How Long Before My Cravings Go Away For Drugs or Alcohol?

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An anonymous reader writes in and asks: “How long before my cravings for drugs and alcohol go away?”

Good question. And it is certainly something that any newcomer would like to know. Unfortunately, the answer can be rather complicated. The reason for this is that there are 3 major variables that we are dealing with:

1) Which drug (or drugs) we are talking about – such as alcohol, cocaine, opiates, etc.

2) People are different – different body types, chemistry, length of time to detox their body fully, etc.

3) Psychological and subconscious triggers – that can trigger a craving years after the body is fully detoxed

Let’s take a closer look at each of these 3 situations.

Certain drugs might take longer to get over than others

Some drugs create physical dependence and take some time for the body to fully detox from them (such as opiates), whereas other drugs are flushed fairly quickly and do not produce this same level of dependence (such as Meth). However, this doesn’t mean that these “weaker” drugs won’t eventually produce cravings in a person….it just means that they won’t produce substantial physical withdrawal symptoms.

For example, someone who has been doing Cocaine for several years might have intense cravings that seem to last for a long time after they get clean and sober. In other words, our cravings might persist for longer if we used a drug for a period of years or decades before quitting, regardless of how quickly the actual chemicals get flushed out of our system.

Different people will have different amounts of craving

Some people get clean and sober and go through a few days of withdrawal and never really look back. They don’t have cravings really, just the occasional thought about using or taking a drink. Other people might get clean and sober and struggle for months with intense cravings that come almost every single day. It just really depends a lot on the person and their unique situation.

Something subtle can trigger you years later

Scientists have proven that you can be triggered to have a powerful drug craving without even knowing what caused the trigger. In other words, we can be subconsciously triggered into a craving…for example, by smelling someone’s perfume that we used to use drugs around. The bizarre thing is that we might smell the perfume and not even realize that it is causing the trigger. The challenging thing is that this can happen to us years after we have physically detoxed from the drugs and alcohol.

What can you do about cravings?

1) Talk about them – this is one of the most powerful remedies. Talk to another recovering addict about your craving. If you keep it in, or keep it a secret, the craving will only grow stronger until it drives you crazy or drives you to pick up and use. Don’t let that happen. Instead, talk to someone about it.

2) Fight them directly - by immediately involving yourself in recovery-related activity. Go to a meeting, call your sponsor, or whatever you can do to get distracted from the craving and focusing on something positive.

3) If you’re having a craving, tell us about it in the comments below. Sometimes that is enough to bring some relief.

What not to do – Don’t do something passive. Don’t just say “Oh, I’ll go home and sleep this craving off.” You need to take action and be more proactive about overcoming cravings. If it is a strong craving and you really want to use, then get motivated and pick up the phone and connect with someone who can help you. If you brush it off and choose to be passive, you’ll probably regret it later on.

Don’t be afraid to ask for help!


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  • Bill Urell


    I ran across an interesting explanation of alcohol cravings. This states that the body of an alcoholic, liver and pancreas prcesses alcohol at 10 -33% of the rate of a helathy liver and pancreas. One of the breakdown components of alcohol is acetate. Acetate triggers a craving for more acetate.

    For a normal person they drink and process the alcohol with little bulidup.

    In an alcoholic, because the metabolicprocess is so slow a backup occurs. So, starting with one drink, craving occurs, add another drink the craving goes up add a third, even more.

    One is too many and a thuosadnd not enough.

    Bill Urell

    PS I know that wasn’t the question, but still thought it interesting.

  • Patrick

    Thanks so much for your comment and insight, Bill.

    That is an interesting idea, that the damaged body of an alcohol makes it more susceptible to cravings. Definitely good to know, and all the more reason to find the ways and means to overcome these types of cravings.

    If anyone is interested in learning further abou this, I highly recommend you check out Bill’s website as well…tons of good information on there too. You can access it by clicking on his name in the comment above.

    Thanks for your insight, Bill!

  • Sheila Joyce Gibbs

    I have absolutely NO idea at all, on Mr. Urell’s comment. Perhaps it very well, may be true, who knows!
    As a recovering Alcoholic now for 16+ mos. & having a dreadful health affliction FROM DRINKING & my beautiful late husbands sudden death from the same affliction, I can honestly tell you, that in this time of grief, sorrow & dispair, I have cultivated a STRONG BITTER HATRED of ALL LIQUOR ! Now, having said that, it doesn’t mean that during a stressful day, dealing with certain family members, who irritate the living crap out of me, that when going to the fridge for a Diet Pop, that I don’t think about my dear old friend Mr. ‘GreyHound’ because from time to time, yes, I DO !!! But, I have enough health problems & financial struggles, as well as the heartbreak from losing my hubby, that WILL NEVER HEAL…..None of which Vodka & Grapefruit Juice, can do anything to help!
    So, basically, I go day by day, strongly hang on to my Christian Faith,
    & hope to not disgrace my family’s good name &/OR my Husbands good name, EVER !

    Don’t think that’s what you wanted to hear, sorry, I had to be honest !
    God Bless.

  • Patrick

    Hi there Sheila

    Bill is saying that they did a study that shows how the breakdown and damage to an alcoholic’s body makes the person more susceptible to future cravings (someone jump in and correct me if I’m wrong here).

    Sounds like you have had a bit of a journey yourself, Sheila, and I’m glad you’re in recovery now….thanks for sharing with us!

  • Kylie

    I appreciate all of your comments. I have a meeting today, will speak and pray for relief of these cravings. They are not a constant, but when they come, my mind can conjure up reasons to use: no one will know, I’ll just do it once, etc.

  • Patrick

    Hi there Kylie….hang in there and don’t use no matter what. Try the prayer or even meditate during a meeting if you have to, find a way to find peace within your self and connect with it…..

