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Alcohol: The Most Dangerous Detox

Detoxifying the body of drugs and alcohol is never a comfortable process. Acute symptoms can be extreme, and there are often long-lasting symptoms that sporadically reoccur for months or even years. Alcohol, along with benzodiazepines, is one of a few detoxes that can prove to be lethal without proper medical supervision.

Chronic alcohol use creates neural changes in brain circuits that control motivation, reward, stress, and arousal. Overtime, these changes make a user physically dependent on alcohol intake. When alcohol is removed, a person will go into a state of withdrawal. Alcohol withdrawal symptoms include, but are not limited to, anxiety, depression, fatigue, mood swings, headache, nausea and vomiting. Severe alcohol withdrawal can cause delirium tremens, with symptoms including fever, tremors, confusion, hallucinations, heart arrhythmia and seizures. The possibility of seizures and heart problems during withdrawal means that detox without proper medical supervision can be lethal. According to the NIH, to prevent the possibility of death from complications, treatment should include “monitoring of blood pressure, body temperature, heart rate, and blood levels of different chemicals in the body, fluids or medicines given through a vein, and possible sedation using medicines until withdrawal is complete.” Alcohol withdrawal symptoms are entirely dependent upon a person’s history with alcohol. The more extreme their alcohol use, the more likely they are to experience symptoms that may be life-threatening.

Alcohol dependence is a chronic and fatal disease that, if left unchecked, can permanently damage the brain and body. The brain, however, has a certain amount of malleability, also known as neuroplasticity, meaning that it changes to adapt to what it is being delivered. Just as the brain changes to adapt to increased alcohol delivery, it can change back to its normal state with enough time free from alcohol. Acute stages of withdrawal typically last no more than a week, while post-acute symptoms may take months to years. Eventually, with proper treatment, the brain and body can recover.

Cultivating resilience for lasting wellness, the co-ed programs offered at Resilient House on a full continuum of care provide holistic and clinical expertise for recovery. Our 50,000 square foot facility in Shreveport provides the tranquility and serenity you need to heal your mind, body, and spirit. It’s time to live. Ready, set, go: 833-CHANGE1