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    Old 12-05-2007, 11:16 PM   #1
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    Alcohol withdrawal

    I have been drinking pretty hard on and off for about a year now and I just quit cold turkey last Sunday. Every time I went with friend I would drink as a social lubricant and to help with my depression. I would drink at least 6-10 drinks in a night every time. The reason I quit was because I am starting a new job next week and my schedule will be completely different than the night shift I was working at a restaurant. I want to use this opportunity to get my life on track but right now I feel like I am going die. Thursday will make day 5 and I still feel like hell. I having intense anxiety, panic attacks, nausea, vomiting, fatigue, and some bad thoughts. How long will this last?

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    Old 12-06-2007, 08:11 AM   #2
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    Re: Alcohol withdrawal

    I am so sorry you are going through this - I have not personally gone through alcohol withdrawls but I have watched my sister go through it. If you are on day 5 you should start feeling better in the next couple of days. My sister was actually in the hospital because the alcohol was shutting her kidneys down - the first few days it was scary but you are close to the end of the road. I wish there was something I could tell you to take to make you feel better - I know one thing they told us was to get her to drink as many fluids as we could - I hope this helps you some what. I will keep you in my prayers -please keep in touch.

    Old 12-06-2007, 11:49 AM   #3
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    Re: Alcohol withdrawal

    Could you get some help from a doc to ease the withdrawal a bit? Also, you mention having depression and anxiety. When I was treated for that (the root cause of my drug/alcohol use), I quit all the crap. You're self-medicating like I was. When I took myself OFF the anti-depressants and anti-anxiety meds, I once again turned to drugs and drink. So treating the depression and anxiety will definitely help curb your alcohol least it should. I take the lowest dose of Zoloft and use Xanax sparingly, ONLY when needed. Xanax gives me absolutely no high, so there's no temptation for me to want to abuse it. It simply takes the edge off when I'm feeling overly anxious.


    Old 12-09-2007, 11:41 AM   #4
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    Re: Alcohol withdrawal

    I can't really afford the doctor until my new benefits kick in in 3 weeks with the new job.

    Old 12-09-2007, 01:41 PM   #5
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    Re: Alcohol withdrawal

    Best of luck to you. Make sure you keep tabs on your blood pressure and pulse. Alcohol withdrawals are some of the most dangerous because of the risk of seizures and the wildly fluctuating BP and HR. If you were to tell a doctor that you had quit drinking cold turkey, he would most likely tell you that it is much safer and much more comfortable to alcohol detox using valium or a similar drug for a few days. They regulate the central nervous system that is going haywire, yet they don't have properties that will prolong withdrawals. They are pretty much standard medical procedure.

    Now, if you are anything like I was, after reading this your anxiety will soar and you will be convinced you are about to stroke out. Don't worry about it. With the length of time you have been drinking, it's pretty rare. Most of the serious or fatal effect of alcohol withdrawal occur in people who have been drinking for years and years. Their nervous system does not know how to function without alcohol. Since you are a binge drinker, that is not the case. So calm down. (I know, that's next to impossible at the moment. My heart goes out to you.)

    I wish you the best of luck, and all I can tell you is that for me, the anxiety and panic lasted about five days or so. I also had problems getting to sleep and night sweats when I finally would fall asleep. From the day I started turning the corner to the next two weeks or so, I intermittently dealt with super short episodes of ataxia (wide, uneven, lumbering gate that is common in CNS depressant withdrawals) and another quick feeling of being suddenly "unbalanced." Like the room was moving. Or rather, like my brain was moving. That lasted about 10 days, but was totally bearable compared to the panic and hysteric tears of the first 5.

    Seriously, if you can get your hands on some kind of benzodiazipine like Valium or klonopin, you will be amazed at how much they alleviate the symptoms.

    Oh, I couldn't fall asleep without benadryl for more than two weeks. Your drinking history sounds alot like mine, and those were my experiences.

    Mine might have been different because I had been using benzos to prevent w/d symptoms the day after drinking (cause I hate drinking in the day) and drinking later that night. The drug I was on, Klonopin, is very long acting, and was still very much in my system when I began drinking. I thought I was okay waiting 6-8 hours. Instead I created a cross tolerance in myself. It would take more and more booze to get me drunk, and more and more klonopin to get me back to normal the next day. The progression was much more rapid than run of the mill tolerance building. So when I quit drinking, I quit both cold turkey. That's why I couldn't use them during my withdrawals.

    I also drank to self medicate anxiety and depression. I still deal with panic and being down in the dumps on occasion, but it's much better than it was. I found that the alcohol actually treated AND increased my anxiety and depression. It is a cycle, and if you can break it, you will feel a difference immediately. I still take benzos very sparingly (it takes me 3-6 months to use 60 tabs of a low dosage depending on the stressors of the time.

    Best of luck to you. I know where you are coming from. You hang in there, okay? You are in the worst of it now. It probably won't get worse than this. It will only get better. Okay? Keep us posted.
    Married 09/28/2002
    DS born 07/05/2003
    DD born 3/24/2005

    Last edited by siren1024; 12-09-2007 at 01:51 PM.

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