Going through an alcohol detox can be very dangerous because withdrawal symptoms can be extremely severe. However, if done carefully it is possible to undergo this at home. Provided that your alcohol dependence is mild and you have a good support system, having an at home detox is relatively safe when done properly. An Austin alcohol rehab center may be necessary if relapse continues to occur though, and a rehab based detox is typically faster than the home based process. If you wish to take this on in the comfort of your own home, then here are some steps on how to detox safely.
Step One: Know How Much You Drink
You need to know exactly how much you drink in order to get started. The average amount of alcoholic beverages consumed per day can affect how long your detox may take. Below is a guide to help you discover your daily alcohol amount. Please note though that alcoholic percentages differ between products, and this guide may not always be 100% accurate for all alcohol brands.
- 12oz beer, 5% alcohol
- 5oz wine, 12% alcohol
- 1.5oz liquor, 40% alcohol
Step 2: Create Your Plan
Once you know your average daily alcohol consumption you are ready to make an outline of your detox plan. The average Austin alcohol detox lasts 3-7 days, and you should aim to slowly reduce your alcohol intake over this amount of time. If you drink less than 20 alcoholic drinks per day, then it is recommended to cut back 2 drinks every day until completely sober. If you drink more than 20 alcoholic beverages per day then it is advised to drink 1 drink per hour the first day (16 drinks), 1 drink every 90 minutes the second day (10 drinks), and then cut back 2 drinks a day after that until clean. You may also want to join a support group like Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) for during and after this time, because having this along with a reliable support system reduces your chances of relapse.
Step 3: Going Through the Detox
Finding out how much you drink and forming your plan are only the beginning though. It is actually going through the detox where the hard work comes in. Sticking to your original outline is important, but it is normal to experience some setbacks along the way. For example, if withdrawal symptoms suddenly feel as if they are getting dangerous it may be a good idea to drink until this feeling improves. This decreases your chances of these symptoms becoming life threatening. You should always be aware of the severeness of your symptoms, and if any serious withdrawal signs occur medical treatment should be sought immediately. Early withdrawal symptoms typically begin around 6 hours after the detox has begun. You can expect signs like headache, insomnia, shaky hands, and nausea. More dangerous symptoms like seizures and hallucinations may begin after about 24 hours, and late symptoms begin 2-4 days into the detox. 5% of patients are reported to experience delirium tremens during the later withdrawal stages. These are extremely serious and should be treated by a doctor. Symptoms of delirium tremens to look out for are hallucinations, seizures, extreme shakiness, high blood pressure, and rapid heart rate.
Some Extra Tips
Although not always deadly, alcohol withdrawal symptoms can still be very unpleasant. Here are some methods to help cope with these uncomfortable signs:
-Drinking plenty of water
-Keeping up a nutritious diet
-Drinking beverages with electrolytes
-Practicing controlled breathing exercises and/or meditation
-Taking a shower