Alcohol Detox Withdrawal Symptoms- Detox Plus UK

Battling alcohol withdrawal can be the hardest thing you ever do. First, you must detox your body of all impurities & undergo safe alcohol detox treatment.  

There are ways to go about safe alcohol detox treatment.

In a medical detox unit, you should receive good quality medical care and psychological support aimed at keeping you dry after completion of the detox. It is often acknowledged to be the first step of recovery. Withdrawals usually begin 6 to 8 hours after intoxication and can last for 48 hours relative to how often, and how much a person drinks. Vitamins, lots of fluids, rest and a healthy diet, are vital for safe withdrawal, and it is always safer to seek help from a professional. Alcohol detox is the beginning of a fresh start and is often the first step required for health problems related to alcohol use disorders.

What is alcohol detox treatment?

Treatment is a preliminary step towards recovery when a person clears their system of alcohol. It is the body’s way of removing an unwanted substance. When a person suffering from alcoholism stops drinking, they will experience alcohol detox symptoms, which can be uncomfortable, painful and sometimes frightening. Detox periods can be dangerous to do alone and should be monitored by a professional so that variables like diet, fluid intake, rest, and medication is supervised.

When a long-term heavy drinker abruptly stops drinking, they may experience factors including delirium tremens, hallucinations, seizures, other psychotic episodes, and heart complications. Although some people experience relatively mild withdrawal symptoms, disease processes, or events that accompany withdrawal can cause significant illness and death.

How alcohol affects your body

According to Healthline, the effects of alcohol on the body are numerous. You can experience:

  • Behavioural changes
  • Blackouts
  • Slurred speech
  • Cancer
  • alcohol poisoning
  • Heart damage
  • Liver damage
  • Fatigue
  • Dependence
  • Muscle cramps
  • Lack of coordination
  • Numbness
  • Sexual dysfunction
  • Infertility

Sadly, this list doesn’t encompass every effect that alcohol abuse has on the body, but it describes some of the dangers of alcoholism.

Unreasonable drinking excites and aggravates the nervous system. If you drink on a daily basis, your body grows dependent on alcohol over time. If this occurs, your central nervous system can no longer readjust easily to the absence of alcohol. If you abruptly stop drinking or significantly decrease the amount you drink, it can cause alcohol detox symptoms

Safe alcohol withdrawal treatment – What you need to know

The first stage of treatment for alcohol abuse is detox. Simply put, you have to purge it out of your system so you can move on with the recovery process. Withdrawal is not pleasant, so you must be wholly committed to recovery, or you’ll be susceptible to falling back into the grips of alcohol dependency.

What should you come to expect during the alcohol detox process?

If you seek professional treatment, you will undergo tests that check your mental and physical health, undergo blood work and answer questions about your physical and psychological health as well as your drinking history.

You will then enter the support phase, where you may be offered alcohol withdrawal medication. The clinic’s medical professionals will provide support for you with alcohol detox symptoms and for any issues that come up during the detox treatment process.

Keep in mind that the detox phase can vary in length, depending on the level of your consumption. For some people, the treatment process is reasonably quick. Others may go through a much longer and more unpleasant process.

Effects of alcohol withdrawal

alcohol detox symptoms

You might be surprised by how fast alcohol detox symptoms can hit you. Here’s a timeline of how long it typically takes to start feeling the effects of the alcohol withdrawal process:

6 -12 hours after 

  • Headaches
  • Agitation
  • Anxiety
  • Shaking
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting

12 – 24 hours after 

  • Seizures
  • Disorientation
  • Hand tremors

48 hours after 

  • High blood pressure
  • Seizures
  • Delirium tremens (rapid onset of confusion)
  • Insomnia
  • Excessive sweating
  • Visual, auditory, and tactile hallucinations

Long-term alcoholics may also suffer from prolonged side effects, known as

Post-Acute Withdrawal Syndrome


Having a Slurred Speech

Excessive amounts of alcohol can affect the brain. it disrupts the connections between the neurons called the synapses, causing short-term memory loss and slurred speech. A person who abuses alcohol on a regular basis will have difficulty speaking and forming coherent sentences. Addicts usually mumble or change the intonation of their voices without reason. This happens while drinking, during alcohol withdrawal or for a few days after a binge-drinking episode.  

