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Quitting Alcohol - physical side effects?

I started drinking about a half liter of vodka a day around 2 years ago. 3 months ago I decided I want to stop, but I decided I should cut-down to avoid any withdrawls, so I stopped drinking vodka completely and now I drink 3 - 24 oz. cans of beer a night, a 6 pack.

I read that if you stop cold turkey, you can go through DT's and seizures.  The thought of this makes me feel like having a panic attack.  Is your body dependant on the amount of alcohol or alcohol period?

Should I continue to cut-down since I'm having success with this method? Maybe cut down to two beers, for a week, and then 1 beer, and then stop? Is cutting down slowly a good way to avoid side effects? Is my body getting used to not having alcohol? My stomach now feels better, less gas, and my apetite has increased.

I'm not going to have any psychological withdrawls, I feel good without drinking, I'm just worried about the physical withdrawls.

I know some people are going to mention to go to a hospital, but I have a thing about hospitals and don't like them, besides I'm broke and unemployed.


Thanks
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17219725 tn?1454686748
even if you drink only beer, and the amount you drink is quite a bit, after 24 hours you might not feel anything and think everything is fine. but in realty, you could still have a seizure four or five days after quitting cold turkey. it is best to get detoxed safely to avoid all that. i went through detox 2 times and even after that you still get symptoms, but that is due to your body adjusting without alcohol. they call that post acute withdrawals. i have been sober now for 18 months, and i still have good days, called windows, and bad days called waves. we just don't realize the damage that drug alcohol puts on our bodies. good luck to you always.  
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Avatar universal
I don't understand how this happened? I know everyone is different but some have drank terribly for 20+ years and make it! Your mom only drank 9 months?
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COMMUNITY LEADER
Thank You for checking us out and posting here!32 years ago,8 days before i went to rehab i detoxed myself off Valium,alcohol,pot and cocaine!EEGADS!what a foolish thing on my part,i could've died!I DO NOT advise anyone to do this!Medical assistance is a necessity!Hope to see more of your insights here!
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Avatar universal
well after reading all the posts and comments of alcohol abuse, i can really relate to it. i drank very heavily for years I'm saying gallons and gallons of vodka. i quit cold turkey on my own with no medical help, let me tell you it was the toughest thing i had to do in my life and I've been sober going on three months. the withdraws are no joke i thought i was going to die but by the grace of god i manage to stay strong and pull threw. at the same time i still have a long road ahead of me. i still have cravings and anxiety...alcoholism is no joke. if your trying to quite cold turkey i suggest get help because you will need some one to stay by your side while your going threw it. so those who want to quit good luck and stay strong and its only matter of time you will be on top and feel so good knowing you beat that demand...godbless
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COMMUNITY LEADER
Thanks for sharing!so who is your sober support system today?
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Avatar universal
Here is my personal and continued battle with drinking. I hope it can help someone.  As anyone with any sense knows addiction can and will effect anyone who lets it get out of hand. My drinking first started when I was in college. I drank for 10 years and 7 of those were very heavy. The last 5 years I have been up to at least a fifth of vodka and a pack of cigarettes a day. I lost some beautiful girlfriends, good jobs and drank away my education. I'd have to take shots from the time I woke up until when I passed out drunk. I'd wake up in the middle of the night shaking, uncoordinated, "fuzzy" head, sore, and just feeling like overall crap.  So I'd quietly get out of bed as to try and not wake my girl. I would go in the living room to smoke cigarettes, watch tv, and pound vodka for an hour or two and then sneak back into bed like I have been in it all night. It got to a point where I wanted to stop on my own.  Beware this is very dangerous. The first time I stopped cold turkey I had a seizure and was helicopter airlifted to a major hospital. I relapsed two more times and was airlifted again due to varicies in my throat. I was internally bleeding into my stomach and the scarring on my liver prevented it from processing it out into a stool movement. I needed 9 units of blood the first time and Seven the next. I was very close to death and probably would have died without quick medical attention.  I was good and sober for just under two months and I was starting to feel really good. Then I got too confident thinking I could just drink wine that quickly turned into another 4 month binge. I went cold turkey again. Thankfully I wasn't alone because 48 hours I had a massive heart attack. Quitting cold turkey is dangerous but if it's something that you want to do please do it in a hospital. If a hospital isn't going to be where you do it at then have someone around you for a week. No work, no stress, lots of fluids and any food your body can keep down in the beginning. Your heart going to feel like it is about to explode and as has been stated in previous comments, you can't feel a seizure coming. I justified not doing it for so long because I couldn't take a week off work or something along those lines.  If drinking at this level is what you do and you want to quit, then that becomes your new priority because it will eventually be the reason why you die a more then likely very painful death.
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Avatar universal
Hi, I'm  a 43 year old that is in good shape, 5' 11", 200 lbs and like to drink alcohol. I didn't think that I was drinking that much, but my body said otherwise and I started having PVC's, which will give you the effect that your heart skips a beat. Then, I would drink coffee the next day and my palpitations would start.
The doctor said that he did not know how they start and when they would end.
Well, let me tell you guys a little about my bad habits,. I thought that I was not drinking a lot of alcohol but I was wrong!!
A few years ago I was taking shots of whiskey and started drinking my homemade beer every other day.  I thought I would try something healthier and I started drinking red wine.  All of a sudden I started to feel my heart palpitating.  I started searching the internet to see what the heck this was.
Everything I read seemed to be describing PVC's or palpitations. The doctor had also confirmed it.
I stopped drinking for about 3 months and the PVC's really slowed down and I noticed that if I  had a cup of coffee in the morning I would feel the PVC's a little stronger..
So, I started slowing down on my alcohol drinking.I had stopped drinking alcohol for about 2 weeks and was drinking my usual morning coffee and I noticed that I was not having any PVC's nor palpitations. This somewhat confirmed to me that I was drinking way too much alcohol.
So, if this sounds like this maybe happening to you, then slow down on the alcohol intake and your PVC's will eventually stop.
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Avatar universal
Hi Cat I'm really glad to see you come back although sorry you are still drinking But You can change that today ! Your budding relationship would benefit so much from you being sober That is one of my biggest regrets is drinking during my marriage It added a element to it that was negative and contributed to my lack of self esteem.. Although I drank a lot and everyday I did not have Major wd Mine were Anxiety to the Max restlessness racing thoughts these kids of things.. The safest way to detox is with your Dr. on board.. This all lasted for a few weeks if I remember right but what I do remember is the cravings That was the most difficult That is why many attend AA meeting to help them navigate the craving and Just for the support of others that understand what you are going thru.. You can get sober this is for sure It all is up to you and how badly you want it.. Keep posting for support ! lesa
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Avatar universal
Thank you so much !  I'm still struggling.  I came back to this site without realising it was me who wrote the comment.  I have only just read your really inspiring response THANK YOU SO MUCH.  I hope you are still doing so well.  I guess I'll have to just cut back and then cut out.  Perhaps drink every 2 days if day 3 is the seizure likely day?  

