Painkillers and dependence to them

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by MoreBoo, Oct 6, 2006.

  1. MoreBoo

    MoreBoo New Member

    Hi, Like many of you I'm on Norco for fibro. I've been on it for about 4 years. I also take it for migraines which I have about 3-4 bad migraines a month. (Can't take the triptans) When I started Norco I was not taking it everyday for fibro, but now I'm up to 1 and 1/2 tabs a day. My doctor is ok with this, but I'm worried because I figure I'll have this disease for the rest of my life and my Norco will only increase.

    My fibro has gotten much worse in the last 6-7 years, hence the increase in the Norco.

    So I'm asking what other people's experience is of taking narcotics for this disease and should I be worried or afraid.

    PS: I take other meds for sleep problems, anti-depressant, etc.
  2. MoreBoo

    MoreBoo New Member

    That helps, you know how it is....I'm the only person I know in my life that has this disease and I feel like I need other fibro patients perspective.

    I have great friends and family that are supportive, but they don't realize the amount of medications I take - it is a little embarassing to me.

    I was always one of those young people who wouldn't take an aspirin if I had a headache - I'm a long way from that now.

  3. hermitlady

    hermitlady Member


    I know exactly how you feel. I have been worried because the last couple of months I have been taking Vicodin 5/500 twice a day. Posted the same concerns here and got a lot of support from other folks.

    I just know that my Dr is ok with it and I know it makes me feel better.....It's too bad that we have to deal w the guilt trip over painkillers! We need them to feel better, not to just get high like so many people think.

    Just this morning I thought I'd try to take an Ultracet (usually only take at bedtime) instead of a Vicodin...had to go back to bed and sleep for 2.5 hours! Not a good way to start the day.

    Hang in there and take it if it makes you more comfortable....Feel better!

    xxxooo Hermit
  4. Mini4Me

    Mini4Me New Member

    I would say that you have nothing to fear. In fact, if you need more norco, you should consider a long acting painkiller like the fentanyl pain patch or oxycodone. They are better for your liver (no tylenol) and they provide you with 24 hour relief. Then you can use the norco for breakthrough pain if you have to. Other people shouldn't be involved in what you take and when you take it. It's really none of their business.

    You deserve proper pain relief! Make sure you don't let other people's fears and lack of education about pain meds get in the way of proper treatment.

    If you google the national pain foundation, you'll come across some very helpful info. about proper treatment of chronic pain.
    Best of luck
  5. pookieruth

    pookieruth New Member

    I wish I had that problem!! My rhuemy didn't even want to give me ultram!!! I finally convinced her. Man - if it hurts, fix it.

    I wouldn't worry. One and a half tabs doesn't sound like a lot to me. Best of luck.

  6. Beachtrekker1

    Beachtrekker1 New Member

    I replied an important message to you and I hoped it would help others. I attempted to move it to a new post after and I have lost it....Nowhere to be found. And I have to call it a night. I will try again tommorrow if able. Until then PLEASE don't worry about your meds. For what you've described it's like your taking a baby aspirin. I also have the debilitating Migranes...
  7. Suzan

    Suzan New Member

    I know it is a serious thought..and I am NOT being critical of your thoughts..But , you are like so many Americans, afraid of "addiction" because of how doctors and pain has been dealt with..or NOT dealt with to be more accurate! in our country.

    After being on pain medications for 3 years now, and doing alot of my own research on FMS and chronic pain in general. I am convinced that we chronic pain sufferers , way to often are made to feel like we don't deserve to be pain free. I would be perfectly happy to never take another pain medication again in my life, but in order for that to happen, someone would have to unlock the mystery of FMS for me and give me something concrete that would work to change what is going on in my body!

    Until then...I will "demand" treatment for my symptoms, and since that seems to include daily pain and discomfort, I will take, without guilt, medication to help me with that. Yes I may have to increase dosages...and even take more potent pain relievers as I go thru this journey. But again, I refuse to feel guilt about that. I did NOT ask to have this illness, and I DESERVE to live as normal a life as I can. I also feel justified in refusing to take drugs that I am not comfortable with..or that have no proof that they will work for me.

