Alcohol withdrawal is the first step to overcoming alcohol addiction, but many people wonder about the alcohol detox timeline. What happens during withdrawal, and how do you get through it?
What Affects Your Personal Alcohol Detox Timeline?
Although you might be ready to stop drinking, the fear of withdrawal symptoms may be in the back of your mind. Understand that some people don’t experience major physical manifestations, while others face intense symptoms that in some cases are life threatening. The amount of alcohol you consume and your overall health both contribute to the severity of alcohol withdrawal symptoms.
It is important to note that some symptoms aggravate existing medical conditions. For this reason, anyone thinking of undergoing withdrawal should do so in a medically supervised setting. This setting ensures your physical health and overall well-being while making the process more comfortable. The worst place to detox from alcohol is at home by yourself.
The Progression of Withdrawal
The majority of individuals notice the first signs of withdrawal symptoms after eight to ten hours without a drink. During this time, anxiety gradually builds. You try to get some rest but can’t fall asleep because gastrointestinal issues and stomach pains keep you awake.
Over the next two to three days, you may see your blood pressure spike and body temperature fluctuate. If you suffer from depression, it may get worse. Those dealing with anxiety disorders notice that their symptoms become more pronounced.
Medical intervention at this point evens out your vitals, treats emotional disorders, and ensures that you stay healthy. Medications can also tackle some of the withdrawal symptoms that cause discomfort. Although detox isn’t going to be fun, it doesn’t have to be downright miserable. Detoxification facilities offer medical and holistic treatments such as:
A small group of individuals may experience hallucinations and seizure activity during the detox process. Delirium tremens (DTs) have the potential to be life threatening. This is one of the reasons why quitting by yourself at home is a bad plan. It’s impossible to predict with accuracy who will experience DTs and who won’t.
What’s Happening Inside Your Body?
Five to seven days into the alcohol detox timeline, your body reaches equilibrium and the symptoms begin to subside. For some, it’s a sudden change that leaves them feeling ready to conquer the world. Others notice a gradual tapering off until the symptoms disappear completely. What you have been experiencing is your central nervous system’s reaction to the removal of a depressant.
It takes your brain time to reestablish connections and re-regulate neurotransmitter functionality. The physical manifestations of this process end once the internal processes finish. At this stage in your recovery, it’s time to look for a rehab facility to break the emotional alcohol addiction that may linger.