How Long Does it Take to Detox From Alcohol

Last Updated on November 20, 2023
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Writer: Adam Zagha
Clinical Reviewer: Ariana Gravanis

Alcohol detoxification is a critical first step toward recovery. When someone has been heavily dependent on alcohol, abrupt cessation can lead to a range of withdrawal symptoms that can be uncomfortable and, in some cases, even life-threatening.

At NUMA Recovery Centers, we understand the challenges you face and are here to help. If you or someone you know is dealing with alcohol addiction or any other substance-related issue, don't hesitate to contact us. We're here to offer a helping hand on your journey to recovery.

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Alcohol Detox Length and Timeline

The alcohol detox timeline for individuals going through alcohol detox can vary, but here is a general breakdown of the symptoms and their progression:

  • 6 to 12 hours after the last drink: Minor withdrawal symptoms may emerge, including headaches, insomnia, anxiety, and loss of appetite.

  • 12 to 24 hours: Hallucinations may begin, which can be visual, auditory, or tactile in nature.

  • 24 to 48 hours: More severe withdrawal symptoms, such as seizures, may occur in individuals who have been heavy drinkers.

  • 48 to 72 hours: Delirium tremens (DT) can manifest with symptoms including ongoing hallucinations, delusions, disorientation, confusion, and fever. It is important to note that DT is a severe and potentially life-threatening condition that requires immediate medical attention.

  • Beyond 72 hours: Symptoms of delirium tremens generally start to subside after about seven days. However, it is possible for some individuals to continue experiencing symptoms for a few additional days.

It is crucial for individuals who have been drinking heavily for a prolonged period to seek professional medical monitoring during their detoxification process. Medical professionals from a luxury detox and rehab can provide the necessary care and support to manage severe alcohol detox and ensure the safety and well-being of the individual.

Remember, everyone's experience with alcohol withdrawal may differ, and it is essential to consult with healthcare professionals or addiction specialists for personalized guidance and support during the detoxification journey.

Alcohol Withdrawal Syndrome Explained

Alcohol withdrawal syndrome occurs when individuals who are dependent on alcohol suddenly reduce or cease their alcohol consumption. It is a result of the body's physiological and neurochemical adaptations to chronic alcohol consumption.

When a person stops drinking, the body goes through a period of adjustment, leading to a range of physical symptoms, as well as psychological symptoms.

Alcohol Withdrawal Symptoms

Acute alcohol withdrawal symptoms can vary in severity and may include anxiety, restlessness, insomnia, tremors, sweating, headache, nausea, and irritability. These mild to moderate withdrawal symptoms can be distressing but are generally manageable with proper medical supervision and support.

However, in severe alcohol withdrawal cases, alcohol withdrawal seizures may occur, as well as a condition known as delirium tremens (DT). DT is characterized by hallucinations, confusion, rapid heartbeat, and other severe symptoms. As it is a potentially fatal form of alcohol withdrawal, DT is considered a medical emergency and requires immediate professional medical attention.

Should I Seek Professional Detox for Alcohol

If you are contemplating quitting alcohol and wondering whether professional detox is necessary, it is crucial to understand the benefits and considerations involved. Here are some important factors to consider:

  1. Alcohol Cravings and Withdrawal Symptoms:

    • Alcohol cravings and withdrawal symptoms can be intense and challenging to manage independently.

    • Professional detox programs offer medical supervision and interventions to alleviate withdrawal symptoms, reducing discomfort and increasing the chances of a successful detox process.

  2. Severity of Alcohol Abuse:

    • If you have a history of chronic or heavy alcohol abuse, seeking professional detox is highly recommended.

    • Medical detox programs can address the potential complications and risks associated with severe alcohol withdrawal, including seizures and delirium tremens.

  3. Safety and Support:

    • Professional detox provides a safe and supportive environment for individuals to navigate the early stages of recovery.

    • Medical professionals can monitor vital signs, administer medications if necessary, and respond promptly to any complications that may arise during the process of detox from alcohol.

  4. Individualized Treatment:

    • Professional detox programs offer individualized treatment plans tailored to your specific needs and circumstances.

    • The expertise of healthcare professionals ensures that your detox process is optimized for success while considering any co-occurring medical or psychological conditions.

  5. Long-Term Recovery:

    • Seeking professional detox is often the first step toward long-term recovery from alcohol use disorder.

    • Medical detox programs can help individuals establish a solid foundation for ongoing treatment and support, increasing the likelihood of sustained sobriety.

While it is possible for some individuals to quit drinking without professional assistance, seeking professional detox for alcohol is highly recommended, especially if you have a history of severe alcohol use or experience alcohol withdrawal symptoms.

Start Recovery Here.
Call (888)-344-6862

Alcohol Detox Treatments

Alcohol detox treatments are available in various forms to cater to individual needs during the detox process. Reputable treatment facilities, like NUMA Recovery Centers, offer options such as inpatient treatment, outpatient treatment, and medication-assisted treatment (MAT).

Inpatient treatment provides intensive care and 24/7 medical supervision, which is suitable for severe alcohol dependence and co-occurring mental health conditions. Outpatient treatment allows individuals to receive detox services while living at home, which is ideal for milder alcohol dependence. MAT combines medications with counseling to address the physical and psychological aspects of alcohol dependence.

Holistic approaches incorporating mindfulness techniques and complementary therapies are also available. Aftercare and continuing support are vital for long-term recovery.

Can NUMA Help Me Detox from Alcohol

If you or a loved one are seeking professional support for alcohol detox, turn to NUMA Recovery Centers. Our dedicated team of experts provides comprehensive and personalized care to guide you through the detox process and achieve long-term sobriety.

With evidence-based treatment programs, holistic approaches, and 24/7 medical support, we are here to help you break free from alcohol dependence. Contact NUMA Recovery Centers today to begin your transformative journey toward alcohol detox and recovery.

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Writer
Adam Zagha
Adam Zagha is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in Los Angeles with over a decade of experience in addiction treatment and recovery. He holds a Master's degree in Clinical Psychology and is certified in EMDR therapy, CBT, DBT, and ACT. Prior to Numa Recovery Centers, Adam was CFO and the Director of Clinical Outreach at Transcend Recovery Community. Adam is committed to providing top-quality care to individuals seeking treatment for addiction and mental health issues. He also provides trainings and workshops on addiction, mental health, and mindfulness.
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About Numa
Numa Recovery Centers is a leading drug and alcohol detox and rehab company based in Los Angeles, providing evidence-based treatment for substance abuse and addiction. With a team of experienced professionals, Numa offers a comprehensive range of personalized services to help clients overcome addiction and achieve long-term recovery.
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