The process of alcohol withdrawal is one that puts many people off getting help for their alcohol problems. Many of those abusing alcohol worry that they will find alcohol withdrawal very painful, or else they simply cannot imagine a life where they will have to abstain from the substance.

This often means that these individuals will continue with their addictive behaviour, which could result in them developing devastating illnesses. It can also put other people in danger, particularly if they take unnecessary risks while intoxicated.

Over the Limit

A mother from Dunfermline was more than seven times over the legal alcohol driving limit when she got behind the wheel of her car and drove on a busy dual carriageway. Wendy Sturch had drank so much alcohol that she does not even remember the incident. Sherriff Craig McSherry admitted he was shocked at the reading and said it was one of the highest levels he had ever seen.

Sturch’s reading was 159 mg of alcohol in 100 ml of breath; the legal limit is just 22 mg. She had been spotted by police driving in an erratic manner and was pulled over and breathalysed.

Struggles with Alcohol

Sturch’s solicitor James Moncrieff said, “The true picture is that she has long-standing difficulties with alcohol, which has plagued her family through the generations. She had sought help from Alcoholics Anonymous, but that was not successful, and she relapsed.”

He said that on the day of the incident, Sturch believed she was ‘in a better position than she was’. He added, “She appreciates this is a very high reading. It has been a big wake-up call. It is a very serious first offence.”

Sherriff McSherry said, “What is of great concern to the court is that this reading is one of the highest I’ve ever encountered. It is also of concern that you can’t even remember driving the vehicle, which shows the state you were in.”

She was given a two-year driving ban and a six-month restriction of liberty order.

Overcoming the Fear of Alcohol Withdrawal

It is difficult to beat an alcohol addiction, particularly if you have been struggling with it for a long time. Many people will try to quit a number of times before finally managing to beat their addiction once and for all. It is often the case that a serious incident spurs them to get help, as in the case of Wendy Sturch. Nevertheless, many alcoholics are afraid to even try to quit because of their fear of alcohol withdrawal.

It is true that withdrawing from alcohol can be complicated due to the fact that this substance affects almost every cell in the body. For those who have been abusing alcohol for many years, withdrawal symptoms can range from moderate to severe as the body fights to get back to normal after years of abuse.

However, with a supervised alcohol detox programme, symptoms can be eased and patients can be made much more comfortable throughout the process.

What is Alcohol Withdrawal Like?

The symptoms of alcohol withdrawal usually begin around six to twelve hours after the patient has had his or her last drink, even if there are significant amounts of alcohol still in the system. The first symptoms to occur are usually mild and can include a racing heart, shaking, mood swings, and sweating.

If you are going through this, you may feel nauseous and lose your appetite; some people will vomit. The mild symptoms will probably be familiar as you may have experienced them before at times when you needed a drink. Many of these symptoms will subside within a few days, and some people never experience anything more than mild symptoms during their withdrawal.

However, others will suffer from much more serious side effects, including severe shaking that can be so bad that it prevents them from functioning properly. Others may suffer from hallucinations, paranoid delusions and seizures. It is rare but some withdrawal symptoms can be life-threatening, and for that reason, it is always advisable for those detoxing from alcohol to do so in a supervised facility where medical professionals are on hand to react in the case of an emergency.

Treatment for Addiction

It is worth remembering that detox is not the same as treatment; it is just the start of the recovery process and the part that deals with the physical side effects of the illness. It is important to follow up with a rehabilitation programme in an outpatient or inpatient clinic. It is during rehabilitation that recovering alcoholics will learn what has caused their addictive behaviour and how they can move forward to live an alcohol-free life.

For more information on alcohol withdrawal and rehab, you can get in touch with us here at Addiction Helper. We can provide advice and support as well as information on the various treatments available and how you can access them.

Source: Mum was seven times over limit (The Express)

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