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How long did it take for your withdrawal to start?



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How long did it take for your withdrawal to start?

Old 02-17-2018, 10:53 AM
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How long did it take for your withdrawal to start?

So I've decided to make a go at sobriety. Some background:

I've been drinking EVERY DAY for the past five years (almost 6). This last year-and-a-half I've been killing either a half-gallon of booze or about a litre of moonshine (~180-185 proof) a day. My routine is:
4-6 shots for breakfast
500mL water bottle full with lunch
250mL over the next 6 hours after lunch to keep the buzz going
The rest of it in a 2-hour period before bed

I drank all this and was never what I would consider "drunk" just "loosened up". Normally I'm as silent as the dead but with all that alcohol you can actually manage to get a word or two out of me. Not nervous around people just don't have much to say.

So now that I've quit cold-turkey, (last drink was on Mardi Gras; giving this Lent thing a try) I'm kind of (EXTREMELY) anxious about withdrawals. I know they're different for everybody but I'm more interested in the time it took for them to onset for you or somebody you know. It's been barely 4 days and other than my decline in sociability (HA!) I feel no different.

Tl;dr how long after quitting drinking was it before you or somebody you know experienced withdrawals?

I'm happy to answer any questions if it'll clarify anything.
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Old 02-17-2018, 10:57 AM
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Well the standard answer is, "everyone is different." I mean, that is the truth. I think if you are okay at four days, just be careful. Extreme anxiety is part of it - increased heartrate, rebounding nervous system. I don't think you're out of the woods yet.

If you are concerned, go to a doctor.

I had some withdrawals, but I wasn't drinking as much. You can Google the common symptoms - it can be life-threatening, so I hope you have someone around you who knows what you're doing and can keep an eye on you. (?)
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Old 02-17-2018, 11:26 AM
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Everyone is different. My detox started the morning after I quit drinking and lasted for many days.

I do hope that you have informed a friend or family member of your detox? Just in case symptoms start to go south and you need attention.
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Old 02-17-2018, 11:54 AM
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Wow. I'm really surprised you haven't had a pretty hard detox. Consider yourself very lucky. I have seen very heavy drinkers (and I'd put you in that category) start detox after a couple of days. I guess the message is be on guard. Hopefully you have someone that can help you if you need medical assistance. If not, have a plan for sure.
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Old 02-17-2018, 01:09 PM
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biminiblue I'll try to stay calm about it. I don't think I'm nowhere near out of the woods yet and closest doctor is 4 hours out (unless I get medievac out of work).

Mizzuno yeah I got 2 or 3 people who take turns calling me every hour or 2 and know if I don't answer something is probably up. Keep a spare battery on me too. My neighbors actually come in to wake me up in the morning so I hope if anything happens it I hope it won't happen in my sleep.

Frickaflip233 I have no idea what the standard is for heavy drinking. The only thing that really made me start wondering was when I downed a half-litre of shine and was still awake. I'd never been more scared in all my life.


Thanks for the words. Would love to hear more from people.
p.s. don't know if it matters but I'm 125lbs
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Old 02-17-2018, 06:27 PM
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I started shaking and having terrible anxiety like the day after I stopped drinking, tremors got worse before they got better. Cravings were horrendous. Insomnia started as soon as I couldnít have a drink to get to bed. I didnít have DTís or a seizure but these are two very real concerns. I was irritable as hell, and had stomach problems starting around day 3 I think I lasted about a week before I drank, it was the mental more than the physical. Other theee times Iíve gotten off of it I was medically detoxed
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Old 02-17-2018, 06:50 PM
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Originally Posted by SIPinrecovery View Post
So I've decided to make a go at sobriety. Some background:

I've been drinking EVERY DAY for the past five years (almost 6). This last year-and-a-half I've been killing either a half-gallon of booze or about a litre of moonshine (~180-185 proof) a day. My routine is:
4-6 shots for breakfast
500mL water bottle full with lunch
250mL over the next 6 hours after lunch to keep the buzz going
The rest of it in a 2-hour period before bed

I drank all this and was never what I would consider "drunk" just "loosened up". Normally I'm as silent as the dead but with all that alcohol you can actually manage to get a word or two out of me. Not nervous around people just don't have much to say.

So now that I've quit cold-turkey, (last drink was on Mardi Gras; giving this Lent thing a try) I'm kind of (EXTREMELY) anxious about withdrawals. I know they're different for everybody but I'm more interested in the time it took for them to onset for you or somebody you know. It's been barely 4 days and other than my decline in sociability (HA!) I feel no different.

Tl;dr how long after quitting drinking was it before you or somebody you know experienced withdrawals?

I'm happy to answer any questions if it'll clarify anything.
Perhaps just stop drinking and see what happens. If the shakes start maybe have a couple of beers and taper off.

Considering the amount of moonshine (180 proof) you've been drinking and your weight you should see a doctor.

On the other hand I understand if you can't. When I got sober I had no money to see a doctor much less go to rehab.

