What are the symptoms of dopamine withdrawal?

Discussion in 'Porn Addiction' started by TheLearner2008, May 29, 2014.

  1. tangoalfaromeodelta

    tangoalfaromeodelta Fapstronaut

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    Holy shit, I had very similar symptoms to this for the first stretch of my proper recovery too. I also experience them in a milder form for a couple of weeks after a relapse, but my relapses are generally so spaced apart nowadays that they get milder every time.

    I genuinely thought it was just pure chance and nothing to do with my addiction but these symptoms are almost exactly consistent with what I experienced (minus the fever). It was like a cold that never went away, at least not for a good half year. I always assumed that, since there's no chemical side of pornography (ie you aren't injecting anything into yourself), there would be no physical withdrawal from porn; and while flu-like symptoms are definitely nothing like benzo or opioid withdrawal, I guess physical porn withdrawal is more real than I presumed.

    PAWS (Post-Acute withdrawal, mental withdrawal) from porn is 100% real though, and can last years. I'm still battling with it to an extent now.
     
  2. l33b0b12

    l33b0b12 Fapstronaut

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    Phew so I’m not bonkers! What’s interesting is the rollercoaster my brain has been on today. Most of it I’ve felt like crap, spaced out almost. However I’ve noticed brief spells where I feel almost human and about 25 minutes ago it felt like my head had cleared it’s mental fog. It’s very weird, I’m enjoying it whilst it lasts as I’m not taking anything for granted but it’s like my brains suddenly found clarity of thought. Watch this space!
     
    Granddad Julian likes this.
  3. l33b0b12

    l33b0b12 Fapstronaut

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    ugh, things were rough over the weekend, a wedding on saturday and a birthday party (not mine) on sunday really took it out of me. try to be sociable and chatty whilst your heads a sack of mad squirrels, your stomachs really starting to regret that cheese sandwich you ate and all you want to do is curl into a ball and sleep. i have had moments of clarity and enlightenment, so if they are an indicator of what lies ahead then good times are down the road. for now though its a rocky road and bad insomnia!
     
    Granddad Julian likes this.
  4. Dave G 123

    Dave G 123 Fapstronaut

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    You're experience is very similar to mine. Unfortunately I relapsed at the weekend, and am deeply regretting it. I found that the improvements over the previous 49 days were barely noticeable at the time, but after I slipped I realised how much progress I'd actually accumulated - stick it out each day, and eventually it will add up to something good.
     
    Granddad Julian likes this.
  5. l33b0b12

    l33b0b12 Fapstronaut

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    aw shit dude sorry to hear that. i can understand where your coming from. my last wining streak was 45 days and then i just threw in the towel. since then ive felt like shit most days. pick yourself up, dust yourself down and get back in there! your tougher than you know!
     
  6. l33b0b12

    l33b0b12 Fapstronaut

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    ok so a better nights sleep last night (although i couldnt wait to get to bed and didnt want to get out!) which was a relief. i've also started timing my 'withdrawals' to measure any improvements. Last Sunday the spanned a good 2 hours at least during which time i felt really crap, (an improvement from 'god awful crap' that dominated the first week!), just got through my first one today which i would characterise as 'mostly crap!' and that lasted an hour before tailing of for 20 minutes into 'ugh!'. So physically things are an improvement on where i started. Mentally theres been improvement overall, however yesterday my anxiety was through the roof again. Feelings on insecurity, anxiousness, uncontrollable shakes seemed to be the order of the day, well up into lunch time.
     
  7. l33b0b12

    l33b0b12 Fapstronaut

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    first target is 8 days away. that equals my previous detox.
    mild insomnia last night. one thing i recall is when i used to waste an evening binging and go to sleep, id wake up the next day with a headache. at first i didnt think anything of it, then i realised it was dopamine overload hitting me. that was a warning bell that i decided to ignore....
     
    Granddad Julian likes this.
  8. l33b0b12

    l33b0b12 Fapstronaut

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    heres another thought thats entered my head recently. As mentioned im starting to experience moments of clarity as well as the feeling that my body is starting to work better than before. This lead me onto an awful realisation, Porn has robbed me of the most I could have made of decades of my life. It turned me into a moody, bitter, withdrawn individual who couldnt see the point to doing very much. Now it feels like clouds i didnt even see are starting to part and im getting a glimpse at what can be. To say im seriously annoyed is an understatement, however at least its tempered by being optimistic.
     
    Granddad Julian likes this.
  9. Dave G 123

    Dave G 123 Fapstronaut

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    Yep, I know what you're going through!
     
  10. Michealdave2

    Michealdave2 Fapstronaut

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    O men I'm on day 9 depression and anxiety eat me hard making my brain burn, I feel sweaty ,it is really hard
     
  11. l33b0b12

    l33b0b12 Fapstronaut

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    Hang in there. It's worth it in the end. If you relapse your only going to have to do this all again.
     
  12. l33b0b12

    l33b0b12 Fapstronaut

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    So yesterday was fun, muppets at work pissed me right off, rushed home (with a headache) to find the opticians had cocked up my eye test and didnt have me booked in (so much for online booking!), headache got worse, wife wasnt much help (decided to pick an argument), mood got worse till the point I have to leave the room, pop pain killers and lie on the bed with my eyes shut. I havent had much depression yet, boats loads of bad mood, anxiety and nausea which seems to be waning but this mornings a bit bad. The nausea seems to last about two hours but the episodes are getting less frequent. Once I got to work this morning I sat in the car feeling my stomach flip over and my brains try to push themselves out of my ears for 20 minutes, until I got so fed up i told myself not to be such a pussy and get off my ass. It seems to have helped as the symptoms are decreasing a little, I guess theres some major re-wiring going on in my cranium right now. My brain is probably saying to itself 'WHA-DA-FUCKS-GOIN-ON!!!'
     
