You can break free from a physiological addiction to alcohol in about a week. However, it’s not a very pleasant process. Most importantly, it can be downright dangerous. That’s why experts strongly urge individuals to enter a medical detox program with constant monitoring of alcohol withdrawal symptoms.
Understanding Withdrawal Symptoms
Alcohol contains a number of chemicals that affect your central nervous system and neurotransmitters. Your brain heightens its activity to keep you functioning despite the constant presence of a depressant. When you quit drinking altogether, your body reacts to the sudden lack of chemicals. Your brain has come to rely on alcohol to function and isn’t used to its absence.
At an alcohol addiction treatment center, therapists routinely work with people who have a difficult time reaching equilibrium. It takes a few days to make the transition. At a detox program with medical supervision, pharmacological support eases discomfort. Most importantly, it protects you from the more severe side effects of withdrawal.
Typical Alcohol Withdrawal Symptoms and Timeline
You’re already familiar with the trembling hands and the piercing headaches that mark a day without a drink. It’s typically your warning that you need to consume alcohol before things get worse. When you pass about eight hours without alcohol, you begin to experience gradually increasing gastrointestinal upset. It’s not unusual to experience nausea, vomit, or become dehydrated.
At a detox facility, you receive medications that keep you comfortable and prevent dehydration. After about a full day without alcohol, you’ll notice that your heart rate becomes irregular. Your body temperature rises and falls. Because your nervous system is getting back online, there are some misfires.
Once again, medical supervision keeps you safe. At the 72-hour mark, you’re at risk for delirium tremens, hallucinations, and seizures. Although these symptoms are rare, it’s impossible to predict who will develop these withdrawal symptoms. Therefore, detox facility staff members are on high alert.
Choosing the Right Facility for Your Detox
Don’t try to weather these alcohol withdrawal symptoms at home on your own. Rather, check into a high-quality detox facility. Best practices suggest that you select a facility that also offers rehab onsite. Doing so cuts down on the risk of early relapse.
Once at the facility, you work with an intake advisor who helps to create a care protocol for you. Possible treatments include:
- Medical supervision throughout the alcohol withdrawal process to allow for immediate intervention if necessary
- Medication assisted treatment for clients who need help with pain and cravings relief
- Clinical care that lets you transfer from detox to residential rehab with ease
- Dual diagnosis treatment for clients with anxiety, borderline personality disorders, or other conditions that lead to self-medicating
- Family counseling that encourages loved ones to heal and support your efforts to overcome an alcohol use disorder
Don’t continue to dread the onset of alcohol withdrawal symptoms. At last, overcome them with the help of Pillars Recovery. Experts in the field of addiction treatment want to assist you with recovery. Call 866-782-0247 today.