:30 AM with the lights out and the iPOD blasting.....I was skiing. Night skiing. Shite I think I need some drugs.
    Waste your time, read my crap, at:
    One Gear, Two Planks

  6. #6
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    May 2002
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arnold Babar
    Well, the pills are gone. Now I find that I can't go to sleep at night no matter how tired I am. I'm up till 4:00 am, I dose off, the alarm goes off at 6:30. Needless to say I'm tired and irritable as hell. No other physical symptoms, I just can't fall asleep. Anyone else go through this? How long can I expect this insomnia to last?
    Until you share.

  7. #7
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    Oct 2003
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    I'm not really recommending that you do this, but I ran into the same sort of problem after my knee surgery. The hydrocodone I took before bed made me feel like I was floating and very sleepy (i heart painkillers). When I ran out and couldn't sleep, I started taking Benadryl before bed. A few years ago I was having trouble sleeping and thought I needed some sort of sleeping pill. The doctor told me that two Benadryl tablets before bed should work just fine and claimed it was non habit forming (I don't know if thats true or not). So, about an hour before bed I started taking two Benadryl tabs. I still take them to this day if I feel like I haven't been sleeping much or just really want a good nights sleep.

    They are not all that great for helping me get to sleep, but they are better than nothing. Where I really notice a difference is that once I fall asleep I don't wake up until morning compared to tossing and turning all night looking at the clock. In fact, I need to buy another bottle because I wouldn't be up right now if I had some.
    "Whoever said skiing on fat skis is like having sex with a fat chick, has obviously never had sex with a fat chick." -Jack Handy

  8. #8
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    You are not alone. Typically I fall asleep no problem but then I wake up around 3am. I spend the rest of the night trying to find a comfortable position which seems impossible. For some reason my medial meniscus starts to ache if my leg is in the same position for more than 30 minutes.

    Oh and TS, I to am addicted to skiing and snow in general. It has also been really difficult missing out on all the pow here in Utah. Even though I can't ski I still check all the snow reports and listen to the avalanche forecast, constantly look at Alta/Bird/Basin's web cams-I must be a masochist or something. Today is my wifeís 6th powder day in a row . My friendís keep calling me telling me how good the skiing is. On Saturday after they finished off the day they all wanted to get together and go out to dinner and so I agreed, Gawd all they could do was talk about skiing. Man that is difficult. It seems that everyone I know skis or snowboards so when the weekend rolls around I have no one to hang with. Big storms are predicted again for this weekend, I'm not sure if I can stand it. At least all this snow will make for some epic kayaking this spring
    "For in the end life and liberty can be as much endangered from illegal methods used to convict those thought to be criminals as from the actual criminals themselves".

  9. #9
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    I had trouble sleeping but it wasn't trouble falling asleep, just staying asleep - every time I'd roll over I'd wake up. Then sometimes it was hard to get to sleep again. My PT suggested that my body wasn't used to all the laying around and maybe I just didn't need all the sleep I normally do.

    That lasted until about 2 months, I think. Anyway, I just had Lortabs this time and after the first few days I only took them at PT. But after my first surgery I took Percocet constantly for like 6-8 weeks but didn't have any trouble just quitting when I was done feeling like I needed them for pain. Probably different for everyone.

    When I went to acupuncture, the acupuncurist/herbalist gave me some Chinese herbs to help me sleep through the night - they knock me out but don't seem to have any other side effects. Seeing as how the label is in Chinese I can't really tell you what they are... so that's pretty helpful, I'm sure. Actually from her description, I'm pretty sure they're just Melatonin - which you can buy at any health food store/vitamin section. I've used that for jet lag and stuff and it works exactly the same way.
    "Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming, "Wow, what a Ride!"

  10. #10
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    I don't like the drugs, but the drugs like me . Last night was better. I bought a bottle of Tylenol PM. I didn't take any, but I think just knowing that it was there helped me relax and fall asleep. Of course, I woke to pounding snow outside my window, which used to mean an early rise, throw the gear in the truck, and head to Vermont ahead of rush hour traffic. Today it meant shoveling, and slipping on the ice that was under the snow, and worrying that the next step or shovelfull I'd lose traction and destroy the graft and be headed back to the operating table . The words "I hate snow" almost escaped my lips . Later in the day I tackled the daunting task of reorganizing our basement. I had to move my skis like 5 times in the process. I almost cried as I found a nice clean spot on the shelf for my tele boots. They're at such a good age: perfectly broken in, yet still with that hint of newness...God I miss skiing
    "If you can dodge a wrench, you can dodge a ball!"

  11. #11
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    Here's to a good recovery. Only additional advice I have is to be careful of Benadryl -- laugh if you will, but it can be somewhat habit-forming in the same way you describe if you take it consistently for falling asleep.

  12. #12
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    I was given percocet when I broke my shoulder, and after taking like 2 of them it really scared me. I chose instead to live with the pain because that 'buzz' you speak so highly of totally freaks me out! Docs give them out like candy in Whistler, it's ridonkulous.
    Believe.

  13. #13
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    Sounds like they gave you some pretty strong meds for your knee surgery. Taking them in the evenings every night is probably what got ya into trouble. I never had sleeping problems when I ran out of mine after my surgery, just a general disappointment that the fun was over. Give it a little time, I'm sure it'll get better soon.

  14. #14
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    ok so 6 days since your first post....how you doing? I'm about to jump off the pain pill ride too. Wondering if your bod has adjusted and is now gettin to sleep normally? Hope all is going well!

