APEX’s medically supervised alcohol detoxification program utilizes an individualized approach to treat each patient. Because of the different stages and severity of alcohol dependence, patients can expect differing levels of withdrawal during treatment. However, our highly trained staff will take all necessary steps to minimize these symptoms and help patients slowly wean off of alcohol and get back to normal life.
Alcoholism affects all segments of American life. Unlike most addictive substances, alcohol is both readily available and legal for persons over the age of 21. The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism announced in 2013 that around 16.5 million of adult Americans had an alcohol abuse disorder (AUD). In addition, almost 700,000 teenagers between the ages 12 and 17 shared the same problem.
Alcohol indulgence and abuse can start very early, as can be seen from these statistics. Prolonged abuse of alcohol can, and it usually does, lead to multiple health issues that involve the cardiovascular system, the digestive system and the liver. Alcoholism can also result in depression and very serious conditions like stroke and cancer.
It’s obvious from this information that alcohol withdrawal is not an easy thing to go through if you are struggling with an alcohol problem. The severity of symptoms depends on a host of factors: the duration and scope of abuse, mental health disorders and traumas, a family history of addiction, the number of previous detoxifications, stress levels, overall physical health, etc.
“Cold turkey” detox and detox without medical supervision is extremely dangerous, because symptoms can manifest rapidly and without a warning. In extreme cases, it can even be fatal.
Symptoms of alcohol withdrawal are highly individual and that’s why a physician is the best support in the process. Symptoms can start between 2 and 8 hours after the last drink and they generally peak in the period between 48 and 72 hours, but in severe cases that can be prolonged. Physical symptoms of abstinence typically disappear after 5 to 7 days.
Mild symptoms are anxiety, insomnia, nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, fatigue, increased heart rate (palpitations), confusion, mood swings and irritability and depression. Moderate symptoms are increased body temperature and blood pressure, irregular heartbeat, sweating, heightened irritability and clouded thinking and sometimes hallucinations. These hallucinations don’t feel real and that’s the main difference between them and delirium tremens (DT) which is characterized by fever, seizures, agitation and hallucinations, which the patient is not able to perceive as distorted perception. Delirium tremens happens in up to 5% of the most difficult cases. Not only is it highly dangerous without a supervising physician, but it can also occur suddenly.
Alcohol Detox Program