Around 95 percent of people who choose to quit drinking alcohol will experience mild to moderate withdrawal symptoms. They can usually be treated by healthcare providers on an outpatient basis but around five percent of these people will experience severe withdrawal symptoms and must be treated in a hospital or a facility that would be able to specialize in detoxification. Those who are experiencing alcohol withdrawal symptoms are advised to seek medical attention immediately. The individual should contact their family physician or a healthcare provider, the urgent care center, the local emergency room, or any other medical facility that would be able to do an assessment of the severity of their withdrawal symptoms.
There is no way to predict how any individual will respond to ending their alcoholism. If someone plans to stop drinking and they have been drinking for years, or if they drink heavily when they usually drink, or even if they only drink moderately but they do it frequently, then they need to consult a medical professional before they try to go "cold turkey" and quit alcoholism on their own. The symptoms that are associated tend to vary. Mild to moderate symptoms can include feeling shaky, feeling nervous, anxiety, irritability, being easily excited, mood swings, depression, fatigue, difficulty with thinking clearly, bad dreams, headache, sweating, vomiting, loss of appetite, paleness, rapid heart rate, pupils of different sizes, clammy skin, abnormal movements, tremor of the hands, abnormal eyelid twitching, and insomnia.
With the proper medical care, alcohol withdrawal symptoms can be reduced and eliminated. There are treatments available for anyone who wants to stop drinking, even after they have experienced long term alcohol abuse. For those who are dealing with very mild withdrawal symptoms and trying to handle it on their own, support group meetings and online guidance can be helpful. Still, there are many who try to leave their main focus towards detox and rehab programs to ensure that they have a structured environment as they recover from their addiction.
Generally speaking, there are many alcohol detox programs to choose from, but they all provide the same services. Some rehab programs have their own detox programs included, which can be a good idea if the individual wants to work on handling everything at once with the same program or facility. However, there are generally separate detox programs that the individual needs to participate in before they can even get involved with a rehab program. If the individual doesn't know if any detox programs in the area, the rehab program usually has a list of places that they can refer the client to in order to ensure that they are going to a reliable location for treatment. For someone who has health problems, getting a referral from a doctor may be a better option because they can direct the individual to a facility that works specifically with people who have that condition; alternatively, they may direct them to a facility where there are more medical staff available in case anyone experiences complications with their withdrawal experience.