Common Alcohol Detox Symptoms
Written by: Martha Jackson on 5th September, 2013
- The most common alcohol detox symptoms include shakes, trembling and an uncontrollable urge or desire to drink.
- Most of the symptoms of alcohol withdrawal are merely uncomfortable or difficult to cope with but in rare cases they can be dangerous.
- Talk with a treatment professional about the detox symptoms that you are experiencing. There could be helpful medications or treatments that can ease the discomfort. Antiseizure medications have proven effective at preventing seizures and reducing anxiety and depression during alcohol withdrawal.
If you’re ready to detox from alcohol but you’re not prepared for the challenges ahead, you could be in for a rude awakening. Alcohol detox is the most difficult process associated with addiction treatment and recovery, it often leads to relapse and it could be potentially fatal if the symptoms of alcohol detox are not properly managed. Alcohol detox symptoms can vary depending on how severe an addiction is, the length of time that the alcoholic was drinking, the amount of alcohol consumed and a number of other factors. Preparation for what’s to come can help you to remain in control of your discomforts and to remain optimistic about the process of recovery.
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The most common alcohol detox symptoms include:
- Shakes and tremors also known as DTs
- Uncontrollable urges to drink
- Nausea and vomiting
- Depression and anxiety
- Loss of appetite
- Fatigue, sleep disruption and insomnia
- Fever and sweating
- Rapid heart rate, heart rate fluctuations, heart attack or stroke
- Seizures and convulsions
Uncomfortable but Usually not Deadly
Many of the symptoms, in fact, most of the symptoms of alcohol detox are merely uncomfortable and difficult to cope with. Symptoms such as nausea and vomiting, sleep disruption and even minor trembling of the hand can be uncomfortable and may make you wish you could have a drink to stop the symptoms, but they won’t really hurt you. Vomiting that persists for days and that results in a complete inability to hold down fluids can lead to dehydration which can pose serious health risks.
Most of the time, the withdrawal symptoms that a patient will experience when he or she is detoxing from alcohol will not cause any serious harm and will go away on their own within a few days. In rare cases, the symptoms of alcohol withdrawal can lead to serious side effects such as heart attack, stroke or death. It’s important to detox under the guidance and care of a treatment professional in a qualified detox center to ensure that dangerous symptoms are spotted and treated right away should the occur.
Talk with a Doctor
If you are experiencing withdrawal symptoms, talk with your doctor, healthcare provider or treatment professional about the symptoms that you are experiencing. It can be difficult to remain abstinent from the use of alcohol if you don’t receive adequate treatment and care during detox. A healthcare provider can only treat symptoms if he or she is alerted to your discomforts and your needs.
Don’t be afraid to tell a treatment professional about the symptoms (no matter how small they may seem) that you are experiencing during alcohol detox. There could be medications or medical treatments that could reduce the symptoms or alleviate them completely so that you can focus more time on healing and less time on how uncomfortable you really are at this time.