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joessportster

When does "X" become an addiction ?

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This question has plagued my life for the last 6+ years, I have known people with addictions for several years to most of my life. I know / known, Smokers, Alcoholics, Drug Addicts. I have never sat down and discussed with any of them if they ever had a moment when they thought they may be at the beginning of a problem. So my curiosity has peaked and I thought I might ask here.

 

Reason for the ?, I have been taking Opiod  pain killers for years now I am still on a very low dose according to my Dr. and I try and take them only when needed IE...not every day and never more than once a day late in the evening before bed in a vain attempt to get comfort for sleep which is usually 4 hrs or less per night.  That said I do find myself coming to a point where I will Purposely not take the medication if I think I WANT it to much, even though I am in pain (not sure that makes sense).  There are no withdraws, no shakes, no mood swings involved it is simply my state of mind, I refuse to take the Meds if a thought even enters my mind I WANT them regardless of the pain involved. 

 

I feel like if I take something for a WANT rather than a dire need, that is the start of a problem.

 

What say you ?

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It doesn't sound like you are addicted, but the question would be what are the long term effects to your organs by taking the medication for a long period of time.....Btw, I have the same feeling about over-the-counter pain relievers as well. Last week I watched this documentary on YouTube that I thought was interesting:  

 

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There are different types of addiction, some are physical and some are psychological.  The thresholds are different for each.

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1 hour ago, joessportster said:

I feel like if I take something for a WANT rather than a dire need, that is the start of a problem.

What say you ?

I'll say:

While I understand the reasoning behind looking at it that way, I'm not so sure.

My problem affected my $ through lost work. Affected friendships to ruin, even when some made an effort to help me. The pain I attributed my usage to wasn't physical but it became so, much worse than I could ever imagine later on. Years into it forced into rehab, it got through to my block-head that I was addicted.

 

It starts with a particular personality flaw or type that does not sound like you here.

 

Now mine was an addiction way before I considered it as such, but looking in hindsight I'll say this. When what you're habitually doing affects other facets or maybe all aspects of your life in any way that's an addiction.

 

You're using this drug to help you not hurt physically. If I read into that correctly I wouldn't call that addiction. You also sound headstrong enough to prevent yourself from getting hooked.

 

If the doc thought you were taking too much he would not write the script.

 

Believe me drs are taking pain medicine away from people with an actual documented physical need for it because of the polit-bureau crowd in our former USA. I live with and take care of one of those people, and I'll stop now before I start ranting and railing about it.

 

Good luck with this Joe. & borrowing trouble (worrying) won't help anything.

 

 

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You asked the million dollar question.  Good for you!

 

Nobody can tell you if you are addicted unless they really know all the facets of your life and can witness the effects.  Even then, people will disagree. 

 

Addiction is a condition which escalates very surreptitiously because it always seems to be gradual until it spirals out of control.  If your conscience says, "I probably shouldn't," you probably shouldn't.  If you get to the point of being dissatisfied with yourself for having a habit, then, you will know for sure.

 

Good luck!

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Everyone has their faults. All we perfect individuals can do is to encourage and support those that have a dependency.

 

Keith

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Appreciate all the input guys, I dont really see where the Meds affect my life or others around me in a negative way at this point. I certainly do not want anything to get to that point.

 

Audio could easily be construed as an addiction I spend large amounts of my day's thinking about it, perusing the internet in search of the next Latest / greatest, I spend WAY to much money on it. Money that would be wiser put to use in the boys savings. I feel like all the Labor / work done deserves some vice.

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there are less effective, but non-addictive alternates.   I suffer chronic pain [sciatica] and use mj. Opioids are more effective, but the sides that comes with them. 

