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a person denying alcohol wonders the side effects of quitting alcohol cold turkey

Side Effects of Quitting Alcohol Cold Turkey

The National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence report that 1 in every 12 adults in the United States suffer from some type of alcohol dependence. It is the most regularly-used addictive substance nationwide. Regularly drinking large amounts of alcohol can cause the brain to get used to how the substance interferes with neurotransmitters and absorption. Alcohol causes levels of GABA and dopamine to increase, which tells the body how someone feels. Dopamine affects sleep, memory, learning, and how someone feels pleasure. When levels of GABA increase, the central nervous system slows breathing, heart rate, and blood pressure.

What Alcohol Does to Disrupt the Body

The more the body feels accustomed to this interference, the more it relies on alcohol to remain stable. When someone becomes alcohol dependent, dangerous withdrawal symptoms can occur. This makes the side effects of quitting alcohol cold turkey hazardous. Many individuals wonder can alcohol withdrawal kill you. The simple answer is yes. No one should stop drinking abruptly as the side effects of quitting alcohol cold turkey can be dangerous without professional care.

About Alcohol Withdrawal

Half of those who are dependent on alcohol will experience withdrawal symptoms when they stop drinking. These alcohol withdrawal symptoms can begin within eight hours from someone’s last drink and peak two to three days after drinking last. The extent of the side effects of quitting alcohol cold turkey will depend on how dependent the individual was.

Some possible side effects of quitting alcohol cold turkey include:

  • Headaches
  • Nausea and/or vomiting
  • Dizziness
  • Diarrhea
  • Fatigue
  • Irritability
  • Loss of appetite
  • Increased heart rate
  • Mood swings
  • Sweating
  • Tremors
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Short-term memory loss

Alcohol can also deplete the body of the essential vitamins it needs to be healthy. These deficiencies can lead to the development of disorders that can affect clients’ lives forever. Dehydration is another side effect of alcohol withdrawal, which causes an electrolyte imbalance in the body. Severe dehydration can be dangerous.

How a Prolonged Exposure Therapy Program Can Help 

With the help of a prolonged exposure therapy program, those withdrawing from drugs and alcohol can help individuals to determine the cause of their addiction. A traumatic event or a series of events may lead to substance abuse. Prolonged exposure therapy helps clients deal with their fears and the feelings of trauma that have a hold on their life. This type of therapy helps the brain to develop better associations with trauma triggers and lessening the need to drink alcohol or use drugs when thinking of these instances.

Prolonged exposure therapy helps individuals to address their trauma symptoms. They are guided through the process so that they aren’t retraumatized and can express how they feel more openly. The goal of prolonged exposure therapy for addiction is to help patients to feel safe and secure in everyday life without the use of substances. It helps them reset and feel less fear and anxiety about life, which may cause someone to want to feel drunk or high to hide from their real-time feelings. Prolonged therapy programs have been proven to be helpful with a variety of individuals, including alcoholics, drug addicts, and PTSD patients alike.

Call to Learn More About Minimizing Alcohol Withdrawal Symptoms Today

Conquer your addiction. Create the life you always wanted. Promises Behavioral Health provides a variety of substance abuse recovery programs in many locations. We offer programs in cognitive process therapy, prolonged exposure therapy, and dual diagnosis programs that all help individuals with recovery. You cannot recover successfully from substance abuse without connecting with those who understand what you’re going through. Don’t go through the side effects of quitting alcohol cold turkey alone. Call us at 844.875.5609 today to find out how our recovery programs can help you to have a healthier future.

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