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How Long Do Alcohol Withdrawal Symptoms Last?

When one’s body is constantly exposed to alcohol, it will adjust to incorporate alcohol into its normal functioning. Those who consistently drink more than three drinks daily will likely experience withdrawal symptoms if they suddenly stop drinking. The severity and length of detox will vary depending on the severity of the addiction, along with other factors.

What Will Happen during Alcohol Withdrawal?

The body creates certain chemicals in order to function. When it gets those chemicals from alcohol, it stops producing its own chemicals, thereby relying upon alcohol to feel normal. When alcoholics quit drinking, their bodies endure intense pain because the need alcohol to feel well. This pain and discomfort are withdrawal symptoms. Specific withdrawal symptoms will vary from person to person, however the most common symptoms of withdrawal include the following problems:

  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Fatigue
  • Foggy thinking
  • Irritability
  • Shakiness
  • Mood swings
  • Nightmares
  • Clammy skin
  • Insomnia
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Sweating

Alcohol withdrawal typically begins between 5 to 10 hours after you stop drinking, but they can also begin days later. After about 48 hours the symptoms will likely intensify and can last for a week or longer. Many alcoholics experience disrupted sleep patterns and difficulty focusing for months after taking their last drink. It is encouraged that you talk to your doctor before attempting to detox from alcohol.

Can I Detoxify from Alcohol at Home?

While it may be tempting to try to overcome alcohol dependency without support, it is not recommended. You cannot predict how your body will react to the cessation of alcohol use, so it is important to be under the supervision of qualified medical professionals. To get through withdrawals as safely and as painlessly as possible, enroll in a program of medically supervised detox. Typically, withdrawal that is unsupervised is more painful and longer than attempting detox with the help of a doctor. It is also important to remember that alcohol problems are rarely just a physical issue. There is almost always an accompanying psychological addiction that will need to be treated alongside the withdrawal. In most cases, detox alone is not enough to cure addiction. Many people will relapse if they attempt to quit addiction on their own. In order to achieve a lasting recovery from alcoholism, seek comprehensive rehab treatment from qualified professionals.

Alcohol Withdrawal Help

Are you struggling to get free from alcohol? Please call and let one of our trained counselors teach you about withdrawals and reach your sobriety goals. We are here 24 hours a day, so call our toll-free helpline now.