Alcohol withdrawal can start as soon as two hours after the last drink and continue for weeks. It has the potential to be life-threatening and can occur in people who have been drinking heavily for a period of time ranging from weeks to years. The alcohol detox timeline may start with anxiety and shakiness, but may quickly proceed into more severe symptoms known as delirium tremens (DT). Delirium tremens is characterized by severe confusion, fever and rapid heartbeat, and it has a death rate of 1–5%.
An important thing to note is that alcohol withdrawal can often start out mild and then rapidly get worse. This is why any withdrawal from alcohol is better done under medical supervision, such as that found at professional detox facilities. Withdrawing from alcohol at a detox facility such as Serenity House Detox in Florida, not only ensures your safety, but prevents the chance of relapse.
The other issue is that if you’re addicted to alcohol, chances are you won’t be able to even make the choice to stop drinking. Many of those suffering from addiction tell themselves that they can quit at any time, but as addiction is a mental disorder, it’s not simply a matter of willpower to stop.
Reasons for Symptoms on the Alcohol Detox Timeline
Excessive drinking over a long period of time changes brain chemistry and disrupts neurotransmitters. Drinking alcohol enhances the effect of neurotransmitters called GABA, that produce feelings of relaxation. However, prolonged heavy drinking eventually suppresses these neurotransmitters, which then requires more and more drinking to achieve the same effect. Excessive alcohol consumption also reduces glutamate activity, which is a neurotransmitter that produces excitement. To keep the balance, glutamate begins operating at a much higher level than in nondrinkers or those who only drink moderately.
When you stop or severely reduce your alcohol consumption, these neurotransmitters come back online and result in exaggerated effects like anxiety, irritability, tremors and the like. They are essentially the opposite of the effects of alcohol consumption, except at much stronger levels. Usually the severity of alcohol withdrawal symptoms depend on how much individuals regularly drink and how long they have been drinking at that level.
Experience a Safer and More Comfortable Alcohol Detox Timeline at a Detox Center
Withdrawal symptoms are often a major barrier in seeking treatment for those with addiction. However, under medically supervised detox, these symptoms can be drastically reduced or eliminated.
Detox is only a first step in countering the disease of addiction, but it cleanses your body and provides a strong foundation for recovery. Call Serenity House Detox today at 866-294-5306 to get started on the road to a successful recovery.