How To Taper Off Alcohol: Key Strategies and Tips

By: Tim Mcintosh

The tapering down process can take place for the first several weeks or even months of the alcohol recovery timeline. There are many factors that can affect how long weaning off alcohol will take. Other people use medication-assisted treatment, which can help reduce alcohol cravings as you cut back. Lastly, engaging in alcohol therapy can also make a major difference in your healing journey. A therapist will work with you to create a personalized plan for cutting back and provide ongoing guidance and accountability.

What helps with shakes from alcohol withdrawal?

  • The main downside of tapering off is that it requires discipline.
  • Alcohol dependence can be fatal, with rising death rates attributed to alcohol consumption.
  • It also lets you start working new habits and routines into your day to replace drinking, starting the transition.

This can sometimes cause unpleasant withdrawal symptoms, and these symptoms can make it hard to stick with your recovery plan. If you’re used to drinking alcohol or using drugs when you feel tense, nervous or worried, here are some other ideas to help you relax. How to tell if you’re addicted to cannabis (weed), including signs of addiction and cannabis withdrawal symptoms, plus where to get help for cannabis addiction. Information, advice and self-help resources to help you cut down or stop drinking or using drugs, and improve your mental wellbeing. Towards the end most of my drinking was just to deal with alcohol withdraw. Drinking wasnt fun like before, I was just getting sloppy drunk and the normal “euphoria” feeling was gone.

How to safely taper off your alcohol consumption

  • If you’re not sure if cold turkey or tapering is right for you, you can join the Monument Community to hear from others who have confronted similar questions.
  • Towards the end most of my drinking was just to deal with alcohol withdraw.
  • Late symptoms begin between two and four days after the last drink, and they usually include changes in heart rate, breathing and blood pressure.
  • Kindling refers to lasting physical changes in the brain that cause each subsequent withdrawal period to be worse.
  • Whether you’re sober curious, know for sure you’re ready to quit, or fall somewhere in between, Dr. Streem shares advice for how to stop drinking.
  • Keep it interesting and varied with sparkling water, virgin cocktails (also known as mocktails), fruit juices, low-fat milk, or kombucha.

When coming off drugs or alcohol tapering is the best way to prevent severe withdrawal symptoms. Tapering is the act of gradually reducing alcohol use until completely abstinent. By creating a schedule to monitor your alcohol use you can see just how much of the substance you are drinking.

How To Taper off Alcohol Safely and Effectively

  • How to manage drug and alcohol cravings, including how to plan for them and distract yourself while they are happening so that you don’t go back to old habits.
  • Each of these challenges requires a unique approach and often the support of professionals, loved ones and support groups.
  • Vitamins B1 (thiamine), B9 (folate), B12 and C are often recommended to aid recovery.
  • Medically assisted detoxification (detox) is an inpatient program that keeps you stabilized during alcohol withdrawals.
  • It is important to only attempt a taper while under a doctor’s care.
  • They’ll be able to help you create a tapering schedule that won’t only raise your chance of success but also avoid severe symptoms.
  • It can also be a good idea for people who don’t want to, or can’t, attend any type of full detoxification program.

Lastly, it is essential to have a comprehensive plan that includes strategies for coping with cravings and emotional distress. Engaging in therapy, support groups, and other recovery resources can provide the necessary tools to navigate the challenges of alcohol tapering successfully. Obviously quitting cold turkey from Top 5 Advantages of Staying in a Sober Living House a 12-beer-a-day habit is going to be more stressful than tapering off slowly. But that does not mean home detox is effective, appropriate, or safe. After prolonged alcohol use, your body can come to rely on alcohol for normal functioning, and suddenly going without it can cause potentially dangerous withdrawal symptoms.

Challenges to Weaning Off Alcohol

best way to taper off alcohol

Kindling refers to lasting physical changes in the brain that cause each subsequent withdrawal period to be worse. Someone who has gone through alcohol withdrawal several times is more likely to experience severe withdrawal symptoms than someone going through it for the first time. This is why many people dependent on alcohol will choose to taper down their usage rather than stop drinking altogether.

  • This thought process can be a useful mental tool when the physical pain of withdrawal is most severe.
  • It’s normal for certain stimuli to cause a reaction in your mind and body without even being aware of it.
  • If you drink heavily, alcohol withdrawal symptoms can be harsh, dangerous, and even fatal.
  • Just as what is a useful method for one person may not be for another, what is a safe method for someone may not be for someone else.

best way to taper off alcohol

Let them know your plan, your progress, and how withdrawals are going for you. Take the first step toward addiction treatment by contacting us today. You might run into obstacles along the way that tempt you to drink. Keep in mind the reasons you chose to cut back on or quit alcohol. If you turn to alcohol to manage emotional distress, the added overwhelm can prompt the urge to drink, making success seem even more out of reach. What’s most important is looking at your drinking habits and finding a way to cut back that works for you.

Managing Drug or Alcohol Use when Accessing Mental Health Support


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