Symptoms of Alcoholism
Withdrawal symptoms are likely to appear between 6 hours and 1 day after the last drink, and they vary from person to person. Some symptoms, such as headaches or nausea, are mild, while others are more severe and warrant medical care. It’s impossible to predict which symptoms a person will experience, which makes at-home detox that much more dangerous. The safest way to detox from alcohol is in a medically-supervised environment.
Alcohol withdrawal symptoms are broken up into three distinct stages. Those stages are:
- Stage 1 (mild): lasts 8 hours; headache, anxiety, insomnia, depression, mood swings, nausea, loss of appetite, fatigue, heart palpitations, tremors, abdominal pain
- Stage 2 (moderate): lasts 1-3 days; mild symptoms as well as increased blood pressure and temperature, sweating, irritability, confusion
- Stage 3 (severe): lasts 1 week; moderate symptoms in addition to fever, hallucinations, seizures, disorientation, agitation
While many of the physical withdrawal symptoms tend to fade after several days in detox, psychological symptoms can be more persistent. This puts those new to sobriety in a vulnerable position, seeing as even the slightest trigger can increase the risk of relapse and continued alcohol abuse.