The first stage in recovering from an alcohol use disorder is the process of detoxification. During this process, the person will experience symptoms of alcohol withdrawal. Going through alcohol withdrawal can be dangerous, and a person should not attempt to handle their withdrawal symptoms alone. Experiencing withdrawal in a safe, medically supervised setting can save pain, stress, and even your life. When it’s time to seek treatment and get sober, BetterAddictionCare can help by matching you with the alcohol withdrawal treatment program that will work best for you. Don’t try to go it alone: Call us to speak with a counselor and get help now.
Withdrawal occurs because alcohol suppresses receptors in the brain. When you drink alcohol, the brain is flooded with chemicals that make you feel good, and the brain responds by shutting down receptors for these chemicals. Once the drinking stops, the supply of these feel-good chemicals diminishes, causing symptoms of alcohol withdrawal. The signs of alcohol withdrawal can occur as early as two hours after a person’s last drink. Withdrawal from alcohol can be separated into three stages. Heavy drinkers experience the largest range and most severe symptoms of alcohol withdrawal. During the first 12 hours after alcohol consumption, typical symptoms include anxiety and agitation, shaking, headaches, nausea, nightmares, dilated pupils, sleeplessness, and lack of appetite. A second wave of symptoms can occur during the next 12 to 24 hours that includes muscle rigidity, loss of bladder control, disorientation, clenched jaw, hand tremors, and uncontrolled cheek-biting. Around 30% of individuals who experience alcohol withdrawal will experience severe symptoms during a 48-hour period. These include seizures, insomnia, full-body tremors, irregular heart rhythm, high blood pressure, fever, hallucinations, and delirium.
There are many benefits to experiencing withdrawal in a safe, controlled setting. Medical specialists will be able to talk you through symptoms and their effects while supporting you in a comfortable environment. You will have access to medications to ease these symptoms, some of which can be dangerous without treatment. For instance, seizures can be very dangerous when they occur unmonitored and can result in head injury and hypothermia. Many people are unaware of the dangers of unsupervised alcohol withdrawal, but self-detox is an often-fatal complication of substance abuse.
Don’t try to face the symptoms of alcohol withdrawal alone. BetterAddictionCare can help you find a cost-effective, successful, safe rehab program customized to your needs. Call today or fill out our contact form to speak with a counselor about our nationwide recovery network and get help now.