I'm an alcoholic and have been for several years.

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i am a 57 year old female who started drinking Spirits about 5/6 years ago. Around 6 months ago ive shifted to wine but its still a problem,i do on my own at home. i start at midday and sometimes sip away until evening time. Not more than 1.5 bottles but i REALLY WANT TO STOP. Any advice about Naltraxon?

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  • Posted

    Hi Caroline,

    May I firstly ask you why you started drinking spirits 5-6 years ago? Was there a significant event in your life that you can attribute to your dependency on alcohol? That might be a good place to start to help you on your way to recovery. Are you currently working as you say that you start drinking at midday and then carry on until the evening. Is this everyday or just every now and then?

    I'm sorry but I have no experience of Naltraxon but other users on here may be able to help you.

    All the best.

    Claire xxx

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    • Posted

      Thank you Claire for your reply. I cant remember any particular event that first made me start drinking spirits but im starting a course of CBT and maybe they will enable me to find some answers. Ive got a good GP and Alcohol service helping me now soim feeling quite hopeful in beating this addiction. Drinking like i do,everyday at home is a recipe for disaster,especially when I have other medical issues.

      Thank you again for your reply and concern!

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    • Posted

      Hi Caroline,

      The first start is to acknowledge that you have a problem and wanting to do something about it so well done as so many people are in denial. It's great that you are starting a CBT course - I've always been skeptical of these 'life changing therapies' but I recently underwent a one to one NHS telephone course with a fantastic lady, who didn't judge me but taught me to look at things in a different way. I can honestly say, hand on my heart, that she worked miracles and I definitely benefited from her help. The CBT helped me on my alcohol journey but a liver scare and feeling so ill all the time made me finally want to quit. I've now not had a drink for 6 months and I feel fantastic. I wake up with a clear head, I've lost 2 stone and my confidence has come back. It's been a long journey Caroline, I was a heavy drinker for about 25-30 years and I know that Robin has also not had a drink for about 5-6 years so it can be done!! You will have setbacks and bad days but persevere, a day at a time, as the outcome of being alcohol free far outways the anxiety and depressive feelings that are enhanced by drinking. Sorry I've gone on a bit but I find it quite theraputic for me to share bits of my life in the hope that it might help others.

      If I can do it - you definitely can!!

      Keep in touch and let us know how you are getting on even if you slip up, we've all been there.

      All the best.

      Claire xxx

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  • Posted

    Welcome Caroline. You are at home all day and not working if i understand you correctly. How many units in total per week and do you have any days without drinking i wonder. Check out The C3 Foundation i recommend.robin

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    • Posted

      Iam unable to work so you're correct in thinking I'm at home all day. Im drinking a minimum of 1 bottle of white wine,sometimes opening up another bottle and am ashamed to admit i have no "drink free" days. Ive spoken to my GP and the Alcohol Team who suggested i use some tablets called Naltraxon which they will be starting me on very soon.

      Thank you for your reply.

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    • Posted

      Hi Caroline

      That's great to read you will be starting on Naltrexone soon. Many of us on here have little luck in getting it prescribed by our GP's . It's great that you have such good support too.As Robin suggested look on the C3 Foundation Europe website and read about the Sinclair Method (TSM) .

      I now take Naltrexone and 2 years after starting to use the Sinclair Method . I now rarely drink and when I do choose to do so I take my tablet an hour before hand and probably only drink a couple of small glasses , I just don't want any more than that which is amazing . Like you I was a regular drinker ( more a binger) and tried everything to stop but nothing lasted .I stumbled across this site and was desperate for help and it's here that I discovered the Sinclair Method .You have come to the right place for support am sure you will hear the experiences of others too. Keep posting 😊

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    • Posted

      Thanks for your reply Nat 666. Im grateful to learn that you've been able to change your drinking habits....you have done so well. Huge respect! I will deffo look at the Sinclair Method.

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  • Posted

    Hello Caroline.

    Well done for taking the first steps to what could be a much, much better life for you. I will try keep this post as short as I can, whilst giving you some information about naltrexone.

    Naltrexone was approved to help those with alcohol issues back in the mid 1990's. At the time, the company who researched into it (who were called DuPont, I think) found that when it was prescribed to be taken every day to prevent a relapse back to drinking, it actually didn't give much better results than someone who took a placebo tablet every day. The level of relapse was still quite high. What they did discover is that in those that did relapse, they drunk far less than normal and the relapse lasted a shorter length of time.

    Further clinical testing showed the same type of results - naltrexone given to someone with the instructions to take every day and not drink didn't work very well.

    However, back then, the concept of moderation management was unheard of. For profit reasons they needed to get the medication approved and onto the market, so they continued to work towards the original intention of take every day and remain abstinent, in order to get the medication approved. Had they gone to approval with the concept of tell someone to take the pill when they got the urge to drink, then allow then to drink, they would've been laughed out the rooms.