  • jess

    hi there. Can people share some tips on how to beat the cravings? Sometimes it gets too hard. What works for others?

  • Jason


    I’ve been sover for almost 3 months now and had one of my worst cravings tonight. I drove around for over an hour passing restaurants and bars that I thought I might be comfortable drinking in. I planned out exactly what I was going to order and almost convinced myself to do it. I was almost convince that I need a drink in order to feel better. For some reason I never pulled in and ended up gong home. Good thing. I don’t know if I can handle another one like that. We will see. I will try my hardest to stay strong.

  • N.B

    Many in the fellowship assert that upon completion of the steps, the obsession to use not only abates- but is entirely removed. This, to me, has become disheartening.

    I’ve been working rapidly through the steps and my obsession to drink and drug has persisted. I’m only 4 months in, but I’ve spoken to numerous others who avow that once they completed their 9th, the obsession was permanently alleviated. At times I feel as though I’m not doing something right. Although my cravings have lessened, I’m still completely overcome by the obsession to drink at least 2-3 times a week, sometimes more. These bouts can last for up to 8 hours at a time – through meetings, communication with sponsor and others in recovery, and prayer. It’s just wholly exhausting at times. I’m hoping to find some relief. This has been a constant in my recovery and relapse over the past two years. Please, leave me a comment with opinion/advice.

    God bless

  • Patrick

    Hi there N.B.

    That is such an excellent question that I am shocked no one had the guts to ask it by now. You are going to have an awesome recovery, I think, simply because of your honesty showing here, and also because you are a deep thinker.

    You sort of hint that you have relapsed multiple times over the past 2 years and so you are obviously somehow blocking yourself from the recovery that you really want. Anyone who desperately wants for AA to work for them can generally make it work. Not that it is easy….simply that most people don’t really want it to work. They want to drink. They are not done yet, etc.

    Traditional AA suggestions state that if something isn’t working for you, then you need to try something different. We all know the often quoted definition of insanity about doing the same thing over and over again.

    If the steps have failed you, then try something else. If the fellowship has failed you, try something else.

    Now of course this gets tricky here, because the die hard stepper will say that “the program did not fail you, instead, YOU failed the program.” They will only give credit to AA and never to the individual, and then they will only fault the individual and never AA. This is part of the mentality that some people in recovery will eventually walk away from, when they decide that they want more out of life and out of recovery.

    I am not saying you should avoid the 12 step program. I am just saying you need to honestly evaluate how well it works for you.

    There are other paths. It sounds like you have the energy to seek alternatives. It sounds like you have the capacity to carve your own path in sobriety.

    Or, maybe not. Maybe you just need to revisit and old path, and try harder this time.

    I know for me, traditional recovery was blocking me from finding my best life. I had to seek beyond the usual 12 step dogma…..

    The steps might remove the obsession to use, but they cannot give you the desire to be sober. If you first have the desire to be sober, the steps can relieve the obsession. But they cannot give you the desire to stop drinking even in spite of yourself.

    It is the same with, say smoking. Take someone who has no intention of quitting, and slap a nicotine patch on them. At the end of the day they are ready to tear someone’s head off for a cigarette. They have not “gained a desire” to quit smoking. That desire had to come from within.

    You can’t beg, borrow, or steal the desire to be sober. It might even be a gift from God. Going through some motions, working some steps…..there is no magic there. I know many will cry blasphemy at this, but it’s true. Many people who had no desire to quit drinking were “forced” to work the steps, and guess what? They return to drinking.

    If you stay sober for long enough the phenomenon of craving will leave you eventually. If you are a “dry drunk” then you will probably still crave alcohol. If the 12 step program is not getting you excited about living a sober life then you need to look elsewhere. If 12 step recovery is a chore then seek another solution. You have to be passionate about a new life in recovery and you have to be excited about your new life in sobriety in order to overcome cravings.

    I have not had a serious craving in years. Sometimes I will catch a whiff of a cigarette when walking by someone, and think “Ah, that would be nice….” but I can bat that away like a fly.

    I am way to excited about the opportunities I have in life each day to think about throwing it away on a relapse with booze. Could I still drink? Sure. But right now, the balance is tipped so heavily toward sobriety that I would never consider it. I am having too much fun. I am experiencing too many great things.

    If recovery is not working for you, then it is up to you to change it. It is your responsibility to find the path that works. No one can just hand you your recovery on a silver platter. You have to build it yourself.

    And, I think you can do that. Your comment reminds me so much of myself that it is downright scary…..

  • N.B

    Thank you, I genuinely appreciate your time. Your response was exactly what I needed to read. It made me think, now it’s time to take some action.

    This is a great site, you’re doing amazing work


  • Mary

    I have been clean and sober from alcohol and drugs for almost 4 years. Just recently, this past week, I have been thinking about getting high and drinking again. I’ve spoken to my sponser, kept myself connected with the Program, but have been fighting cravings for almost one week now. I’m scared because I don’t ever want to pick up again. I’ve been praying really hard that my Higher Power God help me through this. Just wanted to share. Thanks.

  • Patrick

    Hi there Mary. I think you should take action in addition to what you are already doing.

    If you are on the ropes, I would make sure it is daily action. Massive action. If you are gonna do meetings, do a few each day, etc.

    Just my 2 cents. Good luck…..

  • N.B


    Just thought I’d check in. I still visit the site intermittently and thought I’d do so tonight seeing as I feel a bit off and have been struggling the last few days.

