How Bad Is Alcohol Withdrawal?

Individuals who have consumed alcohol in moderate to heavy rates over extended durations might experience a medical condition known as alcohol withdrawal should said subject immediately cease their intake. Our center invites you to read the following brief blog discussing specific aspects of the alcohol withdrawal process.

Causes Of Alcohol Withdrawal

Alcohol induces a depressive, sedative impact upon the body, in particular the brain and nervous system. Repeated usage actually reduces the rate at which nerves communicate. As one’s alcohol dependency intensifies, this phenomenon worsens. That said, when consumption is suddenly ceased, the stoppage sends nerves into a frenzy, resulting in any number of physical and mental manifestations.

Associated Manifestations

Withdrawal symptoms will vary from person to person. Mild manifestations might include:

  • Sweating
  • Jitteriness
  • Tremors
  • Headaches
  • Fatigue
  • Sleeplessness
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting

More moderate cases of alcohol withdrawal might elicit symptoms like confusion, elevated blood pressure, expedited pulse rate and a raised body temperature. Individuals experiencing severe withdrawals might witness any of the preceding manifestations in varying degrees and potentially dangerous occurrences like hallucinations, convulsions and the most severe delirium tremens.


Afflicted persons might begin to notice the commencement of the more mild symptoms as soon as six hours following their last drink. In individuals with moderate to severe dependencies, more significant symptoms typically develop anywhere from 12 to 24 hours after alcohol cessation. However, the potentially dangerous occurrences often begin 48 hours after alcohol stoppage.


The severity of the withdrawal symptoms a stricken subject experiences will depend upon numerous factors. Such issues can include how long the person in question has been alcohol dependent, the specific amount of the substance the addict had been consuming when the abrupt cessation took place and if other drugs were also being ingested. Moreover, withdrawal stages can be influenced by several personal health issues related to the withdrawal sufferer, such as said individual’s age, weight, mental state and stress tolerance level. Symptoms typically begin to diminish anywhere from five to seven days after beginning.

Potential Treatment Options

Medical professionals and addiction specialists caution that anyone with moderate to severe alcohol dependency should not attempt to quit “cold turkey.” In many instances, such individuals are neither in the physical nor mental condition to place their bodies and minds under that much stress without close medical monitoring and intervention. In essence, trying to treat severe dependency could have permanent, potentially fatal consequences.

For many dependents, withdrawal symptoms are treated in a medical setting where supervised detoxification, sometimes abbreviated simply as detox, can occur. The initial efforts of the detox process usually center around making the dependent comfortable, ridding their bodies of alcohol at a measured pace and alleviating any withdrawal manifestations that emerges. As significant vital statistics like blood pressure, heart rate, respirations and body temperature can be significantly impacted by abrupt alcohol stoppage, such measurements should continually be observed by a trained healthcare professional.

The gradual elimination of alcohol from a dependent’s body and control of the physical and biological symptoms are merely the first facet of the withdrawal treatment process. Some withdrawal sufferers experience far greater difficulty coping with associated mental manifestations. It is not uncommon for individuals who successfully emerged from the initial withdrawal stages to experience serious psychological struggles like anxiety, depression and potentially suicidal thoughts.

The mental struggles former dependents experience often precipitate relapse. Ergo, strict attention must be paid to helping the afflicted person appropriately deal with these feelings. Recovering addicts often face and conquer psychological issues with the help of counseling, various forms of therapy and, in some cases, entrance into an in-patient treatment facility where said individuals learn to address issues including the reasons that may have inspired them to start drinking and learning to live in the outside world while sober.

Final Thoughts

Many addiction specialists and healthcare professionals would agree that, aa a general rule, the alcohol withdrawal process is challenging. For most persons with moderate to severe dependency, a strict, medically-supervised withdrawal process will be necessary. Moreover, the psychological withdrawal can prove even more difficult and often requires a serious commitment to overcoming the addiction and the help of many caring professionals. Fortunately, however, full and total withdrawal can occur.

If you or a close relation is struggling with alcohol dependency, they should not try to beat said addiction alone. Though our firm is located in Columbus. Ohio, we serve people from across the United States and may be able to tailor a program best suited for a specific patient’s needs and recovery goals. Call us today at 833-820-2922.