Alcohol Withdrawal: Symptoms, Treatment and Alcohol Detox Duration

At The Woods at Parkside, we offer a comprehensive addiction treatment plan that begins with medically-supervised detox. Side effects from alcohol withdrawal range from mild to severe, and some are life-threatening. Typical withdrawal side effects include sweating, anxiety, insomnia, headache, nausea, vomiting, and tremors.

At 12 to 48 hours following the last ethanol ingestion, the possibility of generalized tonic–clonic seizures should be anticipated, occurring in 3-5% of cases. Meanwhile, none of the earlier withdrawal symptoms will typically have abated. Seizures carry the risk of major complications and death for the alcoholic. When you are detoxing from alcohol at a rehab center, nurses and doctors monitor vital signs, provide adequate nourishment and treat complications if they occur. The purpose of tapering off alcohol is to avoid major withdrawal symptoms so you can achieve sobriety safely.


In a treatment center, including an alcohol detox location, you can be sure that you are getting ample care to meet your needs. Benzodiazepines are the most commonly used medication for the treatment of alcohol withdrawal and are generally safe and effective in suppressing symptoms how to stop alcohol shakes of alcohol withdrawal. This class of medication is generally effective in symptoms control, but need to be used carefully. Although benzodiazepines have a long history of successfully treating and preventing withdrawal, there is no consensus on the ideal one to use.

Why do I keep shaking after drinking?

As alcohol leaves the body of a heavy drinker, the brain is flooded with more activity, the nervous system becomes hyperactive, and you may experience alcohol tremors or shakes. The shakes can happen as quickly as eight hours after your last drink.

However, home-based alcohol withdrawal is less common in other parts of the world. In the United States, for example, most people would be checked into a rehabilitation facility to assist them in the process. That’s because it slows down the rate at which your brain functions. If you drink too much, too often, your brain and liver get used to having alcohol in the blood. A good first step is to speak with a primary care physician who can provide treatment referrals and medications. They can also evaluate the person’s drinking patterns and overall health and work together to craft a treatment plan. The timeline of detoxification varies between individuals and depends on the duration and extent of their drinking behavior.

Imagine what’s possible on the other side of opioid use disorder.

If you choose to reduce your drinking gradually over a few days, it is usually possible to avoid the worst withdrawal symptoms. This is because your body has the chance to adapt gradually to the lessening levels of alcohol in your blood.

  • Learning what helps with alcohol withdrawal can be a process.
  • It can begin as nothing more than a misstep and eventually manifest into a complete loss in motor function.
  • This can also be caused by nutritional deficiencies, which can be rectified by supplementing thiamine.
  • You may also need to get tested for other medical problems that could be connected to your alcohol abuse.
  • However, they’re a symptom of the disorder when they occur with other signs of AUD.

The more people in your personal network that you trust to support your journey, the more likely you are to be successful. Alcohol has a depressant effect on the body, slowing down brain function and energy levels.