Alcohol Tapering How to Taper Off Alcohol Safely

This may require some self-control and discipline, but it is essential for your health and wellbeing. You may find it helpful to keep a diary of your alcohol consumption, noting down the amount you drink each day or each week. Before you begin an alcohol taper, a little preparation can go a long way, especially when it involves handling your triggers and tracking how much you drink. Always start with a professional consultation with your doctor. Remember your motivation for cutting back and set realistic goals. Figuring out where to start your alcohol taper schedule can be challenging.

If you notice any severe withdrawal, you may need to slow your taper, drink alcohol immediately, or seek medical attention. If you drink heavily on a regular basis, it can be dangerous to stop alcohol cold turkey. For this reason, you should not suddenly quit drinking without talking to your doctor. The consequences of quitting alcohol cold turkey can be serious and lead to alcohol withdrawal syndrome, which can be fatal in severe cases.

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DT can be fatal, and a person going through them should have medical support in a hospital or rehab facility. Tapering off alcohol is a reasonable strategy for anyone who desires to stop drinking. A taper can be especially helpful for those who find they cannot stop drinking without experiencing negative symptoms.

  • It is important to be patient with yourself and celebrate your achievements along the way.
  • Since alcohol depresses central nervous system activity, quitting drinking can cause an imbalance of an excitatory neurotransmitter called glutamate.
  • Experience has shown me most people who continue using other hard substances simply get high and then continue drinking.
  • If you don’t really like hard seltzer, like me, drink hard seltzer.

If you need to taper in the first place, you have already proven that you can’t drink like a normal person. Alcohol detox medications can make the process safer and more comfortable. They can also ensure your alcohol detox is successful by making it nigh impossible to relapse if symptoms get difficult. Additionally, the post-detox treatment resources available at a professional treatment center can ease the transition to sober living and give you the tools you need to stay sober long-term. Minor symptoms of alcohol withdrawal can start as soon as six hours after the last drink of alcohol.

Does Everyone That Drinks Need an Alcohol Withdrawal Taper?

These activities can help replace the social aspect of an alcohol-infused event and offer various health benefits as well. For example, you can join a sports club, dance classes, or yoga studio. You can also start a new hobby like painting, reading, or playing an instrument. Furthermore, spending time with family and friends who don’t consume alcohol can help avoid temptations and create healthier habits and social circles. Another option is to use a smartphone app or online tool that allows you to track your alcohol consumption more easily. Many of these apps provide daily or weekly summaries of your intake, as well as information on the calories and other nutrients you’re consuming through alcohol.

  • But Dr. Streem knows that it can be hard to recognize signs of alcohol abuse in ourselves.
  • You can even use this as an opportunity to develop healthier habits.
  • But from a harm reduction standpoint, it’s much less likely to get you into trouble than alcohol, pills, or harder drugs.
  • Activities like meditation, yoga, deep breathing, and progressive muscle relaxation can all help to reduce stress and promote relaxation.
  • As with any substance, caffeine can be tough to quit — but maybe not as tough as you may think.
  • One of the best ways to wean off alcohol is to find healthier alternatives to consume instead.

Establishing new habits and routines, and dealing with the underlying causes of your drinking habits, are essential to lasting recovery. Alcohol also changes your brain chemistry, which can result in higher levels of anxiety and depression for the first several months. Finally, just because you’ve gotten past the withdrawal phase doesn’t mean you won’t continue to face psychological aspects of addiction—including alcohol cravings and drinking triggers. In the nomenclature of recovery studies, cannabis aided alcoholism recovery is referred to as “Marijuana Maintenance”. For starters, Marijuana Maintenance offers a relatively un-impactful solution to alcohol cravings, as addicts will smoke or ingest cannabis instead of taking a drink.

Medical Detox for Tapering off Alcohol

But that does not mean home detox is effective, appropriate, or safe. However, if you don’t taper properly, you may experience withdrawal symptoms, especially if you have severe alcoholism. It is sometimes possible to taper your alcohol use at home if your AUD isn’t severe.

  • Alcohol can disrupt your sleep and make it difficult to get the rest you need to feel your best.
  • Someone should only direct taper if their drink of choice is beer with a low alcohol percentage.
  • In the same way that everyone person is unique and their experience with addiction is going to be unique, the most effective method of recovery is also going to vary from person to person.
  • I don’t recommend tapering yourself at all, and I especially don’t recommend doing it rapidly, but it has been done.

A direct taper means drinking the regular substance of choice but lowering the amount that’s consumed every day. Someone should only direct taper if their drink of choice is beer with a low alcohol percentage. Support groups such as Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) or sober living houses can help you get connected with peers who are going through the same journey as you are. A final strategy to assist with an alcohol taper is to get a good network of peer support. Medical detox programs for alcohol dependency commonly offer medications to ease the discomfort or pain of withdrawal.

Alcohol Tapering Methods

The intensity of the withdrawal symptoms depends on the severity of the alcoholism. Drinking plenty of water is crucial for your overall health, especially when you’re weaning off alcohol. Alcohol can cause dehydration, which can lead to headaches, fatigue, and other symptoms. Aim to drink at least eight glasses of water per day, and more if you’re sweating heavily or engaging in physical activity.

how to taper off alcohol safely