Developing Various Health Problems

Excessive alcohol consumption can lead to different types of health problems. For example, the person in question might start to have issues maintaining balance while walking. Cognition and logical thought can also be affected. If alcohol is abused for a long period of time, hypertension might develop. Hypertension is also known as the “silent killer” and it’s one of the leading causes of chronic illness and death worldwide.

Apart from hypertension, addicts can also have liver problems. The liver is the main organ responsible for filtering toxins such as alcohol. It can do a great job, but at some point, it can get overwhelmed, especially if the addict engages in binge drinking or heavy alcohol consumption. One of the most common liver problems is called alcohol-induced fatty liver disease. From this, the liver can develop cirrhosis and in worst cases, liver cancer can develop.

Try our Alcohol Assessment Test

Why you should detox in a safe environment

alcohol detox treatment

Alcohol recovery is never a straightforward process. Sometimes you can feel completely fine, but the next you’re suffering from a nausea attack followed by extreme dizziness. You can never truly predict the specific symptoms a recovering addict will experience during their detox. Patients receiving detoxification in a safe environment will receive medical treatment support.

Medications for treatment

Alcohol detox medication is most frequently used in moderate to severe alcohol withdrawals. This may include alcohol withdrawal drugs like Benzodiazepines; Adrenergic Medication; or Anti-Seizure Medication and vitamins for alcohol detox.

Best food and drink for alcohol withdrawal

It can be difficult to consume food during the initial stages of your detox. More likely than not, you’re going to have issues keeping your meals down. However, it’s necessary that you adopt a well-balanced diet to help you make a full recovery.

Stay well hydrated during your treatment, especially during the initial stages. Your withdrawal symptoms will only intensify if you’re dehydrated. You should drink copious amounts of water even if you don’t have a desire to do so. That way you’ll be able to flush your body of all harmful toxins.

Soups and Liquids
At the start of your treatment, around 24 to 72 hours, you should focus on consuming soups and other liquid-based meals. If you indulge in more substantial meals, there’s a good chance you won’t be able to keep it down for long.

We would recommend that you consume lean sources of protein that include fish, beans or poultry. Your soup should also include lots of vegetables.

Vitamins and minerals
Alcoholics tend to suffer from vitamin and mineral deficiencies. Therefore, you should stock up on foods that are full of specific vitamins and minerals:

  • Vitamin A (includes milk, carrots, and fish)
  • Vitamin B (includes leafy greens, nuts, and eggs)
  • Vitamin D (includes fatty fish and fortified milk)
  • Vitamin E (includes vegetable oils, nuts, and almonds)
  • Vitamin K (includes leafy greens and olive oil)

What comes after detox treatment?

After you’ve successfully undergone a safe alcohol detox treatment, clients have the choice to opt-in to the therapeutic recovery programme and can begin usually participating within days after detox starts.

Alcohol withdrawal treatment begins with you.

It’s not easy to recover from alcoholism, but know there are resources dedicated to helping you fight your addiction. Remember, you can only begin the path to recovery once you’ve promised yourself that you will no longer abuse alcohol, then can you move forward to a brighter alcohol-free future.

If you or someone you love is struggling with alcoholism and sincerely want to get sober contact us today to find out more about alcohol addiction and treatment.


Alcohol faq

There Is No Rehab Centre Near Me, What Should I Do?

Whilst location is an important factor for all of us, please understand, that recovery from addiction is a journey, and a commitment and the initial foundations should not be compromised.
This means seeking advice to find the best rehab centre and therapeutic program that fits you (or your loved one) personally.

