How to cope with alcohol withdrawal symptoms

people joining hands in a meeting

The road to addiction recovery is filled with challenges, but one of the worst is the initial step of withdrawal. Addicts can face severe risks as a regularly used substance leaves their system, including alcohol. While this process is difficult, there are ways to cope with alcohol withdrawal symptoms. 

One Step at a Time

Alcoholics and other addicts generally need a nudge to push for sobriety. Maybe they worked with an experienced Boulder DUI attorney or recently had a child. Regardless of the circumstances, quitting cold turkey is never recommended.

For other drugs, there are medicines that mimic the user’s addiction and help wean them off the substance. Suboxone and methadone are two examples. For alcohol, there’s no such method. It’s highly recommended that alcoholics slowly wean themselves off of the drink, taking gradual steps towards sobriety. Quitting cold turkey can tun into a trip to the ER complete with devasting medical complications. 


Recovery is difficult, zapping energy from those trying to reach sobriety. That’s why a healthy diet is important. With a nutritious and well-balanced diet, an addict has a better chance of having the strength to push forward in their recovery. 

Water is also a vital component. Many of the symptoms of withdrawal are exacerbated by dehydration. This will also help to work any remaining alcohol out of the user’s system. Sports drinks and other beverages with high levels of electrolytes are also ideal for fighting muscle spasms and seizures. 


There’s a lot of tension around recovery, especially when a criminal offense has kickstarted the process. A quality attorney, like those at the Law Offices of Dorie A Rogers, can help take some of the stress out of the legal side of the situation. 

Taking warm showers is also an excellent relaxation technique. Not only are they naturally relaxing, but they can help loosen tense muscles as well. Other techniques like meditation and yoga work to reduce blood pressure while calming the mind. Deep breathing, journaling, and even walks through nature all help. 

A Program

Addicts rarely recover on their own. For this reason, it’s in the alcoholic’s best interest to sign up with a program like Alcoholics Anonymous (AA). However, these groups do not aid in detox. There are alcohol detox programs available, though. 

In a detox program, patients receive medical assistance and supervision as they manage withdrawal symptoms. Each is designed to help the body and brain overcome this condition, preparing individuals for outpatient rehab programs like AA. You can find these programs at hospitals as well as inpatient facilities. 

Give It Time

While the length of withdrawal symptoms varies from one individual to the next, there are a few guidelines to be aware of. First, some symptoms take days to show up. This happens when alcohol is still in the system, so much so that the person does not enter withdrawal immediately. 

Once withdrawal occurs, it can take 24 to 72 hours to begin easing up. This is the most dangerous timeframe for those seeking recovery. After that, it takes weeks to fully recover from all the symptoms as the substance leaves your body. So, give recovery the time it needs to happen, even though withdrawal is a challenging process.