Another thing which happens when the function of the GABA receptor is enhanced by alcohol is that the brain tries to overcome this calming effect by producing more adrenaline and other similar neurotransmitters. When the alcohol is completely taken away then this adrenaline and its cousins are left to run rampant https://g-markets.net/sober-living/alcohol-tolerance-wikipedia/ in the brain. This leads to raised blood pressure, raised pulse rate, rapid breathing, fever, hallucinations, seizures and D.T.s. About 10 percent of people experience more severe symptoms, such as fever, fast breathing, and heavy sweating. Here are some tips and strategies for how to taper off alcohol safely.
- Alcohol withdrawal delirium (AWD), commonly known as delirium tremens (DT), is the most serious symptom of alcohol withdrawal.
- You will probably notice them if you’ve been drinking for extended periods of time.
- Light exercise and a proper diet can help you adjust to the detox.
Some people are apprehensive to quit drinking due to withdrawal symptoms, but alcohol detox is the first step in treating alcoholism. This is a highly personal decision, which can be made through self-reflection, and with the support of a medical professional and your peers. If it’s safe for you to quit cold turkey, you may find that cutting alcohol out entirely from the start helps you clearly uphold your boundaries.
Strategies For Weaning Off Alcohol
If you are tapering yourself off alcohol for the first time, it can be helpful to know what symptoms to expect during the process. Although the symptoms can vary for each person based on personal factors, many people share common experiences during this process. Tapering off alcohol is not the most beneficial option for everyone. People who are severely dependent or addicted to alcohol should seek medical support for alcohol detox.
While some symptoms may persist for a few weeks, most of them are minor and can be treated with medication. Always remember that if the taper is not working for you or if you are having major withdrawal that it is safest to check into a medical detox because alcohol withdrawal can kill you. It is very important that you estimate your BASELINE ALCOHOL CONSUMPTION in terms of standard drinks in order for you to be able to set up a taper schedule.
Things to Consider When Planning to Taper Off Alcohol
Just as what is a useful method for one person may not be for another, what is a safe method for someone may not be for someone else. This is why it is essential to determine your method of tapering and your tapering schedule with the supervision of a medical professional experienced in an alcohol addiction recovery treatment. You should also consider an alcohol withdrawal taper if you’ve ever gone through withdrawal from alcohol, or any other depressant, in the past. Alcohol withdrawal can cause something called kindling to occur in your brain. Kindling refers to lasting physical changes in the brain that cause each subsequent withdrawal period to be worse. Someone who has gone through alcohol withdrawal several times is more likely to experience severe withdrawal symptoms than someone going through it for the first time.
The withdrawal process can be dangerous, and its symptoms vary depending on the severity of alcohol use. Detoxing from drugs or alcohol without professional help is known as a self-detox. You can choose to taper your substance use or go “cold turkey.” In either case, you won’t have outside support or treatment. By talking with your doctor or an addiction treatment specialist, together you can determine a safe tapering schedule that suits your needs. The length of the tapering process can vary based on the needs of the person. People with a greater dependency on alcohol may need to stretch out the process to gradually reduce their alcohol intake.
The goal of tapering down is to make a gradual change while causing less stress on your body, both physically and emotionally. Withdrawal symptoms can vary in severity and depend on many factors, such as drinking history, metabolism, age, medical condition, what other substances or medication you take, and more. Because everyone’s body reacts differently, there’s not a lot of research that proves tapering can decrease the effects of alcohol withdrawal. If you’ve been drinking heavily for a long time and think you might experience withdrawal symptoms, it’s best to talk with a medical professional before you begin a taper. They can help you decide if tapering is the safest option for you.
- In other words, they slow down chemical communication in the brain and body.
- It is very important that you estimate your BASELINE ALCOHOL CONSUMPTION in terms of standard drinks in order for you to be able to set up a taper schedule.
- You may still experience some of the less severe withdrawal symptoms.
- The assessment should also include a validated measure of withdrawal symptom severity, ideally with the same instrument as the initial assessment.
- It is commonly a self-managed detox method which is usually less successful than a program at an alcohol detox center.
- Slowly reducing your drinking over time instead of suddenly stopping allows your brain to change its response to GABA.
If you’re addicted to alcohol, it’s unlikely that you’ll be able to recover without some form of addiction treatment. You may be able to detox at home and recover from alcoholism with the help of support groups such as Alcoholics Anonymous. However, medically supervised Man serving sentence for attacking parents fails to return to halfway house and considered escapee detox and professional rehab are more likely to help you maintain long-term sobriety. During this taper, you may notice you’re feeling pretty good again. The first days were miserable, but now you’re a week in, you’re at the 5-6 drinks a day mark, and you feel fine.
How Long Does Tapering Off Alcohol Take?
You’ll likely begin to feel better between five to seven days after you stop drinking, though some symptoms—like changes in sleep patterns, fatigue, and mood swings—can last for weeks or months. The exact timeline for alcohol withdrawal varies from person to person. It’s based on several factors, including how long, how much, and how regularly you have been drinking alcohol.