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Old 12-07-2006, 12:24 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Can the brain heel? And how long does it take?

Hey all,


I am about to graduate from university next semester. I have 4 classes to go until I get my liberal arts degree. I know that drinking is a problem for me because the popular, likeable, and fun person that I used to be is gone. He has been since I got into college (how I did it and have made it this far is beyond me). I started with weed and alcohol in 8th grade and have loved it ever since.

Anyway...I can tell that my thinking has changed. Sometimes I have thoughts that I think only a crazy person would have and I realize it and then wonder, why am I thinking about this insane ****??


I tell myself all the time that "Im in college and this is the social life, you're only young once." I know I will cut back and won't drink as much as I do here in college....Or so I say, but who can predict the future? We can all predict how we would like it to be, right?

Truth be told is that I think I have lost myself over these past four years and I think that my brain chemistry has changed due to my drinking...

I have heard all the stories about alchohol doing permanent damage to the brain. I know everyone is different and everyone here probably feels a lot better after they get sober but my main question to all the great people here on this board is "did you ever get back to that person you always knew you were?"


I fear that irreversible damage thing....
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Old 12-07-2006, 02:57 AM   #2 (permalink)
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All I know is when you drink you lose brain cells and they don't "grow back."

Best of luck to you.

Liz
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Old 12-07-2006, 03:15 AM   #3 (permalink)
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WHAT I KNOW IS ABOUT WETBRAIN. THEY USED TO GIVE DRUNKS VITAMIN B 1 TO HELP WITH THE SYMPTOMS. I DON'T KNOW HOW IS ELIGIABLE TO HAVE WETBRAIN. THEY ALSO SAID THAT PEOPLE NEVER RECOVER FROM IT, I HAVE MET PEOPLE IN RECOVERY THAT HAVE, THEY DO SOME TREATMENT OF SOME KIND. AS FAR AS I GO, I CAN TELL YOU THAT WHEN I WAS DRINKING I HAD A SERIOUS MOOD DISORDER, INSTANT AZHOL JUST ADD ALCOHOL. I ALSO HAD MEMORY PROBLEMS, I BLACKED OUT SOME AND SEEM TO FORGET WHERE I LIVED. I AM MUCH BETTER THESE DAYS BECAUSE I STOPPED AND EVERYDAY I MAKE ANOTHER SINCERE ATTEMPT TO STAY STOPPED. mY BRAIN PROBLEMS ARE ALMOST NON EXSISTANT. I SEEN A DOCTOR AND A SHRINK IN MY FIRST WEEK OF SOBRIETY, IT WAS SUGGESTED TO ME SO I DID IT. SO I WILL PASS IT ON TO YOU AND I WISH YOU THE BEST IN YOU QUEST FOR ANSWERS.

HOPE TO SEE YOUR POST AGAIN
ODATROSE
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Old 12-07-2006, 03:34 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Hello...

Here is info on drinking and your brain..

http://www.alcohol-drug.com/neuropsych.htm

And this is from my program of recovery..AA

Quote:
Step 2
Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity
My restoration started when I was 2/3 months sober.
That is when my alcoholic depression lifted.

Take care...
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Old 12-07-2006, 04:40 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Here are some medical facts:

1. Every time a person drinks alcohol it kills brain cells.
2. Brain cells are never replaced.
3. The majority of brain cells are not used.
4. Brain cells that are not being used can take over for ones that were being used and died with time.
5. While actively drinking a person can kill brain cells quicker then living brain cells can learn how to take over for them, this is why long term drinkers do suffer from many different brain related problems.
6. If some one who is a long term drinker quits drinking with time the living brain cells will slowly take over for the brain cells that have been killed due to drinking.
7. If a person drinks enough long enough they can develop what is called "Wet Brain" which is where so many brain cells have been killed by drinking that there are not enough living brain cells left to ever return to normalcy.

I have been sober now for almost 3 months after 40 years of drinking, I continue to be amazed by how every day my thought process improves, I thank God that when I turned myself over to his will and AA that it was before I had reached the wet brain stage.

I was rather surprised to learn that some studies have shown that binge drinking causes more brain damage then long term drinking. I did binge on occasion, but my drink of choice was beer so as the years went by and my tolerance went up until the last few years when it went down, it was very hard for me to get drunk or even high any more.

This is not bragging but simply a fact to show how this disease works, when I first started drinking a 6 pack would get me pretty high, as the years went by I reached a point where I could drink a case and would not even get close to how a 6 pack used to get me. I also reached a point where I had to drink to where I could fell normal, not high, simply normal!

At about the 38-39 years of drinking point oddly my tolerance would bounce up and down like a yo-yo, one time 8 or 9 would again get me pretty toasted and the next day a 12 pack would not even return me to a normal state in my mind.

