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 personal growth.

Recovery requires us to learn - about the true nature of addiction.

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 of others.

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 using.

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 life.

Symptoms will worsen during times of poorly managed stress.

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 today.

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 day.

A daily schedule can help the symptoms of Paws in many ways.

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 Things First.

Recovery encourages self care - a simpler and more balanced lifestyle.

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 and flustered. 

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 Breathing.

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 situations.

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 turmoil.

In Summary:

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 drugs.

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 and stress.

Recovery provides the best antidote to the symptoms of Paws.

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 Syndrome.

Look for this and other Learning Series topics at www.SupportNet.ca - Resources for Your Recovery.