best wishes, Cat
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Avatar universal
Dear Loganlea

Thank you for your reply - I came across my post again by accident, looking for help.  I failed in my attempt to give up and am trying now.  It's not working though.  I hate being dependent upon this drug.  
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Avatar universal
Dear Lesa, I can't believe I've just read this post.   I wrote that in 2011 when I was looking for help.  I have just read my own post and slowly realised that it was me...  Wow,  I've been heavily drinking for so long.  Hadn't realised how long!   :-(  Still Fat.  I've had cancer twice.  I now drink 35cl vodka most nights.  If not vodka, then wine.  I just want to stop.  I don't even know what I'm hiding from through my drinking.  Life has thrown me a few challenges I suppose.  I tend only to drink only at night.  If I stop cold turkey - will I get seizures?  I tried to cut down yesterday - but ended up not.  I'm so miserable about it.  I have a lovely partner now and he has no idea of the extent - although he says I drink too much - he doesn't know the half of it.   If I do cold turkey - what are the signs that I would need alcohol to avoid illness?
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3060903 tn?1398565123
THIS IS A VERY OLD POST FROM 2007 AND THE POSTER IS NOT LIKELY TO READ YOUR COMMENTS.

One way to find out if the poster is around is to go into their profile page and see if there's anything recent. NEW POSTS ARE BUMPED DOWN if there are many comments made to old posts, and some do not any comments because of it. >  PLEASE consider posting your own thread on in the ALcoholism Community so that you can have people help you directly with your sobriety as most will not respond to the older posts. All the best.
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Avatar universal
I am on my 7th day of cold turkey I have been drinking a half fifth of vodka every day for the past ten years,Everything seems fine right now but I have not gone back to work yet.Work is why I started drinking more.I had the bad night sweats for three days that seems to be gone.I am far from out of the woods.
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Avatar universal
I am on my 7th day of cold turkey I have been drinking a half fifth of vodka every day for the past ten years,Everything seems fine right now but I have not gone back to work yet.Work is why I started drinking more.I had the bad night sweats for three days that seems to be gone.I am far from out of the woods.
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Avatar universal
Hello, I'm in the UK too and its about time I stopped drinking. Not sure how this site works or if you'll get this message but I could really do with some support. My friends all drink too much too.
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Avatar universal
My God I am sorry. It was brave of you to share this. I am 42 yrs and have seen addiction in 2 of my brothers and mother and it was horrible. I started getting addicted to pain medication but have been off of it for 6 months. The mental pain is unbearable sometimes. I can see why it is almost impossible for people to recover. You are an amazing person and I wish you the very best in healing. I realize my post is several years late.
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COMMUNITY LEADER
there are free clinics,have a few in my neck of the woods....BUT if you REALLY want to commit yourself to sobriety you will find a way...someday yes...and then again you may opt to not choose too!there are county outpatient substance abuse clinics that get state funding to help those w/no income or insurance.....I do work in one....many come thru our doors.I've worked there for 29 years.Been sober/clean 30!
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Avatar universal
how do u drink w/no money?

Easy. I can buy a ten dollar bottle but can't afford a $200+ visit to the DR.

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Avatar universal
It is very difficult to quit alcohol due to its withdrawal effects.But if we follow simple remedies these withdrawal effects can be avoided.Please read the article Learn how to get rid off from alcoholism?
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COMMUNITY LEADER
how do u drink w/no money?
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Avatar universal
No Family Dr and no money to see one even if I had one.
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COMMUNITY LEADER
got a family doctor?no one...including me ever died from a lack of sleep:)but cardiac issues can arise from the withdrawal so if you feel yourself in jeopardy you should get self to ER!
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Avatar universal
I stopped drinking last night. I can't say I have quit drinking because I haven't.
It's been one night and I can't sleep and feel horrible.
For the the last ten years or so I have drank a case of beer at least or a bottle of vodka.
I actually feel pretty good but the not being able to sleep is tough.
Also worried about dying from Alcohol withdrawal.
I'm having a hard time doing normal things that I would normally do with a beer in hand.
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Avatar universal
Question recently i cut down the type of alcohol i drink normally i drink 8.8% vol Steel Reserve. Now i drink budweiser which is somewhere around 4.9% on top of that i limit my intake more. Will this change in levels make me itch. i know it is part of the detox process somewhat
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