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Thread: Detox

  1. #11
    Registered User. Mulburry's Avatar

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    Re: Detox

    Thanks for the kind words.

    Update: A couple more diazepam's and a couple walks in the sun, and I'm feeling a lot better. The DZ's (in sufficient quantity) are actually pretty damn good at controlling (the worst) of the symptoms. I'm still a bit worried about potentially escalating symptoms over the coming days, and about what's gonna happen when I start coming of the meds... but just have to take it one day at a time and see what happens.

  2. #12
    Registered User. wagmor's Avatar

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    Re: Detox

    Mulberry - Gosh I can really relate to your detox experience. When I quit drinking in 2014 I was terrified about withdrawals. I knew how dangerous they were, and since I had been drinking enough to get the shakes after just a few hours with no alcohol, I was pretty sure I was going to have a very rough start to my quit. Benzos are very hard to withdraw from too so that's probably at least part of why the Dr is saying 5 days of them. I am SO glad you're getting medical guidance, even if they don't totally understand your situation. Please do check in here regularly, and know that a lot of us can relate to what you're going through. Sending you hugs and strength.

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  4. #13
    Registered User. Mulburry's Avatar

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    Re: Detox

    Quote Originally Posted by wagmor View Post
    Benzos are very hard to withdraw from too so that's probably at least part of why the Dr is saying 5 days of them. I am SO glad you're getting medical guidance, even if they don't totally understand your situation.
    Ya I totally get that, I'm even worried about the effects of coming off the benzos even in this time frame while still having some mild/moderate alcohol withdrawal symptoms. But ya I just have to try to not worry about it and see what happens. And ya they have been very good so far, checking in every day, adjusting meds if needed etc. so that helps put one's mind at ease.

    UPDATE:
    A bit of a weird morning: started off almost exactly the same as yesterday morning (badly wired and the DZ not helping too much). Figured my blood pressure was pretty high so took a clonidine (hadn't taken one yet)... and that actually packs quite a punch as well. But it's a weird feeling, it's like this physical sedation but without the mental aspect (like the DZ's). So mentally still feeling a bit jittery/dysphoric, but also feeling kind of groggy/slow. Basically feeling extremely unmotivated (it took probably 15m just to right this, and felt like huge effort). Still better than the alternative I guess. Hopefully getting out for a walk in the sun helps.

    Another pretty up and down day overall and probably my biggest test yet. The clon/DZ seemed to wear of very abrubtly around noon, and withdrawal symptoms set in again, though relatively manageable (especially when getting out for a walk in the sun). Big mistake was over-napping (more than an hour) which even normally often makes me feel kind of shitty, plus sleep always re-ignites withdrawal symptoms; long story short I was feeling extremely irritable, then managed to drop my pill container and lose a half DZ, spent almost half an hour searching for it with a flashlight to no avail and ended up with some extreme rage/depression (this shit really fucks with your emotions sometimes too). At that point had a pretty strong urge to get a bottle of whisky and take a big chug (funny thing is, before that I really hadn't had even the slightest urge to drink) but of course I didn't. Anyways two more half DZ's throughout the evening and I felt pretty ok. It's a little frustrating with the meds because when they have they're main effect you often feel pretty ok, but when the main effect wears off you feel shitty again, which creates this yoyo sort of effect, which becomes more of an issue the more you reduce them. These next few days with more reduction (heck I'm theoretically only supposed to take one tomorrow, but luckily I have a few extras now) and the shitty weather I think will be pretty tough.
    Last edited by Mulburry; September 17th, 2021 at 02:21 AM.

  5. #14
    Registered User. Mulburry's Avatar

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    Re: Detox

    Haven't been on here much the last few days. Bottom line I'm still struggling (especially with the meds) but still AF. I have been keeping a detailed daily journal so here it is in case anyone's interested:


    DAY 4:

    Morning started rough as usual, took half a DZ (which I technically wasn't supposed to but fuck that) but still felt pretty irritable / jittery / anxious; blood pressure was still pretty high so took half a clonodine, and now feeling a bit better.

