No dose of prednisone is safe long-term, even very low ones, due to the risk of opsteoporosis and other serious side effects. Prednisone isn't effective as a maintenance drug, anyway. It can get you out of a flare, but once the inflammation is healed, it doesn't keep it from coming back. Weird, huh? I think that people have trouble tapering because the inflammation comes back once they drop below a certain dose.
As to going 5x/day, I would have been GLAD beyond belief to only be going that many times when I was at the height of my flare...I was up in the 15-20 range at my worst.
Symptoms began in November 2008, ~4 weeks after giving birth to my son.
Eased for ~3 weeks in December, possibly b/c of probiotic use?
Returned in January 2009 (with a vengeance), diagnosed with pancolitis on January 30.
Currently taking Asacol (400mg 4 pills 3x daily), Rowasa nightly,
40mg 30mg 20mg 15mg 10mg of Prednisone (quick taper), Culturelle probiotic, and Zoloft (25 mg).