How to Taper off from a Drug or Alcohol Addiction with Pictures

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During this time you’ll likely experience the worst portion of withdrawal symptoms. You then get a couple days where the drop is not as much to stabilize. If you experience severe withdrawal symptoms while tapering off alcohol, adjust your plan. The goal of tapering is to make the withdrawal process safer and more bearable. More serious alcohol withdrawal symptoms may require medical attention. If you have a friend or family member who knows that you’re trying to taper off alcohol, you shouldn’t be afraid to ask for help.

  • It is important to note that alcohol tapers are generally not recommended as the best way to stop using alcohol.
  • Benzodiazepines are first-line therapy for moderate to severe symptoms, with carbamazepine and gabapentin as potential adjunctive or alternative therapies.
  • Unfortunately, there’s little to no evidence that tapering off reduces the effects of alcohol withdrawal, some of which can be severe or even life-threatening.
  • Maybe they don’t have peer support or maybe their alcohol addiction is too severe.
  • The HAMS tapering guide suggests dropping your consumption to 16 drinks the first day if you were drinking more than that, and then reducing your consumption by two drinks per day.

You can read all about mindful drinking in this article by a licensed therapist at Monument. 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. This phenomenon is often described as “alcohol dependence.” The most common more mild withdrawal symptoms include headaches, anxiety, and sleep disturbances. When you quit through tapering, you drink a little less each day until you’re able to have no alcohol at all.

How To Wean Off Alcohol: A Step-by Step Guide

Do anything and everything you can to distract yourself from drinking. Whether that’s watching TV, cooking dinner, cleaning the house, going for a walk, or taking a bath. Force your self to do normal activities, but nothing too strenuous or physical beyond what you might normally do. You may be biologically predisposed to abusing it, and if you’re physically addicted, your brain isn’t working right.

Ideally, this schedule will be determined with the assistance of a doctor or addiction treatment professional. If you are a frequent drinker determined to reduce or stop your alcohol intake, the safest way to do this at home is through a gradual tapering process. Attempting to quit all at once can lead to severe symptoms that can be difficult to manage safely outside of a detox setting. Alcohol dependence and addiction are serious medical conditions. Minor symptoms of alcohol withdrawal can be overcome with rest and at-home remedies, and it is possible for some people to taper off alcohol without supervision.