    So, don't fret about your pain relievers is my best advice...take what you need to be comfortable in your daily life, be glad you have a doctor who will prescribe things to relieve your pain, and do your best to be living the best life you can under your health shortfalls!

  8. Jeanne-in-Canada

    Jeanne-in-Canada New Member

    I had a similar situation for years in taht I used to take Tylenol 3 just for painful periods every mth, but eventually I developed fullblown FM and started to use them more for FM pain too.

    Now I alternate between codeine and oxy (very low dose), because I tend to build up tolerance if I take the same one for even a week. This isn't addiction, I've just always had this tolerance to meds thing.

    I do recommend alternating meds, even if your backup doesn't work as well as Norco. Its helps offset physical dependence, which is different than addiction, and helps to you take less meds overall. It works much better for me to take my meds as needed, because I love having a break from them when I can manage. You run a bigger risk of dependance when you go on sustained release and narcotics do tend to lower the pain threshold overall.

    Some people really do need pain relief around the clock, and they should enjoy what breaks they can get guilt free. I have a male friend like this, and his pain never lets up. I wouldn't trade places w/ him for the world.

    I recently had a time when I needed narcotics everyday (though not all day) for 4 mths straight. I fretted about all sorts of possibilities, but I came right out of it w/out even physical dependance, which I totally expected after that long. It just felt really good to be off when them when I could manage.The reason for my increased pain for those mths was w/drawal from another med I was on. I've been narcotic free 3 days this week and been getting regular breaks from them for several mths now. So anything is possible w/ this wacky disease.

  9. Jeanne-in-Canada

    Jeanne-in-Canada New Member

  10. calishygirl

    calishygirl New Member

    I have an article that I post to groups called: "Dependence vs. Addiction" that I usually post to these questions. And, I'm afraid to post it because I can't pull up the rules on my computer. I'm wondering because I have pop-up's blocked, I can't get into them.

    You are far from addiction, by only taking 1 1/2 tablets a day. The thing I would be concerned about is the amount of tylenol that you're taking in, as the tylenol will cause liver problems.

    I have been taking opioids for 7+ years now due to failed back surgery syndrome, FMS, CMP, Neuropathy.

    Here is a description of ADDICTION: "Psychological Problem
    Behavior pattern of drug abuse
    Craving, overwhelming involvement in obtaining drug, using it for other than pain control, using drug despite negative physical, social, legal, or psychological consequences"

    You do not sound like an addict to me. Remember, so long as you take your prescriptions as directed, you won't have a problem. And please, if your family is coming down on you, tell them that you are not addicted, that you are dependent upon this medication in order for you to function. Being dependent upon a drug is not a big deal.

    I like what one of the responders to this thread asked, "if you had diabetes would you quit taking your insulin?" Well, that is right... do you quit that for fear of becoming an addict? No.

    My Mother has been constantly on me about the opioids I take, and as I graduated from Vicodin/Percocet to Oxycontin, she gave me the "you're going to get addicted lecture." Then when I went to morphine, I got the same lecture. I have finally convinced her that I am not addicted because I take the medication as prescribed. So, if its your family, please google "Dependence vs. Addication" and you will come up with a lot of stuff to read!

    Hope this helps!

  11. NyroFan

    NyroFan New Member


    I have been on narcotics for years. They still take away the pain and still make me sleepy. I am on eight Percocet a day.

    Yes, it seems like much. Yet, it does help and he tried me on other things before going heavy duty.

    I figure: if I need it, I need it. I do not second guess myself or the doctor. No guilt, nothing. I accept the pain and know it needs to be arrested.

    I also take Restoril for sleep. And yes, I sleep.

    I wake up feeling like holy heck and just take the meds, get on the heating pad and then make coffee when i can move fairly normally.

    It is a life I have had to get used to.

    The meds still make me sleepy and still work.

    Dependent? Sure, for need, not greed.

    I took all the guilt out of it because I am monitored and never take more than required. At the end of the month I still have some and go for the refill.

    If I were you: I would take any guilt out of it.


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