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Addiction & Recovery Message Board


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calvin,
I'm not sure what to say about your lengthy and detailed post except that I very much relate to you. I suffered my first bout of major clinical depression at the age of 17. I did not know what it was at the time so I struggled through it thinking that I just had a very "deep, philosophical personality" and was more sensitive to worldly things than others. I just accepted it and after a few months I was "better", meaning I was not catatonically depressed but mildly depressed and able to function though I did call in sick to work at least 1 to 2 times a month or more.
When I turned 28 I had been in a relationship for 4 years and it was a wonderful relationship. I began having symptoms of depression again and quickly deteriorated and if my partner had not been there and been supportive of taking me to a dr. to help find out what was wrong with me, I'd probably not have the life I have now. Fast forward to 11 years ago when my partner had back surgery and just out of the blue I asked to try one of her percocets (mind you, I was never a drug user in HS or college, drank socially but really didn't find interest in trying all sorts of drugs). The percocet hit me and immediately I KNEW it was the answer to my prayers, my depression, my catastrophic thinking and negativity and thus began the last 10 years of my life struggling with opiate addiciton.
I have a wonderful psychiatrist and am now on Suboxone for a 2 year binge of hydrocodone 180-200mg per day every day for 2 years. I couldn't bear to stop on my own CT so he offered me this option as he is also an addiction medicine specialist.
I have asked him again and again, why can't I take opiates for depression? It's the best and most effective antidepressant I've ever had....up until a point. And, that's what he said is the problem. For many decades Dr.'s have been researching opiates for depression but can not seem to get past the tolerance and dependence issues which, as we all know, end up making our lives more miserable than they were prior to our first pill.
I, too, wish there was a drug that could give me what opiates give me, that was safe, that I didn't build a tolerance to, that I didn't get addicted to...I think, what would my life be like if I had something like that. I am also bi-polar, have OCD, PTSD and panic disorder. I take Lamictal 200mg, Effexor 225mg, Suboxone 16mg/day, and ativan as needed. Some people have found that the Suboxone gives them kind of an opiate buzz and helps with depression. It does not do that for me. It has, thankfully, saved me from the suffering of withdrawl and has helped immensely with physical cravings and with allowing me to go on with my life and work, be a mom, function fairly normally and go to outpatient meetings without being in a state of mind-numbing panic or disabling depression which happened to me when I went to rehab in 2005 and went cold turkey off of hydro & ativan.
So....sorry to get off topic there but I wish, too, that I had an answer to your question because I would very much like to find something, a miracle thing, that could cure or control my depression and allow me to function at the peak of who I am like I do when I first start taking the opiates.
My next step in researching is Deep Brain Stimulation, where an electrode(s) are implanted in the brain and a Dr. can control which part(s) of your brain are stimulated to regulate mood....I really am quite interested in that. My antidepressants and other meds work to the point of me not being totally incapacitated but my life is not what I would wish it to be and I can't seem to make it different by myself and my thoughts, and support groups, and counseling....I do feel as if the answer lies in my brain chemistry or anatomy and would like to explore these things more. I'm happy to talk to you and your post really did hit home for me. Thanks so much and take good care!

KEW





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