Basics of Alcohol Detoxification
Alcohol detoxification is the sudden termination of alcohol consumption by people who are suffering from alcohol addiction. This method is frequently accompanied with replacement of prescribed drugs that have similar effects to alcohol so as to avoid alcohol withdrawal. It is also used as a follow up method after undergoing alcohol rehabilitation.
It has been found that the tendency to develop alcoholism is hereditary. Alcoholism, or alcohol detoxification, is therefore more prevalent among family members who also have a high risk for alcoholism themselves. People who have parents or other relatives with alcoholism are also more likely to develop alcoholism themselves. Alcohol use and abuse during childhood has also been associated with increased chances of developing alcoholism in adulthood. Some studies show that genetic differences may also exist between people who develop alcohol dependency and those who do not.
When people try to stop drinking, they experience several withdrawal symptoms that may hinder their success. These symptoms include nausea, sweating, shaking, muscle aches, and headaches. These symptoms are caused by severe levels of withdrawal from alcohol. Withdrawal can lead to severe complications if left untreated.
During alcohol detoxification, doctors may recommend group or individual counseling. This therapy aims to help individuals cope with the psychological aspects of alcohol dependency. Counseling usually focuses on social aspects, including the self-image and self-confidence of an individual. It may also include tips on how to live an alcoholic free life. The aim of this treatment is for the patient to learn how to overcome his or her dependency on alcohol.
Psychological counseling along with medications will be the mainstays of alcohol detoxification program. Medications are usually provided in the rehab’s alcohol recovery wing. A combination of medication, behavioral therapy, and inpatient or outpatient programs will be used to treat symptoms. However, this form of treatment is only effective when coupled with life-style changes.
Many people use benzodiazepines and barbiturates as relief for their symptoms during alcohol detoxification. Benzodiazepines and barbiturates can provide quick relief from many alcohol withdrawal symptoms. However, these drugs are highly addictive. Once a person uses these drugs for too long, they develop mental dependency. This means that they must consume these benzodiazepines regularly or suffer withdrawal symptoms when they try to stop using them.
Symptoms like insomnia, anxiety, panic attacks, dry mouth, and tremors can be relieved by using benzodiazepines. Barbiturates are another popular drug often used by addicts. However, barbiturates can cause severe dehydration if it becomes misused. It is important to drink enough water so the body can properly hydrate itself during alcohol detox. This can help avoid potential complications such as dehydration and brain damage caused by too much dehydration.
The best way to avoid complications from alcohol withdrawal is through proper nutrition and hydration. Detoxification alone is not enough to cure an alcohol addiction. Alcoholics need assistance from family, friends, and professionals. The more help available, the better chances the patient has to live a healthy and productive life after treatment.