There are a number of reasons why people quit drinking alcohol. Sometimes, it’s because hangover symptoms are getting worse. Other times, it’s because drinking is affecting their job or family life and they want to get things under control. Some people stop before their alcohol drinking starts to cause serious problems. Whatever the reason, quitting drinking has a marked effect on the body. This is especially the case if you drank a lot before or you have a long history of alcohol abuse. At first, the effects will be hard to handle so contact our rehab professionals for help. However, as you get used to sobriety, you’ll likely enjoy the changes in your body.
What to Expect When You Stop Drinking
Detoxing can be difficult. In the first 48 hours after you stop drinking, you may experience regular hangover symptoms or intense withdrawal symptoms. The latter include increased blood pressure, sweating, and tremors along with the usual nausea and headache. For some people, withdrawal can be dangerous, and it is best done under medical supervision.
When you stop drinking, you’ll also crave alcohol since your body will notice that it’s gone. Depending on how much you usually drank, the cravings may last for weeks, months or even years. However, the strongest cravings tend to come around 72 hours after your last drink and then they begin to subside. Your body will eventually get used to functioning without alcohol. When this happens, you’ll begin to notice some other things.
You’ll Lose A Few Pounds
Chances are that you never stopped to think about the calories in your drinks. Alcohol contains lots of sugar and nutrient-deficient calories. Furthermore, it slows down your metabolism and this contributes to weight gain. Drinking alcohol also leads to the consumption of salty, fatty foods. When you cut out alcohol, you’ll consume significantly fewer calories and your energy levels will increase. You’ll, therefore, be more likely to be physically active and this will help you to lose weight.
Your Sleep Will Improve
Some people assume that alcohol helps them to sleep better. That’s because they feel sleepy after drinking a glass or two of wine. However, alcohol actually prevents you from getting a good night’s rest. It disrupts your body’s internal clock and binge drinkers are at risk of developing insomnia. Even if you fall asleep, alcohol can prevent you from getting rapid eye movement (REM) sleep. This is the most restorative type of sleep. Falling asleep without alcohol may be difficult at first if you typically drank before bed. However, when you do fall asleep, the quality of sleep will be better, and you’ll feel more rested.
Your Skin Will Improve
You may have noticed that alcohol has a negative effect on your skin. It dehydrates the skin and causes it to appear dry. It can also prevent the skin from getting the nutrients it needs. This can lead to rashes, poor skin texture and vulnerability to sun damage. This means you can end up with wrinkles and other signs of premature aging.
The good news is that your skin can improve when you stop drinking. After adopting healthier practices, your skin will become more hydrated. Many people find that their skin begins to look better after just a week. After a month of sobriety, they notice clearer skin, more even skin tone, and an overall glow.
Your Immune System Will Be Stronger
Drinking alcohol can weaken your ability to fight infections. If you are a regular drinker, your immune system won’t get the nutrients it needs. Alcohol also reduces your body’s white blood cell count so it will be harder for you to stave off diseases. When you quit drinking, your immune system will bounce back and it will be able to protect you again.
You’ll Experience Fewer Headaches
People who drink lots of alcohol often experience headaches. That’s because alcohol causes dehydration and this affects blood flow and blood pressure to the brain. Cutting out alcohol and drinking more water will help to get rid of these headaches. Eating better and getting more sleep can also keep headaches at bay.
Let the Team at Asheville Recovery Center Help You
If you’re dealing with alcohol addiction, you already know how it can affect every area of your life. Getting sober will allow you to focus on your health and you’ll look better and feel better. We take a personalized approach to addiction treatment and we’ll help you get on a path to recovery. We’ll provide you with the tools to quit drinking, build stronger relationships, and develop healthier practices. Schedule an appointment with Asheville Recovery Center today.