As a result, little information is available regarding the best way to taper. That said, some independent groups have stepped in, publishing sample tapering schedules to guide people trying to cut back on drinking. Another significant factor in how long a taper lasts is alcohol withdrawal symptoms. After all, the point Art Therapy for Addiction of a taper is to minimize alcohol withdrawal symptoms. If you begin to have withdrawal symptoms during your taper, this is a sign that your taper may be going too fast, and you need to slow it down. While it is generally the medically recommended method of stopping alcohol, it requires medical supervision to be safe.
This is a staggering number considering that many other drugs do not even have the possibility of lethal withdrawals. For this reason, experts advise that alcohol cessation be monitored safely with steady effort between oneself and a physician. Moderately severe AWS causes moderate anxiety, sweating, insomnia, and mild tremor. Those with severe AWS experience severe anxiety and moderate to severe tremor, but they do not have confusion, hallucinations, or seizures. When not properly treated, AWS can progress to delirium tremens (Table 38–10).
Weaning (or Tapering) Off Alcohol: What it Means
Seeking help as early as possible during the withdrawal process is the best way to stay safe as you cleanse your body of alcohol. You may experience alcohol withdrawal symptoms when you quit drinking alcohol. This can happen whether you’re quitting alcohol cold turkey or tapering. For those at risk for severe withdrawal symptoms, medically-supervised detox is often the safest choice for beginning their sobriety or moderation journey. Others may discover after consulting with a doctor that it’s safe for them to quit alcohol cold turkey if they choose to. However, they may still decide that tapering down feels most achievable for them.
- Tapering off alcohol helps some people start their recovery journeys.
- Every person has unique needs, and tapering off may not be an adequate solution to reduce or stop drinking.
- A standard (750 ml) bottle of wine at 12% alcohol contains 5 standard drinks.
But according to the latest numbers from the National Center for Drug Abuse Statistics, roughly half of Americans say they have tried marijuana. By comparison 5%-6% of people who try alcohol go on to develop a problem with alcohol. In particular, some wonder if those enticed by legal use of the drug might unwittingly be putting themselves at greater risk for future drug addiction. Amina Zafar covers medical sciences and health topics, including infectious diseases, for CBC News. She holds an undergraduate degree in environmental science and a master’s in journalism.
Pros and Cons of Detoxing from Alcohol at Home
Or maybe it’s a pregnancy that made you realize it’s time to stop drinking. Or maybe you’re just looking to improve your health, wake up hangover-free and give your liver (and your heart) a break. Avoid taking prescription drugs that your doctor hasn’t prescribed to you. If withdrawal is so uncomfortable that you’re turning to drugs for comfort, you should contact your doctor or a rehab center to discuss medically supervised withdrawal.
The purpose of tapering off alcohol is to avoid major withdrawal symptoms so you can achieve sobriety safely. The time it takes to taper will depend on how long you’ve been drinking, how much you’ve been drinking and a variety of personal factors. If you’ve https://accountingcoaching.online/what-is-a-halfway-house-what-to-expect-in-halfway/ been drinking heavily for a long time and think you might experience withdrawal symptoms, it’s best to talk with a medical professional before you begin a taper. However, it is important to be aware of the risks of attempting a taper on your own.
How Do You Taper Off Alcohol to Reduce Withdrawal Symptoms?
If you or someone you know shows signs of delirium tremens, go to the emergency room immediately. This process temporarily restores homeostasis, or chemical balance, in an effort to counteract the impact of long-term alcohol use on the brain. Emotionally, you may feel some anxiety or sadness about ending a chapter of your life and nervousness about the future.
Although you can use methods to taper off alcohol at home, the best way to taper is to talk to a doctor. They can monitor your intake and adjust it accordingly to reduce the risk of withdrawal symptoms. This may work for many people, but in practice each individual will respond best to a different pace, and each doctor will have their own recommendations. The risk of tapering too slowly is that you won’t stick with it, while the risk of tapering too fast is severe withdrawal. If you experience dangerous signs such as high blood pressure, racing heart, or arrhythmias, slow your taper and seek assistance.