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  1. #1
    guinevere64's Avatar
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    Default Baclofen?--a pill that stops cravings

    I apologize if this has been brought up before and I haven't seen it, but has anyone heard of baclofen prescribed to inhibit craving?

    Not that I'm interested. I'm not.

    There is a new book out called THE END OF MY ADDICTION, written by a physician who apparently could not stay sober despite going to 2 AA meetings per day for 7 years; when he tried baclofen (a muscle relaxant which somehow fools with GABA in the body), at high doses, he found it suppressed his cravings and he is now calling for large randomized studies in humans.

    Baclofen, I find on other websites, causes its own withdrawal syndrome when discontinued abruptly--it acts much like benzodiazepines, apparently, and can be life-threatening when not tapered under medical supervision.

    Is this trading one drug for another? --G
    Guinevere Gets Sober
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  2. #2
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    imo - yes. its just reliance on another chemical to get us through our day. Unless there is a diagnosed medical condition that requires medication.....just another crutch. buck up....deal with the problem instead of throwing another chemical at it. ugh.

    (by the way....sitting in 2 AA meetings/day for 7 years isn't the solution for an addict like me).

    peace
    j

  3. #3
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    When a person can "deal with it" they are throwing another chemical at it, it just happens to be one the body produces through various foods we ingest, everything is chemical. Everyone comes to harm reduction in different ways, and I find it's important to meet there where they are, not where I am. Seems to get more accomplished in the long run when I'm not imprinting my experience on someone else. I can tell them what works for me, but I let them make up their own minds, make their own mistakes. In time as we focus on harm reduction, self love and introspection, the muscle that generates these traits grows and so do they.

    I'm not a pure materialist by far but everything does seem to be chemical and we are a direct continuum of nature.. so what we create is nature.. some of it will hurt us, some of it will heal us.. and hopefully we continue to evolve in the process.

    We can take some of these ideas to extremes.. For example Oxygen, we need it, but it also destroys our cells as a free radical.. our bodies spend large amounts of energy fighting this process.. so what is oxygen? An addiction, it makes us feel better, it keeps us function.. but it's also our downfall over time. I don't believe everything is so cut and dry, it's all about harm reduction and leading a person from their particular self destructive path to something more healthy, something more evolutionary.

    Mind you sluggo, I'm not disagreeing with your take on that, messing with the gaba agonist can be a total disaster and helping a person get to the point where they no longer want to or wish to self medicate is the goal. Getting a person to the place where their emotions, intentions and motivations line up with their needs and wants can take time, and in that place of growth I think harm reduction can play a great role. Working on paradigms that make a person feel like a looser because they used, kindly and in some ways condescendingly giving them their little white tag and starting over once again drives people away, they've already failed enough, it's not a place of strength. Meanwhile having other people pursuing longer periods of sobriety (in many ways "just") so they can have more advanced colors of tags, feeding their ego so they in superiority can tell others what is and isn't, isn't so healthy either. To me it looks like the addiction is still there, now being feed by superiority and certainty. I know the rhetoric around the group tries to stave off these ways of thinking, but we are working with humans.. and such social dynamics within the group are rampant.

    Well I hope some of that made sense to at least a few people because the issue has been brought up quite a bit in some circles I frequent, and I believe they are legitimate concerns.

    -------------------------
    To love. To be loved. To never forget your own insignificance. To never get used to the unspeakable violence and the vulgar disparity of life around you. To seek joy in the saddest places. To pursue beauty to its lair. To never simplify what is complicated or complicate what is simple. To respect strength, never power. Above all, to watch. To try and understand. To never look away. And never, never, to forget.
    ~Arundhati Roy

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    Jymi -
    you and I have very different ideas of 'harm reduction'. fair enough.

    Sounds like the recovery circles you surround yourself with are not too healthy. 'round these parts...the newcomer is the most important person in the room. gratefully, no one judged me when I walked back in the rooms whilst detoxing and pukin on the floor. They loved me.

    Elitism has no place in recovery. we walk shoulder to shoulder. sorry that you've experienced otherwise.

    peace
    j

  5. #5
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    Hey Jymi ... I have a totally different take on the chips/tags/whatever. The last time I took one for myself, primarily, was at three months; I needed the morale boost, so I guess you could call that ego.

    Every time I've gotten one since then, it's been for the new people in the room. Seriously. I love to watch people detoxing and looking up with hope at all the people getting chips because they get hope and to me that is very exciting.

    We also focus on quality of sobriety here more than anything. Quantity will figure in, yes, but quality is job one at the groups I attend. I had to search for a bit but they were there.

    love,
    Danielle

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    Some of them are, some of them aren't but that experience is universal. I just found those I felt comfortable with and those I don't.. but in general there is a strange charge in the air when it comes to groups. Only found a few that feel open and therapeutic here in San Diego. Then again, I go about things I bit differently and that threatens some people. That all or nothing mentality is something I strive to let go of on many levels, not just in maintaining with self medication.

    The last line you wrote is nice but it seems there are few people able to really do this, they say it but you look into their eyes and you find something else, something they will do anything not to acknowledge. I was introduced to the program while living in sober living after ibogaine. I found many people I really enjoy and like hanging out with, though I have since left the group circuit and the dramatic social circles to work on focusing toward positive aspects of my life, and the life I wish to create for myself and others.

    I'm not saying it happens everywhere, but due to the fundamental precepts the groups are based on there is a high propensity towards this sort of thing, and it does happen. I guess in this manor, I'm asking that we take a look at ourselves more than I am throwing out a complaint about the social structures.

