Recovery Story: Sam and Her Mother
How Long Does Alcohol Stay in Your Body?Alcohol is typically broken down at about 100mL per hour. In simpler terms, it usually takes a grown male one hour to process one drink. How long alcohol will remain in your body depends solely on your blood alcohol content (BAC) level. This level can vary based on your sex, weight, age, how many drinks you had, and what type of alcohol had to drink.
4 Ways to Detox Your Body After DrinkingAlcohol is a toxin that needs to be eliminated from the body for us to function normally. About 10% of this toxin can be naturally released through bodily functions like sweating, breathing, and urinating. The rest is up to the liver, which takes over the detoxifying process. Provided below are some ways to help your liver flush alcohol out of your body:
Get Some SleepWhile sleeping late won’t physically flush alcohol out of your system, it’s a good step toward getting your body back to normal. Alcohol causes restless sleeping, so additional sleep is always helpful.
Drink Lots of FluidsThis one’s a given since alcohol is known to cause dehydration, which can cause a headache and make you feel lethargic. To increase your hydration levels, you should keep these three liquids around:
- Water: To fight dehydration and increase your hydration levels
- Gatorade: Has electrolytes that will help your body retain the water you’re drinking
- Tea: Helps relieve nausea and dizziness — you can even add ginger or something else with fructose to help your body metabolize the alcohol
Get Food In Your BodyEating may be the most important way to flush alcohol out of your system. The toxins in alcohol can cause low blood sugar and even crashes, so it’s important to balance it out by eating. If you think you’re too nauseous to eat, you can try something light like crackers or bread. Then later, when your body can handle it, you can try eating meats and other foods that are rich with Vitamin D.
Sweat the Alcohol OutWhile moving might be the last thing you want to do after a night of drinking, it can really help flush the toxins out. Not only will sweating and breathing deeper allow you to release toxins naturally but getting more oxygen can also help your liver filter out toxins more easily. You can take a short walk outside or even do a low-impact workout, like a yoga practice with lots of twists, to release endorphins. Alcohol detox won’t necessarily remove all the toxins from your body immediately, but it can help you flush the alcohol out of your system quickly. Some popular ways to fight a hangover like drinking coffee and taking a shower, for example, may make you feel better in the moment but don’t have any effect on your BAC.
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What Are the Signs Of Alcohol Poisoning?
According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), if an individual drinks too much alcohol, the areas of their brain that control basic life-support functions — like breathing, heart rate, and temperature control — can start to shut down. Some symptoms of an alcohol overdose, or alcohol poisoning, include mental confusion, difficulty remaining conscious, vomiting, seizure, trouble breathing, slow heart rate, clammy skin, dulled responses like no gag reflex (which prevents choking), and very low body temperature. An alcohol overdose can lead to permanent brain damage or death. Some factors that influence how someone reacts to the effects of alcohol include, but aren’t limited to gender, speed of drinking, medications someone is taking, and the amount of food eaten.
The risk of overdosing increases if someone is also taking opioids, anti-anxiety medications, and sleep medications like zolpidem and eszopiclone, and benzodiazepines like diazepam and alprazolam. Other drugs that can be dangerous include over-the-counter antihistamines, opioid pain relievers (e.g., oxycodone and morphine), and illicit opioids like heroin. Like alcohol, these drugs suppress parts of the brain that control vital bodily functions like breathing.
How Long Does It Take To Fully Detox From Alcohol?
Many individuals who quit drinking stop experiencing withdrawal symptoms around four to five days after their last drink. However, the detox timeline depends on how much the individual used to drink, how long they’ve been drinking, and more.
Of course, it’s better to prevent having to flush alcohol out of your system and having to detox so you don’t have to deal with the side effects. Here are a few ways to try to avoid having to flush alcohol out of your system:
- Eat plenty of food before drinking
- Drink a glass of water in between drinks
- Count your drinks
- Don’t mix different types of alcohol
And ultimately, the best way to avoid having to flush alcohol out of your system is by drinking responsibly. However, we know that it isn’t always that easy. The best you can do is take steps such as finding a designated driver, not drinking on an empty stomach, and having a friend around if the effects of the detoxing process are more intense.
Alcohol Addiction Treatment at Silver Pines
If you’re struggling with an alcohol addiction, we’re here to help. At Silver Pines we offer a detox program followed by residential addiction treatment with individualized, holistic, and restorative support throughout each level of care. Call us today at 877.761.1491 to learn more about our programs.
FAQs About Alcohol Addiction and Alcohol Detox
What are the risks of drinking too much alcohol?
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), excessive alcohol use can lead to the following health problems and issues:
- High blood pressure, heart disease, stroke, liver disease, and digestive issues
- Breast, mouth, throat, esophagus, voice box, liver, colon, and rectum cancers
- Weakening of the immune system, increasing the chances of getting sick
- Learning and memory problems
- Mental health disorders like depression and anxiety.
- Social issues like family problems, job-related problems, and unemployment
How long does it take to reset your body from alcohol?
Typically, after an individual stops drinking, their withdrawal symptoms will subside after about four to five days after their last drink. However, the timeline for detox depends on factors like how much a person used to drink, how long they’ve been drinking, etc.