Can’t put this on Facebook but I just had a medical professional be sensible about opioids. First, some history. About 8 years ago I had a crisis with my legs, and could barely walk. I went to see a rheumatologist, who put me on 15 mg. of Vicodin a day. I slept in a recliner for five months, used a walker to get to the bathroom, and barely moved. She upped the Vicodin to 30 mg. and I slowly got better. I cut back the stuff in the daytime, taking it once a day and once a night instead of twice a day. Then I cut it out during the day and just took took 2 pills at night. at night. A 20 day supply lasted me a month and a half, but things got worse in the country and everyone got fussy. I tried to explain that I don’t get any positive feeling from them – apparently addicts get some kind of “warm” feeling or something. Doesn’t do a thing to me. I also am totally lacking the addictive gene.
They don’t listen. They’re so used to justifications and people playing games (and opioid addiction is a tragic, terrible disease) that whatever I said went over their heads. After 8 or more years on the stuff, with me decreasing the dose, they still thought I could get addicted. And they started giving me stuff that tears my stomach up again as an alternative (hence me feeling like shit for the last week).
However, I did realize I got so twitchy and defensive about the meds because everyone else in my family was addicted to them, as well as tranquilizers and alcohol. I somehow missed that addictive gene (or maybe it wasn’t genetic and I just had a different personality). But I felt like I was being accused of it and it pushed my buttons. Once I realized that was my problem I chilled. And since they were so worried I cut my meds down again to 5mg a day with no ill effects.
I just talked to a nurse about my latest run-in with NSAIDS and she talked about maybe I should consider taking a smaller dose of vicodin during the day.. I said I didn’t want to and she asked if it made me drowsy. I said no (it doesn’t – I drive, I act, I write with no dulling of senses). I just didn’t want to take more meds – I’m used to living with a certain amount of pain.
But finally someone open-minded! It was so refreshing for someone to suggest upping the meds (even though I didn’t want to do so, but meds, despite their dangers, are to make things better and sometimes people need more. I just don’t want to take more).
And I no longer have to feel so defensive now I realize where that’s coming from with me. They can pass judgment all they want and suspect me of furtive behavior. It’s annoying that they can’t get over it but fortunately, I can.
Hell, growing older ain’t for sissies!