Delirium Tremens (DTs) is The most serious form of alcohol withdrawal, which happens in 3-5 percent of individuals in alcohol withdrawal, according to the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM), and it can be fatal without treatment.
DTs might not start for one or two days after alcohol leaves the bloodstream, and it can happen without warning. For this reason, that’s why that during alcohol withdrawal should be closely supervised by a medical professional. With expectation, they can keep on monitor vital symptoms, and make sure the individual’s safety during detoxing from alcohol.
To Stop for drinking by “cold turkey” style is extremely not recommended without expert medical supervision. Alcohol withdrawal can become a serious injury, because of the brain and central nervous system experience a rebound after being suppressed by alcohol repetitively for an extended period of time. The sudden cessation of a central nervous system depressant can be life-threatening.
How Long To Detox From Alcohol?
Because there is no specific and decisive timeline for alcohol withdrawal; It is usually held that the withdrawal will refer to the following alcohol detox timeline, as detailed by the National Library of Medicine (NLM):
- Roughly 8 hours after first drink: The symptoms of the first stage withdrawal may begin.
- After 24-72 hours: generally, the peak Symptoms occur in this time period, and stage 2 and 3 symptoms can rapidly manifest.
- in next 5-7 days later: Symptoms are able to start to taper off and decrease in intensity.
- Beyond the 1st week: Some side effects, especially the psychological ones, may continue for several weeks without treatment.
During detoxing from Alcohol, the 1st step is usually to control and monitor the physical symptoms and reach a stable point. This step is often accomplished via medical detox, which may use medications to treat symptoms like nausea, dehydration, seizures, and insomnia.
Benzodiazepines are commonly used during alcohol detox to minimize some of the potential over-activity in the central nervous system may undergo as it attempts to restore its natural order. Blood pressure, heart rate, respiration, and body temperature should all be closely monitored in a medical detox center, and steps can be taken to make sure they remain at safe levels.
Sometimes, using alcohol may be slowly reduced over a period of time through a detailed tapering schedule that should be set up and monitored by a medical professional. In this way, alcohol can be weaned out of the system in a controlled manner in order to avoid more dangerous withdrawal side effects.
Someone dependent on alcohol consumption may also suffer from malnutrition. Supplements and the implementation of a healthy diet and regular sleep schedule may improve withdrawal side effects and help the body heal faster.
Managing Symptoms in a Detox Center
After the physical symptoms have been controlled, mental health experts can help to reduce some of the more powerful emotional side effects during withdrawal
Depression, anxiety, and potential suicidal ideations can be healed by medications coupled with therapy and counseling sessions. The most important part is preventing relapse of any alcohol detox center, and 12-step groups and individual therapy can offer continued support through detox and beyond.
Detoxing from alcohol by Alcohol detox centers use three medications, which approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), to help with alcohol-related cravings in the treatment of alcohol withdrawal and dependency: disulfiram, naltrexone, and acamprosate. These medications work to manage withdrawal symptoms and discourage individuals from consuming/drinking again.
Naltrexone blocks opioid receptors in the brain, thereby reducing cravings and the potential rewards that may come from drinking, while acamprosate is believed to work on long-term withdrawal symptoms. Disulfiram can make people sick if they drink, thereby making drinking undesirable. A fourth medication, topiramate, also shows promise for the treatment of alcohol use disorders by also potentially interfering with the way alcohol “rewards” drinkers, as reported in the journal Addiction Science and Clinical Practice.
Alcohol withdrawal should not be attempted without the professional help of a detox center, as symptoms can pop up and magnify very quickly. Even after the physical effects of alcohol withdrawal are under control, protracted withdrawal, or the continuation of emotional symptoms and cravings, can continue without the right level of support and treatment.