7 days and feeling more motivated than ever...

Posted , 6 users are following.

I finally decided enough is enough.

Hi, I'm a 43 year old female and I've been a morning to night alcoholic for around 10 years. Before that always drinking to get drunk.

I could never see the point of drinking otherwise.

I've wrecked everything in my life from drinking. My health, my relationships, my job and integrity.

I've been to Inpatient detox many times, residential rehabs, counselling etc etc....

This time I decided to just go for it and quit on my own. I would never recommend that to anyone of course...see your doctor first. But waiting a month to get into detox seemed like an eternity.

I was a bit worried as I've had seizures in the past, both withdrawal and alcohol induced....so I've stayed home this week.

I feel really good, much better than I thought I would at this point..It's such a relief to feel good about something instead of perpetual shame.

I'm going to keep pressing on, get out this week and get some exercise. The weather is beautiful.

I'm curious about Campral...I've been reading your posts all week and that sounds like an option that would help me...

Take care everyone! Laura..

0 likes, 28 replies

28 Replies

  • Posted

    Hi Laura and well done on one week!

    Campral sounds ideal for you but like any of these drugs hard to get on the nhs (if you are in the uk )

    RHGB will be able to tell you more about it

    • Posted

      Thank you Nicole!

      I'm in Canada, but my GP is pretty open minded and if he thinks it'll help me he'll make sure I can get it.

      Hope you are doing well today!

  • Posted

    Hello Laura,

    Congratulations on achieving one week Alcohol-Free.  You must have a huge amount of willpower, stashed inside you !

    I am glad you have not suffered bad withdrawal symptoms.  Getting out and about now, in the good weather, seems ideal therapy.

    RHGB, on here, knows lots about Campral. I am sure you will hear from him soon.

    Good Luck on your journey of continuing recovery.


    Alonangel 🎇

    • Posted

      Thank you Alonangel!

      Thanks so much for your nice words....I've read many of your posts and you seem like a very empathetic kind person wink

      I don't know if I have much willpower, maybe I had more than I thought....but I'm smiling today so something must be getting me there.

      I was very interested in Campral's ability to help with cravings..that is my issue. I've also heard of the benefits of Baclofen for cravings as well... I would love to hear RHGB's thoughts on these options...

      Thanks again Alonangel! Hope your day is going well wink

    • Posted

      Congratulations on 5 days alcohol free! I just read on another thread....that's awesome!!! You must have stashed willpower as well! 😊
    • Posted

      Okay. The first hurdle you have to get over is the thought of abstinence. I know right now you're feeling tough and determined. But, you have to go through that thought process, am I ready to give up. It's a scary thought, it scared me.

      You've been through the system as far as detox and counselling goes, so you are a bit of a veteran there. People usually fail because the people guding them have no real understanding of what it is like to be hooked on alcohol, so dependent that your first morning thought is, I'll just have a livener to get me straight.

      Well, done on going through cold turkey by the way, that is extremely unpleasant. Should I ever fail, I keep a box of diazepam, so I don't have to do cold turkey.

      So, on to Campral (acamprosate) and Baclofen. I'll start with Campral. It is an anti-craving drug, when you give up alcohol after a long (years/decades) period, it changes your body, mind and central nervous system (CNS).

      This is why you get the shakes because the CNS has been affected. Also your brain changes, it changes both chemically and phsyically. Chemically, it becomes different, it feeds on alcohol, and sends the brain a message when you do not have alcohol in your system, that something is wrong and the only way to bring it back to normal, is to consume alcohol. This also calms your CNS.

      Physically your brain can change, I have had a CT scan and on my patient notes from the hospital, one consultant said they could see changes in my brain scan from alcohol abuse. This is why all the therapy, detox and counselling in the world will not help, because you have been changed.

      This needs resetting, your CNS needs a period to calm down and your brain needs to be taught to not demand alcohol. Which is where Campral comes in, as previously said, it is an anti-craving. It helps with PAWS (post acute withdrawal symptoms) which can easily last 12 months after a detox and is why peole start driking again.

      It has a calming effect, it just seems to tone down your craving for alcohol, you can walk past the liquor store, the bar, have a row with your other half and not immediately reach for the bottle. It doesn't zombify you, make you drowsy or affect any other part of your life, it just calms your need for alcohol.

      It doesn't make you tired, it feels no different to taking a vitamin pill each day. It doesn't have any side effects, doesn't affect any other medication you're taking and if you relapse and drink, it won't give you any side effects, just keep taking it and stop the alcohol as soon as you can.

      Before I go onto Baclofen, there is something that needs cleared up. medications that are approved are either on label or off label for different types of use. If they are approved, they can be prescribed. If they are on label for the type of use, you are much more likely to get the medication. Campral is on label for alcohol problems.

