Post-acute withdrawal syndrome (PAWS)
What is Post-Acute Withdrawal syndrome?
PAWS scientifically knows as, “Post-Acute Withdrawal syndrome” also be referred to as, protracted abstinence, prolonged withdrawal syndrome, protracted withdrawal, and post-withdrawal, refers to an array of symptoms that continues after an individual who is addicted to alcohol or a specific type of drugs has an increase period of withdrawal. The addict will go through a roller-coaster ride of symptoms during this time. No one can determine when, how many times or how severe these symptoms will be.
However, once the symptoms do appear, each episode can last up to a few days, possibly even a week depending on the amount of potency within the substance taken. Post-Acute Withdrawal syndrome does not occur with every drug, it often only occurs with the following drugs if they are to be discontinued:
PAWS has exclusive symptoms in relations to other withdrawal issue due to how vicious it can be. Post-acute withdrawal syndrome unfortunately, has no set time limit, it can last from as little as six months to as long as two years after the individual has stopped using the substance. Frequent symptoms consist of:
- Lack of interest in sex
- Fatigue and/or insomnia
- Mood swings (these can have severe lows and highs)
- Low energy
- Chronic pain
- Aggression, irritability and/or hostility
- Limited ability to focus
How is PAWS treated?
Although PAWS can be extremely harsh on the individual psychologically and emotionally. It can be controlled with professional personalized oversight and medical intervention.
“People who relapse can often die from accidents, overdose, suicide or medical problems. For example, if you have a damaged liver, your liver will return automatically -and not gradually- to the level of damage it was at when you were drinking.”
Long therapy, support groups, family and medication such as Acamprosate can help alleviate even the of worst symptoms and improve overall recovery significantly. This form of help and support can get any individual back to a normal life, knowing they have trusted help to fall back on if needed when facing withdrawal without relapsing. If an individual was to attempt to deal with Paws alone, the likely hood of a relapse is extremely high. Not many people who are addicts or a carer of an addict understand how severe Paws is and often ignore any help from family or professionals.
“Don’t try to go it alone. Whatever treatment approach you choose, having a solid support system is essential. The more positive influences you have in your life, the better your chances for recovery. Recovering from drug addiction isn’t easy, but with people you can turn to for encouragement, guidance, and a listening ear, it’s a little less tough”.
If you suspect anyone including yourself is showing signs of PAWS, please do not take this on yourself. Find the right support to help you beat addiction for the last time. we suggest contacting an accredited alcohol rehab near you for expert medical advice and treatment options.
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