Detox stands for detoxification and is a method used by drug rehab facilities for reducing withdrawal symptoms. Drug addiction can affect your body and mind in the short-term and long-term and treatment should be sought immediately.
If you don't know who to turn to for help, find a treatment center nearby or tell your regular doctor about your addiction and he or she will find you a facility nearby.
Here is a guide to help you learn more about drug detox and why it is effective.
Withdrawal and Drug Abuse Treatment
If you're struggling with drug abuse or addiction, the first step of your treatment program will be getting over withdrawal symptoms. Withdrawal can often be very painful and miserable with symptoms from nausea and vomiting, to an irregular heartbeat and muscle spasms. Detox uses medication therapy to help alleviate these symptoms and helps you get through the rest of the treatment.
The Purpose of Detox
Detox is generally used for reducing or eliminating the more severe withdrawal symptoms. The harsher drug you are addicted to, the worse your withdrawal symptoms will be. Not only does detox help alleviate the painful and uncomfortable symptoms, but it can prevent potentially dangerous situations.
Some symptoms, like irregular heartbeat, can get dangerous if you're not monitored. Finally, detox can help the withdrawal period be lessened by several days which make treatment easier and take less time.
Since the withdrawal period is one of the hardest parts of treatment, this is beneficial to most seeking treatment for drug abuse or addiction.
Drug Abuse Withdrawal Signs and Symptoms
There are a wide range of signs and symptoms you may experience during withdrawal. The severity of these symptoms depend on many factors, including what drugs you have been using, for how long you have been addicted, and based on the individual. Withdrawal can be as short as 2 days or as most 2 weeks; this is also dependent on your level of addiction. Withdrawal signs and symptoms may include any of the following:
- Nausea and Vomiting
- Mood Swings
- Irregular Heartbeat or Heart Palpitations
- Sweating or Chills
- Chest Tightening
- Muscle Spasms
- Body Tremors
- Muscle Tension
- Lack of Concentration
- Shortness of Breath
Because of the severity of some of these symptoms, medication therapy can be used to avoid things like seizure, heart attack, stroke, hallucinations or coma.
The Detox Process
Drug detox will begin as soon as you enter the treatment facility and begin your sobriety. Within 24 hours, your body and mind will begin experiencing any or all of the above withdrawal symptoms. This is when you will be monitored, given medication therapy and helped throughout the withdrawal period. As mentioned previously, this could last just a couple days or up to a week or longer. As your body deals with the lack of chemicals it is used to, you will be monitored for potentially dangerous symptoms and given pain relief medication if needed. This helps reduce the chance of relapse because of the intense withdrawal symptoms.
How Successful is Detox?
Detox is used by the majority of drug treatment facilities because of its high success rate. Not only does it help alleviate many of the side effects of withdrawal and can even save your life due to the monitoring, but it severely decreases your chance of relapse. If you have ever tried to quit using drugs on your own, you most likely went right back to them when you experienced nausea, headaches, heart palpitations, dizziness or mood differences. This is normal and why detox is so important.
When you are at a treatment facility being monitored they will do everything they can to make the process as easy for you as they can.
However keep in mind; you may not be given pain medication that takes away all the pain because it is another type of substance.
However you will be given medication for reducing the more serious side effects.
Detox is only one small part of a drug treatment program. If you or someone you know is struggling with drug abuse or addiction, you should seek help immediately by contacting a drug or alcohol rehab facility near you.