Alcohol Addiction and Alcohol Withdrawal

Alcohol Addiction and Alcohol Withdrawal

Alcohol withdrawal symptoms can be extremely uncomfortable, especially if you’re going through them at home without medical supervision. Common alcohol addiction withdrawal symptoms include sweating, shaking, nausea, and increased heart rate, all of which can be quite disconcerting if you don’t know what to expect. If you or someone you love has been struggling with alcohol addiction and are thinking about quitting, it’s important to learn more about the alcohol detox process and how to ease your body back into health once the withdrawal period has passed. Consider the following alcohol addiction withdrawal information as part of your education on recovery from this addictive substance.

Understanding Alcohol Dependence

Alcohol dependence is defined as a chronic disease characterized by compulsive alcohol use, loss of control over alcohol intake, and a physical intolerance to alcohol. As it can occur in both light and heavy drinkers, it cannot be diagnosed with symptoms alone.

How does Alcohol Affect the Brain?

Alcohol affects almost every organ in your body. It can lead to liver disease, high blood pressure, gastrointestinal disorders, hormonal changes, and even brain damage. One of alcohol’s biggest impacts is on your brain. Heavy drinking may cause long-term changes in how your brain functions, contributing to many mental illnesses.

Why Do People Drink Too Much Alcohol?

Alcohol addiction is a disease. People with alcohol use disorder use alcohol to feel good. Long-term, excessive alcohol consumption damages nearly every organ in your body. When you drink too much over time, your brain adjusts to being inebriated. To feel normal, you need to drink more and more.

Risky drinking and alcohol consumption down says AIHW - Brews News

At first, drinking may relax a person or help them relieve stress from work or school. However, increased tolerance to alcohol means they’ll need more to feel its effects. As tolerance increases, people begin needing to drink more in order to experience these feelings again and avoid withdrawal symptoms associated with stopping use.

Quitting Alcohol – Withdrawal Symptoms

When you drink alcohol regularly for long periods of time, your body gets used to it. When you suddenly stop drinking alcohol, you go through alcohol withdrawal syndrome. Alcohol is addictive, so even after a few days of not drinking it’s difficult to give up. The syndrome may start a few hours after your last drink, but it can take several days for all symptoms to completely subside. Symptoms include sweating, chills, insomnia (trouble sleeping), nausea or vomiting, rapid heart rate (tachycardia), muscle aches or cramps and mental confusion (delirium tremens). These symptoms peak in severity after about three to five days.