What is Detoxification?
Detoxification, also known as detoxing, refers to the process of withdrawal from an addictive substance.
Whether it’s alcohol or drugs, withdrawals can be a painful process. This discomfort is one of the primary reasons that individuals are unsuccessful when trying to quit on their own.
Upon entering the Fair Oaks Recovery Center, each client completes a physical exam, health history, and usage assessment with a physician. Fair Oak’s medical and therapeutic teams develop a plan for the client that addresses individual risk factors for withdrawal with care and compassion.
Our commitment to your healing journey means you are not alone. When the detoxification or detox process begins, individual therapists and trained nursing staff are readily available to offer support.
As the body adjusts, the withdrawal process can be both emotional and physical. Symptoms vary depending on the type of substance and the length of use. Emotional symptoms often include anxiety, restlessness, insomnia, and depression. Physical symptoms may include nausea, diarrhea, sweating, and a racing heart.
It is crucial to the health of the patient that the detoxification process is monitored by a supervised medical specialist. A supervised detox can help you begin your path to sobriety as comfortably and quickly as possible. Think of it as a way to “kick start” your recovery.
Severe detox symptoms from alcohol withdrawal can be life-threatening and, therefore, should not be ignored. They can include but are not limited to: nausea, vomiting, insomnia, tremors, sweating, seizures, hallucinations, increased heart rate, and anxiety. The severest form of alcohol withdrawal is known as delirium tremens, or DTs. As with many detox symptoms, they may seem mild at first but can become serious quite quickly. It is always strongly recommended to seek professional help if your loved one is suffering from alcohol withdrawal symptoms.
Withdrawals from benzodiazepines can also have severe detox symptoms and, as with alcohol withdrawals, they can be life threatening. Benzodiazepine withdrawal symptoms can include sweating, muscle cramps, nausea, vomiting, headaches, dizziness, and seizures. If someone abruptly stops taking benzodiazepines, severe detox symptoms can be the result. A medically supervised detox will ensure your loved one is safe and comfortable during this process.
Severe detox symptoms from opiate withdrawal can also occur. Some symptoms from opiate withdrawal may include insomnia, nausea, vomiting, stomach cramps, sweating, rapid heart rate, anxiety, dilated pupils, restless legs, and muscle or joint pain. Severe detox symptoms from opiates may be accompanied by extreme cravings for the drug, which makes it very difficult for the sufferer. Again, medical professionals will be able to assist in the process to ensure the most comfortable and safe detox for your loved one.
Amphetamine and methamphetamine withdrawals can also have severe detox symptoms associated with them, such as psychosis, depression, hallucinations, irritability, excessive sleeping, and an excessive appetite. Psychosis may pose the greatest threat, as the person may have no concept of reality.
Detoxification is the First Step to Recovery
Detoxification is different for everyone. Typically most clients can expect to spend five to seven days in detox. Once detox is complete, the majority of our clients continue through Fair Oak’s residential treatment program to ensure that they have a solid footing for long-lasting recovery.
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