The hardest part of addiction recovery is the decision to get sober. The second hardest part is detox.
Detoxing is your body’s process of ridding itself of its dependence on alcohol or other addictive substances. The first 6-72 hours after the last time you use can be filled with dangerous and painful symptoms. At their worst, they can even be life-threatening.
This is why a medically managed detox is the best way to handle this process. These detoxes occur under the supervision of medical professionals. They can reduce the severity of symptoms and intervene if they become deadly.
When it comes to alleviating pain associated with withdrawal symptoms and mitigating risk, medically managed detox is the safest path to recovery. We’ll help you learn why in this guide.
Never Detox at Home
Detoxing at home after a long period of heavy consumption can be dangerous and even life-threatening. The symptoms of withdrawal are serious. Without medical help, they can push a recovering addict back to using.
If you are planning to detox, you need to make sure that you are in a place where medical professionals can help you manage the symptoms of withdrawal. Never take the chance of detoxing on your own. It could cost you your life.
You may be wondering, how long does it take to detox from alcohol? Withdrawal symptoms usually last about 72 hours. In severe cases, some addicts may experience symptoms for a month or more.
There are many alcohol withdrawal symptoms that occur within 6 to 12 hours of having your last drink. They can include tremors, nausea, vomiting, and loss of appetite. You may also experience headaches, sweating, confusion, stress, anxiety, and sleep disturbances.
Within the next 12 to 28 hours, you may begin to experience hallucinations and seizures. Within 48 to 72 hours the hallucinations can become more severe.
You may also experience disorientation and an increased heart rate. High blood pressure and rising temperature are other commons symptoms. This is also the period when delirium tremens begins.
Delirium tremens is also called alcohol withdrawal syndrome and abbreviated as DT. The symptoms of DT include an increase in blood pressure, racing heart, and body tremors. DT can also cause dehydration and reduction of blood flow to the brain.
Delirium tremens can worsen existing hallucinations. It can also result in restlessness and even seizures.
The symptoms of DT aren’t just physical. There are many cognitive symptoms of DT that recovering addicts may suffer from. These symptoms include confusion, disorientation, mood swings, depression, and nervous or angry behavior.
This is one of the reasons it’s so important to choose a facility that offers medically managed detox and therapy. These rehabilitation procedures can help you transition into a healthy life. Professionals can teach you coping mechanisms and strategies to help manage withdrawal symptoms.
Another common addictive substance is benzodiazepines or benzos. People attempting to quit abusing these substances may also experience serious withdrawal symptoms.
Benzos are often prescribed by doctors to treat mental illness and sleep disorders. However, the way these drugs impact brain chemistry can cause dependence and addiction. This is especially true if they are used improperly or illegally.
Common examples of benzos include Xanax, Valium, and Librium. Rohypnol or Roofies are also considered benzos. Other common benzos are Klonopin, Halcion, and Ativan.
The physical withdrawal symptoms from benzos can be serious. They include lack of appetite, delirium, hyperventilation, and insomnia. Recovering addicts may also find themselves hypersensitive to loud noises.
Other benzos withdrawal symptoms include muscle spasms, panic attacks, seizures, and excessive sweating. Tremors, weight loss, and heart palpitations can also occur.
Withdrawal from benzos can also cause headaches, muscular pain, and stiffness. Psychological symptoms include anxiety, mood swings, irritability, and psychotic reactions.
The symptoms of opioid withdrawal can also be severe if not managed by a medical professional. Common opioids include heroin and codeine.
Pain relievers such as oxycodone, or OxyContin, and hydrocodone, or Vicodin are also opioids. As are fentanyl and morphine.
Opioid withdrawal symptoms include abdominal cramping, diarrhea, dilated pupils, goosebumps, and muscle aches. Recovering addicts may also experience high blood pressure, insomnia, and nausea.
During withdrawal, a patient’s heart rate may increase suddenly. They may also experience restlessness, runny nose, sweating, teary eyes, and vomiting.
Recovering addicts are also vulnerable to anxiety and depression. These symptoms can push recovering addicts back into using.
This is why it is critical to begin the detox process in a controlled environment. Medical professionals can help ease your body’s transition out of substance dependence.
Withdrawal from stimulants can also result in unpleasant symptoms. Common stimulants include cocaine, meth, and Adderall.
Stimulant withdrawal symptoms can include anxiety, depression, and fatigue. Recovering addicts may also experience insomnia, irritability, panic attacks, slowed thinking, and nightmares. Increased levels of anxiety and depression can lead to suicidal thoughts as well.
Because of this, it is crucial to begin the detox process in a place that provides psychological support. This can help mitigate the long-term effects of these symptoms. Medical professionals can help you find healthy ways to manage them going forward.
Why Chose Medically Managed Detox?
Medically managed detox is by far the best way to ease your body through the detox process. It allows your body to rid itself of the influence of harmful substances in a comfortable and controlled environment.
Under the supervision of medical professionals, you can restore balance in your life. They can help you ease your brain and body back to functioning on their own.
Doctors often prescribe recovering addicts medications. They help reduce the severity and pain of withdrawal symptoms. These doctors are also available if life-threatening symptoms such as seizures occur.
An in-patient treatment center will also provide you with psychological and behavioral counseling. They will also give you the support you need to continue recovery. Relapse occurs in 40-60% of adults in recovery. Having a controlled environment during detox is essential for managing cravings and triggers that can lead to a relapse.
Detox is only the first step of recovery. The next involves counseling, therapy, and a commitment to sobriety. Medically managed detox will help ease you into this next step and increase your chance of staying sober after treatment.
Take Your Next Step Today
If you’re ready to get sober, medically managed detox is the safest path to recovery. It will help you get through the pain of withdrawal symptoms and reduce the risk of experiencing ones that could be fatal.
You deserve to live a joyful and healthy life free from the influence of addictive substances. Reach out to us and let our professionals help you take the next step on your journey to recovery today.