Despite public awareness about the ill effects of alcohol abuse, the problem of alcohol addiction continues to rise in the United States. The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) estimates that in 2013, 16.6 million Americans had an alcohol use disorder.
The International Business Times claims that one of three emergency hospital visits is due to overuse of alcohol, while the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention attributes one in every 10 deaths to the same problem. The NIAAA claims that alcohol is the third leading preventable cause of fatalities, with about 88,000 people dying each year from alcohol misuse.
Alcohol Detox and Rehab Address Ill Effects of Alcohol on the Body
For recovery from alcohol addiction to begin, a patient must go through alcohol detox and rehab. This two-phase entry into recovery, alcohol detox and rehab, helps the body, mind and spirit recover from the ill effects of alcohol abuse. Physical dependence, malnutrition and other physical effects are first addressed through alcohol detox and rehab picks up where detox ends to treat the whole person, including his or her mind and spirit.
In the body, alcohol first increases levels of dopamine in the brain. This results in an abundance of pleasant feelings. Mood becomes elevated, self-confidence increases and inhibitions are lowered. But as the alcohol is cleared out of the bloodstream, the positive feelings diminish.
The more alcohol a person consumes over time, the more tolerant his or her physical systems become. The brain also becomes dependent on the presence of alcohol. When alcohol consumption is stopped, withdrawal symptoms begin. Withdrawal from alcohol can be quite difficult and, unlike withdrawal from many other substances, is potentially life-threatening.
Side Effects Experienced in Alcohol Detox and Rehab
As patients start their journey in alcohol detox and rehab, physical signs of withdrawal appear. Withdrawal usually begins within the day of the last drink. The intensity of withdrawal symptoms relies upon many factors, including the duration of the drinking habit, the amount consumed, personal medical history, existing co-occurring disorders, family history and other issues.
There are three phases of alcohol withdrawal. Some patients experience only mild withdrawal, whereas others may go through all three phases. Each phase and associated symptoms are:
- Loss of appetite
- Abdominal pain
- Mental confusion
- Mood swings
- Heart palpitations
- High blood pressure
- Increased respiration
- Irregular heart rate
- Heightened mood problems
- Mental confusion
- Severe confusion
Because of the severity of withdrawal symptoms when ending alcohol dependence and the threat to life sudden abstinence can generate, it’s never recommended for a patient to attempt to detox at home. It’s crucial to have medical supervision in a licensed and accredited alcohol detox and rehab.
Once detox is safely completed, transition into a licensed and accredited rehab center may take place. Rehab addresses the mental, spiritual and physical effects of alcohol dependence and helps patients to learn more about why they developed dependency, in the first place. Through these two phases of detox and rehab, alcohol addiction can be overcome for lifelong recovery.
Starting on the Road to Alcohol Detox and Rehab Today
If you’re ready to save yourself from the cycle of alcohol dependence through medically supervised detox, Serenity House Detox of West Palm Beach and Fort Lauderdale, Florida ensures comfort and safety for patients during the withdrawal process. Detox is the first step toward lifelong recovery, prior to rehabilitative treatment.
Serenity House Detox is a licensed and accredited detox facility with programs designed to help you overcome alcohol dependence so rehab and recovery can begin. Call Serenity House Detox at 1-866-396-4129 for more information about starting on your own road to recovery.