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What Are the Important Alcohol Withdrawal Syndrome Stages to Watch Out For?

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It’s unfortunate that you find yourself caught in the middle of an addiction to alcohol. Before you get too hard on yourself, you need to understand that substance addiction is a disease, a disease for which there is no cure. The fact you have a disease does not absolve you from responsibility for your own welfare. You still have an obligation to care enough about yourself to recognize you have a problem and ask for help.

Before you go down the path of quitting “cold turkey” and trying to treat yourself, don’t, there are dangers in doing so. Instead, there are plenty of good rehabs, ours included, that can help you with your addiction. You have to get the process started by asking for help. When you do that, that gives us an opportunity to take what we know and apply it to your addiction. We’ll find a treatment option that gives you the best chance for lasting recovery from your addiction.

As for the aforementioned dangers, you will likely have to face some significant withdrawal symptoms shortly after you take your last drink. The seriousness of your withdrawal symptoms will be directly proportionate to you the magnitude of your addiction. Assuming you have a significant addiction to alcohol, you might face withdrawal symptoms like:
Issues with high blood pressure and accelerated heart rate

  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Delirium tremens (DT) – auditory and visual hallucinations
  • Body convulsions, tremors and seizures
  • Profuse sweating
  • Extreme bouts of confusion
  • Difficulty sleeping

None of this is fun. At its worst, withdrawal could put your life in jeopardy. To help you better understand the withdrawal process, it might be worthwhile to take you through a general alcohol withdrawal timeline. As we go through this time timeline, we will identify three stages of withdrawal. Hopefully, this will help you understand why you don’t want to go through withdrawal without help. There are detox programs out there that can keep you safe throughout the entire process.

The Stages of Alcohol Withdrawal to Watch for

As we indicated above, alcohol withdrawal occurs in three stages. Each stage comes with certain withdrawal symptoms from the list we provided above. Remember, the severity of your withdrawal symptoms will depend on factors such as the amount you have been drinking, the frequency of your drinking and the length of time your body has had a dependency on alcohol.

We would now like to take you through the three stages. The entire process would generally happen over about seven days, though things may vary by individual.

Stage One – Initial Stage

You could expect stage one to begin approximately 8 hours after your last drink. In the initial stages, you can expect to feel nauseous and a little shaky. There could be some sweating and a little bit of agitation. As you progress through the first day, all of these symptoms could intensify. You might also notice an increase in your heart rate and blood pressure. During the first day, you will feel like you have bad flu.

Stage Two – The Danger Begins

After 24 hours have passed, the stakes will start rising. It’s at this point that your anxiety would start reaching peak levels. You could also begin vomiting and see a spike in your blood pressure. Over the next couple of days, tremors and seizures would likely become part of the landscape. If severe, medical attention would be required. You will likely feel like you are losing control over everything as your body and mind stop functioning normally.

By the time days 3 and 4 rolls around, withdrawal could be in full flight. Hallucinations take over and psychological issues could become evident. This is a time when you might feel totally disoriented and of control. This could continue well into day 5.

Stage Three – The Comedown

At this point, you might be feeling horrible. The good news is you will have likely cleared the worst of your withdrawal symptoms. Over the next few days, your body and mind will slowly adjust to life without alcohol. Heading into week two, clarity should reappear and you should be ready to begin the therapy portion of your treatment.

Going through withdrawal is inevitable if you have a significant addiction to alcohol. The best way to protect your self is to allow us to help you through the withdrawal process. You can call us at 877-497-6180. about detox and treatment.

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