    I’ve recently picked up my 6 month chip, and have been doing well. My cravings for cocaine and other drugs have entirely abated. But I still get the urge to drink from time-to-time. Recently I’ve found the obsession starting to creep back. I attend meetings regularly, and am extremely active in those meetings. I exercise religiously, eat as healthy as I can, have worked the steps and am helping others etc. At times though, I still get cravings. They’re infrequent now, but they do come. I suppose I just feel envy and equal parts fear when I hear others speak of how the obsession was “lifted” in such a short period of time. I’m fearful that I’ll be stuck combating this forever.
    The last few days have been difficult, but the weeks preceding them were practically seamless.

    It’s been a stressful time. Exams coupled with the rigors of life can be trying. Possibly I’m expecting too much of myself at this point, and have to exercise patience.
    Any insight would be great as to why I still find myself in these mires.



  • N.B

    Like to check in again.

    I’ve dedicated myself to selfless service to others and my community, training for my next marathon, reading and writing over the last few days and I feel amazing.

    I suppose I’m fickle as I should be at this stage in my recovery,



  • A.G

    I quit drinking 2 years ago in November. One evening I got very intoxicated (A fifth of whiskey, A 12 pack of domestic and 3 bottles of wine) and I got in my car at 3am. I had no reason to be driving and I was not going anywhere, just driving, as fast as possible. I did not really want to live much anymore, and I ended up totaling my car.

    The insurance people told me it was a miracle I did not die, judging by the damage done to the vehicle. The cops and judges didn’t see it that way. I am still dealing with all the legal crap years later and I have not had a drop of alcohol since that night.

    The cravings have never subsided though. I just got home from sitting in the parking lot of a local grocery store, I went in and stood in the liqueur aisle for about 15 minutes just staring at the bourbon and scotch. Every weekend for 2 years I have the incredible urge to drink and it makes me feel so weak and pathetic. I am now back at home, alone, on Christmas Eve. All I can think about is having a drink.

    I have used many narcotics in my life and was addicted to a veritable grocery list of them. One by one I removed them from my life, and alcohol became the surrogate. I had to drink incredible amounts to reach that same plateau I used to find with narcotics. After quitting drinking I have nothing left. The cravings are as intense now as they were a week after quitting, they have never dulled and it has never gotten any easier.

    The website said writing a comment might help reduce the cravings, it didn’t. I still want a drink.

  • Patrick

    A.G. – You should get some help. Seriously. I hate to see someone who is still having massive cravings after that long. It does not have to be that hard.

    I fully believe that you are struggling, and that you are genuinely trying to live a better life. But obviously you could use some help. Massive cravings after 2 years is not a good sign.

    I know how you feel when you say “you had nothing left.” I felt the same way after I was clean and sober and finally gave up cigarettes. I truly had nothing left to self medicate with.

    But it gets better. I think you need to ask for help though. Local AA meetings might be a good place for you to start with.

    Good luck…

  • keebs

    Hi there, I found this site and i feel like i should leave a word.
    so i have been drinking for about 4-5 years now. every night.
    i’m only 20 years old and i need to stop drinking. a problem i
    think i have is i do not like getting drunk and i know i need to
    stop but at the same time i DO like being drunk. my mom has
    been trying to help but now im at a age were she can not do
    much about it (like telling me no) when i was younger i just
    found someone to buy me beer. allways could. I do not like
    the idea of the dogma that is in the 12 steps. however anything
    that would work for me would more then good. I have had nights
    with no beer and it sucks. it seems like no matter what i do its
    all i can think about. when i know i have beer at home for after work
    im fine. when i know i dont have beer for after work the day is so
    much longer and i hate it more then ever. i hate beer because of
    all the stupid things i have done ect… i dont know just felt like
    saying anything i could to anyone… thanks for reading :)

  • cheri

    Just had to write, tell, put on paper my strong craving to drink. I am telling myself it is my addiction talking and that helps.Thanks

  • jimmy

    I’ve been in the A.A. program,on and off,for over 5 years.I have not had more than 60 days sober in those 5 years.I am a binge drinker,user.A weekend warrior,who can go a week or 2 with no drinking or using,but then will go on a binge all weekend.I’m 31,married with a newborn.Alcohal has got me 2 d.u.i.’s,and I declared bankrupcy due to it.This past weekend,with close to 60 days sober,I went on another bender.It was a bad one,and I am lucky(mabey)to be hear to talk about it.I don’t have a desire to drink,but I know in a few weeks I will.A.A. is not working for me.Once I get an urge to pick up,usualy a month or two in between,there is NOTHING that can stop it.Not A.A.,a sponcer,rehab,friends or family.I am scared about the next urge,THE BEAST(as I call it),comes out.In A.A. meetings I zone out.I’m not interested in other peoples lives.It might sound selfish,but what do I care about the people there,and what do they care about me.They say they help me to help themselves get better,so they don’t care about me,nor do I want them to.My last sponcer was very strict on me,and whenever I told him what I was feeling,he would tell me I was full of it or make some other comment downtalking to me.I wouldn’t say what was on my mind to him,because I didn’t feel like being yelled at for 20 minutes every day.I have a busy life.I work 60 hours a week and am a father to a newborn.I don’t have time to go to meetings every day,nor a desire to go.What can I do to help me the next time the BEAST comes out?

  • Patrick

    Well Jimmy, you might look into AVRT therapy, as that is what it sounds like you are describing anyway. They talk about a beast and how to deal with the “addictive voice.” If AA did not work for you then perhaps this is a good way to go…..

  • N.B

    Just checking in.

    I’ve now been sober 9 months in AA. I’ve experienced some brilliant moments of calm in my sobriety, entirely free from craving, which have kept me hopeful and involved.

