Starting Naltrexone

Posted , 11 users are following.

Hello everybody,

I just wanted to share that I started Naltrexone yesterday with a huge and generous amount of support from JoannaC3europe .... I knew I wanted to do this and received my prescription a few weeks ago but personal situations have meant I delayed starting. After my initial excitement at making the decision to take this route, the delays caused me much anxiety and I became really nervous that I'd experience awful side effects and so just felt I'd share my first 24+ hours with you and let you know how it's going .....

On Joanna's advice at about 3pm I had a big plate of beans on toast (I usually eat in the evening but was told a snack definitely won't be enough for the first few doses, and I wanted to follow the correct way to the letter!) then at 4pm with a shaking hand I took half a tablet (25mgs) and before I could change my mind, downed it with a pint of water - again following instructions drink plenty of water, then more half hour later! .... I am quite ok drinking water and also prompted by my underlying worry, actually managed to drink a further 2 pints at least .... I had a call booked with Joanna, and at 5.10pm I poured my first drink as I spoke to her, reassuring me all the way! ....

My first glass lasted 1/2 hour - twice as long as usual .... Over the evening I drank around half what I usually would, (my poison of choice is wine) and the last glass that I poured I only took two or three sips of and left the rest! I just didn't know really what to expect and struggle to explain the feeling, but it's almost like watching someone else being you! Like being drunk, but with a clear head!

I enjoy the taste of my drink - I don't set out 'to get drunk' I just find I can't stop once I start - and yet yesterday I did! ....

I didn't sleep particularly well, but don't always anyway and so it's difficult to say Naltrexone caused that - although when awake I did feel just slightly woozy and anxious but nothing serious, and I found I did sweat a lot till quite late (around 7am)

I have just taken my 2nd tablet (have eaten and drunk the water) ... Joanna said any side effects are worst on the first dose, and so I feel less anxious about anything tonight ... moving forward now - I know this can take a good few months, and that some days may not be as good as others - but I have hope now, that I can stop destroying myself, and start to look forward to being healthy again !

2 likes, 31 replies

31 Replies

  • Posted

    It's always much easier when people follow Jopanna's guidance. It isn't complicated, but should be adhered to. Only when people go off and do it their 'special' way, does it tend not to work or side effects are suffered more.

    As for not sleeping so well, a good part of that will be down to less alcohol, which slows your brain down. Once the alcohol is taken away, it takes the brain awhile to adjust to it.

    • Posted

      Yes, Joanna certainly knows what she is talking about! I struggle a bit eating this way but for a short time and long term results it's got to be best to follow all instructions, to go to all the trouble etc to find and get a treatment that has such incredible results seems daft not to!

      Yes, I did wonder about that also contributing to sleep issues, thank you - although I've not written much on here, I do read daily and appreciate all your support and advice!

    • Posted

      A lot of people post that TSM is not working for them and get terrible side effects. They then stop taking the tablets. However more often than not, they've not followed the instructions, they don't wait after taking the tablet, basically ignoring the advice given to them. 

      By by thinking they know best, it's not going to work for them. It's not rocket science to take any form of medication by following the instructions that come with all medications.

      To be fair, several people have been given the wrong information by whoever has prescribed them.

      Insomnia is a common complaint in AUD sufferers, but it maybe down to your bodys reaction to less alcohol.


    • Posted

      You might even right but they must be in a pretty chaotic/ desperate state to be behaving in this way (not waiting an hour) and I wonder how many do this? If many, (actually even if only a few) then this needs to be thought about in thinking about how to help those who for whatever reason are struggling even with initial compliance. Surely we want to help them too?

      Compliance is not my problem- I'm still really hoping this will work for me.

  • Posted

    Excellent, Kerry! Congratulations on starting your TSM journey! 

    I expect in the coming weeks your drinking levels will go up and down, but down overall, so if you have a sudden rebound in your drinking, don't let it throw you. It's actually odd if it doesn't happen. Just stick with taking the Nal an hour before you drink and your numbers will drop back down. 

    I look forward to hearing more about how you're getting along with this!

    • Posted

      Thank you! Joanna said that too so I'm prepared that that might well happen - it's so helpful (at least for me) to know exactly what might occur right up front - that way I can be prepared and not give up if I feel I've 'fallen at the first hurdle' ... well on the up side already, tonight's first drink has lasted 45 minutes as I do these replies, and I'd normally have got up and filled glass again instead of waiting till I'd finished :-)

  • Posted

    I wonder what doing it in ones 'special way' is. I thought you have to take the tablet an hour before drinking? I have been completely compliant but the results have not been as astounding as many here report. They are better than before naltrexone and I'm trying to remain hopeful, but the way you worded that sounded (maybe unintentionally) a little blaming if not so successful. I deeply want this to work.

    • Posted

      'but the way you worded that sounded (maybe unintentionally) a little blaming if not so successful.'

      It was intentional, for those that don't follow the guidelines and then complain that it doesn't work. It was not aimed at those that take it as meant, but are finding that it is not so successful.

      Do you take it every day you drink and not take it on the days you do not drink?

    • Posted

      I so far drink every day and take it every day (without fail by the letter) but honestly I don't really feel like blaming anyone with aud whatever they do. There's enough blame out there already.

