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Dr. Andrew Rynne

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Feeling tired, shaky and lightheaded. How to get relief?

Answered by
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Dr. Jonas Sundarakumar

Psychiatrist

Practicing since :2003

Answered : 2190 Questions

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Posted on Fri, 4 Jan 2013 in General Health
Question: Am feeling tired alot shaky and lightheaded
doctor
Answered by Dr. Jonas Sundarakumar 3 hours later
Hello and welcome to Healthcare Magic. Thanks for your query.

Your symptoms of tiredness, shakiness and light headedness could be due to a few possibilities.

- Hypoglycemia (low blood sugar levels)
- High blood pressure
- Anaemia
- Nutritional deficiencies
- Thyroid disorders, like hyperthyroidism
- Anxiety disorders
- Alcohol-withdrawal or other substance-withdrawal effects

Since your symptoms appear to be causing you a lot of distress, you need a detailed medical evaluation to ascertain the cause of your symptoms. This will include a physical examination and some lab tests, as per necessity. In the meantime, keep drinking plenty of fluids, eat regular meals which are nutritious and healthy, and avoid alcohol, coffee, etc.

Regards,
Dr. Jonas Sundarakumar

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
doctor
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Follow up: Dr. Jonas Sundarakumar 10 minutes later
I have been drinking alot of alcohol recently and I do want to stop
doctor
Answered by Dr. Jonas Sundarakumar 18 minutes later
Hello again,

Excessive alcohol consumption and its effects is the most likely cause of your symptoms. I appreciate you for taking the decision to stop and seek help for the same. This is half the road to success. The second half is taking the treatment and staying motivated.

Now, treatment for your alcohol problems will be in two phases. The first phase is called "de-toxification". In this phase, the aim is to get the body out of the effects of alcohol. This will include treatment of withdrawal symptoms, improving your nutritional status and treating medical complications. The second phase is called "de-addiction". The main goal of this treatment is to prevent you from relapsing i.e. going back to your drinking. For this, there are medications called anti-craving agents like Acamprosate and Naltrexone. which can help reduce the urges or impulses to drink. There are other medication called detterent medication, like Disulfiram, which can also help you stay away from alcohol.

Along with medication, counselling is also essential to improve your motivation and confidence levels. There are many forms of psychotherapy which can be used for de-addiction - like motivational enhancement therapy, aversion therapy, hypnotism, etc. A combination of medication and psychotherapy has been found to yield the best results for de-addiction.

So, I would advise you to see a psychiatrist, so that he can assess you in detail and plan which treatment option is appropriate for you.

Regards,
Dr. Jonas Sundarakumar

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
doctor
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Follow up: Dr. Jonas Sundarakumar 25 minutes later
What are the symptoms for when you stop drinking? And am only 22 so do you think I need to see phychiatrist or could I just stop drinking I only drink beer but about 10 or more pints a week
doctor
Answered by Dr. Jonas Sundarakumar 8 hours later
Hello again,

These symptoms which you could get when stopping alcohol are tremors (shakiness), increased sweating, palpitations (rapid heart beats), dizziness, fatigue, dificulty in sleeping, increased anxiety or restlessness, etc. When the alcohol intake has been very heavy and continuous, there can even be serious symptoms like seizures (fits), pschiatric disturbances, like seeing non-existent things (hallucinations), disorientation, etc.

Well, if you are able to stop drinking on your own and don't get any prominent withdrawal symptoms, then you can give it a try. The withdrawal symptoms usually last for a week or 10 days, during which they will be more in the initial few days and then keep coming down gradually. Drink plenty of fluids and fruit juices and take adequate rest during the withdrawal phase. Don't stay alone and let a friend or relative know about this, so that they can have an eye on you and help you if needed.

If you are having severe withdrawal symptoms or if you are unable to control the urges to restart drinking, then I would suggest that you get professional help. Also remember, that even after you have quit alcohol, you must make appropriate lifestyle modifications so that you avoid any previous situations which could trigger your previous drinking pattern. Keep yourself active and engaged. Find a new hobby, learn a new sport, take up challenging tasks and set yourself new goals - all this will help you stay focussed and stay off alcohol.

Regards,
Dr. Jonas Sundarakumar
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
doctor
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Follow up: Dr. Jonas Sundarakumar 51 minutes later
And another thing is I keep sneezing in my bedroom and my ears seem abit blocked
doctor
Answered by Dr. Jonas Sundarakumar 8 hours later
Hello,

Your symptoms seem to be indicative of an allergic cold or a mild respiratory infection. I would suggest that you use some nasal drops and take frequent steam inhalation. Keep drinking hot fluids and avoid exposure to housedust and cold winds. These symptoms should settle down on their own within a few days.

Regards,
Dr. Jonas Sundarakumar
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
doctor
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Follow up: Dr. Jonas Sundarakumar 4 hours later
Am also getting pressure in my head when I itch top of my back also when I go for a wee I get pressure going to my head what could it be
doctor
Answered by Dr. Jonas Sundarakumar 10 hours later
Hello,

Heaviness or pressure in the head could be due to two reasons:
- Since you are probably having an allergic cold / respiratory infection, there could be congestion of the sinuses in the head, and this could be resulting in headache and a feeling of pressure.

