PAWS?

Postby Antmorales16 » Mon Jan 30, 2017 3:42 pm

How do I know if it's paws or something else? I'm 2 months in to quitting weed and I'm having problems concentrate, racing negative thoughts, mood swings and andehonia and a feeling of depression. I wasn't depressed before this. I did have a little concentration problem but I wasn't diagnosed with anything as it wasn't that bad. I was 16 when I started smoking weed so I was young. How do I know if it's paws? I really hope it is. I'm only 2 months into sobriety. I'm kicking a porn addiction also as I'm 2 months in.
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#1

Postby Antmorales16 » Mon Jan 30, 2017 4:03 pm

I would appreciate someone's advice. I'm very worried and hope someone has been through the same thing and that its PAWS
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#2

Postby NoProblem » Mon Jan 30, 2017 5:25 pm

Hey Ant,

No one can ever be sure if your symptoms are actually PAWS or not, but I would say 9 times out of 10, it is likely PAWS, especially considering you not having any of these symptoms prior to withdrawing from the drug. I'm 10 months out from my quit and my PAWS symptoms extended in severity all the way until the 8th month where they began to subside significantly. They would come in windows and waves: windows being times of clarity and less symptoms and waves being days or weeks where I would feel like I was back at day 1. Eventually, the days in between got longer and the waves became less and less.

My advice to you is be patient and try to incorporate some sort of exercise in your daily routine. Just to give you some reassurance, here is a list of the symptoms I had during PAWS:

Anhedonia
Depression
Severe Anxiety
Mild Agoraphobia
Derealization/Depresonalization
Difficulty Concentrating
Suicidal Thoughts (very minimal)
Negative Intrusive Thoughts

None of these symptoms existed in my life prior to withdrawing from Marijuana.

Time is the answer. Be kind to yourself!
Cheers.
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#3

Postby Blazedout420 » Mon Jan 30, 2017 5:59 pm

Hey Ant,

I can relate to all of the things you describe and the ones listed by noproblem. I thought I was loosing my mind and thought it couldn't be the weed, but looking back the only thing that changed was stopping smoking and porn. Things got better for me after around 6 months, I'm now around 8 months clean of weed and I barely use porn anymore and my anxiety has pretty much gone I just suffer from some lingering effects of DPDR which don't really bother me too much at present but I am aware of them, recently I've noticed my emotions and feelings coming back although still blunted but it's better than being numb and I'm working on undoing the damage I caused myself by obsessing over the intrusive negative thoughts. I feel I am nearly there now so hang in there and you'll be ok. The best advice I can offer you from my experience is not to obsess over how you feel right now and any weird thoughts you have, don't google symptoms and answers just accept this is how you feel now and it will pass. This was the mistake that I feel slowed down my recovery as I wasnt prepared for it absolutely freaked me out. Just try and get on with your life and as hard as it is try not to give your symptoms any attention, just try and do positive things, exercise and be around people, I appreciate that this may be difficult with how you're feeling and some days you might not feel like it but try to push through and you'll be ok. I thought I would never get back to feeing normal but slowly and surely I'm getting there.

Take it easy
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#4

Postby Antmorales16 » Thu Feb 09, 2017 11:15 pm

Wow man so you've been through the same thing? That's exactly how I feel. I've been having extreme anxiety as of lately obsessing over my heartbeat and convincing myself I have some heart condition but I know it's the anxiety! Also I never feel like I'll be Normal again! My thoughts are always worry some and they always predict the bad in everything!! I've had anxiety before but it was very very minimal!!!' Nothing as bad as this. It's very reassuring to know it's PAWS man.
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#5

Postby Antmorales16 » Thu Feb 09, 2017 11:17 pm

Whenever you log on you mind chatting? Would love to speak to someone about the symptoms man
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#6

Postby Antmorales16 » Fri Feb 10, 2017 12:20 am

Blazedout420 wrote:Hey Ant,

I can relate to all of the things you describe and the ones listed by noproblem. I thought I was loosing my mind and thought it couldn't be the weed, but looking back the only thing that changed was stopping smoking and porn. Things got better for me after around 6 months, I'm now around 8 months clean of weed and I barely use porn anymore and my anxiety has pretty much gone I just suffer from some lingering effects of DPDR which don't really bother me too much at present but I am aware of them, recently I've noticed my emotions and feelings coming back although still blunted but it's better than being numb and I'm working on undoing the damage I caused myself by obsessing over the intrusive negative thoughts. I feel I am nearly there now so hang in there and you'll be ok. The best advice I can offer you from my experience is not to obsess over how you feel right now and any weird thoughts you have, don't google symptoms and answers just accept this is how you feel now and it will pass. This was the mistake that I feel slowed down my recovery as I wasnt prepared for it absolutely freaked me out. Just try and get on with your life and as hard as it is try not to give your symptoms any attention, just try and do positive things, exercise and be around people, I appreciate that this may be difficult with how you're feeling and some days you might not feel like it but try to push through and you'll be ok. I thought I would never get back to feeing normal but slowly and surely I'm getting there.

