Alcohol withdrawal delirium, or AWD, is one of the most serious alcohol withdrawal side effects. It is caused by the central nervous system attempting to readjust during detox. Most heavy drinkers will experience at least a few or even all of these physical and mental symptoms. When your limbic system teaches your learning center to treat alcohol as an activity to be desired, you will start to crave alcohol in times of stress even after detox.

What 2 organs are most affected by alcohol?

Organs known to be damaged by long-term alcohol misuse include the brain and nervous system, heart, liver and pancreas. Heavy drinking can also increase your blood pressure and blood cholesterol levels, both of which are major risk factors for heart attacks and strokes.

It is important that people seek help if they suspect that they are becoming dependent on alcohol. Medical News Today has strict sourcing guidelines and draws only from peer-reviewed studies, academic research institutions, and medical journals and associations. We link primary sources — including studies, scientific references, and statistics — within each article and also list them in the resources section at the bottom of our articles. You can learn more about how we ensure our content is accurate and current by reading our editorial policy. Make the withdrawal process safe for the person and help them live alcohol-free. Too much alcohol can irritate the stomach lining, cause dehydration, and lead to an inflammatory response in the body.

Withdrawal symptoms

The well-known Delirium tremens only affects only about 5% of long-term drinkers. Most of the symptoms will resolve over a few days with the help of rest, fluids, and good nutrition. If you meet with your doctor, they may tell you that you can detox at home safely. If you have a mild alcohol use problem, you may be able to taper at home. You may be prescribed a medication like a benzodiazepine to help you taper off alcohol. However, if you have become addicted to alcohol or if you have severe alcohol dependence, going through detox at home may be dangerous or ineffective.

Eventually the person will feel that they need to drink to feel normal or get through the day. In some cases, a person may choose to reduce their alcohol consumption gradually over several weeks.

Severe Withdrawal Symptoms

Alcohol withdrawal may cause uncomfortable chest symptoms that can damage the heart. Medical teams test the bloodstream, screen for co-occurring alcohol detox side effects mental and physical conditions, note symptoms and complete a thorough background so treatment can proceed in the desired direction.

alcohol detox side effects

Lechtenberg R, Worner T. Relative kindling effect of detoxification and non-detoxification admissions in alcoholics. People who have an addiction to alcohol or who drink heavily on a regular basis and are not able to gradually cut down are at high risk of AWS. Verywell Mind uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy. Severe withdrawal symptoms can be quite serious and in rare situations, they can actually be fatal. Over time, your central nervous system adjusts to having alcohol around all the time.

We offer Detox and Inpatient Addiction Treatment in MA

Rarely, it is necessary to use extremely high dosages of benzodiazepines to control the symptoms of alcohol withdrawal. They also note that a person can experience alcohol withdrawal syndrome whether they have been drinking for weeks, months, or years. Treatment options for alcohol withdrawal syndrome typically involve supportive care to ease the effect of the symptoms. People with alcohol withdrawal syndrome can have a wide variety of symptoms, depending on how much alcohol they drank, their body type, sex, age, and any underlying medical conditions. For most people, alcohol withdrawal symptoms will begin to subside after 72 hours.

alcohol detox side effects

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