Cold turkey or easing out

If you have been an extremely heavy drinker daily for years and decades is quitting cold turkey a good idea or is lowering dramatically what you consumed appropriate? I’m having troubling withdrawals on day 4 without a shot it’s been so bad I decided to have a seltzer or 2 but ultimate goal is to go down to no alcohol but am I just setting myself back up for failure? I hate beers and seltzers it was the liquor that was my thing the only thing I ever really wanted to drink. I just want to survive this first week without needing alcohol which I guess will start tomorrow but my mind and heart are so serious this time that we are thru. Any advice especially from those who have been thru bad withdrawals on their own


Welcome to the forum and welcome to your sobriety Someday! That’s a great and brave decision you took to quit drinking. As to your question: I am not in a position to give you medical advice, nobody on this website can because we don’t know you or your circumstances. But I would strongly advice you to seek out someone who can in real life.

Quitting drinking cold turkey can be dangerous for those that have been drinking heavily for a prolonged amount of time. Bodies can get used to the daily ingesting of alcohol and taking that away can be a huge shock to the system. A number of bad effects can occur, including life threatening seizures. That’s the reason detox facilities exist. Typically in a detox heavy drinkers are put on a specific dose of certain benzos for a little while to help fight these side effects.

Like I said I don’t know any specifics of you and your situation, nor am I a MD. So I can’t tell you what to do other than seeking medical help in your situation and saying tapering down is maybe probably a better idea. But hesitant to say so because I don’t know you, nor am I a MD. Wishing you all success though!


I’d second all what @mno said.

If you have the option and are willing, talking to your primary care physician might be useful to see what might be best for your personal situation.

One other point is that while weening down can be very useful in easing the shock to the system, it can be hard for addicts to manage it on their own. Not impossible, but very difficult because the addictive monster inside wants what it wants. Something to think about.

I wish you the best.


Do you know how many units you have roughly each day? Seizures can occur but only in a small percentage of people I believe and my doctor said they can be life threatening due to falling/banging your head rather than the seizure itself. I’m no medical professional, am only repeating what I’ve been told. What side effects were you having on day 4?

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I am an alcoholic and a detox provider. Take the safe route and either do medical assisted detox either inpatient or outpatient, please. A “few” having seizures is a few too many, it’s never pretty or necessary.

To keep having a sip/shot/beers, whatever, only prolongs the process of quitting. No I don’t believe in tapers. If you want to stop, ask for help and be prepared to feel uncomfortable. All it takes is a desire to stop.


Hi hope you start to feel better and stick to sobriety and if I were you I’d take smittys advice, if you were to go into delirium or seizures by the time any one coming up to that point would already not be in mentally stable position to call for help. Look up withdrawals online it’s a serious thing and many people detox in a medical environment, detox is different from going into rehab which also if it’s what you need it can be life saving which is great. But detox is just the first 1-2 weeks where I live, until the alcohol is out your body safely.
Do research look it up and dont be afraid to get medical help, it’s not as bad as we imagine it to be.

Also welcome to the community, it’s great here for people who want to stay sober the support is amazing and it’s great your here, everyones answers here are 100% coming from a caring place, and we want you to be safe and sober and be part of the community :hugs: