How to Quit Drinking or at Least Cut Back

how to take a break from drinking

That’s why Mehta recommends being kind to yourself and thinking about this as an experiment. If you suspect that you have a more serious case of alcohol use (also known medically as alcohol use disorder), Ellinwood recommends exploring and reading the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website, which provides support and a 24/7 hotline. If you’ve thought about it and want to try sobriety, for a brief period of time or for who-knows-how-long, getting started can be simpler than you think. She also recommends starting with an event where you’re most comfortable and even relying on an alcohol-free beverage to ease the transition.

Build a network of support

how to take a break from drinking

So, there’s kind of a balance between being a private person and then having a public persona that made it easy for me to keep my momentum going. This is a mega-helpful episode on what to do, think, say, and plan to take a successful break from drinking alcohol without being noticed. There has been some research conducted on how abstaining from alcohol detoxifies your liver over time. A 2021 review of research notes that several studies determined that two to four weeks of abstinence from alcohol by heavy-alcohol users helped reduce inflammation and bring down elevated serum levels in the liver.

What to know if you’re a casual drinker

However, the benefits vary from person to person. “Drinking one or two glasses of wine once or twice a week has some health benefits, especially for men over 40; it reduces risk of cardiovascular disease… for women you can get those benefits anytime, it’s not age-dependent,” Dasgupta said. Dr. Dasgupta said for social and moderate drinkers, participating in a month break won’t make much difference to their how to take a break from drinking bodies. However, for people who exceed recommendations in the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, he said staying away from alcohol for a month can reap changes. One thing that many listeners who’ve tried a dry January — or any break from alcohol — told us is that their friends didn’t really “get it.” “Why, why, why,” people told us they were asked. Listeners told us they feel compelled to make up excuses.

How much time apart is too much?

So, I kept focusing on the good things, and I did get up and work out the next morning. I don’t think I needed at that point even to have an excuse that I needed to work out in the morning. Although, I do enjoy working out the mornings at group events like weddings that last several days where there’s a golf tournament and a rehearsal dinner and a reception.

how to take a break from drinking

  • This false sense of control can often lead us to put ourselves in highly tempting situations, such as going to our favorite bar, mistakenly thinking the urge to drink is now behind us.
  • If you’ve decided to take a break from drinking alcohol, you’re not alone.
  • I never wanted to be the person who said, “Why aren’t you drinking?
  • I had to chuckle because I remember thinking that is a caricature of how I sometimes felt.
  • “The break itself can be useful for reducing intensity, but if the partners don’t take time to reflect and heal, it is highly unlikely that the issues that caused the break in the first place will change,” says Engler.

This is sometimes easier said than done, of course. If you’re a heavy drinker, you may need to wean off alcohol to let your body adjust. If you’re experiencing severe symptoms of alcohol withdrawal, be sure to talk to a healthcare provider. If you’ve decided to take a break from drinking alcohol, you’re not alone. Breaking the booze habit, whether it’s for 30 days or longer, has its benefits. But for many people, the challenge is getting started.

how to take a break from drinking

What are the long-term health benefits of not drinking alcohol?

This NIAAA guide can help you find a program or approach that’s right for you. It included just 16 people who had been in the habit of drinking about two drinks per day on average. Still, the findings were provocative, scientists say, and merit following up.

how to take a break from drinking

Say, for instance, you’re going to give the speech, the best man speech at a wedding, but you’ve only been off alcohol for two weeks and you’re nervous. Well, maybe you have a doctor’s prescription for propanolol and you pop one of those before it’s time to get up there and give the speech. It’s probably going to block the norepinephrine from making you fearful, and all of a sudden, you’re calm. I have a Suja Organics celery juice and lemon juice. I was just telling you about some of the benefits that I’ve had for skin and other things, and I also have my Dragon Herbs Tea which is my go-to. I think every time we do a podcast, I have either this and/or a dram and/or a few shots of lemon juice and club soda which is my new go-to at any event.

  • This method utilizes “I feel” statements that minimize defensiveness and allow you to talk about the problem without getting dragged back into the same arguments.
  • Irina Gonzalez is the Content Marketing Manager at Tempest, a digital membership program that empowers you to quit drinking and live alcohol-free.
  • Hopefully, this self assessment has helped you to evaluate your use and make decisions that will best work toward your success as a student, as a leader within your community, and as a family member.
  • What did you drink this morning when you woke up?
  • Reconnecting after a breakup isn’t always smooth or easy.

Dos and Don’ts When You’re on a Break

Communication is one of the cornerstones of a healthy relationship, so keep having these conversations to help each person feels heard and understood. Everyone brings their own unique experiences, intentions, and expectations to a relationship. When you talk about these factors openly, you can reconnect in a way that establishes greater trust, which can ultimately put your relationship on a more positive path as you move forward. A lot of people assume that taking a break means the relationship is on the course toward an actual breakup, but this isn’t always the case.

Withdrawal symptoms include: