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Drug Detox for Alcohol and Drug Addiction



Drug detox is the process of getting rid of the toxins and other harmful substances accumulated in the body as a result of the intake of drugs. It is one of the beginning steps of recovering from alcohol and drug addiction. Sometimes withdrawal from drugs can be very severe or even pose danger to the patient’s health. In this case, it is critically important to undergo a medically monitored drug detox program as the primary step to getting drug free.

The objective of a drug detox program is to manage drug withdrawal effects and to assess the addict for their need of continuing with drug rehab. In a few cases, withdrawal symptoms can be extremely terrible, particularly during the first week of recovery. After the drug detox process is successfully complete, the drug rehab process follows. In many cases, this will carry on throughout the person’s life.

Getting Started

Before you take the plunge into drug detox, it is highly advisable that you educate yourself thoroughly. There is a lot of helpful information available on the internet regarding drug detoxing. This process can be terribly uncomfortable so it is best to get equipped with adequate information beforehand in order to prepare for success. Planning ahead can be tricky, but it is well worth it. In addition, it is important to get assistance because the success rate of the detox process increases considerably if the patient gets professional help during the recovery process.

The Process of Drug Detox

Generally, the detoxification process is difficult and may include several methods depending on the type of the patient’s addiction, whether physical or psychological addiction, as well as the drug rehab center, is chosen. Detoxing is usually the period when the body is physically adjusting to the changes of a drug-free life. The process allows the body time to adapt to the transitions without the risk that is normally associated with withdrawal becoming irresistible.

The process can also vary in length with some fast processes leading to completion in less than 6 or 7 hours. Drug detox is usually accomplished using a pharmacological or chemical process. Through the pharmaceutical method, medical professionals administer the correct medicines to flush out the toxins and other harmful substances accumulated in the body. Most medical professionals however recommend using a natural detox process when possible.

The Detox Treatment

Basically there are two major treatments for the drug detox namely; in-patient and outpatient treatment. Within the inpatient treatment, the detox center provides 24 hours of help in a day. The medical professionals help the patient during this time by ensuring that their body is able to handle the changes.

The new environment of the in-patient treatments usually helps the addict to live a drug-free life. Hospitals are mostly used for the in-patient treatments but sometimes residential surroundings are also used for the treatments. These treatments are conducted for both long-term and short-term periods with full medical supervision.

Inpatient treatments typically consist of medical stabilization, abstinence from drugs, and lifestyle changes. This means that the patient may be given medications that will alleviate the withdrawal symptoms and also help stabilize the body. Due to the level of support given, inpatient treatments are often recommended for individuals who are extremely addicted to drugs. After the inpatient care is complete, outpatient treatments are recommended for care, regular check-ups, and follow-ups.

Possible Effects

Alcohol and drug detox can be extremely dangerous if not done with proper medical supervision and support from experts in this field. Naturally, this shouldn’t be attempted. Besides being unsafe, drug detox can also result in some acute complications and effects on the body such as anxiety, high blood pressure, nausea, seizure, and hallucinations. The nature and severity of these effects largely depend on the level and nature of substance dependency.

Additionally, there is a period of time required for any drug or alcohol detox process, which depends on the method used. If done in a medical environment and is well supervised, the process can take roughly 3-5 days. But in drug detoxes such as opiates, heroin, methadone, and benzodiazepines, the process can take about 5 to 7 days.

After Detox

After the process of drug detoxification, the patient will need to go through the second phase of addiction treatment. Although drug detox is intended to help reduce the physical dependence on drugs and alcohol, treatment in established drug rehab is intended to help reduce mental and emotional dependence on the substance.

Performing drug detox to completion can help an individual feel better inside and out. The most important thing is to stay healthy during the process of drug detox, do a few physical exercises, and also maintain a good attitude towards the whole process.