    The medication got approved, profits were increased for DuPoint - they were happy and the governments of the world felt confident that they had something to help people with alcohol problems.

    However, the clinical testing continued and over 120 clinical tests later, it was proven that naltrexone taken every day with abstinence really wasn't very successful at all. Instead, it was found that if a person took a tablet on the first signs of an urge to drink, then waited an hour and drank, then over a period of some months, their drinking gradually become less and less and eventually came to a halt. They no longer felt the urges and cravings to drink at all. What had happened was that the naltrexone was shown to block the rewarding chemical effects of alcohol on the part of the brain that associated alcohol equals reward. In the same way that a person's brain learned that alcohol gave it a rewarding chemical reaction, when that reaction was removed, the brain learned that it was no longer rewarding.

    The medical term for this is called Pharmacological Extinction, but the term us non-medical types use The Sinclair Method, after the doctor that continued the research into naltrexone.

    The issue is that because naltrexone is now out of patent, there is no profit for any pharma company to pay to have the prescribing instructions changed and we are left in a situation were alcohol recovery services are still prescribing it with instructions that are basically not very successful.

    Some doctors are aware of the better way to use naltrexone, and if you are lucky, your prescriber may be one of those, but it doesn't sound like it from your post here.

    I would urge you to read more about The Sinclair Method. Google the website C3 Foundation Europe and there is much more information about the better (more effective) way of prescribing it. Then, when you know a little more, if you think that this might be for you, discuss it with the prescriber - that is, the person who is more likely to have heard of the term Pharmacological Extinction.

    To put it in terms easy to understand, you may have heard of Pavlovs Dog. This is the scientist who discovered that it you ring a bell and give a dog a treat, it will learn to associate the ringing of the bell with a treat and salivate when the bell is rung because it has learned it will get a treat. The scientist then discovered that if you continue to ring the bell but NOT give the dog a treat then it will, eventually, learn to DIS-associate that bell ringing with the reward of the treat.

    Naltrexone PLUS alcohol one hour later will allow your brain to dissassociate that alcohol gives it a reward and if you repeat this over a number of months, your cravings and urges to drink will break down and stop.

    All the best for your journey, whatever you decide.

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    • Posted

      Thank you so very much for your extremely helpful and informative reply. Other members had pointed me in the direction of the c3 Sinclair Method but you have explained it in detail.....so much so,that if you agree, I'd like to show just the text,to my GP and Alcohol Team leader. Of course i will never reveal any of your details eg:name,but you've put it down in text so well,far better than i could say it!!!(my memory is not what it used to be,lol). Naltrone has been my GP's choice so I'm pretty hopeful that i can start fairly shortly.

      Once again,im sincerely grateful for your knowledgeable reply. I will no doubt post on here how things go 😁😁.

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  • Posted

    You should visit a good doctor to leave this bad habit of drinking alcohol. Wine is good for health but if taken in a right amount this much amount will definitely cause problems.

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    • Posted

      This is good to hear, Caroline.

      You shouldn't experience any issues in terms of the blood tests, as the liver would have to be under some quite very serious strain to prevent the prescribing of either naltrexone or nalmefene.

      Most doctors are okay prescribing with even some liver issues present because they understand that continued out of control drinking is going to cause far more damage than this medication plus reducing drinking.

      About 18 months after I used this treatment I had to have blood tests done for a different reason, and the liver results section showed that my liver was in better condition than it was 10 years previously.

      The long term gains far outweigh the relatively low risk of these blocking medications plus reducing drinking. In fact, in the past 5 years, I can count on one hand the number of people that had such severe liver issues that they couldn't be prescribed the tablets.

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    • Posted

      Thank you for your reply @JoannaC3E, youve ben very informative! Im going to show my ladies from the Alcohol Team your reply,if thats ok with you? Please let me know if you are ok with that,obviously no names or web address just your experience/comments. They are over 12/02/19.

      Hope I've not been too bold here and i won't be at all offended if you said I'm not to show your reply etc.

      Kind regards.

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    • Posted

      Absolutely, no problem with that whatsoever πŸ˜ƒ

      It might also be worth you giving them the C3 Foundation Europe website address too. There is a lot of information on there, and the fact that we are a registered UK charity, members of the Small Charities Coalition, and the Alcohol and Families Alliance gives some more credence to what you are asking about. It's incredibly difficult to become a registered charity and members of these national UK organisations.

      Add to that the fact that we are also part National Lottery funded and hopefully it will go some way to them turning their nose up at it and telling you that this is all hogwash etc.image

      I don't think I can put the website link on here, so I've attached a pic with our website address on it.

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    • Posted

      Hi Robin2015 , my Alcohol Team are asking that i have blood tests done ....I'm wondering if its to do with my other medical issues and the possibility of medicines counteracting each other? Blood tests set for end of next week so im thinking a few days after that,after the results,fingers crossed,I'll be on the right track!

      Thanks for showing an interest....its very much appreciated.

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