The goal of tapering down is to make a gradual change while causing less stress on your body, both physically and emotionally. Withdrawal symptoms can vary in severity and depend on many factors, such as drinking history, metabolism, age, medical condition, what other substances or medication you take, and more. Because everyone’s body reacts differently, there’s not a lot of research that proves tapering can decrease the effects of alcohol withdrawal. Anyone wanting to stop using alcohol may benefit from tapering if they first consult with their doctor to ensure they are tapering safely. Tapering is a more cost-effective method of stopping alcohol use, especially for those who do not have healthcare insurance or the resources needed to get a professional detox. People who have successfully tapered from alcohol before may be especially likely to benefit from this strategy.
How do I know if I’m an alcoholic?
Impaired control over alcohol use
This might mean not being able to control how long a drinking session is, how much alcohol you consume when you do drink, how frequently you drink, being unable to stop drinking once you start, or drinking on inappropriate occasions or at inappropriate places.
The alcohol withdrawal symptom delirium tremens (DT) is estimated to kill up to 5% of those attempting to quit suddenly after chronic usage. This is a staggering number considering that many other drugs do not even have the possibility of lethal withdrawals. For this reason, experts advise that alcohol cessation be monitored safely with steady effort between oneself and a physician. Another big factor in how long a taper lasts is alcohol withdrawal symptoms. If you begin to have withdrawal symptoms during your taper, this is a sign that your taper may be going too fast and that you need to slow it down. By talking with your doctor or an addiction treatment specialist, together you can determine a safe tapering schedule that suits your needs.
Client Care Manager
With a robust foundation in 12-step philosophy, Federico can not only educate the clients on the model, but also integrate the tried-and-true principles in a more personal, clinical setting. Each method has pros and cons, but regardless of which one you choose, you must have the knowledge and resources to make a quit attempt successful. If you’re trying to quit cold turkey and need help, please find professional help from an addiction rehab center. Even if you think either option sounds like something that could work for your situation, we still recommend talking to a doctor before proceeding.
Withdrawing from alcohol happens when we reduce or stop alcohol use that has been occurring often for a long period of time. Even when alcohol manages to gain a grip over every single part of your life, it can still be hard to embrace the idea of going sober. There are many reasons why a person hesitates to get sober and healthy, and one of the biggies is the dread of quitting alcohol. Currently enrolled in a master’s program for Social Work, he is committed to expanding his knowledge and providing comprehensive care.
Can Tapering Down Alcohol Use Reduce Withdrawal Symptoms?
The longer and harder a person has drunk alcohol–the more severe the withdrawal will be. Judy is a Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor in the State of Maryland, and a National Certified Counselor. She earned her Master’s Degree in Clinical Counseling from Johns Hopkins University with an undergraduate degree in Psychology from the University of Maryland. She has served in both clinical and leadership positions in a number of roles, in inpatient and outpatient settings, as a Primary Therapist and Clinical Supervisor. James Scribner holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Maryland’s Robert H. Smith School of Business.
- About 10 percent of people experience more severe symptoms, such as fever, fast breathing, and heavy sweating.
- However, some conditions may require treatment beyond our capabilities, and we reserve the right to medically discharge a patient for a higher level of mental health care.
- An alcohol taper is a way to wean yourself off alcohol and avoid withdrawal symptoms.
In fact, according to the NIAAA, someone with AUD is 3.6 times more likely to also suffer from a mood disorder. Always remember that if the taper is not working for you or if you are having major withdrawal that it is safest to check into a medical detox because alcohol withdrawal can kill you. Some people choose to taper more quickly by cutting the amounts in half–for example 20, 10 5, 2, 0. But if you start having major withdrawal symptoms like bad shakes or pulse over 100 or high blood pressure you are tapering too fast and should slow it down. Monitoring you pulse and blood pressure can be a very good idea while you are tapering especially if you have high blood pressure. If your pulse exceeds 100, your blood pressure goes very high, or you have irregular heart beat then this means that you are tapering too fast and you need more beer.
What To Do After You Complete Your Taper
To make matters worse, alcohol is also one of the hardest substances to quit once abuse becomes a pattern. Quitting alcohol can even prove fatal for heavy drinkers if not done with medical supervision. Many who are facing the realities of alcohol addiction may wonder, is tapering off alcohol safe as a method for quitting? For most people, the safest way to quit is to taper off alcohol gradually.
Unfortunately, alcohol withdrawal symptoms can worsen quickly, and they can include agitation and hallucinations that make it more difficult to seek help. For this reason, it is best to seek medical advice on whether you should taper at home or under medical observation. Choosing to taper off alcohol is an admirable decision and a step in the right direction. As with many self-detox methods, the risks and rewards go hand in hand when attempting to overcome an alcohol substance use disorder. But, with a little prior knowledge on how to taper off alcohol, adequate planning and professional consultation from a healthcare provider, it can certainly be done. Depending on how much alcohol you drink to start with, the amount of time an alcohol weaning schedule takes may vary.
Chronic alcohol use also suppresses glutamate activity, the neurotransmitter that produces feelings of excitement. In excessive alcohol users, the glutamate system sober house has to function at a higher level to maintain equilibrium. Withdrawal symptoms may begin within a few hours after the last drink and may last up to 48 to 72 hours.
Is alcohol beginning to take up more and more of your time, budget, and life? You may be wondering how to begin the process of ridding yourself or your loved one of alcohol use once and for all. We also use different external services like Google Webfonts, Google Maps, and external Video providers. Since these providers may collect personal data like your IP address we allow you to block them here.