"Good luck to all those just getting started quitting. You made a great decision. Just use your will power and the support of others to get you through the initial phases and then start finding something to replace those high moments in your life!"
This is also my wish for everyone. I think that you're giving quite some positivism to people and I guess that's something also needed for this forum.
And I hope you will not care to smoke at all after this detox
I completely agree with just about everything you have said about addiction, brain pathways, ability to alter them, being conscious of our thoughts and constantly monitoring them, etc. Addiction is about so much more than just a drug. Although at the start of my thread I said that this was attempt number one million, if I am being honest with myself this is really my first attempt - every other time, always brought on by me, through constant self-evaluation, seeing the drug starting to get the upper hand, has been kind of "O.K., I'm going to stop smoking for quite a while", which is quite different from "I want to address my addiction, and the drivers for my use, and, if I am ever going to use again, then to do so with a completely different mindset". The previous attemps were always going to fail, as I was just seeing them as temporary absences from the drug (with the duration being completely open-ended, which is why I would respomd to some big stress event with "O.K., that's long enough, you can start smoking again"), and not really trying to change anything in my brain surrounding the whole addictive behaviour.
Already I can notice a complete difference. This morning, lying in bed after the first decent sleep since I started (it's day 6, and I just had to count on my fingers to figure that out - shows how brain fogged I am) I "forced" myself to think the thought "Oh, I wish I could have a smoke!", to see how it resonated. I felt nothing at all, as if I were reading a line of dialogue spoken by a character I didn't even identify with. On previous abstinences that thought would have buzzed around me all morning, constantly annoying me, until I gave in. The difference is, I feel, that this time I am trying to addresss the behaviour rather than just withholding a drug.
I would like to be able to use responsibly again, but I'm not going to even attempt that until I feel that I have seriously addressed, and changed, the reasons why I have USED the drug. But, whilst you and I seem to be in the same place, and have a lot of understanding about self awareness, changing neaural pathways, etc, for a lot of people it is probably much safer to say "once an addict, always an addict - don't ever touch it again". I once read a zealous preacher talking about pre-marital sex (shock! Horror!) and advising young people on how far it was OK to go. He recommended complete abstinence (which, on this topic, of course I disagree with), but the analogy he used is I think so wise - he said "If you were driving on a winding mountain road, with steep cliffs at the edge, you wouldn't say "I'll see how close I can get my car to the edge without going over".
The reason I actually wanted to reply to this thread (as it is about duration of symptoms) was to answer a post a few posts back from unregistered about headaches and lightheadedness and stuff.
On one abstinence, having got over the initial withdrawal and thinking it was over, I was talking away to someone (for hours) when I was suddenly hit with lightheadedness, slow thinking, dizziness, etc. I though I was coming down with some virus, but it neither got better or worse for several days (this would have been in week three), and didn't go away until I smoked my first joint. It was only then that I realised that it must have been some delayed withdrawal symptom.
Still not sleeping normal cycles yet. I had some fragments of dreams, but my sleep was still pretty disrupted at 6 nights.
Being the first sober weekend I was anticipating Fri and Sat to be a little tougher than mid week and there have been some cravings...but I've just kept myself busy to occupy my mind. It's Sat evening now and 7 full day's is just about a certainty now.
Me and the wife joined a gym today and I'm hoping that the regular exercise will help regulate my sleep cycles more.
All in all doing pretty good. I will probably stop the daily updates for now unless there is something significant to report. I'll try and remember to check back in with reports at weekly intervals for everyone.
Thought i'd join in, obviously i've not been smoking as long as some of you, but the withdrawals were pretty bad.
Ok so I started smoking weed at 15, only recreationally with friends at first. Then it started to get more common and by the time I was 17 I was on half an ounce a week, no longer smoking with friends, just at home by myself. This continued for about 4 months. During this time, my family found out, and they hated me for it. Took away my car, wouldn't speak to me, threatened to kick me out. Did this make me want to stop? No. I was in love with weed, it dominated my life.
In December, I started to realise the bad effects it was having on me. It wasn't really "fun" any more, it was just something i'd do to get a bit of joy, school was suffering because of it, as was my job (and bank account). Everything seemed to revolve around weed, I'd talk about it at school, think about it non-stop, I couldn't think through problems clearly (a year ago I was aiming to go to cambridge university, now i'm on track for the university of surrey. massive step down), forget what i'm saying mid-sentence, didn't want to go out and socialise, I just wanted to stay at home and smoke a zoot. I realised I wanted to get back to being normal.
