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How to Quit Drinking Cold Turkey

Learn how to quit drinking cold turkey in this Howcast video featuring addictions specialist Paul J. Rinaldi, Ph.D.


I sometimes get asked from people whether they should and how to stop drinking cold turkey. In other words, just one day I'm drinking the next day I don't drink. My answer to that is well, I have two answers. I start with a question. How much are you drinking?

So if you're drinking a small amount, meaning you're drinking one to three drinks a day perhaps, then okay, you might want to just stop and you'll be okay. But my general recommendation is to not ever stop cold turkey without really getting a good consultation. You need to know how much you're drinking. You need to have some advice from a professional about whether you stop drinking.

Will you experience withdrawal symptoms? And cold turkey puts you at risk for having alcohol withdrawal syndrome, and that can be medically dangerous. So, again, whether or not you stop cold turkey is completely dependent on the amount of alcohol you're drinking per day. So when people ask me whether they should stop cold turkey, my general answer is not until you get the advice of a medical professional who knows about alcohol.

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