- Another possibility is that this could also be a withdrawal effect of alcohol. Even if you may not have stopped taking alcohol completely, if you have reduced the quantity or frequency of your alcohol consumption, it may still cause withdrawal effects.

Like I had mentioned earlier, I would suggest that you take stem inhalation, drink lots of hot fluids and take adequate rest. Your symptoms should come down within a few days.

Regards,
Dr. Jonas Sundarakumar
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
doctor
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Follow up: Dr. Jonas Sundarakumar 3 hours later
Why do my eyes feel heavy and tired aswell only stopped drinking three days how long does it take until I can feel good without alcohol ?
doctor
Answered by Dr. Jonas Sundarakumar 17 hours later
Hello,

These symptoms such as heavy eyes and tiredness are also common symptoms associated with alcohol withdrawal.

The symptoms of alcohol withdrawal usually peak between 24 - 72 hours, an then gradually keep coming down. However, it may take up to 10 days for them to subside, and feel good without alcohol.

Regards,
Dr. Jonas Sundarakumar
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
doctor
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Follow up: Dr. Jonas Sundarakumar 11 hours later
I keep getting anxiety attacks it's abit scary
doctor
Answered by Dr. Jonas Sundarakumar 13 hours later
Hello again,

Anxiety is a very common symptom associated with alcohol withdrawal, and indeed, it can be very scary sometimes. Since your withdrawal symptoms seem to be prominent and causing you a lot of distress, I would suggest that you see a doctor for medication. Like I had mentioned before, there are good medicines available which can control such withdrawal symptoms, and ensure that you have a smooth and comfortable withdrawal phase. You don't have to be suffering when there are effective treatment options available.

Regards,
Dr. Jonas Sundarakumar
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
doctor
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Follow up: Dr. Jonas Sundarakumar 27 hours later
Have seen doctor he has given me anti depressants I forgot to tell him all my body seems like it's getting attacked making it itch and making me very tired
doctor
Answered by Dr. Jonas Sundarakumar 7 hours later
Hello,

It's good that you have seen a doctor and have been started on medication. Certain classes of antidepressant medication are used to treat anxiety / panic attacks and this must be the reason your doctor has started you on an ant-depressant. Now, you must realize that anxiety can manifest itself with not only psychological symptoms but with a variety of physical symptoms also. Very often strange sensations like tingling, burning, etc. can be physical manifestations of underlying anxiety. So, the itching or tingling sensations which you describe could be part of the anxiety also.

I would advise you to continue taking the prescribed medication and to get yourself adequate rest. Hopefully, your problems should get controlled soon with the medication.

You can also take a multivitamin supplement for the tiredness and fatigue as this could be caused due to nutritional deficiencies also.

Regards,
Dr. Jonas Sundarakumar
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
doctor
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Follow up: Dr. Jonas Sundarakumar 4 minutes later
What kind of things can you take multivitamins?
doctor
Answered by Dr. Jonas Sundarakumar 39 minutes later
Hello again,

Multivitamin supplements are advised whenever there is a possibility or suspected symptoms of vitamin deficiencies. Deficiency of certain vitamins like vitamin B1 (Thiamine) can cause nervous problems and weakness. Vitamin C deficiency can result in skin problems like dry skin, itching, etc. Other nutritional deficiencies like iron deficiency can cause generalised weakness and tiredness. Also, people with alcohol abuse are more prone for these nutritional deficiencies, since alcohol impairs the absorption of many essential vitamins.

That is why people with alcohol withdrawal and long term alcohol use are advised to take multivitamin supplements. These multivitamin supplements should be available over-the-counter and can be obtained without a prescription. I would suggset that you buy one which contains B complex vitamins and vitamin C (you check the reverse of the pack for list of ingredients).

Regards,
Dr. Jonas Sundarakumar
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
doctor
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Follow up: Dr. Jonas Sundarakumar 47 hours later
Have read somewhere that alcohol withdrawal can be deadly have not drunk in 9 days but am on tablets I went out with my friend for a breakfast and I normally drink alcohol because I can't I was shaking alot and had to go home were am comfortable
doctor
Answered by Dr. Jonas Sundarakumar 11 hours later
Hello,
Alcohol withdrawal can sometimes have XXXXXXX effects, like fits, psychiatric disturbances, etc. when the amount of alcohol consumption is very high. From your description of your drinking pattern, about 10 pints of beer a week (though may amount to an alcohol dependence), is not a very high quantity. Moreover, the risk period for developing these XXXXXXX withdrawal effects is within 24 to 72 hours of stopping alcohol. So, you don't have to be worried about this.

Now, it is important to remembet that taking alcohol while on medication is not good because:
1) it can cause cross-reactions
2) it may decrease the effectiveness of the medication.

So, I would advise you to refrain from taking alcohol, when you are taking medication.

Regards,
Dr. Jonas Sundarakumar
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
doctor
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