Alcohol use is prevalent in the world, especially in the United States, where it is common to find alcohol in restaurants, homes, and even at dinner parties. More than 85% of adults aged 18 and older have claimed that they have had a drink of alcohol at some point in their life, while almost 55% reported that they have had a drink in the past month.
The use of alcohol is common, but at the same time, so is the abuse. Alcohol is an addictive substance, and excessive drinking can make a person lose control over their impulses and become an addict or develop what is called “Alcohol Use Disorder.” About 14.5 million Americans of ages 12 and above suffer from an alcohol use disorder.
Alcohol use disorder, or Alcoholism, is a disorder and not a choice, and the disorder can be treated with medical intervention. The most important part of recovering from this disease is going through alcohol detoxification, followed by abstinence, therapy, and often a 12-step program.
The first step after making the decision to recover – alcohol detoxification – is a hard step, and a lot of recovering alcoholics relapse during this stage as it comes with extreme withdrawal symptoms, many of them physical. The physical symptoms can get quite serious, depending on your usage and the time duration for which you have been abusing the substance; because of the potential severity, it is recommended that no one should go through detoxification alone. Substance abuse facilities, as well as rehabilitation centers, are available all over the globe to help you with this difficult process. Inpatient detox can guarantee not only constant supervision so that you are not tempted to look for alcohol, but they also have proper systems for medical interventions prepared in case your body does not react well to the withdrawal.
Common symptoms that occur during alcohol detoxification are anxiety, mood swings, irritability, headaches, nausea, vomiting, rapid heartbeat, and high blood pressure. These symptoms can be unpleasant and coupled with a craving to consume alcohol, they can become quite unbearable for people. Many recovering alcoholics also report feeling depressed and can experience a loss in appetite, sweating, and even tremors and shaking. On the rare occasion, a user may also start seizing and/or having hallucinations as a symptom of withdrawal, though this is less common with alcohol withdrawal and more common with withdrawal from other substances. This is why seeking professional help is essential; when going through detox at a proper facility, the team can intervene medically in case of extreme symptoms – and sometimes even in non-extreme symptoms where necessary – which can not only make the journey slightly easier but can save your life.
Detoxification sounds scary; however, that should not deter you from making the most important decision of your life and trying to get back control of your life. Yes, the side effects of detox are a bit frightening, but the end result is a healthy life and a healthy body, and anything is worth that.