How Long Does It Take To Detox from Alcohol?

August 24, 2022

When alcohol addiction has you in its grip, it’s not unusual to feel alone. You take the weight of the world on your shoulders because you don’t want to burden anyone with your struggle. You try to quit and beat yourself up when you fall off that wagon again.

You’re not alone. In 2022, more than 14 million U.S. adults will be challenged with excessive alcohol use. Others like you have questions. How long does it take to detox from alcohol? Where can I go for treatment? There are qualified treatment centers available, and many are staffed by people like you, traveling the journey to recovery.

Detox Timeline

How long does it take to detox from alcohol? There’s no definitive timeline, as each person’s detox will vary depending on their:

  • History of alcohol use
  • Age
  • Weight
  • Other health conditions

Senior woman receiving help.

There is, of course, an approximate timeline that detoxification will follow.

6-24 Hours after Last Drink

Withdrawal symptoms begin. Some common withdrawal symptoms include:

  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Insomnia
  • Nightmares
  • Increased heart rate
  • High blood pressure
  • Fatigue
  • Dehydration
  • Mood swings
  • Irritability
  • Tremors
  • Hyperhidrosis (excessive sweating)
  • Anxiety
  • Depression

36-72 Hours after Last Drink

This is the detox period when symptoms tend to spike and be at their worst. In severe cases where the alcohol consumption has been extreme and for an extended period, recoverers may experience delirium tremens or DTs.

DTs can be life-threatening, just one of many reasons you should always work with a licensed and experienced treatment center when trying to detox.

2 Days? 10 Days? Longer?

The alcohol withdrawal process takes as long as it needs to take and is only part of the route to recovery. Your team will work with you during detox to complete a thorough medical assessment in a residential setting. Following the evaluation, the team will determine the best path forward. 

Ideal Treatment

Can you detox on your own? Yes. Should you? Absolutely not. For the safest setting and the best results, you should engage in a full treatment continuum:

  1. Supervised detox
  2. Residential treatment
  3. Intensive outpatient treatment

Therapist Meeting with a Client

Your essential first step to minimize withdrawal effects is to check into a recovery facility. You’ll find clinical supervision and access to medical interventions to wean you off alcohol and other drugs in a facility.

In-house residential treatment can also include:

  • Individual and family counseling
  • A dedicated case manager
  • Education for maintaining coping mechanisms
  • Development of a post-facility sobriety plan

It Takes a Team

The road to recovery isn’t a solitary journey. It takes personal and professional partners to guide you through the journey. At Buena Vista, your partners include doctors, nurses, psychologists, psychiatrists, counselors, and more. Many of them are recovering themselves.

These professional partners at Buena Vista will also work with your personal partners. Supportive friends and family are crucial; the more informed and included they are, the easier and more successful your journey will be.

Unrecognizable group leader welcomes new patients

The Time Is Now

Are you ready to take that first step toward detoxification and recovery? Maybe you’re seeking help for a loved one. We encourage you to learn more about the recovery services available at Buena Vista Recovery centers. We’re a proven medically monitored alcohol detox program in Arizona, and we’re ready to help.

Buena Vista Recovery works with most insurance plans, including, but not limited to, Cigna, Magellan, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Humana, and Aetna, among others. On rare occasions, if a plan is not included in our network, our clinical outreach director will assist you in finding a placement that is in your network. 

Learn more about insurance coverage and begin your journey to recovery now.