It was AA or nothing.
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Old 02-17-2018, 10:10 PM
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I was also considered a heavy drinker, and by day 4 off the booze I was feeling much better.
I have never heard of withdrawals starting several days after the last drink, but definitely within a few hours of the last drink.

Good luck on the journey, it is so worth it!!
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Old 02-18-2018, 05:24 AM
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Keep us posted, SIP - I hope it continues to go smoothly.

Just know that each detox it can get worse:

NIH Kindling
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Old 02-18-2018, 05:36 AM
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I am no expert. I think symptoms start immediately but we just do not call them symptoms. I am only on day 3 and feel anxious. I have been sleeping like crap. And I am a grump to be around. So not serious symptoms like the shakes or anything for me.

I have read a lot and they say it gets better.
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Old 02-18-2018, 06:16 AM
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At 4 days sober, I was usually ok physically, so you may be also.

I'm also surprised that you didn't have a much harder detox, with the amount of alcohol you're consuming.

Even though you may not be aware of it, I bet your blood pressure was extremely high. You may have gotten lucky with rolling the dice on this detox.
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Old 02-19-2018, 03:57 AM
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Originally Posted by wildflower70 View Post
I was also considered a heavy drinker, and by day 4 off the booze I was feeling much better.
I have never heard of withdrawals starting several days after the last drink, but definitely within a few hours of the last drink.

Good luck on the journey, it is so worth it!!
My detox(s) went for about 4 days until things got a little more normal. The first three days I would just sweat like a mule. Sleep was just one nightmare after another. I put Bragg's Apple Cider Vinegar in my water to help with the stomach issues and also aid in detox (worked for me anyway). After maybe two weeks my sleep patterns changed and I actually woke feeling refreshed.

There at the end I was consuming almost a fifth of whiskey/bourbon every evening after work and an entire handle on the weekends. YMMV.
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Old 02-19-2018, 09:04 AM
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Withdrawals usually start when the alcohol in your blood starts to drop below the level at which you have been keeping it. The real stinker withdrawal kicks in when it reaches zero.
Withdrawals can peak up to 72 hours after the last drink. Your body takes 1 hour to process 1 standard drink out of your system.
The acute withdrawals are over after 5 days. So I think you are safe, this time.
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Old 02-19-2018, 09:12 AM
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My acute withdrawal started day 2 and continued for a couple weeks. Very nasty. Then PAWS for months. I think I am an unusual case though. I would think if you have no symptoms Day 4 that's a good sign. Still in that dangerous period though so good thing you are vigilant! Best to you
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Old 02-19-2018, 09:53 AM
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It is really surprising you haven't had any withdrawal effects. I was averaging the equivalent of 8 light beers a day and get really anxious, the crazy dreams after having a lot of trouble falling asleep and get really sweaty with sweat that smells like vinegar. If I'm doing the math right you were at an equivalent of about 50 light beers a day. Which I would assume would of put you in full blown DTs by now.

My withdrawals were always the worst on day 2. I used heroin for 5 years stopping 8 years ago. Then I've tried multiple times to stop the drinking which altogether probably gave me the kindling effect, making my withdrawals worse than they should be.

I'm on day 4 myself after a few week taper, my withdrawals haven't been near as bad this time around. I did the taper in the hope that it would lessen paws this time around which has always been my down fall after weeks and months of sobriety.
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Old 02-19-2018, 10:07 AM
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Originally Posted by wastedpotential View Post
..... the crazy dreams after having a lot of trouble falling asleep and get really sweaty with sweat that smells like vinegar.
I think the restless nights were the worst. When I did manage to doze off it was the nightmares of falling or getting hit by a car. Last time I detoxed, I left a brown stain on my bedsheets from all the sweating! Imagine my organs having to filter all that liquor...
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Old 02-20-2018, 01:22 PM
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Always the next day sometime before noon for me. Anxiety and sweating was the first sign.
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Old 02-20-2018, 01:30 PM
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Hi, SIP. I, too, am surprised you haven't had more of a reaction to stopping. When I quit I'd been drinking all day for months. Just a few hours after my last drink, I knew I was in for trouble. I drank massive amounts for my size - so it's no surprise. My bad days were the first 2 - then I began to improve a bit every day. After a week I felt much better (physically anyway).
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Old 02-20-2018, 07:06 PM
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Originally Posted by steve-in-kville View Post
My detox(s) went for about 4 days until things got a little more normal. The first three days I would just sweat like a mule. Sleep was just one nightmare after another. I put Bragg's Apple Cider Vinegar in my water to help with the stomach issues and also aid in detox (worked for me anyway). After maybe two weeks my sleep patterns changed and I actually woke feeling refreshed.

There at the end I was consuming almost a fifth of whiskey/bourbon every evening after work and an entire handle on the weekends. YMMV.
The Braggs Apple Cider vinegar worked for me too, but dramatically increased the sweating which was drenching. I drank around a fifth of vodka a day toward the end of my boozing career, I started with the dry heaves about six hours after my last drink. The anxiety was the worst of all of my symptoms, it took about three days before things smoothed out.
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