Can You Quit Alcohol Cold Turkey Safely?

When it comes to substance abuse, the answer to questions about its symptoms and effects can vary. But is it safe to stop drinking all at once? It depends. The amount, frequency and length of time you have been drinking, the presence of co-occurring disorders, and your physical health will all play a role in determining the severity of the withdrawal. Heavy drinkers have become accustomed to having alcohol in their bodies, and when they abruptly stop drinking, the central nervous system doesn't know how to respond properly. Alcohol use disorder (AUD) is a medical condition characterized by an altered ability to stop or control alcohol consumption despite negative social or health consequences.

According to the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Addiction, more than 17 million people in the United States suffer from alcohol use disorder, while the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimate that nearly 40 million follow risky patterns of excessive drinking. The term is now used to refer to conditions that people might refer to as alcohol dependence, abuse, or addiction. In most cases of alcohol abuse, people drink to try to escape reality, whether from current problems or from past trauma. However, people with more manageable levels of alcohol consumption may decide that this is the appropriate course of action to quit smoking. Alcohol also inhibits the glutamate receptor, which is the cause of wobbling, difficulty, and general interference with muscle coordination. For people who feel that they drink too much, but who don't necessarily have attention deficit disorder (AUD) and want to stop drinking, there are a number of measures that can help them stop drinking.

The reasons why a person may choose to avoid professional help when struggling with an alcohol use disorder vary. Quitting smoking will also improve gastrointestinal function, blood sugar regulation, sleep, mood, and cognitive function, including memory and attention span, as well as an increase in energy. The benefits of quitting alcohol may include better sleep, better-looking skin, a healthier weight, better mental health, a boost of the immune system, as well as better memory and thinking skills, not to mention reducing the risk of cancer and cardiovascular disease in the long term. Another thing that happens when alcohol boosts the function of the GABA receptor is that the brain tries to overcome this calming effect by producing more adrenaline and other similar neurotransmitters. The surest way to avoid dangerous withdrawal symptoms is to gradually stop drinking with the help of a professional recovery team. Of course, every person experiences alcohol addiction and the detoxification process differently, regardless of what the books say.

For someone who doesn't have an AUD, Finn said it's not dangerous to quit alcohol cold turkey.

Sophia Streeby
Sophia Streeby

Addiction recovery expert from experience and training - I want to help others Quit drinking alcohol and find freedom from addiction daily.