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At your switch dose, what do you notice?


NewEra
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Obviously, the main observation one makes at the switch dose is indifference to alcohol.

 

However, I just finished reading Ameisen's book and a decent amount of other material on baclofen and it also seems to imply that underlying anxiety also drops significantly.  Have you all noticed this to be true at your switch dose?

I am not a chronic worrier, however, I am not at peace fully ever.  I am itchy (needing to move around etc.) most of the time.  I guess this could be classified as an underlying anxiety.  When I hit my switch dose, should this go away?

Thanks.

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That's a really difficult question to answer, NewEra, & there has been some discussion elsewhere on this site about underlying anxiety.

One confounding problem is that alcohol, although it relieves social anxiety, brings anxiety in bucketloads with the hangover next day.  So, once you stop drinking, you are rid of that feeling of anxiety (even paranoia for some people) the next day.

The other issue, which I certainly had, was the "when will I be able to get my hands on the first drink of the day?"  That question was with me every working day, so that I could feel the tension rising towards the end of the day.  With baclofen, that has gone.

I know that I personally had a lot of social anxiety.  I actually find that without alcohol, I tend not to bother with social occasions unless I have to.  I don't feel anxious now so much as bored.  There has also been some discussion on MWO as to whether a lot of us alkies actually have a mild form of Aspergers (that includes Ameisen who I think fits the picture quite well!)

I expect this post doesn't really answer your question.  Hopefully others will be along shortly with more helpful contributions.

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4 hours ago, Molly78 said:

I know that I personally had a lot of social anxiety.  I actually find that without alcohol, I tend not to bother with social occasions unless I have to.  I don't feel anxious now so much as bored.  There has also been some discussion on MWO as to whether a lot of us alkies actually have a mild form of Aspergers (that includes Ameisen who I think fits the picture quite well!)

I'm the same way, @Molly78. And I'm pretty sure I do have a mild form of Aspergers. When I took the Autism Spectrum Quotient I scored in the possible Aspergers level. 

@NewEra, I did notice my chronic anxiety melting away when I was titrating upwards on baclofen. I think that the anti-anxiety effects really kicked in at 100-120 mgs/day.  Baclofen didn't eliminate all of my anxiety though. I can suffer from crippling social anxiety and I still get bad situational anxiety as well. But overall it is a fraction of what it was before I started taking baclofen. 

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52 minutes ago, Felina said:

 When I took the Autism Spectrum Quotient I scored in the possible Aspergers level. 

I scored "Not in the autism range" - tho I did get bored by the end?

For me on reflection it was the anxiety - It is difficult to describe - I usually describe it as replacing the shocks absorbers on your car - Something that you do not realise until you make a change that makes you realise, something was not quite right before

Regards

 

Bacman

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On my way to my switch I was so relaxed. When I started baclofen I didn't realize that I had anxiety. This lessened as I titrated up. I also didn't care one way or another about alcohol. If I had 3 drinks I'd need a nap. 

When I titrated down I did notice my anxiety coming up here and there. 

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Hi, New Era and a belated welcome to the forum. 

I had no idea I had underlying anxiety before I got sober with baclofen in 2011. I didn't really relate, when I read Ameisen's book, to his descriptions of being restless or uncomfortable, and I've always considered myself a fairly social person. 

I was wrong! HA! All those years of therapy only to discover in my 40s that I had crushing anxiety, intensified by alcoholism, and alleviated (a bit) by baclofen. When I first reached indifference and stopped drinking, baclofen was a powerful anti-anxiety med, or it was the fact that I wasn't drinking, or both. But that waned over time. 

I would imagine that we (both on this forum and as people with alcoholism) are as varied as the human population. Though I do relate in some ways to people who have Asperger's. I definitely don't. I just understand not...feeling like I get it all the time, and I can definitely become overstimulated. 

My experience is summed up very eloquently by bacman, actually. (Though I don't know much about cars, I do relate to the bumpy ride of poor shock absorbers and then the...smoothness, along with the realization that you didn't really know you were having a bumpy ride until it was fixed.)

