Immediate effects of stopping

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I'm mid 40's and have been a drinker pretty much all my life. Beer and then on to wine. Probably a bottle a night until a few years ago when the credit crunch affected our business and things got very difficult money wise. We have worked really hard and can see the light from the money worries but my drinking has got really bad. There is a date in the future when our money problems should be sorted and I'm almost trying to black out life until we get there. My wife went off and got a job which helped with money, leaving me alone all day. I was starting to find that I would enjoy the odd snifter of vino with lunch, usually ending in the bottle going, the afternoon wasted (work, not me) and then probably a couple more bottles starting when the kids got home. Completely stupid I know. When I read all the govt health stuff, I wonder how I'm still alive. 

Anyway, yesterday I called it a day. Had enough. I'm getting a bit fat and reckon I'm on a crash course to an early grave if I continue with this. Damage may already be done. I stopped. I had half a bottle left which I considered pouring away or leaving as a test but in the end, I downed it with lunch and that was that. No more sneaking around to the shop later on. The evening was OK, a little craving or two here and there but nothing much. The biggest thing was what to replace the glass with. Tried water but drank it too quickly so ended up with multiple cups of tea. Went to bed at about 11pm, pretty tired. 

By 3am I'm in all sorts of problems. Sweating, muscles aching, headache, hot and then cold. No craving, just felt awful.. Got up had water and pain killers and got about 3 hours sleep. This morning still no desire to drink at all but still sweating and feel a bit 'buzzy' (alive maybe:-)).

My question is to others who have gone cold turkey. Did you get a similar thing? I started reading about Withdrawl Syndrome which basically says I'm going to start have hallusinations and then drop dead, which cheered me up no end. 

I'm now wondering whether stopping so soon is such a good idea. I'm going shopping in a bit and was considering buying a little bottle of scotch, just for a night cap so I can at least sleep. Or is that just a silly idea? I 'think' I can resist and just have a double before bed but maybe that's nonsense. 

Help. I feel good that I have made this descision. Should I go through the cold turkey or is it too much of a body shock to go from 30 units a day to 0? 

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  • Posted

    Taper down starting from today. Reduce by 5 each night. Tonight. 25. Friday 20. Saturday 15. Sunday 10 etc.

    Read how to control your drinking by Allan Carr

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  • Posted

    Hi Tony

    I currently drink 1 bottle "or so" a night.  I hit the wine box after 1 bottle as I am too embarrassed for my husband to learn what is really going on.  Some nights, and these are planned, say 1 day a week, I am giving up alcohol.  On these nights I often go to bed read, and then toss and turn all night, come out in night sweats, etc.  Other nights, can hardly keep my eyes open and sleep straight through!  I have heard you should taper down but I just can't, it's all or nothing with me.  Maybe give it one more go after a day of exercise to tire you out?

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    • Posted

      I'm pretty much the same. After 1 bottle, you kind of lose the will to stop and on you go. Thinking I'll give it another go tonight. 
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    • Posted

      what I meant was 1 glass just opens the flood gates, because 1 glass leads to just one more..... and so on, hence all or nothing.  Better luck with the next try, but as I say, wearing myself out definitely helps!
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  • Posted

    You must NOT go cold turkey from alcohol, it can be dangerous and can even kill. You could try cutting back gradually but the majority of peoiple find that is too difficult to do. The best solution is an alcohol detox, where you stop drinking but take medication to eliminate the alcohol withdrawal symptoms. Your GP should be able to advise what is on offer in your area but it's a postcode lottery. Many areas provide very little help, others are much better.
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    • Posted

      hi my partner is a heavy drinker mixture of beer ie stella and cider cheap strong stuff .he is really suffering after quittig for a week so far ,all symtoms of DTS bar seizures and death,(he is in a terrible state to be fair)are present. he looks dreadful too,Ijust dont know how to help him through this,what to do for the best ,
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    • Posted

      I have only just seen this Jainne. If a person is having DTs (delirium tremens) then you should call an ambulance immediately. I hope it wasn't DTs but standard withdrawal symptoms (which are serious enough). Withdrawal symptoms should be gone within a week of stopping drinking. Could you give me some more detail of his symptoms to help me understand his situation?

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    • Posted

      Just to reiterate what Paul has said, please come back with more info.

      When you have been on alcohol for a long time, maybe 20+ years every day, the physical problems (you feel like you're dying) may stop by the end of the first week. However the brain can still have this awful headache/pressure that really ways down on you.

      Really he should have clinical help, but the NHS doesn't help people much with a drink problem. Failing that, he needs plenty of rest, plenty of hydration and as much food as possible.

      Apart from the rest, he porbably doesn't want the others. He needs to try, if he hasn't got an appetite, then soup is something people can manage. Tea is usally the best people can manage for hydration or plain still water.

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  • Posted

    Well done on making the decision to stop Tony. The question you need to answer is if you are an alcoholic or not (I am, quit 7 weeks ago, from heavy drinker every day to zero overnight). If you're not, then cutting down slowly is a good idea. If you are alcoholic, then it will be very difficult to have just one or two drinks as a night cap. If you are, detox is a good suggestion. I go to AA meetings every day, which really help me in my circumstances, thoug everyone is different. Whichever route you choose, I wish you good luck and keep remembering the reasons you wanted to stop in the first place.
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  • Posted

    Problem is I think if I don't just say 'that's it' I'll get pulled in again. I don't feel any cravings today, feel pretty sharp actually aside from a bit of a hot/cold thing going on. Feel very good about stopping, even if it's just 24 hours. I don't think I'm an alcoholic but then I guess most people say that. Just a bit worried about the health implications of going from loads to nothing. 
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    • Posted

      Hello Tony. I'm wondering how you are doing petal? 

