What is alcohol detox, and why does it require professional help?
Detoxification, or detox, from alcohol is the body’s way of ridding itself of alcohol after the individual stops using. The body has become accustomed to the presence of alcohol and has reached a tolerance for it; thus, a person with addiction drinks more and more to produce that effect of it. When the individual decides to stop drinking or is forced to stop for medical reasons, the sudden absence of alcohol sends the body into a tailspin of shock from withdrawal. Detox is not something to be taken lightly.
Some individuals may have severe or even life-threatening reactions to this process. When a person has consumed high amounts of alcohol for an extended period, they can have delirium tremens, or DTs. Delirium tremens is the body physically reacting to the lack of alcohol in the bloodstream. Seizures, irregular heartbeat, high fever and shaking can occur. The individual may also experience symptoms such as hallucinations, hearing and seeing things that are not present. A study by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) revealed that death may occur in up to 5% of patients with DTs. It’s important to seek professional help during alcohol detox so that medical staff can monitor this process and provide the medical treatment as necessary. Do not take detoxing lightly. When properly observed, the process can be completed successfully and safely and can be the first step on the road to recovery.
If you or someone you love is suffering from addiction to alcohol and are looking for help, understand alcohol detox and why it’s important to seek professional help. You are not alone, and many resources are available to get you the help you need.
We can start you on the road to recovery.