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Yours is a question, and a concern, many more people should consider when dealing with many drugs and interests and activities. Essentially you do not want an external ‘thing’ controlling your life through the coercion of a maniacal dependency. This understanding alone and a commitment to this goal is adequate in my mind, and you clearly do have this understanding in play. Culturally society keeps a fuzzy benchmark for addiction. When a drug renders a person witless and vulnerable becoming addicted to it is considered bad. Thus opioids are relegated to the dark side even if when properly used they clearly have genuine merit. Not so with nicotine. Nicotine does not massively alter behaviors but it surely is addictive and any adult can buy the stuff otc at will and nicotine has absolutely no practical application for humans (other than $$$).

 

Personally I believe you should weigh addiction wariness based upon age and need. Take the popular sleep aid Ambien. The medical community works hard to keep people from becoming dependent on Ambien for sleep. Well, for a 25 year old this makes sense as they should not require nightly sedation to get adequate sleep (see Michael Jackson). But for the elderly who commonly physiologically struggle with sleeplessness why not afford them the drug and any dependency simply to get them solid sleep as they age?

 

As for physicians and ‘pain’ subscriptions they know only what the patients advise. This is how many obtain their recreational pain meds - they lie, and when they run out of gullible docs they turn to other drugs and supply avenues. 

 

But it the real key is this question you have posed here. In your case you have a real need and ready access to real relief....... and if this is your only recourse use the stuff and be less concerned about addiction.  IMHO opioids have been far too loosely prescribed....... especially with young people. Why? Because young people heal and once healed the pain goes away. So what if they suffer some short term pain? Pain is a valid feeling....... not desirable, but valid. Expect pain in your life. Expect it after surgery. Learn to live with short term pain, yes even short term excruciating pain. It will get better and it will be gone and you will not have any need to unwind, or serve an addiction.

 

As for the unscrupulous pushers intent on profiting from addicting others - execute them just as ruthlessly as they prey upon the lives of others. Drugs can be wondrous when applied properly. It is horrific how subhumans seek to profit from their abuse.

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If you are on a low prescribed dose and you are not exceeding it you are not dependent. Legitimate painkillers exist as there is a demonstrated need. Horses for courses.

 

Wb

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agreed Wolfbane

most of the prescriptions say "Every 4 hours or as needed".  That's where things can go bad. 

  When used responsibly are very effective. 

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7 hours ago, WillyBob said:

 

there are less effective, but non-addictive alternates.   I suffer chronic pain [sciatica] and use mj. Opioids are more effective, but the sides that comes with them. 

Smart man. 

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=== might possibly some this be inherit in a persons makeup, psychology and physically? Some folks predisposed to a low tolerance of pain and a physiological tendency to use a “crutch” may well fall to a dependence on opioids. 

Im not saying I have a strong mental makeup or a high threshold for pain but I still have, and don’t ask me why, a half bottle of Rx pain meds for hip replacement surgery(s). After a week or so I didn’t need them so I didn’t take them. I’m sure there are people who took even less than I did and those that required one or two refills. Surely a complicated circle of events that can lead to good and bad results—

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1 hour ago, Bosco-d-gama said:

Yours is a question, and a concern, many more people should consider when dealing with many drugs and interests and activities. Essentially you do not want an external ‘thing’ controlling your life through the coercion of a maniacal dependency. This understanding alone and a commitment to this goal is adequate in my mind, and you clearly do have this understanding in play. Culturally society keeps a fuzzy benchmark for addiction. When a drug renders a person witless and vulnerable becoming addicted to it is considered bad. Thus opioids are relegated to the dark side even if when properly used they clearly have genuine merit. Not so with nicotine. Nicotine does not massively alter behaviors but it surely is addictive and any adult can buy the stuff otc at will and nicotine has absolutely no practical application for humans (other than $$$).

 

Personally I believe you should weigh addiction wariness based upon age and need. Take the popular sleep aid Ambien. The medical community works hard to keep people from becoming dependent on Ambien for sleep. Well, for a 25 year old this makes sense as they should not require nightly sedation to get adequate sleep (see Michael Jackson). But for the elderly who commonly physiologically struggle with sleeplessness why not afford them the drug and any dependency simply to get them solid sleep as they age?

