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Alcohol Detox

Alcoholism & Alcohol Detox

Alcohol is a legal intoxicant for anyone over the age of 21 to purchase in the U.S. This makes it the second most common addictive substance in the nation. From television shows to a night out with friends, it can often seem like alcohol is everywhere that you turn. All of these factors combine to make alcohol addiction, also called alcoholism, a serious issue for society. An estimated 14.5 million Americans over the age of 12 are addicted to alcohol. Many do not seek help because they do not know where to turn. Alcohol detox centers were created in order to help people to overcome an alcohol addiction in a safe and effective way. Learn more about alcoholism and our alcohol detox center below.

What is Alcoholism?

Alcoholism, sometimes called alcohol use disorder, is defined by the Mayo Clinic as being a pattern of alcohol use that has a negative effect on your health, or impacts your ability to lead a normal life. Many people’s path to alcoholism begins with binge drinking, or drinking a lot of alcohol in a short period of time. For men, this means having 5 or more drinks within 2 hours, and for women it means having 4 or more drinks within 2 hours.

How Can Alcoholism Affect Your Health?

One of the most important reasons for those with alcoholism to seek help at an alcohol detox center is because of how many negative impacts drinking can have on your health. This is because repeated alcohol abuse can cause a number of different problems with many different parts of your body. It can cause problems with your heart, including heart disease, irregular heartbeat, high blood pressure, and stroke. Alcoholism can also cause a range of serious liver issues, including cirrhosis, fibrosis, fatty liver disease, and even alcoholic hepatitis. Other risks include permanent brain damage, an increased risk of certain types of cancer. In addition, an increased chance of dying from an injury, homicide, or suicide. 

The Symptoms of Alcoholism

Alcohol detox centers see clients with alcohol use disorders that range from mild to severe. Even the most mild forms of alcoholism pose a risk to your health, and carry the risk of developing an even worse addiction. If you aren’t sure if you are showing signs of alcoholism, there are some things that you can look for. These include:

  • Not being able to control how much you drink.
  • Trying to drink less, but find yourself unable to.
  • Spending a lot of time drinking, thinking about drinking, or recovering from hangovers.
  • Constantly thinking about alcohol when you are not drinking.
  • Having issues performing at work or school, or within your relationships, due to your drinking.
  • Continuing to drink even though you realize that it is causing issues with your health or quality of life.
  • Giving up hobbies or social activities in order to drink instead. 
  • Needing to drink more and more alcohol in order to feel its effects.
  • Participating in risky activities, like driving or having unsafe sex, while you are drinking.
  • Experiencing withdrawal symptoms if you go too long without alcohol.

While not every person with a drinking problem will have all of the same symptoms, the more of these issues you have, the worse your alcohol addiction likely is. If more than two of these situations apply to you, it is likely time you seek the help of an alcohol detox center.

What is Alcohol Detox?

Alcohol detox refers to the process of your body getting rid of all of the alcohol in your system, and getting used to being alcohol-free once again. Detox can involve a number of negative symptoms, called withdrawal. Alcohol detox centers are specialized facilities that help to treat withdrawal symptoms with medications that make them less severe. There are currently three different medications most commonly used at alcohol detox centers to help with withdrawal. These include:

Naltrexone

This is a medication that helps reduce cravings for alcohol. It can also help prevent relapse by keeping you from getting intoxicated if you do drink.

Acamprosate

This medication is usually only used for people with very serious and long-term alcohol addictions. Acamprosate helps to treat and reverse some of the damage that alcoholism can cause to your brain. This helps your brain to relearn how to function without alcohol in your system. It also helps reduce cravings, along with some withdrawal symptoms such as anxiety, depression, and insomnia.

Disulfiram

While this medication does not treat withdrawal symptoms, it can be a great asset to people with an alcohol addiction. If you drink alcohol while taking disulfiram, it will cause a number of unpleasant side effects, including nausea, headache, facial flushing, and weakness. This can be very helpful in preventing relapse after you have completed an alcohol detox center program.

Alcohol Detox in Nashville, TN

Detoxing from alcohol isn’t just unpleasant, it can also be potentially dangerous. People with very severe alcohol addictions are at risk of having delirium tremens, or DTs, a serious withdrawal phase with symptoms like seizures and hallucinations. Going through withdrawal alone not only greatly reduces the chances that you will be successful, but also leaves you at risk of not being able to get medical help if you need it. 

At Brentwood Springs Detox in Nashville, our alcohol detox center will be staffed by a team of highly-trained addiction specialists who monitor you 24 hours a day. With their supervision and the help of medications to reduce withdrawal symptoms you can get through detox both more comfortably and more safely. What?s more, you will also have a lower risk of relapsing, which means you can get back to enjoying your life without needing alcohol to be a part of it. Contact us today at (615) 560-7545 or fill out a contact form below.