    • Posted

      No one is blaming anyone for AUD. It is because it is unlikely to work if you don't follow the guidelines and then some people wonder why it doesn't work. That is my last post on the matter.

    • Posted

      But it's so devastatingly sad that people can't stick to this. That's all I'm saying. I find it heart breaking.

    • Posted

      I was referring to the fact that several people have posted it's not working. Then they post they take it even when not drinking.

      I know this post is not about campral, but using it as an example.

      Its the same with campral, again posts that say it's not working then further posts that they've had a few drinks. 

      I am not saying you've been taking it wrongly, but many have been. Neither am I blaming anyone who has AUD. "special way" I imagine is RHGB politely saying they think they know best and don't follow the instructions properly!

      My apologies RHGB if I misunderstood your phrase 'special way'

    • Posted

      I would like to publicise this treatment if it works. If it works I find it utterly shocking that it is so not known. But working out whether or not it works includes thinking about those for whom it has not worked well for. If people don't follow instructions we need to understand why. I have followed instructions and I'm still drinking too much and also less than I was. I want to understand the outcomes for everyone.

    • Posted

      It tends to vary considerably and it's hard to say why, Secondslong. My best guess is it boils down to genetics. Some reach their goals in a few months, while some (like me) take 6-12 months. As long as you're seeing a reduction in your drinking, then it's working. 

      Are you recording your drinks every day? 

    • Posted

      Keep doing what you are doing secondslong, if your drinking has reduced you are moving forward, maybe not as fast as you would like but nevertheless forward.We are all different and progress at different rates. Best of luck with this and well done for sticking with TSM
    • Posted

      Sometimes, we can do everything we possibly can, explain, and discuss and educate, but human nature being what it is, some people just will not follow the instructions, period.

      With compliance for example, we can provide the importance of it, why it's vital, and tools to make things easier (setting an alarm on a phone perhaps) and yet some people will just not follow through on the action part of it.

      That's just the way it is, sadly.  On the good side though, the seed has been set and I have people contact me who have tried TSM before and they know they didn't do it right and maybe stopped after a few weeks of tablets, so they ask for help to get it right this time.  Hopefully, they do.

    • Posted

      Hi Joanne 

      ?The old saying "you can take the horse, to water, but you can't make it drink" springs to mind.

      This is exactly the point I was trying to make to secondslong  and I think RHGB was also. I think that was what he meant by 'special way'.

      It must be very frustrating to spend a lot of time explaining how TSM works. I get the impression that some people think all they have to do is swallow a tablet and hey presto, it's a green light for them to drink exactly as they did before.

      Whilst I've not used TSM myself, as you say, human nature being what it is, there will always be those who think they know best and don't comply with instructions. In other words

      Nothing worthwile in life is easy, and my understanding is that TSM requires compliance and mindful drinking for it to work successfully.

    • Posted

      Joanna I'm really not suggesting you are doing anything wrong. Far from it- you are doing everything you can to help people- I see that.

      I just think that people are complex and there can be all kinds of reasons why people do things that are bad for them. And in this case it's very sad as it's likely to kill them.

      I'm glad people come back to you to try again.

    • Posted

      There are all sorts of reasons, you are correct, secondslong..... but that is just 'life' and it's impossible for anyone (me, you, or anyone) to help everybody.

      In my mind, all any of us can do is discuss the recovery options and then when someone is ready, they will know the options and be far more willing to follow whichever treatment method they chose as it should be followed - which will give the best chance of success.

    • Posted

      You have to accept that some people don't actually want or are ready to stop drinking. They may be just going through the motions to appease a partner. Unless you are really determined and ready to alter your drinking habits, then nothing will work. You then have the perfect excuse, "it's not working, so I may as well carry on drinking as normal"

      ?It's very easy to say it doesn't work, so why bother. Or I tried but it didn't work for me. I'm one of the minority where it doesn't work. It won't with a negative attitude and no real effort.

      No pain, no gain


    • Posted

      Hi secondslong

      I agree with you, it is dreadfully sad, but I would argue that is the nature of AUD, when is it ever logical? If you are in its grip you are lost. When a person is ready they will reach out and take the right action for them. RHGB used a good phrase for this but I can't remember it, sorry RHGB!

      My Husband has started his TSM journey, it's early days but the signs are VERY encouraging. He is doing well because he personally WANTS to do it, that is my belief. Joanna has been absolutely fantastic. I have made a donation to C3foundationeurope and my Husband says he will be making one too. I'm so glad you have started your journey with TSM and realise the importance of compliance. TSM gives hope and for some that is incalculable, when all other options have failed



    • Posted

      Thank you ade- its really encouraging for me to hear about people who have taken longer. Im about 4 months in. I stopped recording but maybe should start again...
    • Posted

      Ah! It's entirely possible. Well met, then!

      Yes, I'd suggest starting recording again, it just helps to quantify things and engages your brain in the process that much more. Often, people get down about their progress then have a look at their graph and take heart. 

      I'd also suggest moving the drink away from you so it's not so easy to chain-sip. Keep it in another room or the refrigerator so it's actually out of sight, while keeping a NA drink close at hand. Throw in little tasks or diversions in between sips, that often leads to forgetting about the drink for an hour or more. The idea here is to start pushing and prodding around to see if you can find any soft spots in the habit where you might gain an advantage. 

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