    Overall the program has been pretty good but it's a little frustrating because you're often talking to different people (probably about 3 different people so far this week), like today the person was trying to tell me that my symptoms (or at least the anxiety) wasn't withdrawal related but just in my head (and it's like fuck you, I've been dealing with this shit for decades, I can tell the fucking difference). Also told me that I shouldn't only be taking the DZ (1 of them) before bed and taking gabapentin now (while the nurse the other day basically said take them as needed), but I think I'm going to do a slightly longer slower taper, and save gapentin for after (the nice thing about having the meds already is that you have control basically, they can only advise you).


    DAY 5:

    Medication update: tried gabapentin today for the first time, maybe I just have an atypical reaction to it but it's definitely a weird one, felt very druggy, almost a bit like I was stoned (mild euphoria, mixed with some anxiety, and general weird feeling - almost like mix of stimulation/sedation). Wasn't that effective at symptom relief either, though it mellowed out a bit after a couple hours. It wasn't a terrible evening but doesn't seem like something I'd want to take every day (let alone 3x a day), more like something you'd want to take once in a while to get high, lol.

    Ugh, this middle of the night insomnia is getting worse. Woke up around 4am, wide awake and so restless I had to get up and pace around the room. Took an OTC sleeping pill but it did shit all. Still having a hard time even lying in bed trying to get back to sleep at all. It's kind of funny, for normal people sleep is great and refreshing, for me it's become the enemy; seems like every time I sleep (even napping) it resets my brain going a step backwards. I think this next stretch coming off the DZ's might be the toughest of this whole thing.


    DAY 6:

    Well back to this pretty crazy morning ramp up again (despite not getting a ton of sleep), kind of feel like I'm going backwards (though not quite as bad as the first couple days). Luckily I still have a DZ's left, took a third but it's not helping much. Will try to stick 2/3 today so that at least I'm reducing still. BP's pretty high so might take half a clonidine, which usually helps a bit as well. Also, as soon as people start activating the heating system in the building (even though I don't in my apartment) there's these constant strange sounds coming from the walls, and it's driving me fucking crazy.

    Afternoon: The clonodine seems to have helped quite a bit. Strangely it seems almost more effective than gabapentin (though researching it, it does make sense; technically it's a blood pressure medication but it is also sometimes used to help manage opiate/alcohol/sedative withdrawal symptoms).

    DAY 7:

    Frustration, maybe the word for today. Managed to get about 5 hours sleep (in 2.5 hour increments) by splitting the half DZ (which I technically wasn't supposed to take) into quarters and taking the second in the middle of the night. Aside from the usual restlessness, the worst thing right now is this extreme irritability (I can feel it literally the instant I wake up). Irritability might not exactly be the right word for it, it's not the way a normal person would feel (a bit grump/snappy etc.), it's sort of dysphoria too maybe, but it's not just mental; it's almost like a physical sensation as well, like something is constantly gnawing at your bones, sometimes almost like your skin's on fire; it's extremely aggravating. I'm having strong cravings for something (ironically more for ktratom or diazepam than alcohol – basically symptom relief). I'm gonna give gabapentin one more shot.
    Tried gabapentin again in the morning: Feeling weird, almost like I'm stoned, mild auditory hallucinations, occaisional anxiety. There is sort of a feeling of heaviness, but I'm still feeling kind of restless at the same time. Basically I'm sitting here feeling a bit restless but I also don't want to do anything. Feeling pretty of depressed and like I can barely function. It also isn't helping that much with the irritability / dysphoria feeling that I've had since waking up. Spent about half the morning just staring at my computer screen not even being able to decide what to do. The effect seemed to wear off after about 3 and half hours and I had some pretty bad rebound anxiety and restlessness. Took a diazepam and feeling a bit better now.


    DAY 8:

    Night and morning almost identical to day 7 (maybe just slightly better). Little less than a quarter DZ and half a clon helped me get through the morning and the (zoom) doctor's appointment, which went ok; got prescribed some new meds (acamprosate, and trazadone for sleep). Had an ok middle of the day with nice long walk down by the ocean. Tried the acamprosate and also a bit weird: gave me some anxiety and mild headache on the come up, but now feeling pretty relaxed but still a bit weird, not totally sure if I'll continue it. Will try the trazadone for sleep tonight, and maybe even a low dose in the day if the acamprosate continues to give me issues.


