Alcohol withdrawal syndrome is a set of symptoms, observed when heavy drinkers suddenly stop drinking. These symptoms may range from gentle shakiness, anxiety, bad dreams, insomnia to hallucinations and convulsions. If left untreated these symptom may turn life threatening ones. People who drink occasionally are usually not prone to such symptoms. Frequent drinkers who have been addicted to alcohol from months, years are more probable to experience withdrawal symptoms whenever they give up drinking.
The extent of these symptoms is frequently reliant upon the factor, how chemically contingent the drinker has become. Anyone who drinks heavily, then be it frequently or on not so often basis, develops a high level of addiction, whereas a person, who drinks a small amount of alcohol even if daily, is probably not so much dependent on chemicals. When any individual who has become ‘alcohol dependent’ resolves to stop drinking, he would suffer a certain level of physical discomfort. Therefore, such people need assistance and support to help them come out of their chronic habit.
Symptoms of Alcohol Withdrawal
The symptoms of alcohol withdrawal include, but are not restricted to:
- Craving For More: It has been observed that when person decides to quit drinking, he feels a craving for more alcohol. Such situation can become life threatening if not treated at time because the person is struggling with his urges.
- Shakes & Sweats: People who are lesschemically dependent may experience such symptoms, which may also include nausea, headache, anxiety, rapid heart beat, and increased blood pressure.
- Seizures: It usually happens with heavy, frequent drinkers within six to 48 hours after not drinking. Initially, it leads to visual hallucinations, including some sounds and smells. Sometimes, it can last for few days or weeks.
- The DT's: If not medically treated, Seizures may turn into delirium tremens (DT's) after 3 to 5 days without alcohol. It is the worst symptom of withdrawal which includes profound confusion, disorientation, hallucinations, hyperactivity, and severe cardiovascular disturbances. Once DT’s start, you cannot stop them even by medical treatment.
Treatment for Alcohol Withdrawal
The people, who are actually alcohol dependent and wish to quit drinking, must take the help of addiction specialist to get rid of their habit. With a proper medical treatment, alcohol addicts can skip or reduce the severity of all these symptoms. Anyone who is less dependent can rely on doses of vitamins (Thiamin) while taking proper diet so as to not endure the withdrawal symptoms. For the ones who are essentially dependent, medical treatment by a specialist should be administered. A special care should be taken of such person to help him overcome such situation.