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Old 12-18-2004, 11:09 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Drinking Mouthwash and Vanilla Extract!!!

Does anyone have any experience with drinking mouthwash or vanilla extract? My girlfriend and I (were) both in recovery. But she has been on a hellish relapse.

She's consumed at least two large bottles of mouthwash and at lease 4.. 4 ounce bottles of vanilla extract in the last three days. I'm wondering how it might affect her physiologically. The high she gets is bizarre.....completely different from her reaction to her drink of choice (vodka).

She's tried to get into a psych ward and they say she does not 'meet the criteria'....she's been kicked out of several reahabs and they won't take her back.....same with halfway houses. I'm at wits end dealing with her.

All suggestions are welcome but my main concern is her immediate health regarding the mouthwash and vanilla....thanks.


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Old 12-18-2004, 11:20 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I think you need to be concerned with your own recovery right now. There is nothing you can do for her right now. She has to want to stop. Remember that your own recovery must come first before anything else. When I was in rehab one of the relapse warnings they taught us was focusing on others.
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Old 12-18-2004, 11:35 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Thanks for the concern, my friend.

I should have included the fact that I'm taking care of myself FIRST.
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Old 12-18-2004, 11:45 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I am glad to hear that. I will say a prayer for your girlfriend.
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Old 12-18-2004, 11:45 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Behavior like that is over the edge, even for us alkies. Here's the deal when it comes to psych wards, especially county-funded: I used to walk into hospitals meek and mild, thinking and hoping I would get sympathy for my miserable self. Didnt work. I quickly figured out that if I used the same amount of energy towards getting help as I did getting drugs that I always had help. I would do ANYTHING to get drugs or alcohol-when I applied that to getting admitted, I got admitted.

If you think your friend is a danger to herself, lie your ass off. Call 911 and say she has a knife at her throat...or your throat. Tell them you just pulled her from the freeway overpass, or that she tried jumping in front of a bus. Tell them she has a PLAN and the means to carry it out. Do whatever you have to do friend. Just get her safe, and make sure your safe. You can always make amends later...
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Old 12-19-2004, 02:01 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Damn...gotta let her go.
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Old 12-21-2004, 01:51 AM   #7 (permalink)
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To answer your specific question, mouthwash is about 2/3 the alcohol content of hard liquor (Listerine is 27%, compared to whiskey or brandy at 40%). Vanilla extract is 36%, and is a really, really expensive way to get drunk.
Listerine also contains some other alcohol-like compounds (eucalptol and thymol) that may have toxicity issues of their own, and some other ingredients--all of which give the liver a workout and probably lead to one hell of a hangover (kind of like vermouth). But I think the toxicity of the ethanol is the important thing. From your description, she's basically drinking the equivalent of about a liter of bourbon a day.

It doesn't matter whether it's Listerine, single-malt whiskey, or Old Times. The fact that she's drinking whatever is in the house is the issue. She's got a compulsive drinking behavior that she can't control. I agree with Jon: do whatever it takes to break the behavior. And it sounds as though it would be safest if that were supervised. As you know, it's what happens after she's detoxed that will determine whether she achieves long-term sobriety.

Take care of yourself, and please keep posting.
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Old 01-28-2005, 12:23 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Here is aguote from another thread..
http://soberrecovery.com/forums/show...anilla+extract

Hi Honey...

" the best way to describe an alcoholic is an egotist with an inferiority complex."

I like that, I too have looked at some of my pathetic behavior while in the throes of my addiction to alcohol, like waking up once in the morning realizing I was going to have to go to the store to get more booze, but being physically unable to accomplish the task, they would have had me commited being in the lousy shape I was, so i drank the vanilla extract to take the edge off... I wonder where the ego is there, but it was selfish of me to be so wrapped up in myself and my addiction, caring little about anything else...

I don't ever have to go back to that insanity again!!!!