    But, if i were to say “the obsession has been lifted”, I’d be lying. I’ve done all the work and continue to do so , tirelessly, but I find I still experience temptations and cravings to drink or use. This often makes me feel alienated at meetings. People seem to think it’s bizarre that at this stage of my sobriety, this problem would still be so pronounced. Obviously, opinions vary. There are some who are more practical, they say there’s nothing abnormal about experiencing cravings at this stage in my recovery. Others, the fanatics, are of the opinion that It must be a flawed program I’m working, that’s the only way cravings could persist to this point. Either way. it’s becoming exhausting. I’ve accomplished so much, and have branched out in so many ways in my spirituality and creativity, yet I still crave drugs and alcohol a few times every week.

    What’s your opinion Patrick?


  • Patrick

    Hi there N.B.

    My opinion is that cravings are normal for a long time after you get sober. Others might be luckier in this aspect, but I think it is completely realistic to expect cravings after a year or even a few years sober.

    How many years did you drink for? Expect your cravings to diminish greatly when you have been sober for that many years. Seriously, I believe there is some truth to this. I have now been clean and sober for longer than I drank and used drugs, and I can honestly say that my cravings have been lifted entirely for several years now. Really, it has been a complete non issue.

    However, in early recovery, I was living in long term rehab, and I can remember being very frustrated and vulnerable even at 18 months sober. It took time for me to get the relief that I have today.

    Just my experience.

    I also don’t buy the whole “you are doing it wrong” thing with recovery. It just takes time for some things. Getting past cravings is one of those things. Try to rush it, and in some cases, it just won’t be rushed. It is what it is. So, we deal with it as best we can.

  • john

    Jimmy I really feel for you that you don’t believe that others care for you and visa versa. I am no expert as i am just entering my 6th week of sobriety but I think if you look at the people at the meetings and just realize that you are not alone and by understanding what someone else is going through might just help you out as well. Others may not know you but I wouldn’t assume that others don’t care about you just because they don’t know you. expressing your issues might help someone else and help yourself at the same time. Sorry to ramble and I am not giving you a hard time it is that I generally care yet I have my own issues.

  • N.B

    I’d like to thanks you Patrick, for your input.

    In 15 days i’ll be one year sober. My cravings have become less frequent and far more manageable .

    This is an excellent site and I direct friends to it as often as I can.

    Thanks again,


  • Missybear28

    I am on my second day sober and I already want to drink.I drank about 20 beers day before yesterday and I weigh 115lbs.I do not want to lose my family and I do not want to fail this time.I dont want to put my husband and two year old through this any longer.I dont want to keep putting myself through hell eigther.The guilt and shame are enough to kill me.I get panic attacks from drinking now so I drink more to try and take it away.I just want to be sober and get through this toughest part.I was sober a few years ago for 8 months,so I know it will get easier if I stick with it.I just wish this feeling would go away.This intense pull.Thanks

  • Michelle

    I have been drinking a 6 to a 12 pack a day and now I know I need to quit. I have been saying this for weeks and I am hoping today will be the first day. It is so hard being strong and avoiding something you like. I hope I can make it through as it is now effecting my 17 yr old son and hurting him. I need to do this for my health and for his health and well being. I hope today will be my first day and that I can stay strong and avoid the craving.

  • Patrick

    @ Michelle – If you cannot do it on your own, Michelle, I strongly recommend that people go to detox or rehab in order to make it through the first week at least.

    Rehab may not be a magic bullet, but it sure can help. Good luck.

  • Alice

    I have been clean for over a year now from a 13 year opiate addiction. I have done great for so long, doing all the things I used to do, and now have a very strong relationship with God. Had a fabulous summer, but when there was a change in season, fall, I don’t know what happened. I started getting all these weird feelings, and cravings to use again. I don’t understand it.

  • Patrick

    @ Alice – Probably not uncommon. A year is still somewhat early in the game, at least from a physical standpoint. I have heard from doctors who specialize in addiction that it can take several years to really get fully over opiates, depending on your personal use history. Some opiate addicts will never be right again, if they abused heavily enough and for long enough.

    So do not be discouraged that you have these feelings at the one year mark. Do you exercise? I know that if you engage in vigorous exercise every single day, it will definitely lessen any opiate cravings you might be having. Sounds like a lot of work, I know….but the benefits are huge.

    Good luck.

  • N.B

    @ Michelle…

    I’ve been sober now for 16 months, and I’m experiencing the same thing. I abused alcohol and cocaine for 10 years. Definitely has something to do with the weather change, life stressors, etc. It isn’t always easy, even being heavily active in my recovery, working steps, etc. Things get tough at times. Best of luck.

  • Anonymous

    i have abused drugs and alcahol the last 15 years im 31 now just lost my job and drinking a lot need to stop or cut down not enjoying any more reading your comments have been helpfull

  • chaz

    I am having an intense craving right now. I only want to work, go home, exercise, eat dinner and go to bed. I do not want to be prisoner to this craving. I have too much going on in my life to keep on giving into this type of feeling. I know if I give into the craving, I will end up broke and even more frustrated that before the craving, my mind keeps wandering into the dark place that’s telling me to use. I always feel like If I can get over this time I will be able to break through to next time. I have so many things I want to accomplish, and I start to accomplish them and my issue always gets in the way. This is making me feel somewhat better, but the money in my wallet makes me anxious. I feel like I can do this.

  • Marco

    I am seperated from my wife, we still “date” but live apart, the seperation is around her children.
    After a few years of raging resentments about the living situation used.
    My drugs of choice is crack, but I need to drink to get disinhibited enough to go after the crack.
    I got a call a few minutes ago from a dealer/prostitute, asked me to come over an join her and her lesbian girlfriend for an afternoon of party favors and sex. ($500.00) — God the obsession– I’ve been going to meetings dailys , I have about 3 weeks since my last cocain use and a week from getting drunk. I feel like I am crazy with the knowelage and potential disaster of what I want to do and the pain of not doing it– Am just a f.n”N” baby ??