Clearly, it’s vital that you find a rehab clinic that offers the right treatments for you. Don’t worry, you can call the Detox Plus UK hotline today, and our advisors will talk you through the different options. This allows you to figure out what treatments will benefit you the most so you can find rehab centres that suit your needs.

When we talk about going to rehab, this assumes that you’re willing to pack your bags and move into a rehab centre. This is known as residential rehab, and it basically means that you live in an environment that’s closed off from the outside world.

It’s been proven that this benefits patients as it restricts you from coming into contact with things or people that trigger your addiction. As a result, it allows the people there to carry out detox treatment without worrying about relapses.

We strongly advise that you give us a call if you’re having trouble figuring out which option is best for you. We’ll talk to you on the phone to help come up with a treatment plan that benefits you the most. As a result, you’ll soon know the best course of action to kick your addiction.

We offer locations for rehab centres nationwide, call our team on 02072052734 or view our locations for Rehab centres

I Can’t Afford Private Residential Treatment. What Should I Do?

Contact your own GP and accurately & honestly explain to him or her your addiction problems and express your desire for help and treatment. Your GP should activate your local ADAT Addictions team who will offer you whatever NHS/Social and treatment routes are available. You should also attend AA or NA recovery groups for support and guidance.

How Long Is The Average Residential Stay in Rehab?

Residential stays vary from between 7-28 days depending on the specifics of your circumstances and historical usage. e.g. An average alcohol detox may last 7 days, with a further 2-3 weeks in the therapeutic program to resolve the psycho-social and behavioural aspects of addiction. As above, most experience the best outcomes and lasting long term sobriety following a minimum 28-day residential stay

What Medication Is Used for Alcohol Addiction?

Medical Treatment for Alcoholism

Medicine to help quit alcohol comes to recovery from several angles. There are medications aimed at aiding you before, during, and after your recovery. This makes alcohol medication very versatile for numerous people, wherever they are in their journey. 

Let's explore some of the primary kinds of medication for alcoholism. Hopefully, you can get a better idea of the options available to you and what you can expect them to do. 


Acamprosate, also known as Campral, is a drug that aims to manage your dopamine receptors in a way that curbs cravings. As an alcohol craving medication, it makes it a lot easier for you to breeze through those first few months of recovery that tend to lead to relapse. 

You'll still experience withdrawals and have to contend with the social and personal elements of the addiction, but the craving will be weaker. That's a big benefit when you're already faced with many triggers and challenges. 


Naltrexone is an interesting medication in that it assists you to ease into quitting by adjusting your experience of alcohol. When you're on Naltrexone, your dopamine receptors are adjusted in a way that reduces the euphoria of alcohol. 

In other words, you don't enjoy being drunk as much. Your BAC will still be high, and you might experience other symptoms, but the pleasure response to alcohol will dim. 

The idea is that you won't be as compelled to drink if you're not going to enjoy it. 


Nalmefene is another drug to stop drinking alcohol, motivating a person to get into a new relationship with the substance. Nalmefene has shown that it can reduce alcohol consumption in individuals who aren't ready to quit but might have a problem. 

We can extend this line of reason and use it to reduce alcohol consumption to lower the intensity of withdrawals and cravings when a person quits. 


Disulfiram is a medication to stop drinking that blocks the enzyme needed for metabolizing alcohol. When a person on Disulfiram does drink, the experience they have is wretched. 

The experience is worse than drinking is enjoyable, so the idea is that it would keep an individual from drinking. It's a quit drinking medication that makes drinking feel even more terrible than it would the next day. 

Interested in Recovery?

If you're interested in medical help for alcoholism, medications tablets to stop drinking, or insight into sobriety, we're here to give you advice. There are dozens of ways that a person can get sober, and they're all worth exploring. 

Explore our site if you're interested in learning more about tablets to stop drinking alcohol and more. Contact us for more information on recovery, options, or pricing. 


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