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  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
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    7

    alcohol for anxiety

    The past 3 or 4 days have been immensely difficult for me (anxiety-wise). Making my boring job 100 times worse… I can barely contain my tears of frustration, sadness, or whatever the hell is driving my emotions into a frenzy until I leave work- then cry my head off in the car until I get home, and then put on a happy face in front of my wife and daughter and continue to fight off the tears until I go to bed and escape this crap for a whole 3 hrs until it starts waking me up again.

    All I keep reading is to ‘be with the anxiety', allow the anxiety, accept it. Im trying like hell not to fight it. Getting nowhere it seems.

    So.. last night I had 3 or 4 drinks, and I felt almost NORMAL. I completely understand that alcohol is not good for anxiety. But for a temporary band aid- DAMN!!!! It certainly works like nothing else!

    I absolutely will not abuse. I get bad hangovers.. which certainly stops me from having more than 2 or 3 drinks even just a couple times per week. And. I am a beer and whiskey connoisseur (even a home-brewer)… so I know better than to abuse something that I am passionate about.

    Any thoughts on why alcohol helps SO much? Yes, I know it depresses the CNS. Yes I know its a temporary fix. Yes I know it is not recommended and can lead to many other problems. But if it works so well, why isn’t there some sort of supplement or other medication that affects the CNS in a similar way, but in a healthier way?

  2. #2
    I am sorry to hear of your struggles, I have been there and I now the soul sucking effects of what you are going through.

    Alcohol is known to temporarily elevate GABA receptors in the brain which are highly responsible for easing anxiety. Have you tried any supplements or meditation techniques for your anxiety?

    It might be worth it for you to get your hormones checked. Hypothyroidism as well as elevated estrogen levels, low testosterone among a few others can destroy your well being if not addressed.
    My Mental Health Blog - www.fixmybrokenmind.com

  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Location
    Maryland (MD)
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    1,194
    Many people use alcohol as a coping mechanism for anxiety.

  4. #4
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2016
    Posts
    291
    Coincidence, because I was feeling really good last night (way less anxiety) I had my first beer in nearly 5 months!

    I definitely expected to influence me today, but no, I have been feeling pretty well all day so far.

    Anyways I think there may be other reasons, beyond the intoxication that alcohol is helping. For me anyways, when I drink, it invokes memories of when I was younger and more care-free ( I am not talking very long ago..just 6 months ago).

    It's simply one reason why Alcohol is such a popular substance to use, because it is a good alleviation for anxiety.

  5. #5
    Even thought I don't get the typical craving in the classic sense and could probably have a alcoholic beverage, I know it will only set me back again and I'll regret it. While it might (seem to) help on the short term, the long term consequences wouldn't be worth it.

  6. #6
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2015
    Posts
    202
    I think it depends how much you drink.

    If you are also taking medication, you need to be careful because for whatever reason, it lessens the efficacity of medication, especially benzos.

    That has been my experience.

  7. #7
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    California
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    109
    Ethanol acts on the same receptors as the anti-anxiety medication benzodiazepines. Alcohol temporarily modulates the GABA-A receptor which induces anxiolysis. However, much like benzodiazepines, the anxiolytic effect of alcohol is very temporary. I would exercise extreme caution when using alcohol to quell anxiety. While much has been said about the abuse of benzodiazepines, they are usually not very addictive by themselves. The problem comes when you use them in combination with other CNS depressants such as opioids or alcohol.

  8. #8
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Posts
    12
    This may be a little off topic but im very curious. Before my panic attacks I would occasionally drink about 3-4 beers a week. I've stopped beer completely because I read alcohol and anxiety dont mesh well. I still want to be able to socially drink with friends once a while. Did any of you give up alcohol completely or do you still have at least 1 when out with friends?

  9. #9
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Location
    Indianapolis
    Posts
    8
    If you enjoy a couple of drinks occasionally, there is nothing wrong with that. I would try some of the supplements they have out there like Calm Now or maybe even going to therapy and getting on medication. I understand the need to put on a calm face for your family, but they really need to know what is going on. With your stress level increasing, you could eventually snap at them. Telling them could help with your options in dealing with anxiety. Keep us updated on your decisions and good luck.

  10. #10
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2015
    Posts
    202
    Quote Originally Posted by Two One View Post
    . While much has been said about the abuse of benzodiazepines, they are usually not very addictive by themselvesl.

    I wish this were true, but as a former benzo addict, you can become dependent on even a low dose after a month.

    Agree with you that alcohol and benzos is a dangerous mix.

    If not on meds, one or two beers socially is probably a good idea. Half a bottle of scotch isnt

 

 

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