Brain Recovery From Alcohol: How Long Does It Take to Heal

This change can initiate them to become more motivated to maintain sobriety. Motivation plays a major role in addiction how long does brain fog last after drinking recovery, considering the rates of relapse. What we can say is that brain fog is more than just a passing feeling.

Coordination, balance, and fine motor skills improve as brain volume recovers. Higher thought functions like focus and concentration take longer to improve since they are controlled by brain areas that recover volume more slowly. When in a state of chronic stress, the primitive brain takes over, and we can’t use our higher thinking functions as well,” explains Wilhour. Getting a handle on stress will help you stay more in the thinking brain. One of the challenges with understanding brain fog is that there are so many potential causes, and having brain fog alone doesn’t tell doctors what exactly is going on. “Brain fog” is thought to originate from the term “brain fag,” a phrase coined in 1850 by British physician James Tunstall, according to research.

A question you might ask yourself after you stop drinking.

Also, be sure to drink plenty of fluids before, during, and after exercise, as dehydration can actually worsen brain fog. Just be sure to avoid sugary drinks as they can actually worsen brain fog. At the Detox Center, we are always available to help those fighting against addiction access the care they need. Alcoholics’ brains have developed slower than those of nonalcoholics in terms of both volume and weight. This brain shrinkage affects the “wiring” in the brain that connects regions and the areas of the brain that enable neurons to communicate with other neurons. According to several studies, people who have severe alcohol abuse disorders have smaller and lighter brains than those who do not.

But managing stress isn’t always simple, which is why you need a guide to get a jump-start. You’ll learn the basics about stress (and its dangers) as well as how to plan and prepare to buffer the ill effects of stress. These can be varied but generally center around the idea that your “thinking or memory isn’t as efficient or effective as it used to be,” she says. You should always consult with your doctor if your COVID brain fog symptoms get worse, cause concern or distress, or if it interferes with your day-to-day activities significantly.


The researchers found that people with alcohol use disorder (AUD) had less brain matter than people without AUD. The affected brain regions controlled skills like attention, language, memory, and reasoning. By changing your brain, alcohol can therefore lead to worse memory and impaired judgments, among other changes.

  • If you’re eating a restricted diet, not consuming adequate vitamins and minerals may result in experiencing some brain fog, says Pudumjee.
  • After an alcohol-induced stroke, it can take your brain several years to fully recover.
  • The brain’s recovery pace is different for everyone, so there is no set timeline.

If you’re struggling with your thinking or memory, now is the time to seek an evaluation. Finding the root cause of your cognitive problems can help you find the right treatment plan. The earlier you start with targeted solutions, the more effective they will be at helping you clear brain fog. Many people with this condition have trouble concentrating, remembering things, and making decisions, which can cause you to spiral into even deeper depression. Getting a targeted treatment plan based on the specific type of depression you have (there are 7 types of depression) can help minimize symptoms of brain fog. Physical exercise increases endorphins and gets more glucose and oxygen flowing to the brain.


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