how to taper off alcohol

This lessens the severity of withdrawal symptoms, as there is not an abrupt or dramatic change. Tapering will normally create less severe alcohol withdrawal symptoms but will spread them out over a prolonged period. Essentially, tapering provides less how to taper off alcohol at home intense withdrawal symptoms but over a longer amount of time. Those who find that they cannot taper off the number of drinks for any significant length of time have likely developed alcohol use disorder, a condition commonly known as alcoholism.

Tapering Off vs. Cold Turkey

Typically, quitting cold turkey from a 12-beer-a-day habit is going to be more stressful than tapering off slowly. In addition, home detox may not be effective, appropriate, or safe. Tapering off alcohol involves gradually reducing the amount of alcohol you drink. Besides its positive health benefits, it can help you quit drinking after weeks or months. Alcohol withdrawal is potentially fatal, especially for people with an alcohol addiction. Sometimes, they may experience seizures and delirium tremens (DTs).

  • Tapering is the process of gradually weaning off alcohol rather than quitting cold turkey.
  • Alcohol withdrawal can cause many symptoms, some of which can be fatal.
  • So, if you normally have 6 beers a day, you could be done tapering within one week.
  • Alcohol can also activate opioid receptors, the same receptors that bind with your body’s natural endorphins and narcotic drugs such as oxycodone and heroin.
  • Sunnyside uses a psychology-based approach to help you drink more mindfully, no matter what your goal is.

If you slip, return to your plan.

As a depressant, alcohol will cause your brain and body to get used to its inhibitory effects on your nervous system. It may adapt by producing more excitatory chemicals and fewer of its native inhibitory chemicals. When you stop drinking, your brain will stop getting the inhibitory effects of alcohol and become overstimulated. Alcohol withdrawal often involves restlessness, anxiety, and insomnia, among other symptoms. Alcohol is likely the most widely used recreational substance in the world. In the United States, most people will drink alcohol at least once.

What is the treatment for alcohol withdrawal?

It becomes overexcited because there’s no more alcohol to slow it down. Go to the nearest emergency room or call 911 (or your local emergency service number) if you or a loved one has any concerning symptoms of alcohol withdrawal. A direct taper means you continue to drink your regular drinks but slowly decrease the amount over time. Direct tapers are better if you prefer drinks that contain a low percentage of alcohol.

how to taper off alcohol

What Happens to the Body When You Stop Drinking?

  • When those around you are in the know, it can help them know not to offer you drinks.
  • Tapering alcohol is beneficial because you can avoid alcohol withdrawal symptoms.
  • This method works best with gradual reduction, as alcohol withdrawal symptoms can start within 12–24 hours after stopping drinking.
  • However, individuals who suffer from alcohol addiction require professional rehab.
  • However, doing so without the guidance of a physician, can complicate tapering and ultimately delay when, if ever, sobriety is reached.

What happens to your body when you stop drinking?

Find out more about our admissions process

Challenges of Cutting Down Your Alcohol Intake

how to taper off alcohol