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What Are the Symptoms of Alcohol Withdrawal?

Alcoholism is a growing disease in Canada and around the world. The ravages of alcohol on the body are very severe with a long list of conditions. A person who is under the influence of alcoholism can begin to suffer from both psychological and physical problems through the prolonged use of the alcohol. Severe depression, mood swings, and complete change in personality are all changes that occur in a person's psyche. The physical conditions include liver damage, heart problems, brain damage, and eating disorders.

Another serious problem that occurs in someone who is an alcohol is called withdrawal. An alcoholic will experience withdrawal when there is a sudden cut off alcohol. This is mostly seen when the person has been drinking excessively for several years. The body builds up a tolerance for the alcohol, as well as a compulsion to need the alcohol. Withdrawal is a very serious condition that can cause both psychological and physical problems. These problems can range from mild to life threatening depending upon the severity of the alcoholism.

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The mild symptoms of alcohol withdrawal include a long list of different conditions. These can be nervousness, shakiness, excitability, sudden mood swings, fatigue, headaches, sleepwalking, nightmares, and incoherency. While none of these are life threatening, they need to be treated before any type of psychological damage is done.

Severe symptoms show up in those who have been drinking for several years. These include very high fever, convulsions, blackouts Definition of the word, hallucinations, nausea, tremors, increased heart rate, and dilated pupils. Shortness of breath and paranoia are also conditions that can cause heart attack or lead to stroke.

Part of the treatment for alcoholism must include some time to monitor and treat for withdrawals. These symptoms begin to show up after 12 hours of not having any alcohol. In a severe alcoholic, some of the milder symptoms may begin to show up a little sooner. An in-house treatment facility is the safest way to treat alcoholism.

Once someone stops drinking it is important to find a treatment facility or go to a local emergency room. The symptoms of withdrawal should not be treated at home or by an individual. Once the severe symptoms of alcohol withdrawal set in they can rapidly escalate to more serious, life threatening, conditions.

Some planning should be done before any steps of alcohol treatment are made. Realizing that withdrawal is a serious issue should be the first step. Once that is realized, finding a treatment center that is equipped to handle the withdrawal should be next. Heavy sedation may be required to help the patient get over this period of their treatment. After this dangerous period is over, then the patient can begin a long-term treatment for "drying out."

There are plenty of alcohol treatments and rehab services available throughout Canada that are set up to monitor mild and serious withdrawals. The Canadian Alcohol and Drug Treatment Facilities are located throughout the provinces and offer both in house treatment and long term group settings to help alcoholics find help and a new life.

Reference: alcoholism.about.com/cs/withdraw/a/aa030307a.htm