What Is Alcohol Withdrawal?

Alcohol withdrawal refers to the symptoms that may occur when someone drinking on a regular basis suddenly stops drinking. If you need alcohol for your body to feel normal, then you likely need help to stop.

What Causes Alcohol Withdrawal?

Alcohol has a depressive effect on your system. Over time, the nervous system and the brain adjust to these depressing effects and compensate releasing more stimulating chemicals than it does when you are not drinking. When alcohol consumption is stopped or significantly reduced, the brain continues producing these extra chemicals, potentially causing unpleasant withdrawal symptoms that are associated with overstimulation. Eventually the brain readjusts after a few days, but in the meantime, withdrawal symptoms may appear.

What Are the Alcohol Withdrawal Symptoms?

Alcohol withdrawal symptoms may vary from person to person. Some people experience minor withdrawal symptoms, others may experience the most severe effects. Withdrawal can be life- threatening, so before you stop drinking, find professional support and look for a treatment centre that’s adequate to your needs.

The symptoms are influenced by different factors including the drinking frequency, the amount consumed, length of time drinking, the consumption of other substances or drugs, the physical condition and mental health.

Alcohol withdrawal symptoms can begin within a few hours to a day or two after your last drink.

Common symptoms you may experience when quitting drinking may include:

  • Tremor
  • Anxiety
  • Sweating
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Irritability
  • High blood pressure
  • Insomnia
  • Confusion
  • Nightmares
  • Increased heart rate

What Is Delirium Tremens?

Delirium tremens is the most sever withdrawal, it happens rarely (between 3 to 5% of patients hospitalized for alcohol withdrawal). It usually begins about 3 days after the appearance of symptoms and lasts usually 2 or 3 days.

Delirium tremens symptoms:

  • extreme confusion
  • extreme agitation
  • fever
  • seizures
  • hallucinations (auditory, visual or tactile)

How to Treat Alcohol Withdrawal

Alcohol withdrawal for long-time or heavy drinkers should be closely supervised by a medical professional to ensure the individual’s safety during detox. Stop drinking suddenly is NOT recommended without medical supervision. If you go into delirium tremens without supervision, it could prove fatal.

In some cases, alcohol withdrawal requires medical treatment. With the proper medications, most symptoms can be greatly reduced or even eliminated.

Can alcohol withdrawal be done at home?

If symptoms are mild to moderate, the withdrawal can be done at home, but it is important to have a relative or friend to stay over to make sure things don’t get worse. Medical advice is essential until the person is stabilized completely.

How Long Does Alcohol Withdrawal Take?

Alcohol withdrawal symptoms can begin within a few hours to a day or two after your last drink, they generally worsen over two to three days and all symptoms tend to decrease within 5 – 7 days.

Some milder symptoms like anxiety, trouble sleeping, or memory problems may persist for weeks in some people.

Detox alone is not treatment, but it is the first step in the to recover from a substance abuse disorder. Once the physical symptoms are over it is time to care for your medical and mental condition. Our services include medical care from the first symptoms of withdrawal and a complete therapeutic approach to help you through the whole process of recovery.

Let Us Help You

Our multidisciplinary team can offer you a safe start to a life free of alcohol. Let us take care of you and guide you through recovery in a luxurious and peaceful place. We will be happy to provide more information if you have any questions. Contact us for more information.

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