  15. #15
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    I was on Percocet/Roxicet/Darvocet after my surgeries and I defineity felt the lack of sleep afterwards. I would just lay there watchin tv until 5 or so in the morning. I just thought of it like PT. It sucks, but you have to go through it to get better. Deal with the lack of sleep now, and you will be fine once your body gets used to the fact that there is no more morphine derivitives coming its way. Good luck and let us know how its coming along.

  16. #16
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    I won't take Percoset or Darvocet anymore for these exact reasons.

    1st knee surgery, had Percs... was on em for quite a while... coming off was a nightmare, more pain, couldn't sleep, etc.

    Then I had my wisdom teeth out after that, back on Percs (about 6mo's after knee).
    That was really rough.

    I'll only take the pain killers (other than advil) now if the pain is unbearable.
    I don't like not being able to sleep etc. or how redonkulously addictive that crap is.

  17. #17
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    Oct 2003
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    So the last few nights I haven't really been able to sleep at all with a big job interview coming up tomorrow morning and everything. I haven't had Benadryl since early December, but I just couldn't take not sleeping anymore. At 3:30 this morning I go rumaging through my bathroom drawer's looking for anything that will help me get some sleep. No Nyquil, Tylonal PM, or Benadryl to be found. Then, in the very back of one of my drawers I find an unopened box of Unisom. I have no idea when I bought the stuff, but I decide what the hell, I'm gonna take one. Sure enough, I'm asleep 20 minutes later. I woke up this morning at 10:30. Slept through my alarm and its 3:10 in the afternoon right now and I still think my body and mind are asleep. If I ever feel like taking a week off and just sleeping I just might take another one of those Unisom's.
    "Whoever said skiing on fat skis is like having sex with a fat chick, has obviously never had sex with a fat chick." -Jack Handy

  18. #18
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    Fuck...I'm dealing w/ the same shit now. The last 3 nights' sleep has been awful. I broke down and just took a perc.
    Aliases: B-Dub, B-Dubya, & B. White

  19. #19
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    I never even though of that as to my issue. I've been taking pills at about 10 each night cause my leg acts up and the last few nights I haven't taken them and I have had the most irritable nights, i'm tired but can't sleep.
    If you open a second beer and don't miss a beat between sips, is that two beers or just one 24 ouncer? -Tye 1on

  20. #20
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    There is a degree of withdrawl with those things. I fully embraced the oxys, and took them till they were gone even though I could have stopped earlier. I suffered through a week of sleepless nights before I was over it. Looking back I don't think it was a big deal, just part of the process. But at the time it scared me, and it sucked.
    "If you can dodge a wrench, you can dodge a ball!"

  21. #21
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    Oxycontin I hear is likened unto Heroine. Hard to get back after using them for leisure activity. My thing lately is chew up a couple of Hydrocodone (lortab) and puff a jay. It keeps my mind occupied and allows for some good times but then again I am not very mobile.

    So, I hope you are exercising and raising your heart beat in order to fatique your body. Exercise is one of the best methods to make you sleep without chemical help. Do what you can to regiment your schedule. Wake up earlier and exercise. Exercise in the afternoon and 1-2 hours before bedtime. Have the mrs. put you to sleep with a good cookie .

  22. #22
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    [QUOTE=SPREAD EAGLE]My thing lately is chew up a couple of Hydrocodone (lortab) QUOTE]

    Yeah, if you chew up the pills the pain relief is much faster.
    "For in the end life and liberty can be as much endangered from illegal methods used to convict those thought to be criminals as from the actual criminals themselves".

  23. #23
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    Castro, I believe Unisom and Benadryl are the same drug: Diphenhydramine. Get the generic version of Benadryl and it's pretty cheap. I take Benadryl when I can't sleep and it works like a charm, although I'm left feeling hungover for the first 4 hours of my shift.

    I also take Actifed instead of Benadryl. Not only does it put me to sleep, but it unstuffs my nose during the night. I've never felt addicted to either, but I can see how if you rely on them for sleep, you might.

    Try taking a hot bath and reading a book or a magazine while lying in bed. That usually puts me to sleep, and if it doesn't, out comes the Benadryl or the Actifed!

  24. #24
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    Oct 2003
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    I am totally going through the same thing right now - I have been weeing myself off the percocet, but last night I woke up at 2 am and never went back to sleep. I feel horrible today and am worried it's going to send my immune system down the tubes and I'll get the flu that my dad has . . . I took a pill, but no avail.

    Tonight I may try Tylenol PM or hope that I am exhausted enought to sleep.

    So, does Melatonin work? I feel a bit better about trying an herbal remedy - I am afraid to rely on pills to do mother nature's work . . .

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kellie
    I am totally going through the same thing right now - I have been weeing myself off the percocet, but last night I woke up at 2 am and never went back to sleep. I feel horrible today and am worried it's going to send my immune system down the tubes and I'll get the flu that my dad has . . . I took a pill, but no avail.

    Tonight I may try Tylenol PM or hope that I am exhausted enought to sleep.

    So, does Melatonin work? I feel a bit better about trying an herbal remedy - I am afraid to rely on pills to do mother nature's work . . .
    I had trouble sleeping for a while too. I'd go with melatonin - it can't hurt. It's worked for me with jet lag in the past. Unfortunately I didn't think of it until I was out of this phase... I tried sleeping pills but they were a waste of money - I still couldn't sleep.
    "Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming, "Wow, what a Ride!"

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