The insanity is in taking that the first drink -KelKel
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Old 01-28-2005, 06:05 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Hi Dance, I had a simalar problem getting into VA Hospital one time. I had to use Jon's suggestion. Even the VA personel will tell you to claimyour a danger to yourself and that you want to hurt yourself. I called an ambulance, once in the hospital emergency room, the only way to not have to deal with you is for you to sign yourself out. Possesion is 9/10ths of the law. And they possess you. In fact, instead of going through a doctor to get admitted many do this to get atound red tape. They can divert the ambulance but, somebody has to take you if only in fear of a law suit if something were to happen to you. Many of these hospitals go by crazy rules so you have to be slick. At the VA Hospital, If you get put out your home and stay at a hotel. Then try to check in saying your homeless, it won't work. They consider your hotel your home even for 1 night. The counsilors have to send the Veteran to a homeless shelter for 1 night. They can then admit them the next day. What I did this last time was call 911 and told the police I felt terrible and was afraid I was going to hurt myself. They called the ambulance and I was in. I know we talk about honesty but, get honest after your in the hospital. Don W
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Old 02-01-2005, 01:10 PM   #10 (permalink)
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cdance,
Idon't have any phc. info but it sounds like she is an alcoholic out of control and only God can save her.
I'll be praying for you to be strengthened in your recovery.
Go to a meeting, call your sponser and pray.
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Old 02-02-2005, 09:58 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Just wanted to share that it is very common for alcoholics to turn to things like aftershave or rubbing alcohol in the advanced stage of alcoholism. Bela Lugosi (Dracula, the very old b&w film) was drinking phermeldohyde (spelling?) near the end of his life. He didn't make it out of his nightmare.

But Kitty Dukakis did. The wife of Michael Dukakis, she shares in her autobiography that she was drinking just about anything in the house, including nail polish remover. But she eventually found sobriety.

It is a baffling disease, and progressive.
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Old 02-02-2005, 10:01 AM   #12 (permalink)
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(((chrisman)))
good stuff
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Old 02-02-2005, 07:54 PM   #13 (permalink)
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I was going to say I never did that but, then remember back in the Navy, at somebodies suggestion I tried aftershave. I didn't like it but, the fact I tried it speaks volumes. I did like others go to sick bay faking a cold to get what we called,
" GI GIN". this was cough medicine that was 40 percent proof. We would mix it with orange juice while out to sea. I'd like to thank you for posting. I'd forgotten all about that, and it helps to be reminded that, Yes, I was that bad." Don W
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Old 02-03-2005, 07:45 AM   #14 (permalink)
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That sounds so amazing to me... drinking vanilla extract or even worse nail polish remover. I'm still denying what I did to get a bottle of pills. (I mean, I know I did some crazy things, but I'm not on that step yet....) But still, wow.
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Old 02-03-2005, 06:58 PM   #15 (permalink)
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My Sister, in recovery for 25 years was a Chemistry Teacher, and told me she experimented more after work than during. She still has no idea what she might have drank, but she has many unexplained physical problems. Don W
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Old 02-03-2005, 08:26 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Oh my God, this totally brings back memories. Although I never drank rubbing alcohol or Pam, I did try ONCE to get drunk on vermooth. On several occasions when me and some friends were tweekin' and we'd smoked the last of it, we'd start searchin' the floor for those rocks that surely fell there. So we'd end up smoking cat litter and boogers and God knows what else. Ahhhh the good ole' days. I know that I wasn't the only one here who pulled half smoked cigerette butts out of ashtrays either.
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Old 02-04-2005, 09:15 AM   #17 (permalink)
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I'm not sure I should laugh, but cat litter and boogers. I can't help it, that is so bad. I can see it too. But it is so bad. Hearing it from the other side... it is funny as hell.

When you hear that stuff and you are doing stuff like that, it isn't really funny - and you say to yourself - how stupid... (even though you know it could be you).

But right now, as I am going through this and I'm not using. I can't help but LMAO.

We sure can be idiots.
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Old 07-22-2007, 09:31 PM   #18 (permalink)
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hi

I drank mouthwash and vanilla extract tonight, its sad, and tastes bad, but .... its better than nothing? i dont know
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Old 07-22-2007, 10:04 PM   #19 (permalink)
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ythis is going to sound cold but LEAVE I am been through alcohol addiction with my dad and I can say I would not be able to do it with my girlfriend Though I dont have one yet
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Old 08-01-2007, 07:13 PM   #20 (permalink)
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In My drinking days I would drink mouth wash if I knew I could not drink the hard stuff. It kinda took the edge off until I could drink safetly. I remember getting into the car and the wife commenting that I smelled so Minty. If she only knew.
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