It’s estimated that nearly 46 million Americans struggle with a substance use disorder. Because of its widely available and socially acceptable image, alcohol tends to be the most popular substance involved in these disorders.
This is a problem because, depending on the extent of the addiction, alcohol withdrawal can be incredibly difficult and even dangerous. That’s why it’s important to be familiar with the different stages of alcohol detox.
In this guide, we’ll walk you through what you can expect with detox. We’ll also give you resources for finding professional alcohol detox in Calabasas if you need it. That way, you maximize your chances of getting clean.
What Is Alcohol Detox?
The more someone uses alcohol, the more the body changes to deal with the effects of it. Since alcohol impacts the release of neurotransmitters in our brain, the brain adjusts so it can maintain balance.
It will stop releasing the “feel-good” chemicals naturally since it knows that they’re going to come from the alcohol. The good news is that if someone decides to stop using alcohol, the brain and body can re-adjust to make up for the lack of effects.
The bad news is that this process, known as alcohol detox, can be quite unpleasant. It involves both physical and mental symptoms that last for days or even weeks.
Depending on the extent of the alcohol use disorder, it can even be life threatening. That’s why detoxification programs are so important.
They provide a safe space to ease the discomfort of these symptoms that come when detoxing from alcohol. And, in the event of a life-threatening event, medical help can be found on hand.
The Different Stages of Alcohol Detox
It’s important to remember that alcohol detox will look different for everyone. That’s because individual factors can affect the severity of the withdrawal. Some of these factors include things like:
- The severity of the AUD
- The length of the AUD
- Their mental health
- Their family history
- Whether or not they use alcohol with other drugs
That being said, most people going through alcohol detox do experience a similar alcohol withdrawal timeline of events. In this section, we’ll break down the alcohol detox timelines so you can learn more about the different stages.
1. First Four to Twelve Hours
During alcohol detox, the first symptoms will usually appear within four to twelve hours after their last drink. From here, mild symptoms will begin to set in. Most of these symptoms are mental.
They can include things like depression, anxiety, restlessness, fatigue, mood swings, insomnia, confusion, lack of appetite, and irritability.
That being said, physical symptoms might also appear like headaches, mild tremors, night sweats, abdominal pain, and fevers.
2. First Twenty-Four to Seventy-Two Hours
During this stage, the alcohol withdrawal symptoms tend to switch from mild to severe. They can include things like:
- High fever levels
- High agitation levels
- Severe tremors
- Increased blood pressure and heart rate
During this stage, the symptoms of withdrawal will peak. They’ll typically be at their most intense around the forty-eight-hour mark.
3. Day Three and Four
Usually by day three or four, the withdrawal symptoms will begin to die down a little. However, if someone experiences severe AUD, then delirium tremens can appear.
This dangerous condition occurs only in a small percentage of those with AUD. However, it’s marked by increased severity of all of the severe withdrawal symptoms.
These symptoms will usually continue until day four. However, it’s not uncommon for them to last up to eight days. People experiencing delirium tremens will need to seek medical attention.
4. Day Four and Five
For most people in alcohol detox, the physical symptoms will go away around the fourth or fifth day.
However, it’s important to remember that everyone’s timeline is different. For some people, it can take weeks or even months to completely detox.
At-Home Detox vs. Professional Detox
At-home detoxes are often portrayed in the media as being quick and painless. People quit cold turkey, and then the next day after a rough night they’re perfectly fine.
While this at-home method might be viable for mild problem drinkers, it’s not a good option for people with alcohol use disorder. Many times, it can be downright dangerous.
Some people opt for the taper at-home method, where they gradually reduce the number of drinks they have each week. However, this method has an extremely high chance of relapse.
That’s why a medically supervised, professional detox is almost always preferred. If your addiction is serious, you can choose an inpatient residential treatment option.
This involves staying in facilities overnight so that you can be monitored by a medical staff. There are also outpatient programs in which a doctor will prescribe you medications to take at home to deal with the detox.
However, many doctors are not comfortable with these programs because there’s little to no medical oversight. Regardless, it’s almost always better to choose the professional option.
Treatment Following Detox
It’s vital to remember that alcohol detox is only the first stage of the process. The next stage involves changing your routine and patterns through the use of one-on-one therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy, and support groups.
Without this ongoing step of recovery, you’re much more likely to relapse in the future following a detox.
These treatment options give you the ability to identify triggers that might make you drink, diagnose potential mental health conditions contributing to your drinking, and establish routines to get through life without alcohol or drugs.
Need Alcohol Detox in Calabasas? Contact Paradiso Recovery
We hope this guide helped you learn more about the timeline of alcohol detox. As you can see, if you struggle with severe AUD, it’s often necessary to seek professional help.
So how do you find the best alcohol detox in Calabasas? Look no further than Paradiso Recovery. We’re a luxury rehab facility that uses evidence-based treatments to maximize your chances of getting sober.
So if you want to get the top-of-the-line alcohol addiction treatment in Camarillo, you can contact us to verify your insurance today.