    DAY 9:

    Took an acamprosate last night, some anxiety (and mild headache) in the first hour or so then it leveled off and I felt not too bad for the rest of the evening. Half a Trazadone (25mg) didn't help much for sleep: after waking up after a couple hours, I did fall asleep a bit faster again; slept another 3 hours with the same extreme restlessness upon waking. After a bit of time up on the computer and feeling a bit sleepy again I was actually feeling pretty good, but eventually it got to the point where I had to take a nap.
    Feeling not that great again now; took an acamprosate (as I was supposed to) and then a (timed) half hour nap, felt almost good/slightly manic initially when I woke up but now it's shifted into anxiety. Feels like I'm trading off irritability for anxiety. Acamprosate is supposed to take 5+ days to become effective but I don't think I'm going to continue it with the anxiety side effect being so pronounced.
    A quarter DZ and a walk in the sun and I felt quite a bit better. Some restlessness and especially irritability returned after an (unavoidable) nap. Didn't want to take anymore acamprosate and was starting to feel a bit frustrated and discouraged... but a couple valerian root capsules really helped (it's interesting that a natural herb can seem to work better than prescribed meds). I've also ordered some chamomile capsules which I've heard can be very effective for sleep so may try those as well, if the trazadone continues not to work well.

  6. #15
    Registered User. Mulburry's Avatar

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    Re: Detox

    DAY 10:

    Took the trazadone very early morning this time (instead of late at night) and managed to get another 4 hours sleep (7 total, by far the most I've slept in the last week or so). Also felt better in the morning/early afternoon than I have in a while (though that may have been partly due to the trazadone still in my system). I was going to say that today almost felt a bit like a turning point... but felt somewhat worse again in the late afternoon evening (1.5 valerian helped). So still feels like a bit of a roller coaster and I'm still pretty dependent on medication, but it does feel like there's some progress at least.


    DAY 11-13

    It seems like over the last few days the extreme (bad) hyperness / restlessness has subsided a bit, and it's morphed a bit more into just a general lousy feeling (irritable, a bit depressed, slightly anxious/restless). Getting a bit more sleep now (averaging about 6.5 hours a night), and the extreme restlessness in the middle of the night has gotten bit better as well. Medication-wise I've settled into a routine of half a trazadone in the middle of the night/early morning, small amount of clonodine and/or the last of the tiny specs of diazepam I have left (not sure if that's doing anything, might just be placebo) in the mid-moring and valerian in the late afternoon/early evening (down to 1 capsule now). Although it's probably not the best thing to stay on that routine for too long, I'm hesitant to change it up now as it seems to be helping (especially as we're getting into this rainy stretch which doesn't help with mood in general). Overall, it seems like there is some progress which is positive, but on the other hand it can be frustrating to feel lousy day after day, and it can start to wear down your resilience / determination a bit.

  7. #16
    Registered User. Mulburry's Avatar

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    Re: Detox

    DAY 14-17

    Have been sleeping a lot a better (7-8 hours a night) but daytime symptoms are still persisting while fluctuating quite a bit (both from day to day and within the day). Monday felt pretty ok*, Tuesday was pretty mixed, Wednesday more irritable and depressed. Tuesday was probably the best example of daytime fluctuations: mild anxiety attack in the morning, almost euphoric while out on a walk in the sun, restless after a nap (second walk helped), felt better in the evening, all interspersed with occasional short lasting bouts of depression. The doc said that for people with long time alcohol use, it typically takes a few months for the brain to normalize, and it's quite common to have recurrence of symptoms (even separated by a few days or a week at a time), not what I wanted to hear but what I expected from my own research. So I might be in for a long haul.
    * Taking some chamomile extract Sunday night might have been a mistake; I thought I was switching to something milder from valerian but it was actually pretty potent. It's possible that was the reason I was feeling better Monday and I might be having a bit of a rebound effect from it the last few days (you have to be so careful with gaba-ergic substances). I've also been cutting everything down slowly (down to a quarter trazodone, mostly cause I've been sleeping better) and valerian. Also, took the last of the DZ on Sunday so that's probably totally out of my system by now. I had been thinking to try to cut everything out slowly over the course of this week but will have to see how things go. I'm hesitant to stay on anything too long because I'm wary of the effects of coming off them again (I really don't want to have to go through another process like this again).