Alcoholism is a progressive disease, I wish they had better education on it when I was in school, because so many folks like me may have had enough sense to recognize the early symptoms of alcoholism and stopped drinking long before they reached and or went past the stage I went. From what I have heard the earlier one recognizes they are an alcholic and quit drinking the easier it is to quit and stay sober.

tryingtolive only you can decide whether or not you are an alcoholic, here are a few ways to check your self out:

1. Try for a week straight to only drink 2 drinks of what ever is your favorite drink.
2. Try leaving half a drink, simply push it away and not finish.
3. Don't drink for a week and then just have a single beer and not have another drink for at least a week.

If you can do all of the above then you may not be an alcoholic, if you can't then you need to decide if you are an alcoholic or not.

Be honest with your self, do not be like me, alcohol kicked my butt! I reached the point where I knew I was an alcoholic and after trying time and time again to stop drinking I decided to not fight what I felt I could not beat, I surrendered to alcohol, I decided "Well I know I am an alcoholic, I can't stop drinking, so why worry over it or fight it."

It was not to long after this that I hit my bottom and realizing I could not do it alone went into de-tox and then to AA where I learned that a Higher Power then me, in my case God, could and would if I gave myself over to him give me the power to not drink again as long as I did his will.

First I surrendered to alcohol, then I surrendered to God who took the power alcohol had over me away.

Being sober now I am happier then I have been in 30 years.
Quote:
I fear that irreversible damage thing....
I had no fear at all of that once I surrendered to alcohol, as my disease progressed every fear I had about the damage alcohol would do to me dissappeared.

Alcohol is cunning, baffling, and powerful to an alcoholic.
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Old 12-07-2006, 05:36 AM   #6 (permalink)
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I have read several articles that indicate that after a period of abstinence, the brain not only heals but also regenerates.

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases...1108015734.htm

Personally, I have no doubt that my cognitive abilities have improved after abstinence. Complex tasks at work are far easier, and I can focus better.

Coordination improves. I do several tasks as a technician requiring a fair amount of dexterity, much easier.

Also, yu'll find yer spellung wll improov.

Good news, all around

Keep well

Ron
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Old 12-07-2006, 05:54 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Also, yu'll find yer spellung wll improov.
LOL Ron! Ur sew write

Interesting link Thanks!
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Old 12-07-2006, 06:44 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Mongo I have read those articles also, they do indicate that the older you are when you quit usually the less you will regain if you have really fried your brain and the longer it will take to regain what you have lost if you only browned your brain instead of really frying it.

The neat thing is that when they are indicating "older" they are talking (If I recall correctly) 60+ years old, I was 52 when I quit and have been amazed at what I have regained in just the short 2 1/2 months I have been sober.

On another really positive note for me, when they did blodd work on me when I went into de-tox my liver enzyme levels indicated I had a "Fatty Liver" which is a pre-cursor to cirrosis of the liver and alcoholic hepatitis liver. The doctor told me that as long as I didn't drink any more my liver would fully recover. Well I had liver blood work done last Friday and they called me a few days ago to let me know my liver enzymes were back to normal!
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Old 12-07-2006, 06:53 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Your brain doesn't heal per say. What it does with enough alcohol free time is create new pathways around the damaged areas. The information you have read is correct; brain damage is permanent. Unlike other organs and tissue in the body, brain cells do not heal. But, even in people with serious traumatic brain injuries the researchers have shown remarkable recovery of functioning with time as the brain creates the new pathways.

Peace, Levi
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Old 12-07-2006, 11:21 AM   #10 (permalink)
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"Post Acute Withdrawl Syndrome" can last 18-24 months.

Lotsa info out there. Try Google.
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Old 12-07-2006, 11:22 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Well, I have been basically drinking to get hammered for about 6 years. I honestly don't think that I have done any serious brain damage but I can tell that my thinking has been alterd.

I have gone sober for 2 months. Did it earlier this year. Getting sober (for 2 months) wasn't hard. The hard part is changing everything about your life. I went back to my old friends and would go out drinking with them because I was so lonely and sick of sitting at my house on fri and sat nights watching TV. Im outgoing by nature and I needed to get out. Also, I would be very quick to anger when I was sober. I have never been a violent person but I think that was just part of the emotion of not drinking, trying to change life, and being lonely.


Also, when I would talk to people I would get nervous and I wasn't really able to think clearly. Especially if it was a girl I liked for example.
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Old 12-07-2006, 12:25 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Quote:
"Post Acute Withdrawl Syndrome" can last 18-24 months.
http://www.tlctx.com/ar_pages/paw_part1.htm

IMO it is factual.

