Drug & Alcohol Detox
When a SUD impairs an individual's life, treatment must be secured. Usually, a drug and alcohol detox is the first step in addiction recovery. Initiating the withdrawal process, removing harmful substances from the body enables people to adjust to life without drugs and alcohol.
What Is a Detox?
Detox occurs when someone dependent on drugs or alcohol stops using them. When medically administered, substances are flushed from the brain and body. Unbeknown to many, detox is suitable for a wide range of substance addictions such as:
- Synthetic drugs
- Prescription painkillers
As the detox process begins, it is not uncommon for a wide range of side effects to emerge. Though the side effects experienced entirely depend on the type of drug or alcohol used, they often include:
- Delirium tremens (DT)
- Aching muscles
- Excessive sweating
- Abdominal cramping
- High blood pressure
- Elevated heart rate
How Does a Detox Work?
The safest way to detox is via a rehab program or treatment center. Here, medical professionals are on hand to provide around-the-clock care and support.
Medication-assisted treatment, or MAT, is often employed as rehab programs are completed to mitigate severe and potentially life-threatening detox symptoms.
The medication prescribed depends on the substance abused. However, they typically include the following:
- Methadone - Used as long-term medication to help treat opioid use disorder (OUD), methadone is a controlled replacement for opioids such as heroin and fentanyl. Over time, medical professionals decrease the dose to reduce the intensity of withdrawal.
- Disulfiram - Commonly used to treat alcohol use disorders (AUD), disulfiram comes in tablet forms and is taken in the morning to alleviate cravings. It works by changing the way the body reacts to alcohol to discourage drinking.
- Buprenorphine - This treatment is similar to methadone as it acts as a maintenance drug to replace opioids. Buprenorphine also helps to shorten the side effects of opioid withdrawal.
Although medication is proven to assist those in recovery, it is typically combined with other treatments, such as therapy and support groups. This ensures that physical and psychological aspects of addiction can be overcome simultaneously. Therapy additionally uncovers any mental health problems that may have contributed to the development of an addiction.
Here at Empowered Recovery Clinic, we offer a range of medication and therapy options to suit all clients. We know that there is no one fit for all, which is why we provide a range of options, such as partial hospitalization and intensive outpatient treatment, for those who feel that residential treatment is not suitable for them.
How Long Does Withdrawal Last?
There is no concrete timeline for how long withdrawal can last, even when medically assisted. Factors that can influence how long withdrawal symptoms persist include:
- The type of drugs or alcohol used
- How long the substance has been used for
- The quantity of substances in an individual's system at the time of detox
- Physical health
- Mental health
In the case of alcohol withdrawal syndrome (AWS), symptoms can begin as soon as six hours after your last drink and persist for over a week. When detoxing from opioids, symptoms can appear around eight hours after the last use. Alcohol withdrawal symptoms span several weeks, while opioid withdrawal symptoms can linger for months.
However, medication can aid and reduce these symptoms drastically. As noted above, treatments such as methadone can help manage withdrawal until a person is ready to stop taking medication entirely. When combined with mental health care and therapy, medication reduces the risk of relapse.
Symptoms of Drug and Alcohol Addiction
The symptoms of SUD vary depending on the substance used and the length of time it is used for. They can include:
- Frequently appearing intoxicated
- Isolating from friends and family members
- Changes in mood
- Increased irritability
- Mood swings
- Choosing to drink alcohol or use drugs over other activities or hobbies
- Physical restlessness
- Missing work, school, or appointments
- Financial and legal issues
Though substance abuse looks different for everyone, it is a severe condition that requires immediate treatment. Completing a drug and alcohol detox program is advised if you recognize any of these symptoms in yourself or a loved one.
When left untreated, drug and alcohol abuse can lead to many long-term health problems. These include:
- High blood pressure
- Heart disease
- Reduced cognitive function
Receiving treatment for AUD and drug abuse can limit these health conditions. They additionally pave the way towards a substance-free life.
Benefits of Drug & Alcohol Rehab
Treatment facilities are ideal for those who want to overcome a drug or alcohol addiction. Some of the key benefits of a rehab program include:
- Care and support from staff
- Family therapy
- Individual therapy
- Support groups
- Safe, medicated detox
- Regular medical checkups
- At Empowered Recovery Center, we aim to support each client through their journey towards a physical, mental, and emotional recovery. We offer several programs to support our clients and provide appropriate education to prevent the possibility of relapse. Our treatment programs include:
- Partial hospitalization - This form of treatment requires clients to attend a rehab program every day for several hours. This is suitable for those who require additional support and potentially need to be medically supervised.
- Intensive outpatient treatment - Outpatient treatment allows clients to continue their day-to-day life while attending therapy sessions for several hours per week.
- Outpatient programming - This is a less intense form of intensive outpatient treatment. During outpatient programming, clients attend a reduced number of therapy and counseling sessions.
Each of our programs contain a family therapy component as standard. As the family is a vital support system for those trying to overcome their addiction, educating family members on addiction can help to reduce the risk of relapse.
We aim to give our clients the tools and education they need to succeed upon completing one of our treatment programs. To ensure that additional support is provided, we equip each of our clients with a full year of aftercare.
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In doing so, our team of medical professionals will inform you of your options and help you select a suitable program based on your recovery needs.
Should you attend our rehab center, we will provide you with a wealth of guidance as you progress through your detox program. We will also ensure you have comprehensive therapy and aftercare to support you even after leaving our program.
Drug rehab support area: Drug Rehab
Alcohol rehab support area: