Alcohol Detox at Home How to Detox from Alcohol Safely

It can be helpful to write down your reasons for quitting and the difficulty of withdrawal while it is fresh in your mind. This process temporarily restores homeostasis, or chemical balance, in an effort to counteract the impact of long-term alcohol use on the brain. Nanci Stockwell of Advanced Recovery Systems discusses the risks of detoxing at home and the benefits of detoxing from alcohol and other drugs in a safe environment. Crystal Raypole has previously worked as a writer and editor for GoodTherapy. Her fields of interest include Asian languages and literature, Japanese translation, cooking, natural sciences, sex positivity, and mental health.

This guide will walk you through the process of slowly reducing your alcohol consumption. With commitment and perseverance, you can successfully break free from your dependence on alcohol. You can also get help by reaching out to a professional rehab facility directly, like The Recovery Village.

Who is likely to have significant alcohol withdrawal symptoms?

There are many support options available that can help guide you through alcohol withdrawal, as well as abstaining from alcohol after withdrawal. However, try not to have too many firm expectations, as symptoms can continue for multiple weeks in some people. During the 12- to 24-hour time frame after the last drink, most people will begin Sober Sayings and Sober Quotes to have noticeable symptoms. These may still be mild, or the existing symptoms might increase in severity. There is no exact timeline for alcohol withdrawal, and individual factors, such as the level of dependence on alcohol, will influence it. It’s common for the first symptoms to appear within a few hours after your last drink.

how to wean off alcohol

Studies show support groups play an instrumental role in helping people develop healthy social networks that result in continued sobriety. However, medical complications can occur during the acute phase of withdrawal. For people who experience hallucinations as part of alcohol withdrawal, these may begin in the 12- to 24-hour time frame. Alcohol withdrawal symptoms range from mild but annoying to severe and life-threatening. Over time, however, the body builds a tolerance to alcohol, and a person may have to drink more and more to get the same feeling. Meanwhile, the brain is producing more and more neurotransmitters, making a person further imbalanced.

Can You Stop Drinking Alcohol Cold Turkey?

Research shows people who have a supportive social network are more likely to remain alcohol-free after withdrawal. Those with a wider circle of support have a better chance of staying sober. For people at low risk of complications, an office visit to your primary care provider, along with at-home monitoring and virtual office visits, may suffice. People at high risk of complications should enter a short-term in-patient detox program. Having a plan can help you stay on track and it can keep you safe.

  • Sunnyside uses a psychology-based approach to help you drink more mindfully, no matter what your goal is.
  • Many insurance companies will help pay for some or all of your treatment costs.
  • As you begin to notice those health benefits, you’ll likely feel more energized and inspired to keep up your progress.
  • Caffeine is a vasodilator, which can help relieve headache pain, making it an ingredient in many over-the-counter pain relievers.
  • To successfully taper your alcohol use, finding what works best for you is important.

If you’re living with alcohol use disorder (also known as alcoholism), you’ll likely benefit from additional medical interventions. Contact emergency health services if you or someone you know experiences more than one symptom of severe alcohol withdrawal. If you’ve been drinking for a long time, you may experience withdrawal symptoms when you quit drinking. Although you can use methods to taper off alcohol at home, the best way to taper is to talk to a doctor.

Health Library

The Reframe app equips you with the knowledge and skills you need to not only survive drinking less, but to thrive while you navigate the journey. Our daily research-backed readings teach you the neuroscience of alcohol, and our in-app Toolkit provides the resources and activities you need to navigate each challenge. When you reduce alcohol intake, your body might seek other sources of sugar, leading to cravings. Avoiding temptations is a crucial part of your journey to wean off alcohol. You need to be diligent and proactive in identifying and avoiding triggers. By doing so, you’ll be setting yourself up for success and making it easier to maintain your sobriety in the long run.

how to wean off alcohol

You may want to talk with a loved one or therapist about why it happened and what you can do differently next time. Remove all alcohol from your home or ask a friend or family member to do it for you. This includes beer, wine, and liquor, as well as products that contain alcohol such as rubbing alcohol and vanilla extract.

Can You Really Have Too Much Caffeine?

However, it should not cause someone to become stuck on a step, which would defeat the purpose of a taper. A person is free to increase the taper speed (e.g., lower by three drinks instead of two) as they see fit. While the safest way to taper is with professional help in a detox facility, this may not be an option for everyone. A person may need to detox at home for many reasons, including cost or time. By the end of Week 3, you will have substantially reduced your alcohol intake, and you’ll have experienced how your body feels without alcohol for a short period.

Minor symptoms of alcohol withdrawal can start as soon as six hours after the last drink of alcohol. After two weeks, continue to listen to your body, adding more alcohol-free days and seeking support as needed. The plan can be adjusted and extended based on individual progress. Regular exercise is another important part of self-care when you’re weaning off alcohol.

If you are doing a self detox be sure to drink lots and lots of fluids and to take vitamin pills. If you choose to drink water make sure that you get enough salt for electrolyte balance so that you avoid water intoxication. It can take different people varying amounts of time to taper off alcohol. How long it takes depends on factors like how much you typically drink. A person who drinks more alcohol will probably have a longer taper than a person who drinks less alcohol. Tapering off alcohol is not the most beneficial option for everyone.

The most severe form of alcohol withdrawal is known as delirium tremens, which develops in about 3 to 5% of people with severe alcohol addiction. Delirium tremens is also more common in people of older age, those with a history of seizures, and people with co-occurring illnesses or disorders. Symptoms of delirium tremens can develop within 48 hours and, in some cases, have fatal consequences without proper treatment. Usually, alcohol withdrawal symptoms occur within 12–24 hours after stopping alcohol and can last 2–10 days. Your doctor can determine if tapering alcohol is safe for your unique situation and help you create a plan to quit drinking alcohol.

In the Next Few Weeks

It’s important to detox under the care of a medical professional in order to ensure your safety and make the process as comfortable as possible. Typically, alcohol withdrawal symptoms happen for heavier drinkers. Alcohol withdrawal can begin within hours of ending a drinking session.

  • The most common research technique among those surveyed is an internet search (61%), followed by asking a doctor or medical professional (55%).
  • Illegal stimulants like methamphetamine (“meth”) and MDMA (“ecstasy” or “molly”) cause a huge surge that messes with the reward circuits in your brain.
  • For those who’ve consumed alcohol regularly, a gradual reduction might be safer and more manageable than abrupt cessation.
  • With the right support, you can overcome your addiction and build a healthy, sober life.
  • If you are a daily drinker, a heavy drinker, or a frequent binge drinker, suddenly quitting will likely produce a wide range of uncomfortable symptoms.
  • If you begin to have withdrawal symptoms during your taper, this is a sign that your taper may be going too fast, and you need to slow it down.

For example, if you normally drink 20 units a day, try reducing this to 18 units a day. Our free and confidential services are open as usual and can help you detox safely. You can receive 24/7 text support right away and at your convenience. There is no obligation to enter treatment and you can opt out at any time.

How to safely detox from alcohol at home

You may be able to detox at home and recover from alcoholism with the help of support groups such as Alcoholics Anonymous. However, medically supervised detox and professional rehab are more likely to help you maintain long-term sobriety. Getting curious about a life without alcohol is already an incredible step, and a healthier lifestyle is within reach. This is a highly personal decision, which can be made through self-reflection, and with the support of a medical professional and your peers.


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