Wet brain syndrome is one of the most serious and troubling aspects of severe alcohol use disorder. It indicates an urgent need for alcohol addiction treatment. People who drink in great quantities for extended periods can develop severe vitamin deficiencies, which can lead to Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome — more commonly known as wet brain.
If you or a loved one is having trouble stopping drinking, alcohol addiction treatment at The Bluffs may be able to help. Call our team at 850.374.5331 to learn more about our intensive treatment programs and how they can help you recover.
What Is Wet Brain?
Wet brain is a term used to refer to brain damage brought about by chronic alcohol use. The medical term for wet brain is Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome. It is typically brought on by severe thiamine deficiency that occurs in people who have been drinking for extended periods.
Wet Brain Definition
The specific wet brain definition can depend on certain biological and behavioral markers. There are two key elements of wet brain:
- Wernicke Encephalopathy – A degenerative brain disorder caused by thiamine deficiency
- Korsakoff Syndrome – A memory disorder that affects many people with severe alcohol use disorder
A person receives a diagnosis of wet brain syndrome when they have trouble recalling recent events, have extremely low levels of thiamine, or begin to show signs of psychosis.
Wet Brain Meaning and Symptoms
What is the basic wet brain meaning? When a person is experiencing wet brain syndrome, they may act in a very unusual manner. Additionally, they may have trouble remembering recent events.
They may not know where they are or what year it is, or they may have trouble remembering names and faces. In severe cases, they may also experience troubling visual, tactile, and auditory hallucinations.
In order to be diagnosed with wet brain, a person must be sober at the time of diagnosis. This is because alcohol use can often have similar effects as Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome, and the only way to differentiate between the two is to diagnose the patient in a period of sobriety.
Common symptoms of wet brain syndrome include:
- Double vision
- Memory loss
- Poor motor coordination
- Lack of focus
At medical detox centers, addiction professionals observe people detoxing from alcohol closely for signs of wet brain. If the signs are apparent, they may be able to administer treatments that can help to reverse the course of this dangerous syndrome.
Can You Recover from Wet Brain Syndrome?
Not everybody who experiences Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome will be able to recover. But medical intervention can stop the progression of the syndrome in its tracks, and some people will be able to achieve full recovery.
The first stage of wet brain syndrome is Wernicke encephalopathy. If medical professionals catch the syndrome in this first stage, targeted vitamin infusions and medications can help stop the progression into the second stage.
If people are already experiencing Korsakoff psychosis, they may never recover completely. The same treatments can help prevent the disease from getting worse, but many will suffer permanent brain damage as a result of alcohol use and vitamin deficiencies.
Get Help for Alcohol Addiction at The Bluffs
The best path to preventing wet brain syndrome is getting alcohol addiction treatment as soon as possible. If you or a loved one is having trouble stopping drinking, professional treatment can help overcome the symptoms of withdrawal, craving, and wet brain.
When you’re ready to begin treatment, reach out to our caring professionals at The Bluffs by calling 850.374.5331. Our team will be happy to support you in your recovery and can make sure that both your medical and psychological needs are cared for.