    Addendum: this morning almost the exact same as yesterday, maybe even a tad worse (sometimes almost seems like I'm going backwards which feels very frustrating). Decided to save the 1/4 traz for the day (slept a bit worse but oh well), just kicking in now and seems to be helping a bit.

  8. #17
    Registered User. Mulburry's Avatar

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    Re: Detox

    Haven't been keeping up on the journaling but in summery: still back and forth a bit with symptoms these days, which is a bit frustrating, but looking at things objectively in a larger timescale things are progressing (doc said it usually takes a few months for the brain to normalize so not really unexpected).

  9. #18
    Registered User. 4theboyz's Avatar

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    Re: Detox

    Hey there Mulberry, just a couple observations I have, is you are struggling with getting traction here and it seems the aspect of feeling like shit in recovery is pushing down on you hard and it is simply part of the process and a price we all have to pay to get out from under this. It does come to an end of sorts where you will start to feel better and finally get real sleep again. This is not easy, it won't be much easier with medications but they can help greatly especially when anxiety is at play. Learn to regulate your "moment" where if something is starting to make you anxious see if you can move to a less "noisy" area to calm down. Do belly breathing, meditations, fidget devices, chew gum, go sit under a tress anything to disengage from this anxious moment. Learn to avoid situations that elevate your anxiety or trigger a desire to drink. Sobriety demands we learn to control our choices so we never choose alcohol again!
    Is Addiction Really a Disease?
    Watch this and find out....
    http://youtu.be/ekDFv7TTZ4I

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  11. #19
    Registered User. Mulburry's Avatar

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    Re: Detox

    @4theboyz ya I knew this wasn't going to be easy and was gonna be a long haul. Thanks for the tips; I've developed some of my own strategies in that regard as well (getting outside and walking is one of my best tools), and boy have I had to employ everything possible over the last half week or so, as things have taken a turn for the worse; well that's not entirely true as some symptoms have gotten better (irritability and night restlessness for example)....... BUT I've very suddenly come down with EXTREME anxiety (sometimes escalating to panic attacks and what seems like even very mild hallucinations sometimes, with crazy energy), it's usually worst in the morning / first half of the day and fades as exhaustion takes over later on, but not always, have had a few bad attacks in the evening too (and seems like it can flip on a dime sometimes and tends to be provoked by absolutely nothing: like the other night for example: I was relaxed watching TV and wham it hit me, lasted about an hour and then went instantly from that to extreme sleepiness). This has taken a weird turn and is extremely hard to manage right now, but I've managed to stick with it so far. I'm really hoping this is something that will stabilize after a few days cause I'm not sure how much longer I can handle it.

    P.S. I think it's possible that longer term effects of trazodone (with it's serotonin altering and SSRI) properties might be contributing to this symptom / mood shift, so I've cut that out (which seemed to help at first but today was pretty bad again). The doc now just prescribed seroquel (quetiapine), though I'm a little hesitant to try another med as I've had bad experiences with so many (I do tend to be oversensitive / have atypical reactions to meds so that doesn't help).

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  13. #20
    Forum Subscriber. Guitarista's Avatar

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    Re: Detox

    Great going Mulberry. You're pushing through no matter who no matter what.

    You must stick with your plan and back yourself. Our body and internal chemistry is a superior and intuitive design that wants to work to heal and re balance itself, as long as we work with it and help it along. Be gentle on yourself. Sounds like you've at least had some good moments throughout the difficult days. Keep breaking down the walls of that prison, friend.

    'I am part of all that I have met, yet all experience is an arch wherethro', gleams that untravelled world whose margins fade, forever and forever when I move'

    Zen soul Warrior. Freedom today-

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