Post Acute Withdrawal Syndrome -
from the Recovery Learning Series at SupportNet.ca
- Resources for Your Recovery
Recovery is learning to enjoy life - without the use
of alcohol or drugs that alter mind or mood.
It is treatment for the condition of addiction - an
approach to the challenges of life - and a path to
Recovery requires us to learn - about the true nature
It may be personalized - but it has its necessary
Principles and its Ways.
Recovery is empowered by a day to day structure and
routine. And it will always benefit from the support
This Learning Seminar introduces the topic of Post
Acute Withdrawal Syndrome -
What it is - What you need to know - and how Recovery
can help you to deal with its frustrating symptoms.
What You Need To Know?
Post Acute Withdrawal Syndrome (Paws) is a troublesome
group of symptoms that may occur after prolonged use
of alcohol or drugs.
It may persist for months or years after you stop
The symptoms of Post Acute Withdrawal include mental
symptoms of poor concentration, forgetfulness, mental
restlessness and distractibility.
Emotional symptoms include erratic mood changes, anxiety
and nervousness, overly sensitive and exaggerated feelings.
The symptoms of Post Acute Withdrawal may persist,
improve or worsen at different times.
They may not always be obvious - but are triggered
by stress, fatigue, conflict, change or commotion.
A pressured and hectic lifestyle will worsen its symptoms.
Those who suffer with Paws often report that they
are sensitive to or are bothered by - things that did
not bother them before.
They will commonly say that they are less able to
tolerate stressful situations, conflict or commotion.
Post Acute Withdrawal is very common. It may persist
for months or years.
It is caused by changes that occur in our brain -
after the prolonged use of alcohol or drugs.
The symptoms of Paws may interfere with work, school
and our ability to deal with the stress of everyday
Symptoms will worsen during times of poorly managed
But the symptoms of Paws are themselves frustrating
- and contribute to a cycle of worsening stress.
The symptoms of Paws are a risk for the relapsed use
of alcohol or other drugs.
The use of drugs may temporarily relieve the nervousness
and other symptoms of Paws.
But in the long run, relapsed use will worsen and
prolong Post Acute Withdrawal symptoms.
How Can Recovery Help Me?
Recovery encourages acceptance of what we cannot change
The symptoms of Paws are not going to disappear -
just because we want them to go away.
Learn to write things down. This will compensate for
poor memory. It will help you to feel more organized
- and less stressed.
Recovery encourages a structure and routine to your
A daily schedule can help the symptoms of Paws in
Write down the chores and appointments that you have
to do in a day. Schedule time for rest. Put your most
important tasks at the top of your list. Remember First
Recovery encourages self care - a simpler and more
The symptoms of Paws will be less troublesome if you
get enough sleep - and do not try to do too much at
one time or in one day.
Remember HALT - Don’t
let yourself get too Hungry, Angry, Lonely or Tired.
Forget HALT - and
you are more likely to feel anxious, stressed, forgetful
Remember Honesty, Openness and Willingness. Lying
and secrets set the stage for conflict and crises.
Listen to the experience of others in recovery - and
do what you need to do for your recovery today.
Over time, you will find the symptoms of Paws more
manageable - that your mind and emotions will settle.
Recovery encourages healthy boundaries with others.
Don’t set your self up
for conflict and stress - by keeping the secrets
of others - by engaging in gossip - or by enabling
others in their sickness.
Recovery teaches new ways to calm your self.
SupportNet offers education in Self Talk, Active and
Mantra Meditation, Positive Affirmations and Abdominal
These are all effective ways to learn how to calm
and to ground your self.
Recovery Offers the Serenity Prayer.
Grant me the Serenity to
accept the things I cannot change - the Courage
to change the things I can – and
the Wisdom to know the difference.
Repeat the Serenity Prayer in your mind - and see
the many ways that it can help you to deal with stressful
Recovery encourages you to express your self - and
to deal with things before they build into a crisis.
Recovery Support Group - Journal Writing - Talking
with Others. These are all ways to express and to settle
your self today.
Learn to deal with stress before it builds. Your confidence
will grow - and you will find your self with less emotional
Post Acute Withdrawal Syndrome is a troublesome set
of mental and emotional symptoms - that may persist
long after you have been abstinent from alcohol or
It is caused by changes in your brain - from the prolonged
use of alcohol or drugs.
Its symptoms are triggered by stress, fatigue, conflict,
change or commotion.
Your Personal Program of Recovery will help you towards
a healthier lifestyle - with less likelihood of conflict
Recovery provides the best antidote to the symptoms
It helps you to avoid relapsed use - and allows time
for your brain to heal.
You have now reached the end of Post Acute Withdrawal
Look for this and other Learning Series topics at
www.SupportNet.ca - Resources for Your Recovery.