Jade Wilson, just 28 and from Chepstow, has overcome a 10 year addiction to prescription drugs with the support of Kaleidoscope’s services.
During the height of her dependency Jade swallowed 16 tablets a day, and even attempted to take her own life following an explosive fight with her mother, whom she calls ‘‘her best friend and greatest support’’. Now fifteen months into recovery, she is looking forward to a brighter future.
At just 18 Jade underwent a mastoidectomy, a surgical procedure that involves opening a part of the skull below the ear to remove infected air cells. Unexpectedly complications followed and Jade was prescribed Tramadol, a strong opiate medication to treat severe pain. Her use of the drug was not professionally reviewed for several years, and without knowing it, Jade had become seriously addicted.
In 2017, Jade worked with a GP concerned by her sustained use of the drug to slowly lower her dose, and at first things felt promising. A few weeks later though, Jade’s mental health declined rapidly. Reflecting on this, Jade said ‘‘I was not myself at all, something just switched. Anyone who knows me can see how close I am with my mother, but that night I smashed the house to pieces and gripped her by the throat.
It’s truly frightening, when addiction takes a hold of you it’s as if who you really are disappears. Later that evening I overdosed on Tramadol, Pregablin and another anti-depressant that I can’t recall. I’d swallowed 3000mg of tablets in one go and it was a miracle I survived.’’
She continued ‘’I felt hopeless. I’d relied on Tramadol to block out painful memories. My father left when I was 6 and I lost my only brother aged 9. There was a lot of trauma I hadn’t processed, and the Tramadol had meant I didn’t have to.
It had numbed me for too long and I knew I needed support. Following my admission to hospital I was seriously ill for the next four weeks, that’s when I got referred into service for treatment in 2017, and things slowly started to get better.’’
For almost 2 years Jade has been receiving Buprenorhphine on a weekly basis, an alternative treatment for opiate dependency such as methadone, which is given daily.
Jade added: ‘‘I feel like I’ve got my life back on track now, and I haven’t suffered a single relapse since I started with Buprenorphine. I’m much more in control and my key worker Helen has really helped me to piece things back together.
Initially I met with a number of professionals but there just wasn’t enough consistency. I think to properly get better you need that, someone you can trust and rely on to steer you through recovery. Now I’m hopeful about the future.’’
If you, or anyone you know, is struggling with drug or alcohol dependency or negative mental health, please don’t suffer in silence. Contact us via our website, social media channels, or give us a call on 01633 811 950