How to Taper off Alcohol Safely and Effectively

Alcohol abuse affects how you feel and how you make decisions. It’s especially influential if you have an alcohol use disorder. Don’t try to reduce your alcohol intake based on what feels right.

  • Pinning the downturn to one particular driver, however, is impossible.
  • The support of an alcohol detox program may help you wean off alcohol more quickly and with fewer unpleasant side effects.
  • It’s best to reduce your drinking by a small amount each day to avoid the shock to your system.
  • A person with delirium tremens needs to be hospitalized until the symptoms can be controlled.

You can also try to lengthen the time between each drink during the evening. If you were drinking one beer every 30 minutes, try one beer an hour. The alternative is that you could substitute every second or third drink with water or a non-alcoholic beverage.

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However, many people notice positive changes in weight and body composition within a few weeks to months after quitting alcohol. A dependency on substances can adversely affect your mental health, including by causing anxiety and depression. Tapering off alcohol may improve mental health and reduce the risk of developing mental illness. Tapering off alcohol may not suit everyone, especially those with severe alcohol dependence. Therefore, professional support is recommended for those struggling with severe addiction.

If you do it too fast, you increase your chance of severe withdrawal. You will probably notice them if you’ve been drinking for extended periods of time. They might not mean you need to call 911, but you may need to slow your taper if they’re bothering you too much. My best advice on dealing with these is to buck it up, hug someone if possible, and try to distract yourself. There are many resources available for anyone who is ready to stop drinking for good, or who wants to reduce the harm alcohol is causing in their life by cutting down.

What are the effects of cutting down drinking?

It’s a good idea to talk with a medical professional before you begin a taper. They can help you decide if it’s the safest way to start your recovery, and they can help you make a taper plan. These can indicate a life threatening condition called delirium tremens. It’s important to seek urgent medical care if you experience any of these symptoms.

tapering down alcohol