9 Healthy Things That Happen to Your Body When You Stop Drinking for 30 Days or More

People experiencing mild to moderate alcohol withdrawal symptoms often receive outpatient care—meaning there is no extended time spent in a hospital or facility. It’s recommended, however, that they have someone stay with them who can help during recovery. Your doctor may also prescribe medications that can reduce withdrawal symptoms and cravings. Vivitrol (naltrexone), Campral (acamprosate), and Antabuse (disulfiram) have been FDA-approved to treat alcohol use disorder. If you have been drinking heavily and chronically, it is also a good idea to have your detox medically supervised to minimize your risk of potentially dangerous withdrawal complications. While it has been suggested that one or two drinks per day may have health benefits, one meta-analysis found that even moderate intake has serious health risks.

So when you stay away from alcohol, the number on your scale may well start moving down. Studies have also connected alcohol use to an increased risk of stroke, especially for people under the age of 45 years https://ecosoberhouse.com/ old. According to Volpicelli, the cognitive changes people can have from drinking—like memory trouble, slowed reaction time, difficulty controlling behavior, and poor concentration—get worse over time.

Physical symptoms will subside

A common initial treatment option for someone with an alcohol addiction is an outpatient or inpatient rehabilitation program. It can help someone handle withdrawal symptoms and emotional challenges. Outpatient treatment provides daily support while allowing the person to live at home. While the skin is outside of the body, it’s also impacted by alcohol consumption and alcohol abuse. When someone consumes alcohol it causes inflammation, which leads to a histamine response. If someone has been abusing alcohol for many years there can be persistent skin conditions and flushing.

  • You may be thinking, “But I always fall asleep faster when I drink!” That may be true, but it’s only for a little while.
  • Alcohol use can alter your gut microbiome, which is responsible for key bodily functions like digestion.
  • Whilst physical withdrawal symptoms are likely to be at their worst during the first couple of days and are usually very much improved in a couple of weeks, emotional issues may remain for longer.
  • These first few weeks are critical because they are when the risk of relapse is highest.

​Drinking—especially a fine wine or scotch habit—is an expensive undertaking. Take a moment to crunch the numbers, adding up what you spend for drinks both at home and out on the town (factoring in tax and tip). Quitting cold turkey may not be your best option if you find yourself drinking too much, too often and are showing signs of dependency. Alcohol is a sedative, so if you’re drinking right before you go to bed, you might be thinking that it is helping you sleep — and sleep is good for you, right? These include a higher risk for pneumonia and a reduced ability to fight off infections. The liver can’t perform extraordinary feats of marvel, however, it can only metabolize roughly one standard drink each hour.


Scientists recruited 94 volunteers who were on average 45 years old and asked them to stop drinking for a month. Before the challenge, participants were defined as “moderate to heavy drinkers” who drank around 258 grams of alcohol a week, roughly equivalent to about 18 standard drinks. No participants had a history of known liver disease or alcohol dependence.

Additionally, medical bills related to the treatment of alcohol-related diseases can put a financial strain on households. When alcohol is abused the liver becomes damaged because alcohol is a toxin. Alcohol can cause liver diseases, increase the risk of liver failure, and increase the risk of rare but fatal liver cancers. Typically, those who join the sober curious movement don’t consider themselves to have an alcohol abuse disorder — they simply find that periods of sobriety offer more than drinking in moderation might.

Things That Happen When You Stop Drinking Alcohol

Furthermore, alcohol plays a role in 4 out of 10 traffic incidents, suicides, and deadly falls. Alcohol causes accidents because intoxicated people have less coordination and control over their movements. When blood alcohol concentration (BAC) reaches high enough levels in the blood, people can also lose consciousness. Research suggests this is because alcohol overexerts the immune system. In fact, some studies have found that a single episode of binge alcohol intoxication leads to exertion on the immune system and inflammation. After you stop drinking, your immune system’s response will be strengthened over time.

  • In fact, alcohol use accounts for 6 percent of all cancers and 4 percent of all cancer deaths in the U.S.
  • Many people who join the abstinence movement and want to quit alcohol don’t fall within these parameters.
  • For most people, alcohol withdrawal symptoms will begin sometime in the first eight hours after their final drink.
  • While alcohol can make someone drowsy and function as a sleep aid in the short-term, abusing alcohol can make someone dependent on the substance to fall asleep.

Like other symptoms, the impact on mood depends on the amount and duration of your alcohol use. For light or moderate drinking, you might experience a more temporary, mild effect on mood. If you’ve been drinking heavily or for long periods, the impact will be more pronounced, and it will take longer for your neurotransmitter systems to restore their balance in your body.

For most people, alcohol withdrawal symptoms will begin sometime in the first eight hours after their final drink. It’s true that some studies show potential benefits to your heart health when drinking some level of alcohol. Studies have found an association between light to moderate drinking and a lower risk of cardiovascular disease. Though this may be seen as a benefit, drinking also poses health risks.

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Find a supportive friend or family member to be with you while you withdraw and support your new non-drinking lifestyle. For those with alcohol use disorder, withdrawal is just the first (but very important) step on a long journey to recovery. These first few weeks are critical because they are when the risk of relapse is highest.

Related Conditions

While one standard drink, specifically wine, can lower blood pressure, consuming more alcohol can have the opposite effect. When someone quits drinking blood pressure can https://ecosoberhouse.com/article/what-happens-when-you-stop-drinking-alcohol/ change in a few ways depending on the severity of alcoholism. For someone who abused alcohol for many years, blood pressure can change suddenly during alcohol withdrawal.

what happens to your body when you stop drinking alcohol

Plus, blood pressure levels out quickly and people can see improvements in as little as a few months. A healthy diet and exercise can also speed up blood pressure recovery. “If you are struggling to quit alcohol and experiencing severe withdrawal symptoms like hallucinations, seizures or extreme anxiety, it’s crucial to seek immediate medical attention,” advises Dr. Kellogg. If you have a history of severe alcohol dependence, he recommends consulting a health care professional before quitting, as abrupt cessation can be life threatening. For those with an alcohol use disorder, there are effective prescription medications that can be helpful when abstaining from alcohol. For people who don’t abuse alcohol, withdrawal does not occur when drinking ceases.