Alcohol detoxification is a step towards complete abstinence from alcohol. This is indeed a challenging phase for the individual, as the body does not readily accept the depletion of alcohol from the blood. Several symptoms are developed as a response to this process, which have been enlisted in the following WellnessKeen article.
Human body develops its own mechanism of functioning normally, in the presence of alcohol in the body. The brain adjusts to the usual amount of alcohol in the blood of a regular drinker. Eventually, the person has to rely on larger doses, to experience the same ‘high’. When the person ceases to consume the required amount of it, the body fails to function in a normal way. As a result, the individual experiences several health issues, that are collectively termed as ‘alcohol detox symptoms’ or ‘withdrawal symptoms’. Alcohol detoxification is the process of removing alcohol from the body. Depending upon the amount of alcohol, to which the system of an individual has become immune, the severity of these symptoms ranges from mild to severe.
Mild symptoms are not necessarily dangerous. These develop during the initial days, after refraining from alcohol. However, the craving for alcohol is so much that the person often finds it difficult to remain resolute. Additionally, the symptoms of detoxification often force the person to resume his usual dose of drinking. Lot of support and counseling is required at this stage, to help the person quit drinking. The mild symptoms include:
- Feeling of jumpiness or nervousness
- Feeling of shakiness
- Bad temper
- Sweaty palms
- Loss of appetite
This is the next stage, when the symptoms become more severe. Some of these may be potentially threatening. Medical intervention is required at this stage to cure the person. Moderate symptoms include:
- Emotional volatility, sudden emotional changes
- Difficulty in thinking clearly
- Bad dreams
- Rapid heart rate
- Enlarged or dilated pupils
- Clammy skin
- Abnormal body movements
- Trembling of hands
- Involuntary, abnormal movements of the eyelids
Severe symptoms begin to develop within 48 hours to 6 days of abstinence from drinking. Although, these are of visual nature, sometimes olfactory or auditory senses can also be involved. These symptoms are often of serious nature, and can claim a person’s life, if not treated on time.
- Excessive irritability
- Increased depression
- Increased difficulty in thinking clearly
- Extreme emotional changes
- Delirium tremens (Dts)
- Muscle tremors
- Black outs
- Severe autonomic nervous system overactivity
- Visual hallucinations
- Extreme anxiety
Alcohol withdrawal is a painful process, as there is a lot of physical and psychological trauma associated with it. Many people find it stressful to face their routine life after coming out of the rehab. Some of them revert to drinking again, as they are unable to cope with this pressure. Hence, many people go for the detoxification at home, which helps them to avoid drinking, and cope with the challenges that life puts forth.