 

As for physicians and ‘pain’ subscriptions they know only what the patients advise. This is how many obtain their recreational pain meds - they lie, and when they run out of gullible docs they turn to other drugs and supply avenues. 

 

But it the real key is this question you have posed here. In your case you have a real need and ready access to real relief....... and if this is your only recourse use the stuff and be less concerned about addiction.  IMHO opioids have been far too loosely prescribed....... especially with young people. Why? Because young people heal and once healed the pain goes away. So what if they suffer some short term pain? Pain is a valid feeling....... not desirable, but valid. Expect pain in your life. Expect it after surgery. Learn to live with short term pain, yes even short term excruciating pain. It will get better and it will be gone and you will not have any need to unwind, or serve an addiction.

 

As for the unscrupulous pushers intent on profiting from addicting others - execute them just as ruthlessly as they prey upon the lives of others. Drugs can be wondrous when applied properly. It is horrific how subhumans seek to profit from their abuse.

So as a doctor or pharmacist your knowledge of Ambien is lacking. Ambien has serious side effects in people who take it for extended periods of time. They have been known to sleepwalk, take the car out in their sleep, bizarre behavior. The medical community gives Ambien out 10like they did Norco 30 years ago. Now the horses are out of the barn, there is an epidemic? The kids are moving on to heroin in droves, a dime bag gets them wrecked or you can buy 1 Percocet for $10. Oxy is $1/mg it comes in 5, 10, 20, 40, 80 and 120 mg. Like all drugs tolerance goes up and so people have to increase intake.

IDK if you have medical marijuana in your state Joe, if you do, go get a card. The candy doesn't affect your brain as much as it makes your body relax and takes the pain away for anywhere from 8-12 hours.

Just from what I've heard in the past and present.

 

Mark

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8 minutes ago, richieb said:

might possibly some this be inherit in a persons makeup, psychology and physically? Some folks predisposed to a low tolerance of pain and a physiological tendency to use a “crutch” may well fall to a dependence on opioids. 

Precisely!  My theory (I'm not claiming knowledge of the actual science) is that there are sufficient biological variations between people which makes some prone to addiction to certain things.  I can take or leave alcohol.  I can get drunk and have a good time with all you guys, but that's more of an excursion for me than it is a lifestyle.  On the other hand, if I smoke even one cigarette, I will be in grave danger of picking up a 30 year habit which I successfully quit 5-6 years ago.  Back on the flip-side, my alcoholic brethren at the party can bum one or two of my cigarettes to add to a good time and not fear wanting another when they wake up the next day.

 

It is a fascinating subject.

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... if your state offers medical marijuana, it is well worth a try.

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1 hour ago, Jeff Matthews said:

It is a fascinating subject.

Yes it is.

 

I've been enjoying my cocktails a little too much lately so I decided to try "Dry January" just to see how I did.  it's only 3 and a half days into the month but no issues whatsoever.  I'm normally a 2 or 3 time a week drinker so we'll see how it goes when we get deeper into the month.

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1 minute ago, CECAA850 said:

Yes it is.

 

I've been enjoying my cocktails a little too much lately so I decided to try "Dry January" just to see how I did.  it's only 3 and a half days into the month but no issues whatsoever.  I'm normally a 2 or 3 time a week drinker so we'll see how it goes when we get deeper into the month.

Good luck.   I'm in the same boat as you there.  

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1 minute ago, Westcoastdrums said:

Good luck.   I'm in the same boat as you there.  

As in Dry January?  If so, good luck!  I got a sister in law and son in law to join me.  We've been texting each other regularly.

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1 minute ago, CECAA850 said:

As in Dry January?  If so, good luck!  I got a sister in law and son in law to join me.  We've been texting each other regularly.

Yup, carried over from last month.   I'm approaching a month now, but I've been craving a little not gonna lie haha. 

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