So, I stopped, expecting it all to be back to normal within a couple of days, after all, people had always told me that it wasn't addictive and I had believed them. School told me otherwise. But then again, they also told me that smoking marijuana once a week would cause all types of symptoms, which I hadn't come across smoking that amount, so I just discarded the information as bullshit.
I started to experience withdrawal symptoms, which came as a huge surprise to me. I experienced insomnia (worst one), cravings, nausea, sweats, easily aggravated, paranoia. 4 days of no sleep later, I thought **** it, phoned up my dealer and bought a nice ounce.
Anyway, so I looked on the internet, trying to find as much information on marijuana addiction as possible. This got me mentally against weed. All the bad stuff it's done to my life, it's just not worth it. I don't know why, but for New Years, when i quit, I experienced lessened withdrawal symptoms. It could possibly be to do with mentally conditioning yourself to get your mind against weed. I only had lessened insomnia (only 1 day bad, I got sleep the other nights), sweats (worst one this time, it's ****ing horrible), easily aggravated (not as bad this time) and paranoia. It's now day 9 (soon day 10, it's 11:54pm), and i'm going fine.
I still think sometimes that i just need to take something to get high. So i've turned to DXM (cough medicine lol) a couple of times, my bad. Determined to not get addicted to something else on the path of getting off weed.
So that's me, a 17 year old stoner. Hope you all appreciate the insight into a young persons drug use, it's really interesting to read all your stories.
Things you experienced with weed caught many of us in similar ways. In the beginning we find it harmless and a wonderful way of enjoying the time, but in return some of us can get addicted to it and prefer staying at home and stoned over every activity in the world. I am glad that you have discovered your problem in a comparably early stage, which is your addiction to weed, and looking for ways to quit it. It's very usefull to go though the enormous information on addiction in the web, as you realize, this will change your mental perspective and you will be able to cope much better. There's also a sticky rehab group here which I post useful websites and articles on addiction. What I also want to say is, when someone is addicted, it means that he has developed the neurological disorder called "compulsive drug seek and use", and the kind of the substance he uses does not matter much. So, what matters is the disease of addiction that caught you and you don't need to read on specifically on "marijuana addiction" for which the information will be more limited I gues.
As you say you're 17 and you're at the beginning of creating your life. As you can see from the experiences of this forum, addiction is something that you could be trapped forever and it gets harder to quit by the time goes, and also the harm that it does to your live can be catastrophic at the end. Hence, it's a very good decision for you to quit weed now, the problem becomes only worse by the time.
Recovery from addiction is not something that happens in one week or so, actually it takes usually time in the scale of months for people to go back to their normal states. Because addiction messes up with the hormones in your brain, and it just takes some time for brain to adjust itself to function weed-free. But your young age is a great advantage for you since the rate that you heal can be much faster than elderly people. But as I stated above, addiction also does some profound changes in ones neurology, which makes the person always vulnerable to relapse. And for a true addict, there is no such thing to smoke once. When you smoke, the neurological disorder which makes you compulsively seek and use the drug relapses. During the recovery, you re-code your neurology as you live a sober life, but the part that is addicted in your brain will always stay there, and can popup when you're in a vulnerable psychological situation and can try to make you smoke. So, you should be always aware of your vulnerability and never let your guard down.
Please keep on reading, come here and share your thoughts and let's assist and support you through your journey of recovery.
Hi all, just want to start off by saying ive found CannabisRehab.org a great help in my attempt to kick the green stuff and i must also say I'm releaved its not just me going through these tough times.
Im now 26 years old and have been smoking cannabis/skunk on a daily basis since i was 18. I'd class myself as a chronic smoker, usually 3 big joints a night (every night) after work and also very heavy at the weekends. I am now on day 20 without touching the stuff and I've got to say I'm feeling worse now then ever. The first week wasnt to bad, I actually felt really good but now (last 3 days Im feeling aweful) What I really would like is for someone to answer a few questions and if anyone else has been through the same expierences please tell me your thoughts.
First of my chest is really hurting, it comes and go's I'm thinking its actually hurting because im getting better. Anyone else suffered from this?
Secondly Ive been to the doctor, I told him the total truth in what I doing (getting clean) and he's given me some sleeping pills. Now what I do is take the pills in the working week as I terrified I wont sleep atall and have to go to work but then I dont take them at the weekend. When I eventually do fall asleep at the weekend when I wake up (like today) I feel terrible, very tired, moody, paranoid I'm ill. Do you think this is because I'm actually getting proper sleep and having vivid dreams without any aid from skunk or sleeping tablets and my body is just like wooooooo!!! Im not used to that!! Like I say when I sleep using the tablets I dont have vivid dreams and wake up feeling ok.
