Alcohol detox is a treatment given to drinkers to wean them off alcohol. You have to be aware of the facts and process of such detoxification, to help anyone in need. However, there are also a few withdrawal symptoms experienced by an alcoholic, which have been mentioned in the following WellnessKeen article, along with proper treatment.
Alcohol detoxification, also known as alcohol detox is a procedure to gradually reduce and completely eliminate the addiction of an individual. This detoxification can be defined as ‘A treatment for addiction to alcohol (or drugs) intended to rid the body of the addictive substances, and the physiological and mental readjustment that accompany the process‘. Before undergoing any treatment, it is essential to undergo detoxification to remove the residues of alcohol in the body. It can be very difficult to achieve recovery from addiction to alcohol, if the residues remain in the body, as it can lead to cravings for alcohol.
Detox can be brought about by abstaining from or avoiding the consumption of alcohol whenever possible, use of medications, and changing the patient’s diet. Detoxification can be a bit tough as the individual may have to undergo physical and psychological trauma, when it comes to complete withdrawal from alcohol poisoning. Let’s take a look at the symptoms and therapy methods for withdrawing from this addiction.
Symptoms of Detoxification
Alcohol detox refers to a complete withdrawal or abstinence from drinking. The severity of the symptoms may range from mild to severe and also vary from individual to individual. The mild symptoms tend to develop during the initial stages of detox, whereas the severe symptoms show their presence within 48 hours to one week of refraining from alcohol. In case of moderate symptoms, which may be life-threatening at times, it may be necessary to seek medical intervention.
- Nausea induced vomiting
- Bad temper and irritability
- Headache, which may range from mild to severe
- Loss of appetite
- Excessive sweating, noticed especially on the palms of the hands
- Feeling of nervousness and shakiness
- Insomnia or deprivation of sleep
- Increased heart rate
- Getting nightmares
- Depression and sudden changes in emotions
- Trembling of limbs
- Twitching of eyelids
- Dilated pupils
- Pale and clammy skin
- Inability to think clearly
- Convulsions or seizures
- Fainting spells and blackouts
- Sudden and extreme emotional changes induced by anxiety
Alcohol withdrawal symptoms may tire an individual physically and emotionally. In order to stop drinking completely, it is necessary to undergo treatment. There are many natural detox remedies, like, drinking plenty of water and fruit (or vegetable) juices to hydrate the body and encourage cell functions, practicing meditation and yoga, etc. Vegetable juices like beetroot and carrot juice help in cleansing the liver and strengthening the immune system. There are also many herbs and supplements that help reduce the stress caused due to withdrawal symptoms.
In case of severe symptoms of withdrawal, there are some medications that are used for treatment, like benzodiazepines. This method is known as pharmacological detoxification and medications, like chlordiazepoxide and diazepam are used to treat the case of heavy drinkers. It is necessary to exercise caution while treating severe alcoholism with diazepam, as this drug tends to react with high levels of alcohol and in rare cases, it may even lead to death. So, before taking any medication it is always advisable to consult a health care provider.
Though there are many rehab centers like Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) that help an individual to get rid of this habit, some people prefer to undergo detoxification at home. To quit the drinking habit, the individual must be determined to take up the challenge. It is a challenging phase for an individual, both physically and psychologically, as his body reacts to the sudden reduction of alcohol in the blood. Patience and dedication, with the support of family and friends, is the key to get complete freedom from this harmful addiction.