    -------------------------
    To love. To be loved. To never forget your own insignificance. To never get used to the unspeakable violence and the vulgar disparity of life around you. To seek joy in the saddest places. To pursue beauty to its lair. To never simplify what is complicated or complicate what is simple. To respect strength, never power. Above all, to watch. To try and understand. To never look away. And never, never, to forget.
    ~Arundhati Roy

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    From what is said here they same to two toally different classes of drugs, Antabuse is an opiate antagonist, where this seems to be some sort of GABA compound, you'd have to google it to find out if it's actually simular to the effects of benzo's that antagonize the GABA receptors.

    Err, I'm at work now (I dj on my laptop at the cafe ;).. so I can't check for ya atm.

    -------------------------
    To love. To be loved. To never forget your own insignificance. To never get used to the unspeakable violence and the vulgar disparity of life around you. To seek joy in the saddest places. To pursue beauty to its lair. To never simplify what is complicated or complicate what is simple. To respect strength, never power. Above all, to watch. To try and understand. To never look away. And never, never, to forget.
    ~Arundhati Roy

  8. #8
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    Unlike naltrexone,antabuse is not an opiate antagonist..it's used in alcohol treatment.

    Baclofen is a nasty muscle relaxer,hard on the kidneys as well as other side effects.

    <center>You can't solve problems by using the same kind of thinking that caused them in the first place.</center>

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    thanks jdude, for some reason I remember them being one in the same but never looked into it. I knew it was alcohol treatment medication but a friends father that was on it mentioned that it was also used in opiate treatment, and would make an acoholic sick if they drank.. guess I was missinformed.



    -------------------------
    To love. To be loved. To never forget your own insignificance. To never get used to the unspeakable violence and the vulgar disparity of life around you. To seek joy in the saddest places. To pursue beauty to its lair. To never simplify what is complicated or complicate what is simple. To respect strength, never power. Above all, to watch. To try and understand. To never look away. And never, never, to forget.
    ~Arundhati Roy

  10. #10
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    ok, this is where I got confused..


    http://familydoctor.org/online/famdo...cohol/130.html


    -------------------------
    To love. To be loved. To never forget your own insignificance. To never get used to the unspeakable violence and the vulgar disparity of life around you. To seek joy in the saddest places. To pursue beauty to its lair. To never simplify what is complicated or complicate what is simple. To respect strength, never power. Above all, to watch. To try and understand. To never look away. And never, never, to forget.
    ~Arundhati Roy

  11. #11
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    :)

    Baclofen is a muscle-relaxant used for spasticity and prescribed off-label to reduce addictive cravings. It must be tapered up and down when getting on or off it; stopping use suddenly leads to the same kind of detox that benzos induce. M'camera (a physician) has said that baclofen basically has a benzodiazepine profile and bad OD risks.

    I brought my questions up at a meeting Sunday night and got a number of very interesting responses. One was from a young man, maybe 28 or 29, who's been clean for about a year or so, and whose attitude I respect. His face lit up like a torch when I mentioned Baclofen.

    "It's funny when people talk about using Baclofen to get rid of cravings," he told me. "My experience was, when I used Baclofen with alcohol, the combination was just right. If you know what I mean."

    I knew what he meant. This busted me up laughing. I hadn't even thought of that possibility till he mentioned it. Because, when you get right down to it, if I don't abstain from chemicals, what's to prevent me from using the "chemical of the day" ALONG WITH the chemical I'm trying to quit?

    In other words, using a chemical to fight chemical addiction is like using water to drown a flood.

    IMO. ...

    Food is indeed chemical, but it's not only chemical. Unless one happens to think that the way in which food is produced and/or killed doesn't matter, that everything that exists can be reduced to its fundamental elements--protons, neutrons and electrons--and that "healing" consists of manipulating these elements to produce the outcome one wants. A strictly materialist view of the universe. This is not my view today.

    As for taking chips or keytags, I consider the monthly milestones in my abstinence to be important because I could never put together this much time off drugs before, and somehow it's happening this time, and i kinda want to party on those days. And because the people in my group care about me, and they like to see me do well--and this is an encouragement to me. It's better than the chemicals I've used in the past because it feeds a part of me that can't be reached by chemicals... --G

    p.s. oops, sorry, i see now that materialism was mentioned before, so i guess i didn't add anything to the discussion in talking about materialism. ... another subject for another day i guess. :)

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    quote:Originally posted by jdude

    Unlike naltrexone,antabuse is not an opiate antagonist..it's used in alcohol treatment.
    Thanks jdude. Just to answer a few of my own questions and also for the record, I looked up Revia (Naltrexone) which is used to help alcoholics stop drinking by decreasing their cravings for alcohol while Antabuse (disulfiram) makes a person phycically ill if they drink on top of it.


    Naltrexone blocks the parts of your brain that “feel” pleasure when you use alcohol and narcotics. When these areas of the brain are blocked, you feel less need to drink alcohol, and you can stop drinking more easily....
    http://familydoctor.org/online/famdocen/home/common/addictions/alcohol/130.html

    As far as getting the keytags at NA meetings...
    I dont see getting a tag as a "reward" but more of a recognition and celebration of achieving my next milestone. I dont see myself as any "better" than someone who has less clean time, any more than I think I am inferior to someone who has more clean time than me.
    Getting the next tag gives me a goal to strive for. Not the only goal of course, but on those days when I get a case of the F-its, it helps to remember that I already have a drawerful of white tags and dont need/want any more of em.

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