Timeline of Quitting Drinking

When you decide to quit drinking, you are making a major change to your body’s routine. As your body works to adjust to this change, you will experience a variety of symptoms, depending on your individual body, the quantities of alcohol you typically consume, and the reliance your body has developed on alcohol.

Regardless of the extent of your symptoms, it is important to hold true to your motivation for making the change. There will be moments of difficulty and temptation to fall back into bad habits; however, remembering why you decided to make the change is vital to staying strong and succeeding in shifting your life. Not only will you have achieved a challenging and often unattainable feat, but you will have numerous mental and physical benefits to enjoy including better sleep, improved concentration and memory, increased energy, potential weight loss, reduced indigestion and acid reflux, healthier skin and a healthier liver.

What Happens to Your Body After 1 Day Without Alcohol?

Whether or not you feel any symptoms on the first day without alcohol is dependent on the reliance your body has on alcohol. If you have been drinking large quantities long-term, you will likely feel ill within hours of cutting out alcohol. This will come in the form of tremors, puking, sweating, restlessness, and anxiety. While part of it stems from the lack of alcohol in your system, it is also a result of the mental side of giving up alcohol – knowing you will not have a substance you rely on so deeply has effects on both the mind and body.

If you are not a heavy drinker, you will likely not feel any different within the first few days of giving up alcohol. You may find yourself on a high within the first few days, excited by the prospect of your new goal. Those who fall in the middle of these two categories may find themselves experiencing any of the aforementioned symptoms. It is important to remember that each body will handle the deprivation differently and everyone will experience their own unique combination of effects.

What Happens to Your Body After 3 Days Without Alcohol?

For most individuals, this is the point at which the withdrawal symptoms become more manageable. The first few days are the most challenging as your body has essentially been thrown in the deep end. It is especially challenging for those with severe dependency as your body is fighting to function properly without a substance it has grown accustomed to. After 3 days without alcohol, your body will likely continue to feel fatigued, with reduced energy and feelings of depression and anxiety being common. Additionally, your sleep will likely remain inconsistent for a few days as your body adjusts.

The symptoms will lessen for the majority; however, a small portion of people may find their symptoms worsening. For these individuals, it is important to ensure that the process of quitting drinking is being undertaken alongside medical supervision as symptoms of disorientation and confusion can become dangerous.

What Happens to Your Body After 1 Week Without Alcohol?

The initial withdrawal symptoms will fade away and may even stop within a week of quitting for the majority of individuals. This, again, is entirely reliant on your body and your individual experiences with alcohol. After a week without alcohol, you may continue to feel low, especially when placed in social situations where maintaining sobriety is challenging. Mood swings, trouble sleeping, and nervousness are common within the first week or two of quitting drinking, but will soon begin to weaken as well. Following one week off of alcohol, your body will start to properly adjust to your new lifestyle and for some, sleep will return to normal. For others, it may take up to a month or two to fully achieve sleep normality.

What Happens to Your Body After 1 Month Without Alcohol?

Once you hit a month without alcohol, you will likely have noticed weight loss, improved sleep, higher levels of energy, and reduced blood pressure. As you maintain your sobriety, you are actively restricting calories that were previously a staple in your diet. In doing so, you are likely placing yourself in some form of a caloric deficit, resulting in differing levels of weight loss, depending on your specific body. Additionally, your liver will have begun recovering from previous damage and while you may not see this improvement directly, it will contribute to higher levels of energy and feeling healthier overall. Finally, each of these will come together to bring a new radiance and glow to your skin as your body’s chemical balances begin to regulate at a healthy level.

What Happens to Your Body After 6 Months Without Alcohol?

At 6 months without alcohol, you have made it through the hardest part of quitting. By this point, you should feel that the bouts of post-acute withdrawal syndrome have become less and less frequent with lower instances of anxiety, increased moments of anger, and depression. You will experience more energy and a greater sense of health, all the side effects of fueling yourself in healthier ways and having better, more consistent sleep patterns.

What Happens to Your Body After 1 Year+ Without Alcohol?

The process of recovery and maintaining sobriety is lifelong. Hitting one year without alcohol is an admirable and outstanding feat, something you should be immensely proud of yourself for achieving. Alcohol consumption takes a significant toll on your body, especially when doing so in large quantities and frequencies. By eliminating it from your diet for over a year, you have not only allowed your body to recover from past damage, but also allowed it to grow into new, healthy habits, creating an improved lifestyle for yourself and your future.