ALCOHOL WITHDRAWAL AND DETOX
Alcohol is a legal substance in the United States for people over the age of twenty-one. It has been stated by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAA) that nearly eighty seven percent of adult individuals in America have had at least one alcoholic drink in their lives. Due to the fact that alcohol is incredibly easy to access, it is not surprising that many individuals struggle with alcohol abuse or alcoholism. Alcohol withdrawal happens when an individual has built up a tolerance to alcohol by drinking heavily and or regularly for weeks, months, or years and he or she seriously cuts back or completely stops drinking.
The detoxification process from alcohol can be incredibly dangerous. It is highly recommended that people who suffer from alcohol addiction go through a medically supervised detox program. The effects of alcohol are felt because it has a depressive effect on one’s system. Alcohol works in one’s body by slowing down one’s brain function while also altering the way one’s nerves send and receive messages to each other. With alcohol abuse, one’s central nervous system will learn to slow down to adjust for the presence of alcohol. All of these internal shifts are what create an alcohol dependency. There are numerous shifts and accommodations one’s body learns to make over time, and these do not just stop immediately if a person chooses to stop drinking. For this reason, it is important for a person to have help when he or she goes through the detox process.
- IMS (Incidental Medical Services)
- Full Physical Examination
- All labs including blood & urine tests
- Medical Director/Physician
- Registered Nurse (RN)
- EMT’s (Emergency Medical Technicians)
- CNA’s (Certified Nurse’s Aid)
- Detox Technicians
- Substance Use Disorder Counselors
- Healthy snack & drinks
- TVs in the bedrooms
- Healthy meals prepared by chef
- Smoking area provided outdoors
The detox stage should be done in a medically supervised setting due to all of the physiological shifts that occur during one’s active alcohol abuse. The withdrawal symptoms that can occur from alcohol detox can be life-threatening. Having the proper support throughout one’s detox experience is essential. A medical professional that is overseeing an individual’s detox from alcohol will help to mitigate, when possible and necessary, the adverse withdrawal symptoms that he or she may face during the detox process. Additionally, there will be twenty-four-hour physical, emotional, and mental support for the individual undergoing detox, which can be incredibly helpful. Once the individual completes his or her detox program, a medically supervised detox facility will help an individual with the subsequent steps to continue with his or her substance abuse or addiction recovery treatment.
The more an individual abuses alcohol, the higher the tolerance level he or she builds up in his or her system to alcohol. This will result in the individual to continuously increase his or her drinking at an exponential rate. One’s body will become accustomed to functioning with the alcohol present and when its effects wear off an individual will suffer withdrawal symptoms.
The withdrawal symptoms a person may experience can range from mild to severe. Mild symptoms can arise as soon as six hours after an individual’s last drink. The more severe withdrawal symptoms can show up as early as twelve to twenty-four hours after one’s last drink. Some of the possible withdrawal symptoms an individual may experience can include any combination of the following:
- Shaky hands
- Excessive sweating
- High blood pressure
- Racing heart
Some individuals may experience many of the above withdrawal symptoms, and some may experience few. There is a myriad of factors that will weigh into one’s withdrawal experience from alcohol. Some of the influencers can include one’s personal health history, the amount of one’s alcohol consumption, the potency of alcohol content in one’s drinks, if an individual abused other drugs in addition to alcohol, any family history of addiction, and any co morbid mental health disorders a person may have. Every individual’s withdrawal experience will vary and will be unique to each person. The length of time a person will experience withdrawal symptoms from alcohol will largely depend on the severity of one’s abuse, in addition to the above factors.
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If you or someone you know is struggling with substance abuse or addiction, please seriously consider getting help as soon as possible. Addiction can be an incredibly damaging disease and the sooner help is received, the better. For further information on substance abuse or addiction, feel free to reach out to us. We are happy to answer any questions and provide any information you may be looking for regarding substance abuse and addition.