Alcohol Tapering Avoiding the Symptoms of Alcohol Withdrawal
Vanessa is certified in addictions counseling by Maryland’s Board of Professional Counselors and Therapists, with credentials as a clinical supervisor. She comes to The Freedom Center with over 14 years of direct experience in residential and outpatient treatment between the private and federal sectors.
Going cold turkey can lead to acute alcohol withdrawal for those who have a history of long-term and/or heavy alcohol use. While this is a valiant effort and it can work for some people, an abrupt cessation of alcohol can be dangerous for those who have a long history of alcohol abuse and addiction.
Does Everyone That Drinks Need an Alcohol Withdrawal Taper?
You should only attempt an alcohol taper while under a doctor’s care. However, learning more about how an alcohol taper works can help you prepare to quit. With these things in mind, you need to weigh the pros and cons of tapering your alcohol use—ideally with someone you trust—to make a fully informed decision.
Is a bottle of wine a day too much?
Drinking a bottle of wine per day is not considered healthy by most standards. However, when does it morph from a regular, innocent occurrence into alcohol use disorder (AUD) or alcoholism? First, it's important to note that building tolerance in order to drink an entire bottle of wine is a definitive red flag.
Alcohol will increase the effect of gamma amino butyric acid – the neurotransmitter in the central nervous system that creates feelings of peace and relaxation. However, chronic alcohol use will suppress GABA activity in such as way that progressively increased amounts of alcohol are needed to produce the desired effects – which is known as tolerance. Chronic alcohol use also suppresses glutamate activity, the neurotransmitter that produces feelings of excitement. In excessive alcohol users, the glutamate system has to function at a higher level to maintain equilibrium.
Can Alcohol Addiction be Safely Tapered Off?
Many insurance companies will help pay for some or all of the treatment costs, which may be vital to recovery. Unlike inpatient treatment, tapering allows people to maintain their lifestyles while improving their drinking habits. Some individuals experience a neurological condition known as the kindling effect how to taper off alcohol as a result of repeated alcohol withdrawal. Individuals who have experienced the kindling effect may more severe symptoms including seizures, even when they use small amounts of alcohol. As the Medical Director, Mark works with the staff to coordinate the appropriate level of care for each individual client.
So, if you normally have 6 beers a day, you could be done tapering within one week. It’s always best to consult a physician on the best strategy, especially if you drink heavily. Some people are facing problems with their health or personal lives which require them to quit immediately. However, for many people with alcohol use disorder, tapering off alcohol is a far better experience than quitting abruptly.
Can Tapering Down Alcohol Use Reduce Withdrawal Symptoms?
Use distractions, have a trusted friend to talk to and keep a reminder of your reasons to quit in a place that’s easy to reach, such as a wallet or phone. As you navigate this question, it can be helpful to think about how you typically prefer to approach change. Metaphorically speaking, do you like to dip your toe in first, or cannonball right in? As long as safety precautions are taken, there’s no wrong way to begin a sobriety or moderation journey. This journey is often non-linear, and your goals can change over time. Read all about mindful drinking in this article by a licensed therapist at Monument.
This can give your body the chance to adjust, helping you avoid the worst of withdrawal symptoms. Programs such asinpatientoroutpatientrehab,medical detox, individual or family therapy and support groups are available.