  • mark

    I was a regualr weekend beer drinker until 3 months ago, when I was viciously attacked by five guys on the subway. No one helped me and I was left with serious injuries. I was not “rolling on the ground ” drunk, but I was very mellow (whcih is what beer does to me). These guys, or at least their leader, was on crack. In my flashbacks, where most of my memories of this event comwe to me, I realise that these guys were the OPPOSITE of mellow. They wanted a fight and they , in their predatory, narcissistic, invincible state, were looking for a mark. SOmeone by hiomself and under the influence. I can still see all of their faces and I know where they were going that nite and I know they will be back. The police have surveillance video of them and have posted theses on “bulletins” throughout the city.
    I still believe I will see these guys again( they were with 2 girls-how could they stand by and watch this? did they think it was tough and cool? Will they still feel tough and cool if they get arrested?) and I will be able to call 911.
    Who realates to this or has a comment?
    I hve cravings but Itell myself that they will pass and that if I was able to give up smoking (and, unlike the beer, I did this EVERY day) then I can give up beer.
    I still tell myself that I would have more fun and that I could go back to beer and cut down on the amount. ANother part of me says, “GIve it more time and see if the cravings pass, just like they did when I quit smoking”.

  • mark

    If this is any help: When I quit smoking, the cravings to go back to the nicotine lasted two years, but now I wouldn’t thank you for a cigarette and I actually have to leave when someone lights up.

  • katie

    I want others to know the reality of cravings even after years of being clean. I began using drugs at the tender age of 16. The first boyfriend I ever had took a lot of xanax, smoked pot, and drank. At this point in my life I began to abuse drugs to feel wanted and loved. I thought that was what every teen was doing. The people I have allowed in my life that use added to the intensity of my disease. I am now 30 and I have recovered and relapsed many times. I should be dead from the 6 car wrecks, the lethal dose of xanax, oxycotin, and meth. I have been clean and sober for a year now and I mentally crave any mind altering drug. Even though I crave daily and am obsessed with my craving I have surrounded myself with amazing christian friends that r there for me at all times. Every moment during the day I pray to God that he will take away this craving and stop the unbearable pain my neck and back. I have FAITH that He is going to heal me from my mental disorder, drug addiction

  • Anonymous

    I have used cocaine and alcohol every for 13 years, I have been clean for 16 days and my cravings are driving me crazy every night at 10:00 pm. I usually call my sponsor but I don’t want to bother him while his family is in town. I have a hard talking to my family members about it, because they always say the same thing, “just get over it”. I feel like I am going to explode.

  • Patrick

    Hang in there Anonymous!

    The world hears you. We are pulling for you to stay sober!

    I know it is not easy.

    Good luck

  • Ali

    Da dude who got beat up sorry neh! Here in South Africa nobody takes da subway coz dey kill you b4 u can get on the train! Mabee that is why we have so many wknd drunken accidents! lol Anyway im a 24yr old qualified Electrician dats been 3 times to Rehab for smoking/snorting Heroin in a time period of 7 months(how unfair is that)! My most recent …’flight’ lasted a week and ive been Sobre 4 da past m0nth (only because my family g0t me caged up at h0me) ! My suggestion waz (im hoping for a huge ApPrOval response from the readers) is that i become a FUNCTIONAL ADDICT (live a n0rmal life wid a family n still use drugs … In modesty n limits) =D Brilliant i agree but my dad smacked me n to0k me to a priest =/ n0w why w0nt my plan work? Doesent every one end up happy?

  • chick chicken

    Hi firstly I apologise 4 the ridiculous name i’v left, it’s just I’m paranoid incase sum1 clues up 2 who I am, no1famous, just a regular 25 yr wanting 2 share her experience. Well the main reason I think sum ppl crave it wen the seasons change, It’s cos those weather times myt have sum good memories attatched with them, wen I say good I mean the good times u have with the intoxication, u no in the beginning, b4 the negativity hits ya. Well I’m an ex coke addict, but I’m ashamed 2 say that I gave in 2it 2nyt, I had stopped 4 exactly 8months and was doin it every other day, and u think it’ll probably take a bad experience 4 u 2realise and stop but no nothin major cud keep me away from it, even after hearing about amy winehouse’s death last week and wot happens, I gave in. I just had a really bad downer on New years eve n anytime I got a craving I just remembered that downer!!! Now I don’t no about alcohol cos iv never had a drink in my life but in cocaine world the best advise I have 2give is if u want 2banish any temptation then u have 2break off all contacts who u socialise this drug with, they’re not genuine ppl who care 4u if they wanna fuck u over so don’t give a second thot 2 losing them. I also don’t appreciate the way sum of u have disregarded sum next persons effort. I believe I read a comment about sum 1 who had been clean/sober 4 like 16months. Well that’s bloody brilliant I think n u shud be so proud of urself. I feel like I deserved a medal cos of the 8months I was clean. But anyway as I sed b4 yeah I’m on the coke ryt now as u read this and y cos I saw my dealer after 8months and cudn’t control the urge So I gave in and I feel like utter shit ryt now, just think of the down side wheneva u get that real urge 2 give in 2it and wen u can’t be bothered2 fyt it anymore. From bein a serious coke addict I can honestly say that I no it’ll get easier with time u just have2wait it out. Anyway guys keep strong, I no am!!! Xxxx

  • 25yr old guy

    used coke on and off sometimes heavy from 18-22yrs old . since i quit i’m looking to god, thanks to my wife, really life is good. but almost 4 yrs since i quit and i still crave it, if i see it in a movie, hear a song about it , ppl talkin about it or see ppl i knew in those days, just drivin by! hasn’t changed much anyone know if this is normall?
    btw i’ll never use again, what works well is to cut ALL ties to that lifestyle, and most importantly find Faith. be strong through your faith

  • Bre

    Its hard to admitt I am an addict. Been in denial n with that ive gotton extremely close to the drug and it sucks but I do believe I can quite with help I just gota find the strength to ask for the help cuz im stubborn at times, I can honestly sat im disappointed in myself and never would of thought this could happen to me but it did n im fighting to be myself again, hello everyone im bre and im addicted to meth slowly but surley:( im craving bad at this point my mind n body keep wanting it but this feeling of lost n alone whixh is not me sober freakin sucks I dnt want to ignore these feelings cuz I end up using later on but im ready to stand up to it n say NO! Someone write me bk n give me feedback just so I feel like im being heard please n thanks for readng this god bless

  • Anonymous

    @ Bre – hang in there, you are heard, people do care about what you are going through. I have been there and I hope you find a way to ask for help. For me that meant going to rehab.

