medications

@daeckardt (6245)
United States
February 5, 2011 6:03am CST
After my surgery, I was sent home with a huge bottle of pain pills. I was told by the pharmacist that if I took the maximum number of pills in a day, that it would last a week. It turns out that I haven't used anywhere near the maximum number. In fact, I sometimes go without using any at all. I still take two at night to help me sleep, but soon I may be able to stop doing even that. I am surprised that I was able to function without the pain medication this time around. After my first surgery (2003), I was home from the hospital after about a week and I was constantly taking pills. I think the fact that I had an epidural after this surgery helped instead of being in constant pain the whole time the last time. I definitely don't want to become dependent on pain pills since I have heard of people becoming addicted to them. But I don't know that I want to give them up quite yet either. What do I do? Do I keep taking them at night or just stop altogether? What do you think? Thanks for your suggestions.
1 person likes this
8 responses
@margeryann (1853)
• United States
6 Feb 11
I'm always afraid of getting addicted to pills too so I don't take them as much as it says. When I'm prescribed pain pills I only take them if I'm in a lot of pain in the day or I don't take them then and I take them at night so I can sleep without being in pain. Then, when I'm not in pain at all in the day I stop taking them at night too and just stop taking them. I keep the pills for incase I run into a situation where I need some pain pills. I throw them a way if I have them too long though because I don't want them to expire.
1 person likes this
• United States
7 Feb 11
You never know you might be right on expiration on medicine.Businesses do figure out ways of making more money. You have a good week.
@Lore2009 (7389)
• United States
6 Feb 11
You should talk to you doctor about it. If you don't need it you shouldn't take it.. but with your rate it doesn't seem like you would get addicted to it.
1 person likes this
@daeckardt (6245)
• United States
6 Feb 11
I see the gyn/onc (cancer doctor) on Monday so I might ask her. I am supposed to see the surgery doctor some time next week as well so I could ask them as well. I just wish that I could do this all at one time instead of seeing three different doctors on three different days (the surgery team, the cancer doc and the urology doc). It seems like a real hassle!
@Lore2009 (7389)
• United States
6 Feb 11
I sure does sound like a lot of hassle. I wished it was more organized and easier so that we can just get the best opinions faster and easier.
• United States
7 Feb 11
I personally don't like taking pain killers myself, I try to go without them, if I can and if the pain is bareable. The last time I had surgery I was given a prescription to be taken every four hours. The first couple of days I was taking them in the morning and then in the evening, because it would help me sleep through the night, after that two or three days, I started taking them only during the evening. I don't like being dependent on pain killers, or being in bed. I remember with my C-Sections, I was out of the bed and walking the hospital less than 24 hours after my surgery. I am not the type of person, to be laying down and taking pain meds. Of course, the hospital has to give them to you as procedures, but as soon as I left the hospital I was only drinking to sleep at night, because that is the time I felt the most uncomfortable. But that is the best thing you can do...
1 person likes this
• United States
8 Feb 11
Wow, I am so sorry, you had to go through all that pain, trust me a C-Section is nothing compared to what you are experiencing. But you right, I kind of experienced the same thing during the night, after a week of taking the pain meds at night, I had difficulties sleeping as well, I just never knew why, but maybe there were the pain meds I was taking. It's weird they're suppose to relax you and make you comfortable to sleep and instead they tend to keep you awake. Is it maybe that your body is rejecting them and unconciously telling us to stop. My hubby experienced the same thing when he had his back surgery. Is like your body gets tired of being forced to relaxed and/or sleep.
• United States
6 Feb 11
It sounds like you are pretty smart with them already.Of course you certainly don't want to become addicted to them. Taking them at night can be good and help you sleep which will help you heal as well. Maybe drop down to one at night and see how well that works. Kind of taper them off over a few days. That's how I got my son off pain meds.
@daeckardt (6245)
• United States
6 Feb 11
I was never one for taking a lot of pills. I think the best thing I can do is to stay away from them as much as possible. I might give it a few days before I cut down too much. I want to be able to sleep and I don't trust myself without them. Any more, I rarely use them during the daytime and then it is only if I lay around too much. I usually try to get up and walk before I try to take the pills. Thanks for the response!
@GardenGerty (88740)
• Marion, Kansas
6 Feb 11
I had a foot surgery a year ago. The doctor told me "You will take the pain pills as scheduled for the first two days, after that it is up to you." I think he tells all of his patients that, but it also could have been because he knew I would work or do anything and ignore pain. I tend to not believe my pain is very great. He kept saying I could not get addicted to the pills. I did find that although I did not feel pain as such, I did tend to grind my teeth and have hot flashes. The funny thing is, that can be symptomatic of pain, or it can be an indicator of being to reliant on the pills. I would do as many people are saying and taper the pills off if you do not need them. You are far enough out from your surgery you should know what is going on pain wise. It is pretty smart to take them so that you will sleep. A good night's sleep is essential to the healing process.
@daeckardt (6245)
• United States
6 Feb 11
Thanks. Since I only take them at night now, I think I can stop them pretty much any time. I just want to make sure that I am able to sleep because like you say it is while sleeping that most healing occurs. Being able to sleep is most important to me right now. Have a good night!
• Finland
5 Feb 11
Im not completely sure. If you dont take them, You wont get addicted. On the other hand, the pills will ease your pain. Its your choise to take them or not
1 person likes this
@daeckardt (6245)
• United States
5 Feb 11
I have pretty much decided that I don't need them most of the time. Now I am only taking them at night to help me sleep. I do sometimes take them at other times when I have a little extra pain, but I think it I got up and moved around more, I might not need them for those times. After sitting around all day, I sometimes hurt more than others so I guess that is why I take them at night. I guess that I need to talk to the doctor about whether I need to keep on with them or if I should stop. Thanks for the response!
@moirai (1343)
• Philippines
5 Feb 11
Pain medications can be taken on an as needed basis. If it's immediately after a surgery, then it's usually taken regularly. But if it's a week or more after the surgery already, and the pain is down to minimal or none at all, then you can take them only when needed.
1 person likes this
@daeckardt (6245)
• United States
5 Feb 11
The surgery was about three weeks ago. I had an epidural for the first week after surgery and I was really hesitant to have that taken out because I was afraid it was going to hurt as much as I hurt after the first two surgeries. I was much more able to get up and walk this time around and I didn't get pneumonia! I hope that if I have to get cut again (to do the repair that they were going to do or anything else) that they do it that way again especially if they cut me in the same way. Thanks for the response.
• Pakistan
5 Feb 11
You are in no danger of becoming an addict if your taking just 2 at night!! I would suggest you keep on taking them so that you can enjoy a restful sleep but if your eager to be rid of them completely then start by gradually decreasing the dose i.e. if your taking two then take 1 for sometime and then take 1 on alternate days and so on. Don't stop them suddenly, you won't like the experience. Yes epidural does wonders and i am glad to hear you can achieve pain relief with so few a number.
1 person likes this
@daeckardt (6245)
• United States
5 Feb 11
Thanks for the response. I avoid taking pills whenever possible. I have never liked what they did to me, but in this instance, I like the fact that I am able to fall asleep with them. Even when I was in the hospital, I often went longer without asking for pain pills than they had anticipated. They usually waited for me to ask, but there was one nurse who checked on me because when she came on I had told her I needed some but it was too soon, but she came by a while later because I hadn't asked and it was already an hour past when I could have it. I think the fact that I started out relatively pain free helped a lot. I was really afraid to have the epidural taken out, but even when it was, the pain was never all that bad. Have a great day!