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Anxiety after quitting drinking

I'm a 23 yr male, been drinking what would considered to be heavy since about 18, but I started  altogether at about  age 16. From 18 until now, I would usually get drunk at least 3 times a week or more, and in the inbetween nights usually have a few or sometimes none. I could  go without for a few days and feel fine. About a year ago I noticed some anxiety. In the last half year I found it getting worse and never realized I was bringing it on from drinking. The anxiety seemed managable while drinking but every two or three days without I would feel the need more. I found out 3 months ago that my gf was pregnant, this led to more drinking to relax. After feeling pretty crappy about everything I decided to quit. Knowing I quit brought on some anxiety/depression, but around the 4th day, it really started. Even if I was not thinking about anything/stressing, I would feel uncontrolable anxiety like I'm constantly racing. I'm on day 13 right now and the last 2 days have felt better and I'm doing lots of things to relieive anxiety. These symptoms are worst in the morning when I wake up. I also have some depression feelings. Just in the last few days I started to slightly feel like doing anything, but the anxiety has slowed me down. Positive excitement feelings that I havent had in awhile will trigger the anxiety. Are these feelings normal withdrawal symptoms of quitting? HOW LONG CAN IT LAST? I feel the drinking is the cause of the anxiety/depression and would like to ride this out and get better naturally.
20 Responses
Avatar universal
man..just be positve and try to be active like jogging/walking or whatever soccer or hockey..even if you feel like **** or bummed out just do it you will feel so much better and remember don't reach for the bottle until you crack this and dont' reach for it anymore if you dont want to..anxiety sucks trust me but being postive is the key...don't worry nothign serious if the heart gets tight or fast all anxiety...

dont stress it and stay strong

Avatar universal
yeah just hang in there. You drank for 5 years so its going to take a few weeks to a month for your body to adjust. You will have some good days and some bad days but once you feel better you will be happy you did it cause you will feel great. try to keep busy cause just sitting around thinking about will just make it worse. Good luck!!
165308 tn?1323190145
I would say that you are going through withdrawal.  And also while going through the physical symptoms, you are feeling feelings that have been numbed by the alcohol for so many years.  Once the physical symptoms go away, you will have a road to travel feeling the feelings that have been stowed away so long.  Hang in there.  The light at the end of the tunnel is brighter than anything you could think of!!!
Avatar universal
This story helps. I am in a VERY similar situation right now. Have started drinking at the age of 19, now I am 24. I also have been drinking 3 to 4 times a week. A lot what you wrote seems familiar- especially worried about positive excitement emotions turning into anxiety. Now it's my 3rd day sober and feeling really anxious but according to your story it won't be that fast till it gets better.
Avatar universal
Yeah, I've been drinking since I was 15 and I'm 27 now and It's been almost a month of maybe having 1 or 2 drinks, as of now I'm ready to give it my all, I'm also getting bad anxiety attacks, thinking somethings wrong and tripping out, I figure it's from the drug use I've been involved in the past that and the excessive drinking..