    Don’t give up!

  • Anonymous

    It has been 6 years since I last used coke and the urges get worse and worse as the days go on. I lost all of my friends that were using with me at the time and am really missing those days. I have moved from where I was living previously to try and get a fresh start from all of the problems in my old town and it seems not even that is working. Everyday is a constant battle to stay clean and now more often then not I am staying up into the early morning hours fighting these urges to go out and get some. It’s starting to affect my job now with having little to no sleep and I don’t know where to turn to. I don’t want my girlfriend of 3 years to know my past battles with cocaine and my parents aren’t the best people to approach. Please, any advice

  • DA

    I got on antaabuse around a week back. Am craving alchohol really bad. while i am addicted to alchohol i also have a heavy work/career and drinking affected it. I gave up my career because of alchohol. I did not realize it and finally have had enough. Am craving alchohol pretty. Time to quit for good. first time i could not an gave up my career. Second time i could on anta-abuse. Then i started again. Third time i quit for good.

  • Anon

    Hey im 26 and left home 2 years ago to go to the other side of the world to escape my benzo and opiate abuse. Durining my 2 years away i was clean of opiates and the occasional val (i was in thailand for 3 months) not the best place to go when ur trying to kick the habit. But anyway got to my destination and as clean there for 9 months, i went home for 6 months and the first thing i done was tried to score methadone. So that was me back on the benzos and meth for 6 months till i decided that i had enuf again and i wanted bk to the country where i knew no one and couldnt get anything. I came back ober here 5 months ago and was fine for 4 months after the physical withdrawls went. I crave opiates constantly, 24/7 i tink about them, i dream about them. I never used a needle, well tried to once and popped the vein in my foot and got a fright. But i have found out in the last few weeks i have nerve damage in my arm and i am going to any doc that i can find to try and get oxy. I will rewind a bit, i went to thailand a month ago and came back with 1000 valium, i have about 30 left and never gave any to any1, all my flat mates are down the line anti drug. But bcoz of the benzos its made me chase the opiate again , and i have now found some dealers here. Its more of a pscholgical addiction i have to them even to i am withdrawing from oxy and smack just now. I dont want to go on like this, chasing docs for meds, i was addicted to opiates for bout 4 years back home and after been clean for all those months i see myself getting depressed and going backwards in life. I have just recieved an excellent job and life oppertunity but can see me fucking it up by the way im going. I had reasons that made me want to start using bk home years ago, they issues are nearly dealt with, so i relly have no need to do it. Sorry for babbling on, i dont know if i need counsilling or where to turn to???

  • Patrick

    @ Anon – I would say that you need to get on top of this and take care of it by going to rehab. Counseling might help you and it might not. Rehab will definitely help you if you want it badly enough.

    I would do something though. Get help now. Not later. Now.

  • joe

    This comment is just about how I quit smoking. It may be interesting to some. I do not mean to offend and suggest that other dependency issues can be resolved this “easily”.

    I had smoked for a decade or so. About a pack a day. I got to the point where I wanted to quit, but couldn’t. I failed once or twice (very quickly).

    Then one day I was at work – a factory job where we could smoke at breaks and lunch. Morning break, and I’m out of smokes, and no one has one to “lend”. Oh crap. So, I make it through until lunch, but boy, by then my first thought is to dash out and get smokes.

    I’m not sure where it came from, but I had this thought: I had just made it four hours. I hadn’t died or anything, just experienced discomfort. Pretty much by definition I could make it another four. So, I busied myself doing something – can’t remember now, but I probably just decided to work through lunch to keep my mind occupied.

    By quitting time I knew where this was heading, but absolutely did not want to say it “out loud” to myself. I didn’t want to say “I’m quitting”. That was like setting up to fail. I think the problem was that if I said that, I’d be forced to think about a very long future without cigarettes.

    Well, for me, right then, it was not one day at a time, it was one hour. So, on the way home from work, I told myself the same thing: you’ve been “clean” for 8 hours, by definition you can do 8 more.

    I had heard that people gained weight by eating snacks in place of smoking. I didn’t want to get fat, so I bought a couple heads of celery, and for the next two weeks, when I wasn’t working, I was munching on celery, or sleeping. ‘Cause when I was asleep I didn’t want a smoke.

    At the two week mark, I was sleeping, and had this dream. Strange logic, like in many dreams. I had “nothing better to do” so I’ll smoke.

    Well, I SHOT UP out of bed. It took me a minute to figure out whether I’d actually smoked or not. I knew that if I smoked even one puff, all the time I’d built up would vanish and I’d be back to square one. When I realized I hadn’t smoked, something just clicked. I have never craved a cigarette since that moment.

    That was 30 years ago.

    To summarize, I played a mental game, feeling like I had an ever-growing block of time in the future “in the bag”. I did not look further than that, so sort of one day at a time. I occupied myself with *anything*, just to keep busy. At no time during this did I say to myself or anyone else that I was quitting.

