Alcohol addiction withdrawal is a process that your body goes through when you stop drinking alcohol. The severity of the symptoms will depend on how long you have been abusing alcohol and how much you used to drink.

The more severe cases may require hospitalization, but there are usually ways to treat milder cases at home. Withdrawal symptoms include nausea, anxiety, depression, tremors, seizures (in severe cases), fever (for alcoholics with liver damage), etc.

Common Symptoms

While not everyone experiences the same side effects, many people will experience some of the following symptoms during alcohol addiction withdrawal:

  • Shaking
  • Sweating
  • Nausea
  • Headache
  • Anxiety and irritability
  • Confusion about what’s happening in their life (and why)
  • Depression that can last for months or years after detox has ended

Shaking is common during alcohol withdrawal as a result of tremors. Alcohol has been shown to affect areas of the brain related to movement and coordination, so this may be one way your system reacts after going weeks or months without drinking alcohol. 

Speaking to your doctor is important when it comes to alcohol withdrawals because they can help you understand the process and make sure you’re prepared for what might come. They can also help you determine whether or not you need treatment.

When you are going through alcohol withdrawal, it can be a very difficult time for you and your family. Your doctor will be able to offer advice and support during this time, as well as suggest medications that may help ease your symptoms.

Withdrawal Timelines

The withdrawal timeline for alcohol withdrawals can be divided into two phases: the acute phase, which lasts about 72 hours, and the protracted phase, which lasts about two weeks.

During the acute phase, you’ll experience symptoms including tremors, sweating and shakiness, anxiety, nausea and vomiting, insomnia, and restlessness. If you have severe withdrawal symptoms that are overwhelming your ability to function normally in everyday life, it’s important that you seek medical attention so that they can be managed safely.

The protracted phase of alcohol withdrawal symptoms typically begins three to five days after the last drink and can last up to two weeks. You may experience headaches or muscle aches during this time period as well as sleep disturbances such as insomnia or vivid nightmares. 

The protracted phase is also when people may begin craving alcohol again because their brain chemistry has returned to normal levels but their bodies have not yet adapted back to being sober after years of drinking heavily.

Treatment Options

Alcohol withdrawal can be a dangerous and even fatal condition, so it is important to be aware of the treatment options available. If you are concerned that you, or someone you, know may be suffering from alcohol withdrawal, call 911 or go to the nearest hospital emergency room immediately.

Alcohol withdrawals usually begin within 12 hours of the last drink and can last up to two weeks after the last drink. They are characterized by nausea, vomiting, tremors, seizures, and confusion. The severity will depend on how much alcohol has been consumed over time and other factors such as age and health status.

Medications that can be used for alcohol withdrawals include Benzodiazepines such as Valium or Xanax, which help relieve anxiety and muscle spasms as well as other symptoms associated with alcohol withdrawal, such as insomnia or seizures. 

These medications must be prescribed by a physician who will monitor their use closely because they carry their own risks, including dependency if used over long periods of time or in high doses. Speaking to a physician about medication is important to get the right doses. 

Timeline for Withdrawal

The timeline for withdrawal depends on the amount of alcohol consumed in a short period of time, genetic factors, and other health conditions that could complicate the process.

People who have consumed large amounts of alcohol over a short period of time may begin to experience withdrawal symptoms within 12 hours of their last drink. Those who consume smaller amounts of alcohol over longer periods can take up to 72 hours to begin experiencing symptoms of withdrawal.

Symptoms include shaking, nausea, vomiting, anxiety, sweating, and high blood pressure. These symptoms can occur 24-48 hours after your last drink and may last as long as several days.


Alcohol addiction withdrawal is a serious disease that can be life-threatening. In order for you to recover from it, you need proper medical care and support. Withdrawal from alcohol is similar to other substance abuse disorders in terms of its symptoms and treatment options. However, the timeline for withdrawal from alcohol can vary depending on several factors, including how long someone has been abusing alcohol or drugs and how much they consumed per day before seeking help.


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