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Withdrawal from Alcohol

About Alcohol Addiction

A recent study shows that 32 million Americans have struggled with a serious drinking problem in the last year. While men are at an increased risk of developing alcohol use disorder, women are also at risk. Individuals with an alcoholic parent or grandparent are at an increased risk of developing alcoholism over those with no family history.

What is Alcohol Withdrawal Syndrome?

When an individual who has been drinking for weeks, months, or even years stops or dramatically reduces the amount of alcohol consumed, it is referred to as a condition called alcohol withdrawal syndrome. This is a life threatening condition and can occur as soon as two hours after the last drink and may persist for weeks.

Symptoms of alcohol withdrawal syndrome may range from mild anxiety to severe complications such as seizures or delirium tremens. Delirium tremens, also known as DTs, are characterized by rapid heartbeat, confusion, and fever. The death rate of DTs is estimated to range from 1% to 5%.

Even if symptoms of alcohol withdrawal seem mild, it is suggested that medical attention be sought, since these symptoms can quickly worsen. Medical assistance is extremely important for individuals who have experienced alcohol withdrawal symptoms previously or those with lung disease, heart disease, infections, or a history of seizures.

What Causes Alcohol Withdrawal Syndrome?

Neurotransmitters in the brain are disrupted by heavy, prolonged drinking. When someone who drinks heavily stops consuming alcohol, the neurotransmitters that were previously suppressed by alcohol are no longer suppressed. This sudden rebound results in something known as brain hyperexcitability. This leads to the effects which are opposite of those experienced when alcohol is consumed, including anxiety, agitation, seizures, irritability, and DTs.

If you or a loved one are suffering from alcohol addiction, contact A New Start, Inc. today at 844.TALK.ANS. Our team of addiction specialists are here to find you the help needed to end addiction and begin a life of recovery.

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