Sorry to go on but lastly my concern is my weight loss. Now I understand people on here are glad (maybe you were overweight) to lose weight but I'm not. I'm skinny as it is and if anything Ive been eating better since getting of the weed. I come home from work actually looking forward to dinner and I'd definately say Im eating more (proper food) since Ive quit. However the weight has dropped off me, Im now very thin? Do you think this is a withdrawel effect and I will eventually gain weight again? Has anyone else suffered from this? I must add since Ive quit I have been on a couple of runs and have been playing football every monday night which i never did before.
Anyway, thanks for reading and any info,advice would be much appreciated. Well done everyone for getting off this horrible drug and although its tough stick to your guns and beat this mother f+++++!!
i have been clean four months and the urge is kicking my ass ...good luck
Hi All, I have found Homegrown's posts very interesting. I too have had the intrusive thoughts and also mild OCD symptoms since quitting weed cold turkey. I think the observing your thoughts and letting negative or stressfull ones pass by is a good technique however is also quite hard to train yourself not to get wrapped up in them. I find when you are anxious or stressed it is harder. When you are on your game that subside dramatically. I would be interested in learning more ways to stop your thoughts causing distress. I've just started doing very basic Tai chi to see if that helps with relaxing and beating the intrusive thoughts.
I will just point out that at the moment I beleive Iam going through PAWS (post acute withdrawal symptoms) It's just over 11 months since I quit pot. I started feeling very tired in the mornings and found it harder to wake up recently. Then last week I had an emotional argument with my wife, and had a temper and felt irratable. The next day I had a headache that lingered most of the day, then mid week I started feeling anxious, questioning my thoughts and sanity and noticed mild OCD and intrusive thoughts returning, strange dreams and inturupted sleep. These all feel very similar to the mental withdrawal symptoms I went through during withdrawal when I first quit nearly a year ago. I'm a little concerned, as it's been nearly a year, just wondering if anyone else on here has had post acute withdrawal? From what I've read on the net, It can be the final matienence that the brain is doing to recover, but I've not found a great deal of info on forums or blogs from people who have gone through PAWS the same.
Here is my case anyway, hope this can help with anyone that is currently or thinking of taking withdrawal-cold turkey head on!
It is true weed withdrawal can greatly vary and be very different for most. For some even little to no symptoms. That is why it can be hard for some people to sympathize and take withdrawal symptoms as seriously as other withdrawals.
I'd used weed and booze on and off for years and on occasional times harder drugs like coke or extasy.
It wasn't until I came back home after being abroad for a couple of years, (where I was a heavy drinker) that I started to smoke weed on a regular basis.
There wasn't a lot going on in my life at this point so I quickly got into the routine of smoking 3-5 strong joints to myself, after I got up, after lunch, one in the evening and one-two in the night. I was enjoying it but quickly noticed the coming months and the year fly by. Running out of weed was a pain and having a mad panic trying to score was starting to take over, and couldn't relax until I scored my weeks worth of weed. I started to get annoyed with my lack of ambition and motivation and taking the safe route all the time, and my eating habits were nearly as bad as the smoking. It did seem to calm my drinking of booze though as I was content with my weed.
I had in the back of mind "I've really gotta give this up soon" and unlike myself I finished the joint late one night and said that is my last!
I think the sudden shock of knowing that you are going to try your hardest not to smoke and it dawning on you that you probably won't smoke for some time if ever again, is what I noticed first.
Looking back I did stop very sudden, and the first few days I felt really 'odd'. At times euphoric and excited that I had quit, then at other times really emotional for little or no reason at all, and just an all round "sketchy" feeling.
This goes on for some time, and you start to question that you are going mad and will never come back! It was a very anxious time for me. Looking back now I realise that it is a shock to your system and brain chemicals as it realises the steady flow of THC from routine smoking as stopped.
Shortly after this I started getting night sweats, really bad,vivid dreams. Often about people you have not known or thought of for ages and even dreaming about smoking, this is normal. As smoking weed for a long duration of time starves you of your dreams and melotonin.
I also lost my appetite and lost a bit of weight. During this time it's important to not dwell on your symptoms no matter how crazy your thoughts are and how sketchy you feel. You do start to notice gradual changes and the symptoms letting up. It's like anything, you have good days and bad days.
I found eating healthy and going for long walks, and keeping myself busy around the house helped with the restless-ness and kept my mind occupied. You might at times like I did, question you're sanity during this period, I was really lucky to have some of my family and friends to talk to. They were really understanding, but it is a battle you have to go through on your own.
