Update on the Neurobiology of Alcohol Withdrawal Seizures PMC

Common medications include benzodiazepines to help treat symptoms like anxiety, insomnia, and seizures. You might also take anti-seizure meds and antipsychotics, along with other drugs. If you are detoxing in a facility, your medical staff will administer medications and help alleviate the worst of the symptoms. If you are attempting to detox independently, be sure you have why does alcohol withdrawal cause seizures a responsible adult watching closely to ensure your safety. Still, it’s always best to quit alcohol with the help of experienced detox specialists, like our team at Clear Life Recovery’s alcohol detox in Costa Mesa. Other common household substances can also contain a significant amount of alcohol if ingested in large quantities, including mouthwash and cough syrup.

In this article, learn what alcohol does to the brain, how it can lead to seizures, and what you need to know about alcohol use if you already have a seizure disorder. NL has worked as an clinical pharmacologist expert witness at criminal, civil, family, and coroner’s courts; given lectures on alcohol withdrawal at undergraduate and postgraduate events; published various articles and written book chapters. Over time, your central nervous system adjusts to having alcohol around all the time. Your body works hard to keep your brain in a more awake state and to keep your nerves talking to one another. Withdrawal seizures can typically be managed with benzodiazepines but may require adjunct therapy with phenytoin, barbiturates, and may even require intubation and sedation with propofol, ketamine, or in the most severe cases, dexmedetomidine. Patients with prolonged altered sensorium or significant renal abnormalities should receive an evaluation for the potential ingestion of another toxic alcohol.

Can Alcohol Withdrawal Cause Seizures?

Prior to the seizure, you may also experience an “aura,” consisting of an unusual visual change, smell, taste, or sound caused by abnormal brain activity. Long-term alcohol use can increase your risk of developing epilepsy, https://ecosoberhouse.com/article/alternatives-to-alcohol/ a condition where you are prone to having seizures. While the reason for this is not fully understood, alcohol does create changes in receptors in your brain that affect your likelihood of having a seizure.

can you get a seizure from alcohol withdrawal

When you talk to your doctor about symptom relief, it’s a good idea to discuss treatment for alcohol abuse or dependence. If you’re thinking about quitting alcohol, you need to consider a few factors before you begin the detox process, including the alcohol withdrawal timeline. You may think you know what to expect, but the truth is, there is no clear-cut way of predicting exactly how you will feel and what symptoms you will experience while your body adjusts to not having its usual alcohol supply.

Mental Health And Alcoholic Seizures

While epilepsy can develop on its own in people who do not use alcohol, long-term alcohol use will increase the risk of epilepsy developing in some people. You may be given anxiolytic and sedative medications to help overcome the anxiety and insomnia that is common with alcohol withdrawal. Drugs like benzodiazepines are often used to treat alcohol withdrawal, and they can also be used to taper you off alcohol. Medical detox is highly intensive inpatient treatment with medically managed services. Alcohol dependence may be treated with various options, including medications. As your body adjusts to life without the medication, you may be given medication and therapy options to help you get through the withdrawal phase as safely as possible.

When you go through the acute phases of detox at Clear Life Recovery, you will be under qualified medical supervision. Our staff will observe you to ensure you remain safe and healthy throughout the whole process. There’s no need to worry about having a seizure or getting delirium tremens because help is always nearby to prevent complications and soothe your uncomfortable symptoms.