Addiction involves a physical dependency and to break this cycle you must first go through a withdrawal period called detoxification. Drug detox should always take place under the care of a medical professional – either in an outpatient or inpatient setting. In-home detox is typically not recommended as it can be too dangerous, and even deadly.
Three Steps to Detox From Drugs Safely
In most cases, detox requires three steps: Evaluation, Stabilization, and Preparation for Treatment.
This step screens for physical and mental health issues and a comprehensive medical history is taken. At this time, a blood test will determine the amount of drugs in your body and the amount of medication that is required.
At this point medical professionals will work to stabilize you with medical treatments and medications that help with withdrawal symptoms and ease the detox process.
Prepare for Treatment
This final step prepares the patient for a drug treatment program. You will want to be ready for the next step in the recovery process when detox is complete.
Options for detoxing include inpatient and outpatient treatment. There are benefits to both and it simply depends on the level of addiction and support system around you. Your treatment program or medical professional can evaluate your needs and make a recommendation.
Inpatient Detox Programs
Inpatient detox is best for someone with a significant history of drug abuse and who requires round-the-clock medical and emotional support. It can be the most expensive option and disrupts normal routines, but offers a high success rate.
Outpatient Detox Programs
Outpatient detox is a good option for addictions that are somewhat severe but do not require constant monitoring at a residential facility. This allows you to keep your normal daily routines, but requires family and community support as the patient returns home after each treatment sessions. You can expect to spend 10-12 hours per week in treatment sessions. Or in some cases, a healthcare agency worker can come to your home and track your progress there.
Drug detox should never be done at home or on your own, without medical supervision. Doing so could prove fatal as relapse is more likely, which could result in overdose and death. It could result in other negative health consequences such as cardiovascular problems, delirium and seizures, and mental health issues. The only time home detox is possible is if it is under medical supervision with a strong support system, and the patient isn’t using a drug with serious withdrawal symptoms.
If detox is not done properly at an inpatient or outpatient facility, the effects of withdrawal can be very dangerous – both physically and mentally. Some side effects of withdrawal include:
- Sleep problems
- Cognitive problems
- Heart problems
- Nausea and vomiting
- Tremors and shaking
- Heart attack
Detox with Qualified Professionals
This first step in the recovery process can be difficult and requires professionals who can keep you healthy throughout detox. At Footprints, we offer a safe environment for detoxification with a qualified team. Once completed, we can transition you to an addiction treatment program at our facility. Contact us today to speak to a detox expert and get start on your journey to wellness.
- Drug and Alcohol Withdrawal. AddictionsandRecovery.org. (accessed Nov 16 2018).