    Hope this helps someone.

  • Kitty

    I’ve been sober for two years off meth. Sometimes I get compelling urges to do it again. “I can almost feel the amazing high but if only I was actually on it. I can probably do it for one day and not get outta control with it. I had straight As, a lover, and managed money better when I was on meth and that was when I did it long term. One night would just be a night for old time’s sake of fun.” Yup, I think I may have a problem cos’ I am glorifyin it in a sense.

  • jaqui bronkhorst

    I have a bad habit with snaffing cocaine , I am fine when I am broke but as soon as I have money is like the devil or my own mind.. I get these cravings I don’t want to mess up my life. I pray that God will please free me from this. AMEN

  • lisa

    i am trying to get off opiates. I have not had any for 5 days, and I do feel better, but I seem to be craving it more now than when I was on them. why? I keep thinking of ways to get some, but then feel guilty if i start taking them again. I don’t want to start again, but i can’t seem to get rid of the craving. Nyone help?

  • Patrick

    @ Lisa – I would start exercising, go for a long walk, see if that helps. Maybe go hit a meeting, talk about your cravings, talk with folks who understand (other recovering addicts). Good luck!

  • Jaqui

    Dit is net jammer jy het my geld opgesnuif maar ek hoop jy kom reg,moet nie jou nuwe ou se geld so opgebruik en dan weer n nuwe slagoffer soek nie as jy hom uitgesuig het nie!!!

  • T

    Jaqui I know exactly what your saying. I’ve been dealing with smoking crack the last 2-3 years. Almost every day this year; in fact today even. Its bad and its getting worse fast. I’m 29 years old still living at my mom’s house in which I’m the master manipulator, and she is the ever-giving enabler. When I think about it; like I am now, it’s pretty fucking sick. Started going back to school last spring. I’ve got good grades (3.7 gpa atm) but I’m so close to fucking up by missing a lot of classes this semester; like a month straight. If I fail a class no more financial aid (most of it, spent on crack, other drugs, and bullshit like cigerettes) I’ve sorted it out with my teachers, I had to make up some bullshit about my job; which I don’t have. One lie after another; and on and on it goes. Which brings me back to what I was replying about in the first place. Money is a trigger it seems for me. Sounds like it might be for you. As soon as I get any money in my pocket Before I even realize it; I’m off to the fucking races. Take today for instance. I got up to make my 9am class. Before I left I asked my mom for $20. She of course gave it to me without much of a fuss at all. She did say “you don’t need $20 dollars”, but that was it. Drove to my 9am class and it was canceled. Somewhere between walking out of the school and getting in the car, I must have told myself that I had almost 2 hours to kill; and I’m half-way to the dopeman. The next thing I know I’m headed out; off to the fucking races ! I convinced myself I’d just go get it and wait till after my 11am class to do it. Well an already long story short; I didn’t make the 11am class, and found a way to come up with another $40 on top of the $20. All gone now. Even worse, I have a mid-term for that class on Weds. I’m pretty sure I’ll pass, but that’s not really the point I suppose. Like you said, when your broke your fine; or at least you think you are. I know what you mean though. That’s when you tell yourself, with the best of intentions; that your not gonna do it anymore. Yet the next time you have enough money for a fix or when you have a lot of money in your pocket. Somehow you end of there. Not where you want to be; I know I don’t. Anyways I’ve never posted before and especially not so open and honestly about my addiction. So thank you for that Jaqui. I appreciate it. Day none again, but after today; it seems like a good day to start day 1. I don’t want to mess up the rest of my life either. I’ve already caused so much grief, anger, pain, etc. The worst part about that is it’s always to the people that love you and care about you the most. I’ll say a prayer for you. Do the same for me if you get chance. Take care and God Bless…


  • Jennifer

    I’m also trying to get off opiates. I’ve done this several times over the last year-made it up to a month once. It’s not the physical symptoms that get you, it’s the cravings. I just get so tired of thinking about the drug, I just want to shut those thoughts off and I don’t know how to. I agree you crave more after the physical symptoms abate, it’s easier to focus on your nausea than the obsessions in your head. I don’t have an answer, except to praise myself constantly, it’s not a moral failing that I was enticed by a tremendously powerful chemical and I trust myself I can overcome it. (I don’t turn down any other suggestions :-)

  • josh

    Im only fourteen years old and i have been addicted to cigarettes, ecstacy, marijuana, and alchahol. I think i just crave anything that takes my everyday pain away for a few hours… i am on probation now and im being forced to stop everything. i think this is good though… i was pretty caught up. Anyone have any suggestions for me when i crave a high?

  • Pete

    I had a cocaine addiction for 4 years it started as a good thing which initially made me happy. after 6 months I had a panic attack from it and went to hospital. I was already addicted to it by this point so i was using even though my heart was suffering. I think I gave up just in time. For the last 2 years I’ve only used about 7-8 times and that was last year, the point is i still get cravings out of the blue and my life depends on me not relapsing. Don’t do it it’s a waste of money and could cost you your life

  • Indi

    I have been on opiates for over 3 Years, I need to go cold turkey, its not even the fact that I want a pill but more so just thinking about it. Its driving me crazy. I want to do it for myself, my kids and my Husband, I want to be happy again without having to take a pill, the way it once was.

  • s

    I want to do heroin so badly right now i tried just about everything i can do and i have money and i know someone who can get its been 3 days w/o and lets just say im losing it

  • Old School

    16 Years later and the physical cravings are long gone but I tend to regress once in a while (like now thus the search) so my honest and sad answer is it never completely goes away. Meth, Acid, ecstasy, weed, cocaine, opium among other issues once upon a time. I no longer know if I just miss the lifestyle or the drugs but it’s all part in parcel for me anyway.