On 10/8/2016 at 7:07 PM, Baclofenman said:

For me on reflection it was the anxiety - It is difficult to describe - I usually describe it as replacing the shocks absorbers on your car - Something that you do not realise until you make a change that makes you realise, something was not quite right before

Funny, bacman....

On 10/8/2016 at 7:07 PM, Baclofenman said:

I scored "Not in the autism range" - tho I did get bored by the end?

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7 hours ago, Ne1 said:

 baclofen was a powerful anti-anxiety med, or it was the fact that I wasn't drinking, or both. But that waned over time. 

Mmm - I think this is where I am now - I am getting a hint of anxiety early in the morning - It is normally remedied by 30mg of Baclofen so I am putting it down to the 10 hours or so since my last dose - But in comparison to the way it used to be, it is a doddle

 

On 14/10/2016 at 2:51 AM, Missykc said:

 When I titrated down I did notice my anxiety coming up here and there. 

Do you find, now you are sober you are able to deal with your anxiety rationally and normally?

 

7 hours ago, Ne1 said:

and I can definitely become overstimulated. 

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Regards

 

Bacman

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Hi @NewEra and welcome! i hit my switch dose at 310mgs about 20 days or so ago. I don't know that I actually felt any differently- I just noticed a desire not to drink. I was also testing myself weekly with a few beers to see if I still had the desire to drink. When I hit 310 I had a birthday party at my house for my daughter and the whole neighborhood was supposed to come so I bought a case of Coors Light. Anyway, only the ladies showed up and they had no interest in beer- so I didn't drink either and had no desire to do so! That beer sat in my fridge for a full week before I decided to try controlled drinking. I ended up having 3 and after that had no desire to have anymore. I also went to Buffalo Wild Wings and had 2 tall Blue Moons another night with friends. The first one took me almost 45 minutes to drink and I couldn't even finish the second. That's when I knew I was indifferent.

In terms of anxiety I believe everyone is different. I have General Anxiety Disorder (GAD) and so far, I have not noticed the Baclofen helping with my anxiety. I still take herbal supplements like Passion Flower and L-Theanine along with my prescription Klonopin for when it gets really bad. However, even when I have anxiety I have no desire to drink- it's the furthest thing from my mind! However, this is only my story, I know there are many on here (as well as Amiesien himself) that Baclofen did help with their anxiety. Different strokes for different folks I guess.

Good luck on your journey with Baclofen. Trust me when I tell you it's worth it! 

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  • 2 weeks later...

when i reached my "switch" dose of 300mg, when i was drinking daily id have a few drinks then the i would experience unplesant side effects from alcohol which made me not want to drink. I think baclofen extinguishing cravings is more to do with the lack of a positive reinforcement from drinking. you dont get high off alcohol anymore so you dont crave it anymore.

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Bacman,

i still have anxiety on the rare occasion. More so I felt like baclofen dulled me. I became way less social and remain that way still. Maybe it's not the baclofen and just me but I'm still not motivated to meet up with people much. 

 

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1 hour ago, Missykc said:

Bacman,

i still have anxiety on the rare occasion. More so I felt like baclofen dulled me. I became way less social and remain that way still. Maybe it's not the baclofen and just me but I'm still not motivated to meet up with people much. 

 

Hi Missy

Yeah, I get it sometimes, mainly in the mornings so I guess it is because the dose has worn weak - I was never a go-outer but I tolerated it because I could get pissed - I guess I am now a no go-outer because I do not get pissed - So I guess that is, sort of like you but from a different outlook?

Regards

 

Bacman

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On 10/28/2016 at 9:36 PM, neophyte said:

when i reached my "switch" dose of 300mg, when i was drinking daily id have a few drinks then the i would experience unplesant side effects from alcohol which made me not want to drink. I think baclofen extinguishing cravings is more to do with the lack of a positive reinforcement from drinking. you dont get high off alcohol anymore so you dont crave it anymore.

I think you're right to some degree, Neo.  There is an extinguishing effect over time.  But it's not the same as naltrexone which just acts by taking away positive reinforcement.  I could never have managed to stop drinking by that method - for me bac definitely has a calming anti-anxiety effect.

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