Dry Drunk: Why It’s Important to Address the Root Cause of Alcoholism

Are you or someone you know experiencing emotional storms during alcohol abstinence? This phenomenon, known as the ‘dry drunk’ syndrome (DDS), is commonly attributed to psychological attitudes. Recent evidence suggests, however, that biochemical issues such as food allergies and hypoglycaemia (low blood sugar) may play a significant role. We understand and recognise the overwhelming emotional effects of DDS. As we’ve worked with over 10,000 people struggling with drug and alcohol addiction, we recognise the importance of addressing underlying factors to begin a journey towards a healthier, happier life.

What Does "Dry Drunk" Mean?

The term ‘dry drunk’ was originated by Alcoholics Anonymous to describe the emotional storms experienced by an alcoholic during abstinence. It may not necessarily reflect psychological attitudes but could be related to biochemical problems such as food allergy and hypoglycaemia. The symptoms of DDS can include:

  • Irritability
  • Restlessness
  • Anxiety
  • Anger
  • Headaches and blurry vision
  • Nausea
  • Confusion

Understanding that the symptoms of DDS are not solely due to psychological issues but can also be influenced by biochemical factors is crucial in providing effective treatment. Lifestyle changes such as dietary modifications and blood sugar regulation techniques may help prevent the recurrence of the dry drunk syndrome. Addressing the root cause of alcoholism acknowledges that it is a complex issue with multifaceted components. We believe that by taking a holistic approach that considers both psychological and biochemical factors, people struggling with alcoholism have a better chance of achieving long-term recovery.

Who Can Become a Dry Drunk?

Anyone can experience the emotional storms associated with DDS, regardless of their background or history with alcohol. Becoming a dry drunk is not limited to those who have struggled with alcoholism in the past. The term “dry drunk” refers to the emotional turmoil experienced during abstinence from alcohol. This syndrome can affect anyone who has stopped drinking, whether they were previously dependent on alcohol or not. Anyone who experiences DDS will need to recognise both the emotional and physiological factors contributing to this issue. Being thorough and comprehensive in the therapeutic approach can prevent the recurrence of this syndrome and provide support for people going through this challenging period.

What Happens During DDS Episodes?

During a dry drunk episode, you may experience emotional turmoil and intense internal struggles as you abstain from alcohol. You might find yourself dealing with feelings of restlessness, irritability, and discontentment. These can be accompanied by a constant longing for alcohol and a sense of emptiness that is difficult to fill. Additionally, you may encounter difficulties in managing stress and maintaining healthy relationships. Some people even experience extreme mood swings and depressive episodes as a result of DDS. Self-pity is common. So is the sense of being victimised or blaming others for having to go through difficult times without alcohol. Because of this intense turmoil, some people may go back to drinking.

Alternatively, people going through dry drunk episodes may start engaging in other addictive behaviours. Turning to food, drugs and sex could seem like a way to cope with the current situation without having to opt for an alcoholic beverage. Statistics show that almost all people who try to give up alcohol will experience the symptoms of DDS. It’s most likely to occur in the first year of sobriety. According to the American Journal of Psychiatry, the symptoms occur irregularly and diminish in strength with each passing episode.

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What Happens After a Dry Drunk?

After a dry drunk, you may continue to experience emotional challenges and difficulties in maintaining sobriety. It’s important to understand that the journey towards recovery is not always smooth, and there may still be lingering effects even after abstaining from alcohol. We commend anyone for making the brave decision to go on a sobriety journey. The road, however, is long and slippery. You may find yourself grappling with intense emotions such as anger, frustration, or loneliness. These emotional storms are a result of the underlying root causes of your alcoholism that have not been fully addressed. Don’t hesitate to seek support and professional help during this phase to work through challenges effectively. Remember, you are not alone in this journey, and there are resources available to assist you in finding the coping mechanisms bound to prevent a relapse.

Alcoholism Rehab by The Providence Projects

We recognise your struggle and we recognise how much of a difference professional guidance can make. The Providence Projects can provide the support and resources needed for your recovery journey. We believe in a personalised, holistic therapeutic approach that’s going to resolve the issues standing in the way of lasting sobriety. When you choose our rehab programme, you’ll benefit from:

  • Expert team knowledge and guidance: we will be by your side during every step of the way. Our team consists of leading UK therapists who aren’t just incredibly skilled, they’re all passionate about helping people and seeing them flourish in the long run.
  • Holistic approach: The Providence Projects takes a holistic approach to rehab, recognising that alcoholism affects not only your physical health but also your mental, emotional, and spiritual well-being. We will work together on the selection of the right therapeutic approaches out of all the options: counselling, group therapy, mindfulness practices, and alternative therapies like art or music therapy.
  • Aftercare support: Your journey towards sobriety doesn’t end when you leave our facilities. We will be by your side when you get out in the real world and you’re seeking the best opportunities to guarantee your long-term sobriety. Some of the tools you can always count on include relapse prevention planning, regular check-ins with counsellors or support groups, and access to community resources.

DDS is one of the challenges you will face on your journey to overcoming alcohol dependence. Providence Projects will give you access to tailored tools and resources bound to help you deal with the biggest obstacles. We’ve been coming up with holistic treatments ever since 1996 and our caring, compassionate approach will give you the best opportunity at lasting recovery.

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