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How to Safely Taper Off Alcohol Alcohol Detox Programs

When you quit alcohol cold turkey, you quit drinking completely and suddenly. Tapering helps people stop using alcohol and other substances in small and manageable steps. This can help your body adjust, and it can be easier to manage than quitting cold turkey.

how to taper alcohol

How To Wean Off Alcohol Safely and Effectively

  • This can be done by reducing the number of drinks, increasing time between drinks or choosing a weaker drink with a lower alcohol content.
  • However, medically supervised detox and professional rehab are more likely to help you maintain long-term sobriety.
  • With kindling, the brain becomes increasingly sensitized to stopping alcohol.
  • If you feel more severe symptoms, such as paranoia, increased pulse, or tremors sometimes called alcohol shakes, you should taper more slowly and consider seeking professional help.
  • If you regularly drink a handle of liquor (around 40 standard drinks) or more per day, please seek professional help.

One of the primary challenges is managing the withdrawal symptoms that can occur even with a gradual reduction in alcohol intake. These symptoms can range from mild discomfort to severe health issues, making the tapering process difficult without proper guidance and support. 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.

How Do You Safely Taper Off Alcohol?

  • It can also help you gain a new perspective as you consider how your life will change without alcohol.
  • Therefore, a medically supervised taper schedule is vital, taking into account the individual’s health status, level of alcohol dependence, and potential risk factors for severe withdrawal symptoms.
  • Some alcohol withdrawal symptoms can be so severe that they can lead to death.
  • However, here is a sample timeline of what the average person can expect.
  • An evidence-based approach is crucial, considering the individual’s drinking history, health status, and potential risks.

The first night I barely slept because of auditory hallucinations and the second night I had tunnel vision and felt like a stroke victim. I took a few shots and luckily nothing bad happened, but something easily could have happened. If you have a history of seizures, or have had seizures while detoxing in the past, do not, under any circumstances, attempt a self taper. Check out this medical article which provides further detail on withdrawal from alcohol. Find a reason to stay sober and keep that in mind as you go through this process. Ultimately, you need to decide to get sober for yourself, but if getting sober for someone else or something else motivates you in the beginning, it’s still a step in the right direction.

how to taper alcohol

Minimized Risk of Alcohol Withdrawal Symptoms

Or, you may find that quitting all at once is too drastic and decide to start by practicing harm reduction. If you want to change your relationship with alcohol, it’s important to have an honest conversation with a doctor about your drinking habits before you start tapering off. They’ll be able to help you create a tapering schedule that won’t only raise your chance of success but also avoid severe symptoms. If you’ve 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.

Can Tapering Down Alcohol Use Reduce Withdrawal Symptoms?

how to taper alcohol

Understanding the Role of Alcohol Tapering in Treatment

  • Since alcohol depresses central nervous system activity, quitting drinking can cause an imbalance of an excitatory neurotransmitter called glutamate.
  • For people who moderately consume alcohol, tapering off may be a good option.

How Long Does it Take to Detox from Alcohol at Home?

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