The longer a person abuses an addictive substance, such as alcohol, the worse his alcohol withdrawal symptoms typically are once he stops using. Although withdrawal is often an uncomfortable process, many people get through it without suffering serious health problems.
However, people who are dependent on drinking, especially long-term alcoholics, can have severe alcohol withdrawal symptoms. Knowing this, is what sometimes prevents someone from getting help. Just thinking about withdrawal causes anxiety, but going through the detox process can be a lifesaver.
The Importance of Detox
Detoxification, or detox, is ridding the body of all addictive substances, or toxins. It’s the first step toward recovering from addiction. Detox isn’t a long process, but it’s very important.
A person can’t successfully rehab if she’s still using. Her mental and physical states won’t be in the right condition to process the rehab experience. Detoxing in a qualified facility is the recommended course of treatment, as trying to detox at home (without medical supervision) can be dangerous.
Timeline and Typical Alcohol Withdrawal Symptoms
If the thought of an uncomfortable—even painful—detox has kept you from seeking treatment, you’re probably wondering how long it takes for alcohol to leave your body. Maybe you’ve even tried to detox before, only to relapse when the symptoms became unbearable.
A typical timeline for alcohol withdrawal symptoms looks like this:
- Several hours after the last drink: About eight hours or so after taking that last drink, the shakes may start. A person will feel anxious and may be hot and sweaty. Nausea and confusion are also common.
- First one to three days: This is when alcohol withdrawal symptoms are the most intense. Some people experience severe symptoms, such as delirium tremens (the DTs) or hallucinations. Other, milder symptoms include irritability and increased respiration.
- After the first week: Alcohol withdrawal symptoms will gradually subside. Once seven days have passed since the last drink, most people feel much better physically. However, that doesn’t mean a person is “cured.” What it means is that he’s ready for the next phase of recovery.
Someone who abuses alcohol for years or decades can have severe withdrawal symptoms, some of which are life-threatening. He shouldn’t attempt at-home detox. There are many facilities that can help a person go through the detox process, safely and comfortably. Depending on the detox center, clients may receive medical assistance in easing the worst of their symptoms.
A Place to Heal
Are you tired of the damage that alcohol addiction does to you or a loved one? You can leave drug and alcohol abuse behind with help from a qualified treatment facility like Memphis Recovery Center.
You’re an individual, and you deserve treatment that addresses your specific needs. Our compassionate, dedicated staff believes in treating each client as a unique person. We work hard to personalize treatment so that everyone receives the most appropriate care.
The Recovery programs we offer include:
- Alcohol rehab
- Partial hospitalization program
- Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP)
- Youth treatment program
- Family therapy program
Addiction touches more than the person using. It also impacts her family members. Our facility provides a strong family therapy component, which allows you and your loved ones to heal together. All of you can get the education and support you need as you move forward in your recovery.
Don’t let alcohol withdrawal symptoms scare you away from recovery. You and your loved ones deserve a healthy, happy you, and we’re ready to partner with you on your road to recovery. Call us at 866.304.8254 for more information.