Citation: Mind101. "The High, the Addiction, and the Withdrawal: An Experience with Tramadol (ID 48660)". Erowid.org. Jun 27, 2007. erowid.org/exp/48660
Iíve used generic tramadol after getting a frequent access to the substance over the past 2 or 3 months. It started with 3 pills (150mgs) which gave a high similar to opiates; almost same as hydrocodone but not as instense as oxycodone.
One benefit over opiates is that tramadol, a non-opiate analgesic, lasts a whole lot longer - around 7-8 hours compared to 2-4 for hydrocodone/oxy/codeine.
As the days went by, use was increased to 200mgs then 300mgs over several days. Then, tolerance built up and realization hit that I need to lower it a bit so I abstained a bit by stopping for 4 days after taking a max of 9 pills (450mgs).
At first, I thought there was no withdrawal but a depression hit me so strong over the 2 days that all I wanted to do was cry. Oxycodone helped a lot with sleep over the first 2 days.
Then, after being clean for 2 weeks or so, I started taking it again getting up to the max of 14 pills (700mgs!) over a 3 day period and suddenly stopping. The fault was in the sudden stop of tramadol as the same exact depression hit me over the 2 day period; it's as if all I knew came crashing down and there was nothing to hold on to. Opiates helped a lot with the sadness which didn't last longer than 4 days.
Because opiate use can lead to significant tolerance (requiring higher doses for the same effects), the dose used by a first time user is significantly smaller than that used by a regular user. It can be extremely dangerous to choose ones dose on the basis of the amount taken by someone else. Overdoses of opiates can be fatal.]
Over those 4 days, intense cravings were there and it's as if I had to re-examine my whole life. This was the time I found out that tramadol has SNRI properties which mess a bit with serotonin in the brain so that would explain the sudden depression. 2 days after that, a slight headache was experienced and feelings/mood went back to normal.
Having been through 2 withdrawals with this substance, I've learned to control its use and not depend on it as much if at all. It's fun and does work in small doses for anxiety, etc. although there are some times that this doesn't work for at all.
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