Alcohol Detox at Home How to Detox from Alcohol Safely
The main downside of tapering off is that it requires discipline. You’ll need to stick with gradual reduction every day and not revert to previous levels of consumption, otherwise it won’t work. If it’s too hard to control how much you drink each day, weaning might not be the right strategy. That said, there are now several medications that can help reduce your cravings and make weaning off alcohol easier.
- Whether you’re sober curious, know for sure you’re ready to quit, or fall somewhere in between, Dr. Streem shares advice for how to stop drinking.
- She specializes in a variety of health topics including mental health, dementia, celiac disease, and endometriosis.
- Remember you are facing a difficult challenge during alcohol withdrawal, but you are not alone.
- Therapy can help you understand why you drink and learn new habits so you can live a healthy lifestyle that doesn’t rely on alcohol as a crutch.
- A medical detox reduces the potential dangers of alcohol withdrawal by ensuring medical monitoring and assistance are present.
However, it should not cause someone to become stuck on a step, which would defeat the purpose of a taper. A person is free to increase the taper speed (e.g., lower by three drinks instead of two) as they see fit. A sample taper schedule involves calculating the number of drinks consumed per day. After this is calculated, make a schedule where you consume your normal amount on the first day and make regular reductions each day after. While the safest way to taper is with professional help in a detox facility, this may not be an option for everyone.
Challenges of Cutting Down Your Alcohol Intake
Set up therapy, counseling and support groups, a plan for sober living, and follow-up medical evaluations. The second situation involves counting the daily drinks and switching them to a beverage with lower alcohol content, such as beer. Switching to beer from hard liquor is safer because it is easier to control the amount of beer that is consumed and is harder to binge drink. Consuming a lighter alcoholic drink like beer also makes it easier for someone to stay hydrated throughout the taper.
Before beginning a tapering schedule, speak with your doctor about the risks of detoxing at home. Tapering off alcohol may complicate other medical conditions or co-occurring mental health disorders. It can help you reach goals and can minimize some of the unpleasant and severe symptoms of alcohol withdrawal. Tapering is meant to reduce the withdrawal symptoms from quitting alcohol, but this isn’t a guarantee.
What Does “Tapering Off Alcohol” Mean?
This includes beer, wine, and liquor, as well as products that contain alcohol such as rubbing alcohol and vanilla extract. Keep a list of emergency phone numbers on hand that includes contact info for your doctor, the police, a nearby hospital, and someone you trust. And consider joining a support group such as Alcoholics Anonymous. “The role of GABAA receptors in mediating the effects of alcohol in the central nervous system.” Journal of Psychiatry & Neuroscience, July 28, 2003. Sitting and talking with others who share your struggle can help you feel supported.
When an individual has developed a substance use disorder or dependence on alcohol, stopping its use outright can seem virtually impossible. On top of this, quitting immediately how to taper off alcohol — or “cold turkey” as many users and professionals call it — can be dangerous. Withdrawal symptoms are generally uncomfortable to deal with, but they can be fatal.
What Does It Mean to Taper or Wean off Alcohol?
Licensed medical professionals and highly qualified addiction specialists at The Recovery Village Cherry Hill at Cooper can help guide you toward a life without alcohol. Along with withdrawal symptoms, it may be even more difficult to cut back or taper your alcohol use if you struggle with an alcohol use disorder (AUD). AUD makes it difficult to control alcohol use — it may seem like the alcohol is controlling you.
Heavy drinking can lead to a reduction in the sensitivity of your brain to the amount of GABA produced. If you abruptly stop consuming alcohol, your brain may not have enough sensitivity to GABA, which can result in hyper-excitability and withdrawal symptoms. It is sometimes possible to taper your alcohol use at home if your AUD isn’t severe. Although, you’ll need support if you want to successfully and safely taper at home. We are dedicated to transforming the despair of addiction into a purposeful life of confidence, self-respect and happiness.
Tapering and Alcohol Withdrawal Symptoms
If you start noticing these symptoms, contact a medical professional immediately. However, if you don’t taper properly, you may experience withdrawal symptoms, especially if you have severe alcoholism. In particular, it alters neurotransmitter gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) receptors. When you drink a lot over a long period, your brain reduces sensitivity to GABA.
It’s a 10-question screening test that gives you research-backed, personalized advice for quitting or reducing your intake of alcohol. Behavioral treatment programs are helpful for people who want to quit drinking. These programs involve working with a team of mental health professionals in a group and individual setting. Gradually reducing alcohol consumption can be achieved through a substitution taper. Going “cold turkey” means abruptly stopping drinking entirely, leading to uncomfortable withdrawal effects.