      Baclofen, is approved for muscle type problems, but is off label for alcohol problems. That means that whilst your doctor can prescribe it, it is more unusual and will probably be more difficult to get. Lastly, I take Campral, so I'm quite knowledgeable on it. I've never used Baclofen, so I'm only going on what I've read, plus a few comments from one or two people here who have tried it.

      You have to ramp up to quite high levels for the first 8-10 weeks, and then taper down a bit. The problem is it doesn't seem to work if not used this way and doctors are reluctant to prescribe these high doses.

      The high doses can make some people quite sleepy. That said, the people here who have used it, seem to day it worked, but it did have the side effects and that they ended up ordering online/abroad rather than being prescribed it from a doctor - except France where it is on label.I can't really say much more about Baclofen.

      If the abstinence scares you, just remember, you can try Campral and if it isn't for you, go a different route, but imho it is worth giving it a go.


    • Posted

      Thanks, Laura.  I'm sort of 'up there on Cloud 9' !

      I do so hope it lasts.  My body really needs a break from booze.

      Alonangel 🎇

    • Posted

      I used baclofen and it worked,it was,is a miracle drug and far outstrips any other drug for alcohol cravings (I couldn't pick up that glass of wine if you paid me).....

      But for many reasons I had to stop

    • Posted

      But you had to get in that from an IOP, the one in Canada probably?

      Just looked at the pricing, bet that wasn't cheap, especially when you have to really dose up high in the first 2 - 3 months.

      As you and I both know, much better to start importing medication, then go to a centre and persuade them it's already working for you and they are then more likely to prescribe you and the cost then is fairly insignificant, especially when you consider the alcohol cost savings.

      I doubt that they would have prescribed you Baclofen, so it would have been costly importing that for a year.

    • Posted

      They point blank refused baclofen because it isn't licensed for alcohol which I understand,who wants to put there neck on the line
    • Posted

      This is what I was trying to say in my post to the OP. It is on list for muscle problems but is off list for alcohol problems.

      It doesn't mean it is unlicensed, that is incorrect (either ignorance ((plus ça change)) or not wanting to discuss it) by the alcohol recovery centre, but it passed for a different use and not really researched for alcohol use. it can be prescribed but you will find it nigh on impossible to get anyone to prescribe you.

      The funny things is, I could probably get it prescribed, as I had a severe stroke with ataxia, although I'm not sure what the quantities would be.

    • Posted

      My husband had it prescribed because he had a spinal injury and was in hospital for 5 months but it was prescribed at 5mg a day.I was on 180mg a day by the time I hit my switch
    • Posted

      You're a quiet one Nicole. You obviously been at this game (ducking and diving trying to find an alcohol solution) for some time. Buying both Baclofen & naltrexone form IOPs and you know all the terminolgy (hit the switch). I thought it was only mad people like me, that would resort to taking matters into their own hands when let down by the system.

      Changing the subject slightly, hows your hubby doing with natrexone or did he give up on it?

    • Posted

      I went on another forum a lot and there is a whole section dedicated to baclofen and many people who are alcohol free thanks to baclofen.

      I hit my switch after on 16 days but dropped my dose down to fast due to worrying about the next shipment coming and I started drinking again.when I tried to go up again I reached 249mg and still no switch.The side effects were terrible and my doctor was very angry at me for taking so I felt I had no choice but to stop.

      Hubby gave up on naltrexone due to not taking it an hour before drinking every time but says he wants to try again soon

    • Posted

      So annoying when you write a big post and it gets moderated!!

      I think because I mentioned another forum.

      My hubby has given up on naltrexone due to not taking it one hour before every time but wants to try again soon

    • Posted

      There is another forum that has a whole section dedicated to baclofen and I got a lot of advise there as there are lots of people on it who are alcohol free using baclofen
    • Posted

      If you write a big post, copy it, like you were about to do a copy and paste. Then if it gets modded or the system fall over over as you hit reply and your post disappears into the ether, just start again and right click paste and it will put your original message back.

      That way if the message got lost, you have it straight back, if it got modded, edit it and hit reply. I do this for any website where I have done a long post.

    • Posted

      Yeah I thought of that just after it disappeared,doh!

      Well you live and learn

    • Posted

      Thanks so much for your great reply!

      Sorry about the delay of my response...I dropped my phone that I use for all things internet in the sink! Lol! I put it rice for a day or so and it's okay...phew

      I'm definately going to talk to my doctor about Campral....it seems ideal for me. I had asked him a few months ago about Baclofen but as you said he had never heard of it indicated for Alcohol Abuse.

      I'm doing well...still sober and feeling good...I do have the cravings coming here and there but nothing bad enough to make me reach for a drink...9 days now... wink

      Thanks Again RHGB!!!

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