Alcohol-induced psychosis is a severe condition brought on by long term alcohol dependency. Most commonly, it disappears when drinking is stopped and the symptoms of alcohol withdrawal subside. Unfortunately, this is not always the case, and in cases of especially prolonged drinking dependency, the resulting psychosis can be permanent.
Because of this, it’s crucial that everybody who drinks a lot or has a friend, relative or loved one who does, is aware of the symptoms and alcohol-induced psychosis and how to go about getting help.
Alcoholic Psychosis Definition
“Alcohol-induced psychotic disorder is a mental illness characterized by an episode of psychosis—hallucinations and delusions—triggered by alcohol intoxication or withdrawal”.
To learn more about the condition, take a look at the leading medical study here.
But what does alcohol-induced psychosis look like in a patient?
First, there are several different types to consider:
Alcohol-Induced Psychosis: Different Types
Chronic Alcoholic Hallucinosis
This is a rare condition that is usually only experienced after years and years of consistent and heavy alcohol abuse.
It mostly involves auditory hallucinations (hearing things that aren’t there) but can also include delusions, violent mood swings and more.
The symptoms of chronic alcoholic hallucinosis typically arise during or immediately after a heavy drinking session and can last for any amount of time between a few hours and several weeks, or even develop further into a permanent form that looks very similar to schizophrenia.
Acute intoxication refers to the symptoms experienced in very rare cases of huge amounts of alcohol being consumed in one sitting. This can be fatal due to the extreme volume of alcohol involved, and whereas it often disappears once the body has gotten rid of the alcohol, it is still crucial to get medical help in order to avoid alcohol poisoning
Alcohol Withdrawal Psychosis
Hallucinations can also be a side effect of alcohol withdrawal. We have already posted a complete guide to this here but in extreme cases, it can escalate to a state of temporary psychosis and constant hallucinations, potentially also leading to wet brain.
Alcoholic Psychosis Symptoms
Whereas all of the conditions listed above are slightly different in both their symptoms and causes, they all fall under alcohol-induced psychotic disorder and do share many symptoms, for example:
- Visual, olfactory or auditory hallucinations
- Sensitivity to light and noise
- The shakes
- Increased heart rate
- Difficulty catching breath
- Mood swings and irritability
Alcoholic Psychosis Treatment
Alcohol-related psychosis requires urgent treatment as it can be fatal or cause permanent symptoms if it isn’t treated as early as possible.
The first step of treatment is, of course, to stop drinking alcohol, as it is often impossible to get rid of alcoholic psychosis while there is still alcohol in the body.
However, alcohol withdrawal causes its own issues, so it’s crucial to be able to do this under full medical supervision, ideally with medication that helps to reduce the symptoms of withdrawal and keep the central nervous system calm during the withdrawal process.
Once the patient has fully gotten rid of alcohol from their body, the focus moves to preventing relapse with CBT, support groups, and outpatient treatment from the comfort of your own home.
Finally, an effective aftercare programme is required to prevent relapse, encourage healthy habits, and improve the situation for the ongoing future.
Home Detox for Alcoholic Psychosis
Here at Home-Detox, we run the UK’s most effective home detox programme.
- Withdrawing from alcohol from the comfort of your own home with 24/7 access to GPs, therapists and nurses via telephone
- Withdrawal medication to help control the symptoms and make the above go as smoothly as possible
- Access to leading support groups and advice on NHS facilities
- Referral to top-quality rehab inpatient facilities if further supervision is necessary
All of the above gives you the best possible chance of recovery, all from the comfort and safety of your own home!
To win back control of your drinking habits and get back to being the real you, contact us now and see how our friendly, experienced staff are waiting to help!