Rohnert Park, CA (PressExposure) August 20, 2009 -- Alcohol, though not as addicting as other forms of psychoactive drugs such as cocaine and heroin, is also known to cause dependence on people who are used to consuming large amounts of it. Although not as addictive, alcoholism is considered by many professionals as one of the hardest addictions to cure, especially its consequent withdrawal syndromes. This is because, unlike other withdrawal syndromes to drugs such as heroin, cocaine, and amphetamines, alcoholism withdrawal is known to be fatal. This is due to symptoms that often lead to cardiac arrest.
Alcohol withdrawal syndromes Withdrawal syndromes to alcohol ranges from mild symptoms to severe and life threatening syndromes such as delirium, particularly visual hallucinations in severe cases and convulsions (which may result in death). However, not all alcoholics experience severe cases of alcoholism withdrawal syndromes. The level of severity usually involves factors such as age, genetics, degree of alcohol intake, length of time that the individual has been misusing alcohol, and the number of previous detoxifications he or she has had. Withdrawal syndromes to alcoholism may include:
Mild withdrawal syndromes: Agitation Euphoria Fear Insomnia Irritability Headache Nausea and vomiting Sweating Anxiety and panic attacks Diaphoresis Weakness Restlessness
Severe withdrawal syndromes: Alcoholic hallucinosis Catatonia Confusion Depression Derealization Gastrointestinal upset Hallucinations Palpitations Psychosis Rebound REM sleep Tremors
Fatal withdrawal syndromes: Anorexia Delirium tremens Diarrhea Hypertension Seizures and death Tachycardia Hyperthermia(fever)
Kindling withdrawal Considered as one of the most severe cases of alcoholism withdrawal, kindling is a rare alcoholism withdrawal phenomenon in which repeated alcohol detoxification or detox leads to a severity of the withdrawal syndrome. Although not all alcoholics or those that experienced its withdrawal syndrome experience such phenomenon, it is said that this intensification of the alcoholism withdrawal severity may occur when the patient resumes drinking after a detox, followed by abstinence. This can be considered deadly because this usually leads in a full blown delirium tremens with convulsive seizures.
Kindling can cause complications and may increase the risk of relapse, alcohol related brain damage and cognitive deficits. Chronic alcohol misuse and kindling via multiple alcohol withdrawals may lead to permanent alterations in the GABA