    Hope that helps

  • Old School

    by regress I mean start craving .. I’ve not touched a thing for 16 years – think about it all the time though :/

  • Ray

    I know how you guys feel! I’ve done alot of stupid shit! Not anything extreme I oy stick with the Opiates! Which I am actually getting off of! It’s been an on an off thing. I really hate it! I’ve had Morphine my fave. Hydrocodone and few more I can’t remember at this point brain fart! Any way it’s been a roller coaster! The withdrawals is a bitch and it’s not fun! I hate it and will! I’ve been on an off numerous times lately I don’t know why but its been very weird! I have gone cold turkey by the way it is dangerous to go cold turkey if you have been a user for numerous years and you suddenly quit. It will either harm your body a little or put you in life threatening danger! It’s a painful process to go through! I had to do it too. If I can do it you can do it too! Don’t give up on your self! Don’t let yourself down and don’t let your loved ones down too. Be sure to let someone help you. I didn’t have anyone to help me at first I was screwed I went back again! I talk to my best friend who is also like my mentor and I tell him everything. Everything that goes on in my life! Even if you talk to a stranger about somethings you will feel a little better. Don’t bottle this up and expect it to be a walk in the beach! It’s gunna rip you to shreds and kill ya! I thought I could do it with out talking to anyone failed! I didn’t need help! Failed! Trust me Opiates may be painful to withdrawal from but in the looooooooooong run it will be worth it. I have had some cravings but I don’t go back to them! I moved on and I don’t want to go back on that path ever again! You feel like shit! The withdrawal symptoms I had: nausea, worried, kinda paranoid, runny nose, flu-like symptoms, bad stomach aches, bad coughs (also a symptom) bad very bad head aches, threw up few times. That’s about it

    The runny nose and flu-like symptoms will be the first to notice. Because you are stopping the Opiates abruptly and your body isn’t ‘use to go with out Opiates’ you feel like shit. It takes so much energy out of you. You have to go out be with friends talk to your parents they are here to help you talk to your siblings talk to someone one! Go outside eat HEALTHY FOODS work out daily be outside get good vitamins, don’t sit around and do absolutely nothing. You have to move around, go running or biking or swimming. Be active use your time productively don’t hang out with people who do want to get high in that stuff because its gunna make you relapse again. Don’t take Ny the next day! Make sure you are aware of what’s going on and make sure everything is right. You don’t want to start over again then you will have a Hell Journey!! Keep positive be positive and think positive :) you can do it! If I can then you can :)

    My email if anyone needs to talk to me:
    Please email me if you need someone to talk to. I am here to you! Don’t be afraid to ask for help:) Believe in your self and you will see the better change and see the better differences :)
    Feel free to email me don’t feel like your not alone because you are not alone! God Bless you all good luck to you all! Make the eat of this and Move forward!

  • Ray

    Please email me if you want to talk about anything I am not a professional but I am here to help many people with issues and problems in life! I am a great problem/issue solver and I know how it is too! I was with the Opiates for a good while and I am now doing better! I have hope and faith in all if you! This is your time to shine don’t be afraid to ask for help! Sometimes it’s always better to talk to a stranger about things. I have done that before and they have helped me too :) I want to make people’s lives better by giving great advice and giving great information too. Sometimes an opinion needs to be heard and taken into thought too. Do your best and good luck everyone :)
    Again my email address is
    Feel free to email me about anything or if you just want to talk I am here and I will always listen to people who need it and who want to talk to a random person! Please do though if you want to feel free :) don’t let it get you down you over come it and prove it wrong! Addiction is very powerful and it can hurt people in many ways! I wish the best for all of you who are going through a hard time :) there is always light in the most deep darkest times and roads of a tunnel there is a light that will lead you to a good, safe, and healthy path! You can do this!
    My email:
    Thank you and God Bless you all :) lots of love and hugs :)

  • Anonymous

    It’s been 3 weeks since I used and the craving is so bad right now I almost wanna cry. I just want this feeling to go away.

  • Deb. E.

    I checked myself into recovery May 20th. and was released 6/12/2013. I still have cravings. I do some meditations and some fishing. But the thing that helps me the most is being outside in the fresh air. Right about now I think I’ll take a walk. I wish eveyone well!!!!

  • Amy

    I have been sober from alcohol for nearly a year. I have become a gym junkie instead. Latley cravings have been quite bad – mainly on Sundays when I can’t get to the gym. My ex was prescibed serepax for various conditions and he’s left them here. I have had 2 in the last month and feel like having one now to calm down and probably to feel a bit “out of it”. It’s so unfortunate to be an alcoholic!

  • missing my angel baby

    september of 2012 my baby was born asleep due to pre eclampsia it almost killed me as well i was in ICU for about 2 weeks had a blood transfusion the whole nine yards they had me get my final affairs in order because they didnt think i was going to make it on top of the physical pain the emotional pain was unbearable. The hospital I was in used morphine not only as a physical pain reliever but also as a sedative when i became to emotional they were giving me almost 10mg in my IV every four hours even if i was asleep as well as anytime I became emotional in between. before this the strongest pain med i took was ibuprofen I didn’t realize I had become dependent until i was released from the hospital and had to deal with pain of losing my baby without it still to this day i get cravings but i know the only way i can get it is to steal it and i know that is the point of no return. I wish there was another to get that feeling back i cant even describe it other than pure bliss and yes i have tried meditation it doesn’t even come close

  • julie

    Help me. I went backward and start internship at an addictions facility next month. Please help me.

  • Nikol Langdon

    It’s been 1 month since I did meth. It’s been hitting me for the past week im craving it so bad I just need it back in my body I can’t take it I’ve gone to a doctor but nothing has helped… The craving is taking the best of me… I don’t know what else to do..