The abrupt cessation of alcohol intake of long periods of excesses can carry with it some very troubling effects, some have been known to be fatal, so the process should be handled by a trained professional with the knowhow on ways to go about a withdrawal and a relapse that may fail a proposed therapy module for a client.
The resulting symptoms from the cessation are collectively known as alcohol withdrawal syndrome which may present as anxiety, shakiness, sweating, vomiting, fast heart rate, and a mild fever. More severe symptoms may include seizures, seeing or hearing things that others do not, and delirium tremens (DTs). Symptoms typically begin around six hours following the last drink, are worst at 24 to 72 hours, and improve by seven days. Most of these changes are set to occur due to distortion of neural chemical pathways caused by the abrupt cessation of alcohol intake.
Not all people suffering from alcohol abuse disorder get withdrawal symptoms but it has been found that a considerable number of them (half of them) develop the symptoms which turn out to be fatal for some.
The severity of symptoms is usually defined by how long one has been taking alcohol, the level of tolerance that tends to affect volumes consumed, and the previous record of alcohol withdrawal. Treatment is usually successful when initiated early and specific considerations should be made for its success, considerations such as correcting resulting electrolyte imbalances or nutritional deficiencies that are often common.
Substitution with tapering doses of the benzodiazepine class of medication has been used has been widely used in accordance with an objectively crafted treatment plan by a trained health professional; reassessment of the proposed plan should be reviewed frequently and objective changes made where needed. These are utilized for acute detoxification.
The issuing of treatment has been seen to be as important as monitoring the given treatment. Benzodiazepines are also used to prevent seizures, these include diazepam, chlordiazepoxide among others.
Supportive therapy to manage withdrawals has been seen to be of great importance in managing withdrawals. Wernicke’s syndrome which usually occurs due to a lack of essential vitamins is managed by the administration of thiamine, folic acid, and pyridoxine. All of which are part of the class B vitamins initiated by a health care professional to correct deficiencies and manage effects.
There isn’t wholesome supportive evidence for some other medications, but they have been proposed to help in the managing of withdrawal symptoms. Drugs such as Pregabalin, Topiramate.