    Granddad Julian likes this.
  13. l33b0b12

    l33b0b12 Fapstronaut

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    so early morning insomnia seems to be the norm now. nearly every day ive been waking at 3:30am...
     
  14. l33b0b12

    l33b0b12 Fapstronaut

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    right 41 days in, still got the 3:30am wake up going on so i dont need an alarm clock now! fell better this morning than i have the past few though. usual sense of fatigue that seemed to start around 6am for 2 hours is absent which is kind of a nice change. As is the floating headache i was getting. so 40 odd days since i started and 21 days from the start of my withdrawal symptoms and i can see minor improvements. I think this whole thing is a bit of a rollercoaster tbh. when your at the bottom the withdrawal has kicked in hard and then its a long slow climb back up to feeling normal. ive been having more sex dreams than usual plus a couple of porn flashbacks, especially when im trying to get to sleep, listening to amazon audible helps a lot although i wouldnt recommend the necronomicon as bed time reading, no matter how good a read \ listen it is!!!!
     
  15. l33b0b12

    l33b0b12 Fapstronaut

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    ok its said knowledge is power so im sharing what i can in case anyone else is going through this. 6 weeks tomorrow since i last watched porn so im breaking withdrawal down by weeks. a bit of history first:
    Occasional user of Porn since early teens (now 50), mainly mags and vhs, then took off when the internet came around with it becoming an almost daily habit. Got really bad the past few years (at least for me), daily watching porn as soon as i got up and whenever the opportunity presented itself. When binging id be online for hours, escalating from porn hub into phone sex, webcams sites, etc.

    So physical comedown:
    Wk 1 -3: didnt notice much difference, maybe a bit more moody but determined to avoid pornhub, etc
    Wk 4: physical withdrawal started to hit. felt like a really bad cold, pressure \ floating headache, body aches, horse voice, chest cough, spells of feeling tired for hours at a time.
    Wk 5: Same as Wk4 except starting to get extreme fatigue, nausea, lightheartedness, sinus pain, paranoia (has porn resulted in brain damage?! do i have cancer \ tumour???), anxiety, insomnia (waking about 3am everyday)
    Wk 6: Above symptoms still present but less intense. I can actually function and get stuff done although I get out of breath walking up the stairs and could quite easily spend the day on the couch.

    There are good days and bad days. Sometimes everything lifts (like right now) and I get a sense of clarity when my body doesnt feel like its dying. Other times (literally an hour ago), im wiped out and feel every inch like a 50 year old. I got checked out by the doc and everything is working normally, STD tests clear, thyroid, blood count, Vitamin levels, liver \ kidney function all ok. Cholesterol is borderline but its been like that for years.

    Things I've done to try and alleviate the symptoms:
    Rest when possible but trying to stay active
    Avoiding junk food as much as possible (Chocolate biscuits are my kryptonite!)
    Meditate for 10 mins a day
    Moderate exercise every other day for 30 minutes (stomach crunches, squats, push ups) with 10 mins stretching
    Camomile tea for the calming and re-hydration properties
    Cut back on coffee
    No alcohol

    Things Ive noticed since starting:
    Total lose of interest in sex or masturbation. I mean total. Apart from vivid sex dreams Ive no interest in rubbing one out which i would do on an almost bi-daily basis.
    Im getting less angry as quick as I used to when i started. At the beginning (and before i even started) I would go into a total rant about something that really pissed me off, now no so much.
    Seem to have more empathy for things and other people. So whilst emotionally I sometimes feel numb, other times Im feeling more positive stuff.

    I think thats about it!

    Laters Gaters!
     
  16. l33b0b12

    l33b0b12 Fapstronaut

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    ok so yesterday was a good day! i had two really mild 'attacks' which lasted about 15 minutes each with the rest of the day leaving me feeling pretty good. i actually managed to get some physical things done and more importantly, when i had the opportunity to misbehave, i didnt take it.
     
  17. l33b0b12

    l33b0b12 Fapstronaut

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    bit of a mixed bag yesterday. my physical withdrawal was almost non-existent. i noticed two really mild bouts that lasted about 5 to 10 minutes each and felt more like a slight headache than anything else. my mood was something else, i lasted about an hour at work before i wanted to pack it in and go home. I got more grumpy a the day wore on, workload and co-workers (1 in particular) just annoyed the hell out of me and i bolted for the door at the first chance i got. at least tomorrow i equal my record!
     
    Dave G 123 likes this.
  18. l33b0b12

    l33b0b12 Fapstronaut

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    well todays been pretty good. apart from waking up feeling like id been hit by a bus i havent had any 'attacks'. And as the days worn on i've gradually felt things improving. Infact theyve improved to the point that i actually fell pretty good and the most alive ive felt for ages!
     
  19. l33b0b12

    l33b0b12 Fapstronaut

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    45 days! Woo-Hoo! I've equaled my previous personal best. The past couple of days have been a bit rougher temptation wise, but physically i feel a lot better. I went back to the gym for the first time in over a month yesterday now my energy is coming back. Just need to keep focussed and avoid anything naughty!
     
    Dave G 123 likes this.
  20. l33b0b12

    l33b0b12 Fapstronaut

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    well i didnt allow myself to think i was out of the woods withdrawal wise. i went though this before when i quit smoking and then drinking. 3 weeks feeling crap, 3 days feeling ok and now i can feel that familiar feeling dragging me down again. its not as bad this time, just wish i had held off eating breakfast, my tummy dont feel so good!
     

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