An addiction to alcohol is just as deadly as an addiction to narcotics, but there are more options than ever when it comes to effective and long-term rehabilitation. Depending on the severity of the addiction, previous attempts at rehab and the length of the addiction, there will almost always be a detox period that must take place before the rehabilitation. If you’re ready to recreate a healthier and sober life, it’s important to understand how detox for alcohol works and what can be expected throughout this process.
Developing a Dependency to Alcohol
Almost any time the body is exposed to a foreign substance for a lengthy period of time, a dependency can begin to take place. For alcohol, this most often comes in a series of stages beginning with the initial experimentation and regular consumption of alcohol. While many individuals stop at this point, others will find themselves consuming more and more alcohol at a higher frequency. If this habit isn’t put to a halt, individuals can become completely addicted to alcohol as all other facets of their lives fall by the wayside.
Understanding Detox for Alcohol
Those who’ve been consuming alcohol regularly may begin to experience the effects of withdrawal in just a few hours. For most, the physical signs of withdrawal will begin to take place within three to eight hours after having the last drink. This is due to the fact that the body has become accustomed to functioning normally with a large quantity of alcohol within the system. When the body no longer has these chemicals, it’ll begin to panic and a wide variety of issues can take place.
If you or someone you love is addicted to alcohol, it’s important to remember that detox for alcohol should be overseen by a professional and never attempted alone, especially for those with a more severe addiction. Alcohol withdrawal symptoms can actually be worse than withdrawal from certain drugs, but an experienced detox specialist can ensure that the individual is as comfortable as possible while continuously monitoring vital signs. This timeframe for detox does vary among individuals, but most can expect detox to last anywhere from three to seven days before the body has physically recovered.
Side Effects of Detox for Alcohol
Those who undergo detox can experience a wide range of physical side effects as well as a change in their emotions or feelings. Some of the most common symptoms include agitation, anxiety, an inability to fall asleep immediately and fatigue. For more severe addicts or those attempting to detox on their own, the side effects can include anything from hallucinations and nausea to extreme mood swings and severe depression. While this period may seem daunting, everyone should realize that detox specialists are better than ever at making this step as stress-free and effective as possible.
What Happens Next?
Once this initial detox for alcohol is out of the way, it’s time to begin thinking about long-term rehabilitation. Those who go through detox only to rush back to their old lives could find themselves struggling with the same triggers for alcoholism while not addressing the root causes of the addiction. There are now countless options for rehab facilities of all types that can cater to any need an individual may have during this process. The process of rehab could last for anywhere from 30 to 90 days or longer, with options for ongoing support after leaving the facility. Those who’d like to beat their alcoholism permanently may benefit from services such as group therapy, one-on-one counseling, holistic therapy, diet advice and more.
If you feel as if your drinking has become a problem and are ready for permanent change, contact the helpline at 800-447-9081 to explore your options for detox and rehabilitation.