The human bodies are equipped to handle different types of injuries and illnesses. And the body’s ability to heal is what allows individuals to keep leading happy, healthy lives. But sometimes, the damage the body undergoes is simply too great to recover from, which can result in serious consequences, including death.
While many people trust their livers to filter out toxins, they may not realize how much damage alcohol does to the liver. When it comes to frequent alcohol use, people need to know: Can the liver heal itself? Today, we’ll look at the function of the liver as well as its ability to heal from years of alcohol abuse.
What Does the Liver Do?
The liver is one of the most important organs in your body because it eliminates toxic chemicals or harmful substances found in the blood. In addition to this filtering process, the liver is responsible for metabolizing sugars, fats, and carbohydrates. This means that your liver breaks down these things to create energy. Another unique function of the liver is its ability to heal damaged cells.
Now, the first step in answering the question “Can the liver heal itself?” is to look closer at liver regeneration. Regeneration, according to the National Institute of General Medical Sciences, is a term that means to replace, regrow, or restore, specifically in reference to parts of the body that are either damaged, old, or unhealthy. Regeneration occurs in plants, cells, tissues, and more. But does your liver regenerate after alcohol abuse?
In short, yes. Your liver is able to regenerate to a certain extent. However, the liver is strained by certain factors, including drinking alcohol. When you drink alcohol, the harmful chemicals enter your bloodstream. Your liver works to pump out the harmful substances and replenish the good, but when there are too many toxins coming in from repeated alcohol use, your liver could become sluggish, dysfunctional, and at risk of failure.
What Are the Side Effects of Alcohol Use?
Sluggish liver symptoms frequently go unnoticed until the damage is irreparable, but these side effects can include:
- Gastrointestinal distress
- Nausea and vomiting
- Weight loss
- Abnormal bruising or bleeding
Liver issues as a result of alcohol use can cause severe consequences. It’s important to know that you cannot simply heal from these issues on your own. Instead, you will need professional treatment to help with alcoholism so that you can begin to heal.
Moreover, alcohol can even stop your liver from functioning entirely. Conditions like alcoholic liver disease can cause your entire body to suffer and substantially decrease your ability to live a long, healthy life.
You might be thinking that your liver will eventually heal itself, which can be the case if you receive treatment for alcohol use disorders early enough. The truth of the matter is that the only way for your liver to have the chance to begin healing is if you completely stop drinking. If you’re wondering how to repair your liver, the best place to start is with rehab for alcohol addiction recovery.
Wondering How to Repair Your Liver?
For people who struggle with an addiction to alcohol, knowing where to start with treatment can be overwhelming. Though you might have the answer to the question “Can the liver heal itself?” you now need to figure out how to approach a solution for allowing this vital organ to recover after long-term alcohol use.
Of course, making the decision to get treatment is one that is extremely challenging and personal. For these reasons, some people believe that they are better off if they quit drinking on their own. Yet, there are many risk factors that lead to addiction and relapse. These could cause anyone trying to quit to return back to drinking. Additionally, if your body is dependent on alcohol, quitting on your own could actually lead to serious, life-threatening withdrawal symptoms.
To keep it simple, the first stage in liver and overall recovery is to go through a safe detoxification process. When asking yourself if the liver can heal itself, a big factor is quitting alcohol use immediately. It is essential to cleanse your body of its own dependency to alcohol, but this can bring upon uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms such as vomiting, seizures, and urgent mental health concerns.
This is why going through supervised detox can make all the difference. Under professional supervision and support, you will be able to start the journey toward healing in a more comfortable way. The full detoxification process could last anywhere from five to seven days depending on your particular health needs. From that point on, you will be physically prepared for the remainder of recovery that shines ahead of you.
After detox, your recovery program will be tailored to your specific needs. In an inpatient addiction recovery program, you will have access to:
- Trauma-informed care
- Substance use disorder counseling
- CBT and DBT
- Recovery maintenance resources
- Treatment for co-occurring mental health concerns
- Group therapy
- Family counseling
- Peer recovery support
- Complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) therapies
- Chronic pain recovery
All of these treatment options reveal that the goal with addiction recovery might begin with physical healing—even just for one important organ in your body—but recovery doesn’t stop there. Rather, achieving life-long sobriety from drugs and alcohol is a feat that will bring you better physical, mental, and emotional health so that you can, in a sense, begin to regenerate your life.
Looking For Liver Recovery Options?
The Vance Johnson Recovery Center in Las Vegas, Nevada welcomes you to participate in all of the services listed above and much more. If you are still wondering “Can the liver heal itself?” or if you have other questions, please reach out to us by calling 888-828-2623. Even if you are not quite ready to call, we’re here to address any of your concerns through our confidential contact option.
We understand that healing your liver and other aspects of your life will take time—we’re here to provide you with the space, environment, and support you need to rewind the clock and get back to a happier, healthier version of yourself once again.
Located in dynamic Las Vegas, Nevada, the Vance Johnson Recovery Center (VJRC) a 44-bed facility is run by a skilled multi-disciplinary team of medical and behavioral health professionals that includes nurses, counselors, and doctors, along with complementary and alternative medicine specialists to provide our clients with a transformational experience that encompasses mind, body, and spirit. Our approach is holistic and grounded in research and evidenced-based best practices that help people develop the awareness and skills required to achieve and sustain recovery.