Take it easy


Everything you said was true. I still can't feel my emotions fully man! I'm scared I'm f***ed for good! I smoked for 2 and a half years daily and started occasionally when I was 15! I'm 19 now.. Lately I've been obsessing over my heartbeat... Having really bad anxiety spirals. I can't really enjoy anything But still force myself to do it! I just wanna be normal bro. Please help me out man. I look up symptoms on Google & it makes it worse! My emotions are numb right now and it's hard for me to feel! I wish this all could be over. I had a LITTLE anxiety before smoking but nothing major! :( not like this at at all. Hit me up man lets talk
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#7

Postby Antmorales16 » Fri Feb 10, 2017 12:21 am

If you could message me id appreciate it .
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#8

Postby NoProblem » Fri Feb 10, 2017 12:47 am

Hey Ant,

I just hit the 10 month mark since quitting. Like I mentioned earlier, I can assure you that this is probably the most difficult thing I've encountered in my life, but it really changed me. Just note to yourself that it's likely anxiety from the withdrawals. The brain takes a very long time to return to it's normal state, but it will. I was experiencing severe anxiety in waves almost daily/weekly. It wasn't until the 8-9th month that it began to simmer down significantly. Now the anxiety is specific to some small 'phobias' (if you will) that I developed throughout the withdrawals.

To give yourself some reassurance, I would see a doctor and have some tests done just to rule out any issues. This will provide you the mental calm and confidence that nothing is physically wrong with you and it's simply the brain doing it's best to heal. The anxiety I went through is exactly how you're describing it, but I had a significant fear of panic attacks (similar to panic disorder, never had it before w/d). I would begin to shake and feel like my heart was constantly dropping, had air hunger (felt breathless), and couldn't focus on anything. It would come in waves. As time has gone on, that has completely disappeared.

Trust yourself and trust that everything will be alright. I'm not sure how far along you are in this process, but time heals all my friend. Sometimes it takes longer than others.

There is no way to IM on this, or else I'd keep up with messaging you. Maybe send me a private message and I can keep in touch?

Cheers.
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#9

Postby Antmorales16 » Fri Feb 10, 2017 12:52 am

Hey man I'm 2 months and 10 days in. Is it normal to get this smoking daily for 3 years? I see it usually in people who are kicking a long long term habit like 10 years or so. Could it be that I'm young and it takes longer to recover? Also did it take you a while to feel your emotions? We're there times were you doubted that it was the withdrawals and something else? My mind convinced me it's something else man and it sucks cause I have faith that its withdrawal
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#10

Postby Antmorales16 » Fri Feb 10, 2017 12:54 am

I get caught in negative thought cycles and in return I get crazy anxiety. How was your anxiety? Was it like that ?
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#11

Postby Antmorales16 » Fri Feb 10, 2017 12:55 am

I've made some positive changes to my life and I wanna be excited about life again man
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#12

Postby NoProblem » Fri Feb 10, 2017 1:18 am

Antmorales16 wrote:Hey man I'm 2 months and 10 days in. Is it normal to get this smoking daily for 3 years? I see it usually in people who are kicking a long long term habit like 10 years or so. Could it be that I'm young and it takes longer to recover? Also did it take you a while to feel your emotions? We're there times were you doubted that it was the withdrawals and something else? My mind convinced me it's something else man and it sucks cause I have faith that its withdrawal


I smoked daily for 9 months and I went through hell. It really varies from person to person. No two withdrawal experiences are alike. It took me a good 6-7 months before I stopped feeling anhedonia and depression. Things have gradually started to level out since then. I'm beginning to become the person I was before I started smoking.

Up until now, I still have negative thoughts although not as severe as they were initially. I feel I have significantly more control over them now than I did throughout the whole experience. They would spiral out of control and I would have anxiety attacks sometimes. I also had suicidal thoughts for a short period, but those went away. And yes, for a very long time, I was convinced that my symptoms were permanent and that there was no way marijuana could have caused this. Time has proven otherwise.

If I were you, I would gradually begin to introduce exercise into your life whether it be weight lifting or cardiovascular (jogging, walking, stairs, etc.). It can help alleviate the symptoms of anxiety significantly, but it may be hard initially because exercise mimics the symptoms of anxiety.

Keep hangin' on man.
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#13

Postby Antmorales16 » Fri Feb 10, 2017 1:25 am

Oh wow, that's such a relief To hear man. I thank you so much for the reassurance. Your a big big help. How long have yoU been clean for man? and wow if I'm able to feel my emotions again that will be amazing! I bet that was an amazing feeling once you could start feeling again. I feel like a robot. A walking zombie in a way. I have no interests nor opinions about anything. Did you ever have a problem with obsessive thinking.. Or like obsessing/ getting scared about your heartbeat?
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#14

Postby Antmorales16 » Fri Feb 10, 2017 1:26 am

That's the one that bothers me! Lol even tho rationally there's nothing wrong. I just feel my heartbeat and it freaks me out.
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