The process of detoxing from alcohol may take a long time and be involved. It is different for every person. Various factors can determine the time involved with an individual’s detox experience, and the seriousness of their withdrawal symptoms. The most essential element for anyone who wants to detox from alcohol is for it to be done in an environment that is safe and medically supervised. This will make a big difference during the recovery process.
A person can start to detox from alcohol within hours from taking their last drink. The symptoms associated with alcohol withdrawal are the most intense with heavy drinkers. It is not necessary for an individual to be an alcoholic to experience them. Alcohol withdrawal symptoms can be life-threatening. This is the reason it is always best for people to have their alcohol detox take place at a medical facility that is supervised 24-hour a day.
The reason a person who is detoxing from alcohol experiences withdrawal symptoms is that their body is no longer getting the chemicals it has become dependent on. People who drink on a regular basis will develop a chemical addiction. When these chemicals are no longer present in their body, the neurotransmitters in their system go into shock. Withdrawal symptoms are a consequence of neurotransmitter levels being suppressed. There are some common detox symptoms.
- Mood Swings
- Rapid Heart Rate
Length Of Time For Alcohol Detox
The duration for detoxing from alcohol will be different for each person. The withdrawal will usually start within 8 hours from them taking their last drink. It is also possible for it to also occur days later. The withdrawal symptoms will be at their worst between 24 and 72 hours after someone has had their last drink. After this, the withdrawal symptoms will begin to subside. Certain things occur during the detox process.
- First Hours – A person will experience cravings. This is often the first sign that an individual hasn’t consumed their regular amount of alcohol. This is when their body begins to look for the alcohol. It means the detox process has started. During these first hours, a person could experience tremors, anxiety, insomnia, depression, physical sickness, and irritability.
- 24-48 Hours – If a person’s withdrawal symptoms are not immediately treated, the withdrawal symptoms can continue and get worse. They may experience seizures as well as hallucinations. This is when a person could experience delirium tremens, chest pain as well as an increased heart rate, and more.
Withdrawal Symptoms Decline
Any recovering alcoholic must be closely monitored during their early days of withdrawal. Some alcoholics experience a significant reduction in their withdrawal symptoms after 48 hours and others do not. It’s also possible for physical symptoms and cravings to become worse. The tremors and seizures experienced may be life-threatening. Even when the initial 48 hours has passed, the risk of cardiovascular complications and confusion is present.
Factors That Influence Detox
Many different factors influence the length of time required for a person to detox. They can accomplish detox in a few days and then move on to other treatments. Some alcoholics will experience detox symptoms for several weeks. Certain factors influence detox.
- Underlying Conditions – These are conditions such as PTSD, anxiety, bipolar and others that can change the recovery process for detox. An individual will need to have their condition treated to decrease their risk of a relapse.
- Time Spent Drinking – The length of time necessary to detox from alcohol is influenced by the amount of time a person has spent drinking. Several months or several years will influence detox. The more time an individual has been abusing alcohol, the longer it will take for their brain and body to recover from it.
- Poly-Drug Use – If an individual has combined their abuse of alcohol with the use of other substances, it can impede the detox process. People who have poly-drug addictions could experience symptoms of withdrawal from their drug use as well as alcohol.
- Amount of Alcohol – Some alcoholics will drink moderate amounts every day. Others will have 10 or more drinks in one night. The more an individual drinks, the longer their detox process will last.
- Nutritional Considerations – When an individual drinks for a long time, their body begins to change. Heavy drinkers may gain weight and others could lose weight. Alcohol impairs nutrient absorption. It causes damage to the lining of an individual’s stomach. The more run down a person’s body, the longer it takes to recover.
Are you or a loved one ready to get started with alcohol detox? Call us today at 833-680-0165. Our counselors are ready to help you 24 hours a day.