Unfortunately, many military veterans who left their country to serve and protect U.S. citizens returned home with severe emotional distress and other mental health problems. In order to temporarily relieve the symptoms of mental health disorders like post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), several former service members turn to drugs or alcohol. If this situation sounds familiar and you’ve found yourself leaning on alcohol as a means of coping, it might be time to seek professional help. At Heroes’ Mile, we can tell you exactly what to expect when you quit drinking.
What to Expect When You Quit Drinking: Detox
Sustained heavy drinking can lead to physical dependence, which is when your body becomes used to functioning with alcohol present. Alcohol is made of ethanol, a highly flammable and colorless chemical that acts as a depressant in the brain. In turn, ethanol is made up of tiny particles that can easily slip through dense capillaries in your brain that form the blood-brain barrier. When alcohol crosses this barrier, it upsets the brain’s normal processes.
Detox occurs when you restrict alcohol usage after months or years of continuous use. It is the process of ridding your body of all traces of alcohol, even mouthwash or cold and flu medicine. If you are one of the hundreds of thousands of veterans struggling with PTSD and alcohol addiction, accredited rehab center can help during the detox process. And one of the best things you can do to prepare for detox is to learn more about what to expect when you quit drinking.
Alcohol Withdrawal Syndrome
Alcohol withdrawal syndrome (AWS) refers to the symptoms that typically result from quitting drinking after developing an alcohol use disorder. What to expect when you quit drinking is your body experiencing an imbalance in the normal functioning of certain chemicals and systems. This is what leads to mental and physical withdrawal symptoms.
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It’s estimated that about half of people who are heavy drinkers that stop drinking alcohol will experience AWS shortly after their final beverage. The onset of withdrawal symptoms typically occurs within at least 24 hours after the last drink. These early physical and mental health withdrawal symptoms are usually mild and include the following:
- Tremors and shaking
- Nausea and vomiting
The following symptoms of AWS typically appear within the first 48-72 hours of detox and may be even more intense than the above:
- Increased heart rate
- High blood pressure
- Delirium tremens dts
Everyone’s experience with alcohol withdrawal is unique, just as everyone reacts differently to alcohol. Although severe alcohol withdrawal symptoms are uncommon, it is not recommended to try detoxing from alcohol alone, as severe symptoms can occur and potentially be dangerous.
Alcohol and Drug Detox Program
The first step of recovery is participating in an alcohol detox program. During this process, you may experience some or all of the AWS symptoms previously discussed. So, it’s recommended that you undergo medical professional detox in order to prevent relapse during withdrawal. In addition, an alcohol detox program can help alleviate symptoms, reduce cravings, and provide the necessary support to make it through the process.
Furthermore, alcohol misuse and service-related trauma can affect your mental health. Therefore, our treatment approaches are trauma-informed. After completing detox, you will move on to residential rehab, which is designed to meet your specific needs and teach you what to expect after you quit drinking long term. These programs consist of various evidence-based therapy methods designed to help veterans overcome addiction.
Inpatient Alcohol and Drug Rehab
A residential drug and alcohol rehab center for veterans like Heroes’ Mile establishment in DeLand, Florida, is a safe place to build the foundation for a lasting recovery from alcohol addiction. During your stay here, you’ll learn what to expect when you quit drinking.
In addition to subscribing to a 12-step addiction treatment philosophy, you will also meet with a specialist to create a treatment program designed specifically for you. What you can expect when you quit drinking at our sunny location is 24/7 monitoring in a judgment-free environment. Additionally, you will participate in various treatment options that treat addiction issues and provide psychiatric care for PTSD, MTS, and other military-related mental health issues.
- Veteran-focused individual therapy
- Spiritual healing
- Group therapy
- Nutritional assessment and food plan
- Art therapy
- Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) therapy
- Various recreational activities
- Family counseling
- Cognitive behavioral therapy
- Job-ready preparation and training in conjunction with our community partners
Our staff has a wealth of experience working with veterans struggling with an alcohol addiction and the effects of an underlying mental health issue. As a result, we provide our patients with the resources they need to succeed in maintaining sobriety in their daily lives.
Help for Veterans
Civilian treatment centers may not have the necessary resources to address veterans’ complex mental health issues. However, a veteran-run recovery center like Heroes’ Mile can provide comprehensive services tailored to the needs of veterans struggling with alcohol addiction.
At Heroes’ Mile, veterans can receive treatment in a supportive atmosphere alongside others with similar experiences and goals. If you have questions about what to expect when you quit drinking, contact our admissions team by calling 888-838-6692 or filling out a confidential online form. The team at Heroes’ Mile is here to support you on your journey to sobriety whenever you are ready to take the first step.