      I stopped cold after a particularly bad night in Vegas and I had an horrendous night like you, hot/cold/tossing/turning/ - yuk. The next day I just felt low. The day after that I felt quite a lot better and that's how it's progressed to today. Today is a week and I'm pretty amazed at myself.

      My worry for you is support. My husband has watched me drink (and drank with me) and knew I had a problem way before I was prepared to admit it to myself. He stopped with me and tells me every day how proud of me he is for doing this brave thing. I've been drinking for many years. I am a professional person..life n' soul and all that. 

      You can do it, but you must must musy have support and plenty of encouragement and love. Mostly from and for yourself. 

      Be brave.

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  • Posted

    Hi Tony-

    Congratulations on your decision to quit drinking. I'm certainly not a detox professional but can share my experience as a drinking professional and how I quit. I drank very heavily on my last binge(21 days) morning to night with whiskey. I did not professionally detox though I have done that in the past. I switched to wine because the alcohol by volume was lower and started tapering for the first three days and then went to beer for the last two. I would only drink a little of the wine in the beginning every couple hours just to keep the shaking and sweats at bay. I even watered down the wine. The idea, from what I've read, with the tapering is to keep the withdrawals at bay and keep the body from going into shock. Again, I'm not a professional but have read the biggest danger is having a seizure. Since you are a wine drinker, and if you need to taper to make it through then I would possibly consider beer. This assuming you feel you need something to keep from physically withdrawing too hard and too quickly. The idea would be to drink something with less alcohol by volume to make it through so Scotch at night may be too strong for a taper. My sleepless nights and cold/hot and shaking lasted for about five days but did go away. Best of luck to you and happy to hear you are quitting!!

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    • Posted

      I just need to say that if a person tries to stop drinking or even cuts down, and they suffer alcohol withdrawal symptoms, they must drink and seek medical help. That shaking can turn to more serious symptoms and, in extreme cases, even kill them.

      Congratulations on what you achieved Wendell, but I have to say this for the benefit of other people who may get into serious difficulty.

       

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    • Posted

      I stopped drinking with Baclofen and when I went to nexus(a local alcohol service),they couldn't believe I was drinking 3 bottles of wine one day and nothing thereafter without having any withdrawals so yes,it isn't recommended to stop cold turkey like that
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    • Posted

      I agree whole heartedly. That's why I was very careful to point out multiple times that I am certainly not a professional and can only attest to my own experience.

      Thank you for your feedback and know that I think you are 100% right and everyone certainly reacts to withdrawals differently!!

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    • Posted

      I enjoy reading all your posts. By the sounds of it; I take it you are in the medical profession. Thanks for always chiming in because I always read yours and value your opinion 😊
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    • Posted

      I am a nurse specialising in alcohol treatment, Wendell smile I now work as an independent alcohol treatment practitioner but feel guilty (it's the NHS conditioning I got over 20-odd years) that I cannot afford to work for no money, so I come here to put a little bit back for free smile
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    • Posted

      That's really commendable the work that you do. I know it can't be easy...hopefully the reward in the lives that you help change out weigh the tough stuff. I appreciate your feedback on here Paul 👊😃 You rock!!
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    • Posted

      Thank you for your nice comments Wendell smile Yes, I enjoy the work, get great reward from the difference what i do can make to people's lives and, while I do get some difficult cases, the majority are relatively straightforward and the people are, without exception, really good people once they manage to get their alcohol either gone or controlled.
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    • Posted

      I rekindled...meaning Im receiving more acute withdrawals than before when I drank daily for 3 years, quit for a year, then started 5 weeks ago heavy as before, quit again 2 days ago almost to the hour.  I didnt have anything worse than cold sweats the first time(somehow, maybe cause alcoholism is in my dads side) but this second time...out of nowhere I have almost everything listed under delirium tremens except the stroke/heart attack and major hallucinations...my anxiety is so bad, I tried to kill myself which Ive never even come close to thinking of before....I shouldve gone to the ER...if it happens again in the coming nights, I definitely am...i just cant believe after only 5 weeks of drinking and then quitting, that only hours later this massive attack would hit...im still scared.  Im going to try a few beers a day for a few days to taper it, maybe my anxiety will stop
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    • Posted

      Hi Paul ..wanted to catch you and ask a question.I started on Nalmefene 8 weeks ago and did all the stuff advised like taking it for 8 consecutive days etc , waiting 2 hrs before drinking..Now I only use it twice a week and drink about 2 glasses of wine each time All going great but the issue is I am still getting awful night sweats usually about 3 am ,approx 4 hrs after stopping drinking alcohol. It has always happened but I assumed it was the volume I drank before which was almost 2 bottles of wine a session, I was a binge drinker so drank.this 2 or 3 times a week. This never happens on alcohol free night so wondering how common this is and could it be a sign of an intolerance to the alcohol .

      Would really appreciate your opinion .Many Thanks 😊

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