: Drugs, alcohol and mental health

Discuss the twin challenges of mental health and substance use

2 replies

Codeine addiction

I’ve been addicted to codeine for about 4 years now, slowing increasing the amount I need to take over the years. I am now taking 300mg of codeine every evening and it really doesn’t even do anything for me anymore but I can’t stop. I often take more in the morning so could be taking in excess of 400mg daily. Writing this down shocks me!! I need someone to tell me what sort of damage I am doing to myself. I am so ordinary I never saw myself in this position!! I work in a highly professional job and I am fairly high up in my organisation, I have a family, and lead such an ordinary life! But this is like the dark side of me that I can’t talk about. I am sure if I don’t stop soon I will be doing some serious damage to myself! What am I doing to myself?

1 reply

replying to Mrsme

Hi There, I have been addicted to codeine for 7 years and have been taking similar levels to your self, i have known for a long time that i needed to stop, not just from a health pov but also the effect that it was having on my life. my routine was to take my pills at 11pm ish and sit up till after midnight often into the early hours even though i had to be up for work at 7am. it also affected my relationship with my wife as we would always go to bed together at the same time, but obviously this changed with me sitting up late hence all aspects of our relationship were affected. I had tried to taper down many times but constantly would "reward" myself after a few days of lower dosage thinking to myself that i would start the taper again tomorrow which never happened! 11 days ago for no apparent reason (i had not planned this) i simply stopped taken them. withdrawels kicked in the next day however they felt like a heavy common cold, i got through the second day ok and then the third. I armed myself with an array of multi vitamins (taking double doses), max strength flu and cold tablets, immodium and dioralyte (for dehydration) Floradix for energy. i dont know if this has helped me at all or if it is just a mental thing but knowing i putting goodness into my body has replaced the craving as i just pop another vitamin tablet when the cravings hit. Im not going to pretend to you that it is easy i am on day 11 and still feel very very fatigued, at times i feel as though i have run 2 marathons followed by 2 hour gym workout and that is not an exaggeration, and sleeping is difficult everynight for the past 11 days i have had broken sleep. but so far this is a small price to pay to know i am now free from these toxic pills and despite what i have just said, my life has already taken a more positive turn. I am up early and wanting to do things such as take the dog on long walks, (maybe a bit to much info) but our sex life has returned. and although difficult to sleep i am now going to bed at 10.30 in which i know when my sleep returns to normal that i will feel so energised and invigorated. I hope reading this gives you some sense of optimism.

I cant advise you which way is best to detox, if you are disciplined then i am sure tapering would be the best way but i feel that unless you give your tablets to someone that can remove them from you and only give you the set amount each day then i think you will struggle to stick to it it takes an inhumane amount of will power when they are just sat there in a cupboard.

I initially couldnt bring myself to throw them out so i removed them to my allotment which was away from my home which stopped me getting them late at night, however 3 days ago i went to the allotment and had a large fire an burned the lot ( huge sense of achievement)

Please get back in touch if you need any further help

Neil X

replying to Neil1628

Thank you so much for replying Neil. It is reassuring to hear I’m not alone. It sounds like you are doing extremely well and I hope it continues for you!!! I have tried a couple of times to quit cold turkey. The worst withdrawal symptoms I get are body jitters and really low feeling. I feel like it lifts my mood so dramatically I’m scared of feeling depressed. I really hope you make it Neil! Good luck..... and stay strong!

replying to Mrsme

Hey Mrsme how you doing ?

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