Drug and Alcohol Detox
What is detoxification?
Detoxification is the process by which toxic substances are removed from the body through medicinal or physiological practices. This process usually takes a certain period in which all harmful substances in the human body are eliminated, and one is required to abstain from them.
Drug detox and alcohol detox is usually the first step to sobriety, and it is done to help addicts manage their withdrawal symptoms. When a person decides to stop the use of a certain drug, the withdrawal symptoms may be too severe and unmanageable. This can force them to get back on the drug solely because its withdrawals are causing more harm than good. Luckily, detoxification helps with managing the withdrawal symptoms.
Types of addictions it treats
Detoxification is used to treat various types of addiction. Some of the addiction it treats includes:
- Alcohol addiction
- Opioids, e.g. heroine
- Stimulants, e.g. cocaine
Drug detox and alcohol detox is essential for harmful drugs such as alcohol and opioids whose withdrawal symptoms can be fatal. The detoxification process is different for everyone depending on the drug they are using and the period of use. If the person has been using the drug for a long time, the detox process may take longer because the body has gotten used to having the drug in the system.
The withdrawal period will also vary in this case. Since the body is so used to the drug, it may take months for one to completely get rid of it in the body making the withdrawal longer. Other factors that also affect the detoxification process include:
- Method of drug abuse, e.g. smoking, snorting
- Amount of drugs and alcohol ingested at one time
- The medical condition that a person has
- Family history
The drug detox and alcohol detox usually begin by checking into a rehab center or facility. It is highly recommended to perform detoxification in a rehab center where one has professionals that can take care of them. Once checked in the detox process will begin immediately and it involves three main steps. These steps are evaluation, stabilization and transition to treatment. Evaluation involves the gathering of relevant information from a patient for the treatment such as blood tests. One is given alternative medication that helps ease the removal of the harmful drugs from the body, and this is the next step, which is stabilization. The drug detox and alcohol detox will help greatly in easing the discomfort that comes with withdrawal symptoms.
Once the detox process is complete, it lowers the risk of one continuing to abuse harmful substances. However, it is essential to note that detoxification is not treatment. One can fall back again to drug abuse if they are not careful. Therefore, one should admit to a rehab center to begin their treatment in addiction, which is the last step the transition to treatment. While detoxification helps in eliminating harmful substances, it is a harmful process that is life-threatening and dangerous. It should never be carried out without supervision because severe medical conditions may arise.