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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 alcohol. Severe depression, mood swings, and a 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 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 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 blackouts , hallucinations, nausea, tremors, increased heart rate, and dilated pupils. Shortness of breath and paranoia are also conditions that can cause a heart attack or lead to a 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


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Marcel Gemme

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Marcel Gemme has been helping people struggling with addiction for over 19 years. He first started as an intake counselor for a drug rehabilitation center in 2000. During his 5 years as an intake counselor, he helped many addicts get the treatment they needed. He also dealt with the families and friends of those people; he saw first-hand how much strain addiction puts on a family and how it can tear relationships apart. With drug and alcohol problems constantly on the rise in the United States and Canada, he decided to use the Internet as a way to educate and help many more people in both those countries. This was 15 years ago. Since then, Marcel has built two of the largest websites in the U.S. and Canada which reach and help millions of people each year. He is an author and a leader in the field of drug and alcohol addiction. His main focus is threefold: education, prevention and rehabilitation. To this day, he still strives to be at the forefront of technology in order to help more and more people.

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