Blessings..
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Old 12-07-2006, 12:47 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Thumbs up

After about 20 years of abusing myself with cocaine, crank and booze I could barely finish a sentence without completely losing my train of thought. My brain seemed frozen and I couldn't really carry on a conversation with anyone unless I was loaded. I was also really uncoordinated.. dropping things, banging my head, stubbing my toe kind of stuff. I would think of the weirdest things and then freak out because I didn't know why I was thinking all this crap... maybe I was really a closet serial killer? Crazy stuff.

somewhere around 8 months clean and sober I was just fine. I had no problem articulating and could actually carry on a conversation and have a good time. Around 2 years I felt so good that I didn't realize how still screwed up I was when I was 8 months... I can't complain too much about anything now at almost 5 years.. I think I've stablized now except for occasional bouts of CRS, I'm as clear as I ever was. And I was a blonde!
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Old 12-07-2006, 12:58 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by michski View Post
After about 20 years of abusing myself with cocaine, crank and booze I could barely finish a sentence without completely losing my train of thought. My brain seemed frozen and I couldn't really carry on a conversation with anyone unless I was loaded. I was also really uncoordinated.. dropping things, banging my head, stubbing my toe kind of stuff. I would think of the weirdest things and then freak out because I didn't know why I was thinking all this crap... maybe I was really a closet serial killer? Crazy stuff.

somewhere around 8 months clean and sober I was just fine. I had no problem articulating and could actually carry on a conversation and have a good time. Around 2 years I felt so good that I didn't realize how still screwed up I was when I was 8 months... I can't complain too much about anything now at almost 5 years.. I think I've stablized now except for occasional bouts of CRS, I'm as clear as I ever was. And I was a blonde!


Thanks for this post. It helps. I am glad that you are doing well!
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Old 12-07-2006, 06:16 PM   #15 (permalink)
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I think the jury is out on this, but recent research indicates that new brain cell growth in adults is possible.

http://www.livescience.com/othernews...on_growth.html

We can only hope so, anyway.


Ron
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Old 12-08-2006, 04:49 AM   #16 (permalink)
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Carol excellent link, I will have to mention that to some folks I know who like me stratch thier heads every once in a while when they want a drink. It is like we are doing so well, could care less about a drink and BAM!!!! All of a sudden we get really different and in many cases we fool our selves into thinking a drink is not a bad idea.

Mongo interesting stuff, there are a couple of folks I know who still have the shakes even though they have been sober for several years, thier mind is crystal clear though.
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Old 06-03-2013, 07:58 PM   #17 (permalink)
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About 2 yrs Sober Seems like its been couple of days

If anyone else feels this way. I think I should be further ahead with my life since stopping the drink. Alot of pressure from people. I mean **** I was long gone messed up bad. I live with my grandma not drinking. Its amazing what God has done and what he is doing. How long until I get it together. I haven't been completely sober since 7th grade actually 8th grade. I am 35. I have always had talents but they were never realized because of drinking. Will those talents grow to fruition to their wholeness now that I have stayed the course. And stay the "slogo". I guess I am being impatient. Really letting God work. I have some awesome stories about his saving grace. Probably like alot of you. I am writing this on my phone. My phone sucks. I cannot expand more on what I am feeling today. Oh ya I am not into the AA stuff so don't tell me I am whining. I am not. I don't knock AA if it works for you that's cool. The principles and steps work I just don't want to hear "take the cotton out of your ears and put it in your mouth" This is not anl AA board. Its soberrecovey. SOrry had really bad experience with AA meetings. God is God and he frees from vices AA or not. I have never read about AA in the bible. Anyways. Sorry I still have anger. Any responses to my post other than me going on about AA would be great. Thanks
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Old 06-03-2013, 08:11 PM   #18 (permalink)
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I had to do a lot more than not drink to get my life back on track slogo.
Not drinking didn't fix my problems, but it gave me the chance to work on them, y'know?...and that takes time and effort and a little patience I think.

Some of us dig pretty deep holes over decades of drinking. It can take a while to climb back up to the top.

what don't you feel together about?
where exactly do you think you should be by now?

D
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Old 06-03-2013, 08:35 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Thanks for reply

Dee- Thanks for your reply. Well I know service and fellowship are important. I do and have none. Big no no in some circles. Well I guess II think that I should have the American dream. The house wife Picked fence. I guess I feel I had great potential and drank and pissed it all away. I think I am starting to just now come to grips with where I am in life. I am learning. I guess I just need. To accept my lot in life . I guess I just want to know that God does have a plan. I know he does but I guess I need to hear it.. Thanks
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Old 06-03-2013, 08:39 PM   #20 (permalink)
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I don't think it's ever too late to start again.

I think if you want the wife and white picket fence dream then it's definitely not too late to start working on that.

What we did was then. This is now.

I'm sure God has a plan too - but He never sent anyone to my front door, y'know?

Start working on it
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