So then it's normal to have an unconformable feeling in your gut and slower mental thought processes and to be paranoid ?
Because I'm still tripping out at night and can't sleep and having issues socializing now.
Avatar universal
ive been drinking since i was 15 and now 40 and i drank 12 or more beer evry day i have a bad heart so decided to quit for me and my family and grand kids im 13 days sober now and was woundering if the heart burn and bloted and tight feeling in my stomach and stomach pain is from withdrals from not drinking
Avatar universal
Hey Bud,
I have had anxiety & depression issues for years. I have found exercize to help..changes the bodies chemistry....endorphines and what not. I'm also a believer in the spiritual side of things. You might think this crazy, but I would suggest finding a quiet place when you have the time and speak with all sincerity to God or one of it's agents. You might be surprised what happens. You're never alone. Good luck to you.
Avatar universal
I quit drinking about six years ago after about 18 years of pretty heavy drinking.  I quit after I realized that the drinking had gone from recreation to my primary coping mechanism in life.  I spent a lot of time at a support group I won't mention by name, and it helped, because they had all been there, and did stuff to help me keep my mind straight.  One thing I learned that helped a lot for me was to keep myself well fed, since alcohol metabolizes into sugar quickly in the body, it was helpful for me to always have around snacks, and even stuff like ensure to get my blood sugar up a little.  It seemed to have some calming effects.  Aside from that if anyone goes to an alcohol group for help, if you feel like you need to see a doctor about your anxiety, never let anyone tell you otherwise.
Avatar universal
I used to also drink 2-3 x per week to excess habitually, and I did this for 9 years after several traumatic losses in my family.  Recently, I've stopped cold turkey due to a diagnosis of borderline high blood pressure.  I am also mildly to moderately obese now from years of drinking, which put about 100 extra pounds on my then 119 pound body. I've stopped drinking, lost 20 pounds thus far, and have been completely sober for almost a month and a half.  I've also experienced severe panic attacks that have left me pacing the floor for five or six hours every single night for the first three weeks, until my doctor consulted a nutritionalist who suggested I take 200 mg of L-Theanine, twice daily.  The panic attacks are gone, and sometimes they start to come on, but never manifest themselves.  Whenever I skip a dose of the L-Theanine, though, I have a panic attack within a few short hours.  My blood pressure is now very good. I avoid a lot of sodium, eat whole foods (not processed), exercise daily, etc., and still worry about my health to the extent that my worst health fears seem to manifest themselves.  It's like living a perpetual nightmare from which I cannot awaken.  If it wasn't for the L-Theanine, I don't think I could function at all.  I'm also having recent memory problems, too.  My friends tell me it could all be the result of years of alcohol abuse, but if that were the case, I think it would be getting better by now.  It seems like just when one thing gets better as far as my health goes, another problem manifests itself.  To anyone who is considering quitting, I urge them to do so whilst they are still young or haven't been doing it as long as I did.  It's hell on earth when you've waited until the stuff has wreaked havoc on your body and mind the way it has mine.
Avatar universal
I was just reading all of everyones comments on drinking and the effects it's had on you once you quit.  Even though I was not a heavy drinker I can so relate.  My boyfriend has quit drinking just a couple of months ago. I guess I never really thought of him as an alcoholic because he was more of a binge drinker. He could go days without alcohol and than go out and have 20 drinks!!!!! Of course this effected our relationship....
He went to see a therapist because he was severely depressed for months at a time. This therapist  specialises in addiction, and she said, "IF YOUR GOING TO CONTINUE TO DRINK I AM NOT GOING TO WORK WITH YOU"..I liked her right away for that..She said what your doing is trying to help yourself feel better and the drinking is pushing you right back down so your running into a wall..
He quit drinking it's been over two months and I can tell you it's been the hardest thing for him, for me, for the relationship. He is extremely irritable, angry, anxious,resentful towards me its like he's a different human being. He's also hypo manic!!! and really going through recovery you have shouldnt be in a relationship...Were trying the best we can to get through this and work on ourselfs...
To anyone who's going through this, or is in a relationship with someone whos' going through recovery, my hats off to you!!!All I can say is hang in there, and take this time to focus on yourself and noone else...GOD BLESS!!!!!!!!!!!!
Avatar universal
Hello everyone

I dont know how long i have been a heavy drinker for years,but i do know that i use to drink about 15 beers a day, i am 2 months dry and i a really feelin crappy, my mind feels dizzy confusion, groggy, i have been to doctors and had mri's done,and they cannot find anything other than to tell me it is withdrawals,but i will tell u i am now 2 months sober, and this anxiety and stress and withdrawal *****, i am fighting this but it is really tough, it gives me headaches, and different types of pains in my brain, i get really weak in my arms and legs, and when i eat anything with sugar i just want to lay down the rest of the day, i have had my blood sugar checked, and it was fine, does anyone know what this is
Avatar universal
I'm 44 years old and thisis my first weekend with out a beer or cooler but' i know i'm going to get the sweats and feel sorry for myself ....i have 3 grandsons and i want to see them grow up sooo life long drinker is not a life ...my husband is going through a lot with his health ...this is one of the reasons i'm quitting is too look after him and hope we can make it ...cause he expierenced something last monday that scared the **** out of us ....he was throwing up blood and now we vowed to look after our health together ....cause we 2 more beautiful daughters to raise .....we have been moderate drinkers only on weekends but got to the point it was an all night thing till early mornings ...:( but pos. side we quit ....
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