Withdrawal/Recovery is very gradual so its quite hard to notice great improvement at times, but you will start to feel the smog rising from your head and feel clearer and you will notice your lungs feeling clearer. Some people experience a bad throat and chest after quitting, I didn't but I did notice I wasn't so short of breath.
It will get easier, but unfortunatly you have to put the time in. Just remind yourself if you want to smoke again, you'll have to go through this all again and it puts you back at the start. I didnt have that many cravings, and I quit tobacco at the same time, but reading around, a lot of people find the cravings get less and less over the first few weeks.
As you brain chemistry recovers you will notice random days of feeling anxious, slightly paranoid or irritable, not to mention the dreams but I found they got a lot better after 1 month and you will notice great progress in two,three and so on.
There is post-acute withdrawal that can be AS bad as the first signs of withdrawal. I have done nearly a year of being clean from weed and apart from a couple of setbacks a year clean for tobacco and booze too. I suspect I am going through Post-acute withdrawal now, as it can come on again after 6-12 months. It has only been three days so far, so I'm hoping I will feel a lot better after a week. I'm feeling in general anxious,questioning my thoughts, OCD signs and feel emotional and dwell on past regrets etc but althougth im having odd dreams its not as bad as the first withdrawal.
I do miss the times of skinning up joints, sneaking around, countless hours of playing video games, listening to music, and falling asleep at ease etc
But you will no longer have that burning thought "I should really give this up" you'll be less selfish and will have more time for others, enjoy things more and be surprised at how much more you can enjoy movies,games,sports etc with out being stoned or cloudy headed. You'll be more socialble and have better reactions and energy levels etc
It is a great achievement to kick a chronic habit like this, and takes a strong will and test of character. Anyone who still smokes and has no plans to give up, totally respect that, everyone has different situations and reasons. Good luck to all, remember time doesn't stand still, and things change with time.
I was the one on page 13 smoking the synthetic blend for about a year nightly. I would smoke about 1 package or 3 grams of the synthetic blends a week. I am just now starting to feel a bit better. The night I had my panic attack 49 days ago, I quit both cigs and the blends together. I also stopped drinking my 5 cans of soda a day. I am still having almost constant anxiety, but havent had a full attack in about 2 weeks. I do feel the chest tightness/pressure/tingling due to the anxiety. I had an echocardiogram, stress test, pulmonary function test, all blood tests, and chest xray, all are normal.
I will get racing thoughts where it feels like I am going insanse because my mind is going a million miles an hour. Does that sound normal? I have my appetite back, but I am still having some insomnia and vivid dreams. The reason I started smoking the blends was because my new job last december required random screenings. So in order to get the new job, I had to abstain from smoking weed. It took me 63 days to finally get a faint line on at home drug tests when I was checking before I accepted my position. I only smoked weed for 8 months before having to quit. I didnt feel these withdrawals than, but I also didnt have a panic attack before the synthetic blends.
I did smoke weed between 18-26 daily as well with no adverse affects when I quit between the ages of 26-29. Then I began that 8 month weed smoking, followed by 63 days to get a clean test, followed by 1 year of blend usage. I smoked cigs for 13 years, a pack a day. Would the constant anxiety be normal for someone going through this and being this far along in the withdrawal? Also alot of my worry goes into what harm I did to myself with the blends and if I permanently scarred my brain from them. When I first smoked the blends I wasnt aware for the first 7-8 months any chemicals were in them, then I decided I would quit, but I had difficulty doing so until the panic attack. Then I quit everything at once. Thanks for any help, please help this anxious worry wart right now. thanks
I am glad to hear you are feeling a bit better. The racing thoughts and feeling like you are losing it can unfortunately be the kind of symptoms you can experience as a result of quitting, mental unrest and various symptoms of anxiety can be very normal, unfortunately it can all be part of the process of quitting so try not to worry about it too much and just let it wash over you as much as you possibly can, try to be as much at peace with it as you possibly can, maybe try some meditation and relaxation exercises if you can.
Yeah the lack of labelling as to what exactly you are actually smoking can be very dirty on those smoking blends, I looked at the packet of one and it listed things like lotus flower, wild dagger, skull cap, ect, everything but the synthetic cannabis chemical which was actually the one that was creating the effect that you feel, most of that sort of stuff has now been banned in the UK from what I have since heard.
Anyway chin up buddy and hang in there, you are doing really well.
Take care and please keep us posted.
All the best
Cannabis Rehab Admin (formerly known as BFB)
Drug Rehabilitated for 8 years.
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i think it's more of the cigarette withdrawal than it is the blends' withdrawal. cigs are very much physically addictive and it is normal to have such attacks every now and then for quite some time, anyway, just hang in there, try to work out, relax, and keep busy