Alcohol Withdrawal Symptoms

Alcohol withdrawal symptoms can come in more forms than just a hangover. This article discusses mild, moderate, and severe alcohol withdrawal symptoms, as well as the physical and psychological symptoms that accompany withdrawal from alcohol.

Because alcohol is legal, and because it is consumed so regularly in social settings and other settings, it is difficult to conceive of it as a drug. Indeed, most of the population drinks alcohol at some point, whether it is a glass of wine with dinner, an occasional drink at an annual party, a beer while watching the game, or more serious drinking. Many people forget that alcohol is, in fact, a substance that can impair one’s judgment and alter one’s mood and mind if taken in large quantities. It is also a substance that can become addictive, and one that the body can come to rely on.  And, if someone with an alcohol problem stops using alcohol, it is very possible that alcohol withdrawal symptoms can occur.

If you have been drinking heavily, or if you have been drinking regularly for years, and you decide to alter your behaviors, it is a good idea to be prepared for alcohol withdrawal symptoms. Not everyone experiences them, but at least some mild symptoms are common. Before quitting, it can be a good idea to consult a professional to get a better idea of what could happen, and how to cope.

Mild to moderate alcohol withdrawal symptoms

Even if you have been a moderate drinker, you can experience alcohol withdrawal symptoms. This is especially true if you have been drinking frequently for years. You may not experience the same sever symptoms as a heavy drinker, but it is still possible that you will experience some mild to moderate symptoms of withdrawal.

Physical symptoms

Your body is used to alcohol, and quitting can produce physiological reactions. Some of the mild to moderate alcohol withdrawal symptoms include the following:

  • Clammy skin
  • Paleness
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Sweating (especially sweaty palms)
  • Twitching (especially the eyes)
  • Hand tremors
  • Loss of appetite
  • Dilated pupils
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Trouble sleeping

Psychological symptoms

Not only is your physical body affected by alcohol withdrawal, but you can also be affected psychologically. Here are some of the psychological alcohol withdrawal symptoms, on a mild to moderate basis:

  • Irritability
  • Mood swings
  • Fatigue
  • Depression
  • Bad dreams
  • Hard time thinking
  • Anxiety
  • Nervousness

It is important to be prepared for these possible symptoms, and get help and support when you decide to stop drinking. These feelings can be overwhelming, and it can be difficult for your family and other loved ones. So try to get help and support to help you cope with these alcohol withdrawal symptoms.

Severe alcohol withdrawal symptoms

If you have been a heavy drinker for a while, you might find that you have more sever alcohol withdrawal symptoms. Because alcohol is a mind altering substance, and one that the body builds up a tolerance for and comes to rely on, it is not really surprising that there is the possibility of severe withdrawal symptoms, much like you would see with other drugs. Here are some of the severe withdrawal symptoms you might see when you quit drinking alcohol:

  • Fever
  • Convulsions
  • State of confusion
  • Hallucinations
  • Black outs
  • Agitation
  • Severe depression

If you are experiencing any of these problems, it is important that you seek immediate professional help. A medical professional can refer you to others who might be able to help. There are a number of treatments available for alcohol withdrawal symptoms, and you can take advantage of these. It is vital to have a good support system so that you have people to turn to while you are coping with these difficulties.

In the end, it can be a great thing to greatly reduce - or even stop - your alcohol consumption. Too much alcohol can damage the body and create mental health problems. However, as you reduce your alcohol intake, it is important to remember the withdrawal symptoms. It is a good idea to plan to reduce your alcohol use under the direction of a professional who can offer coping techniques and medication (if necessary) to help reduce your alcohol withdrawal symptoms.

Related Article: Warning Signs of Alcohol Abuse >>