Drug and Alcohol Detox
Drug and alcohol detox helps you safely and comfortably eliminate substances from your body so you can start recovering. Promises offers inpatient detox from drugs and alcohol in a soothing, home-like environment.
What Is Drug and Alcohol Detox Like?
We understand entering drug rehab is stressful. We’re here to help you every step of the way – from detox, throughout treatment and into recovery. During detox, we manage the physical changes that occur in the brain and body after repeated drug use while providing the highest level of comfort and support. Our medical teams use the latest evidence-based medications and alternative therapies.
Here’s what you can expect in alcohol and drug detox:
Comprehensive Assessments – Your treatment team will conduct physical exams and psychological assessments to determine the most effective detox approaches based on your drug(s) of abuse, medical history and individual needs.
Round-the-Clock Care – You’ll be monitored around the clock by staff that checks vital signs and make sure you’re feeling comfortable and cared for. We’ll be there to promptly attend to any discomfort or concerns.
Medications – Our physicians may prescribe research-backed medications as clinically appropriate to ease the physical and psychological symptoms of withdrawal.
Home-Like Comfort – Far from a stark, hospital-like environment, our drug and alcohol detox facilities are home-like and welcoming. You’ll enjoy comfortable furnishings and warm décor in serene settings.
Alternative Approaches – Some of our drug detox programs incorporate alternative approaches to help manage withdrawal symptoms. Depending on the Promises location these may include services like therapeutic massage or acupuncture.
Alcohol and Drug Detox Tailored to You
Like the rest of the treatment experience at Promises, drug detox is carefully tailored to your specific needs. Medications and alternative approaches are based on the type and severity of your addiction.
Recognizing that some clients may not be able to benefit from beginning treatment while in detox, you’re not required to participate in structured groups or other programming. However, if you’re ready to begin substance abuse treatment and are cleared by our medical team, we encourage you to begin attending groups and therapy sessions during detox.
Can I Detox at Home?
Self-detox or going “cold turkey” is when people quit using drugs or alcohol without the support of medical professionals who can ease withdrawal symptoms and cravings and make sure drug detox is safe. While the intentions of self-detox are positive, the outcomes are often not. Many people who self-detox eventually turn to a professional drug or alcohol detox program after failed attempts to “go it alone.” Others will have such a negative self-detox experience that they fall back into their addiction. Some may even have fatal outcomes.
Drug and alcohol detox at home comes with many risks. If conducted improperly or without medical supervision, detox can be painful, even life-threatening in certain cases. The discomfort of withdrawal is one of the primary reasons people relapse or put off treatment altogether. In addition, self-detox does not provide the mental and emotional support needed to maintain sobriety and make lasting lifestyle changes.
Drug and alcohol detox is only the first step in recovery. The most effective medical detox centers will provide 24/7 medical care and research-backed medications to ensure a safe and comfortable experience. At Promises, nearly all of our clients complete detox and move forward with their recovery program. That’s because we use evidence-based approaches to make detox as gentle and comfortable as possible. You’re in good hands with our compassionate, expertly trained medical teams.
What Drugs Require Detox?
It’s best to consult a physician if you’re thinking about quitting any type of substance you’ve been abusing in large quantities or for long periods of time. Depending on the severity of your addiction, your unique physical and psychological makeup, and the type of substance abused, detox has the potential to be painful or dangerous.
Substances that have the highest potential for difficult and/or dangerous withdrawal symptoms include:
Alcohol – If you’ve been drinking regularly or in large amounts, it’s important to seek medical assistance and not try to quit alcohol “cold turkey” on your own. Research shows about half of people who have an alcohol addiction will experience severe withdrawal symptoms in its absence. These could include seizures, delirium tremens, dehydration, anxiety, panic attacks, hallucinations and death.
Heroin and other opioids – Many people who try to quit using heroin, Oxycontin, morphine or other opiates on their own relapse because detox is so difficult. Continued use of opiates can change how nerve cells in the brain function, so suddenly stopping opiates can bring on severe physical discomfort and unpleasant feelings that the body can no longer regulate on its own. Opiate withdrawal symptoms like muscle and bone aches, intense cravings, diarrhea, vomiting, dehydration, restlessness and anxiety can feel unbearable without help.
Benzodiazepines – Benzodiazepines can have medical benefits under the care of a physician, but when abused may lead to severe physical and psychological dependence. Withdrawal from benzos with brand names like Xanax, Valium and Klonopin can be difficult. If you’ve been abusing alcohol or other substances along with benzos, detox can be especially dangerous. Benzo withdrawal symptoms may include seizures, sweating, tremors, hallucinations and panic attacks.
Stimulants – Stimulants like cocaine and methamphetamines change the brain’s chemistry and can cause intense depression and anxiety symptoms when you stop abusing them. Use of methamphetamines and cocaine impact the central nervous system and boost levels of mood-enhancing chemicals like norepinephrine and dopamine. Often, use of these substances results in euphoria, alertness and increased energy, which can be physically and psychologically addictive.
Researchers found that people withdrawing from meth experienced psychotic symptoms and depression for one week and craved the drug for at least five weeks. The abrupt drop in dopamine may also cause meth users to have insomnia, paranoia and hallucinations. Cocaine withdrawal may include intense anxiety, agitation, cravings, paranoia and insomnia.
How Long Does Detox Take?
Detox typically takes 2-7 days depending on the drug and individual. For some substances, lingering effects like anxiety, depression, insomnia and cravings may continue for weeks to several months.
The time it takes to detox depends on:
- The drug(s) abused
- How long you’ve been abusing substances
- How much of a drug you’ve been abusing
- Your physical and mental health
While drug detox is different for everyone, general timelines for commonly abused drugs include:
Alcohol detox – People who are addicted to alcohol may begin experiencing withdrawal symptoms about six hours after their last drink. Alcohol detox occurs in three phases:
- 1-3 days after last drink – This is the first and most dangerous phase of alcohol withdrawal as your body tries to reestablish normal functioning without alcohol. Without medical treatment, you’re at high risk for seizures, delirium tremens, dehydration, heart palpitations and other severe symptoms.
- 5-7 days after last drink – Alcohol withdrawal symptoms lessen in intensity, but you may still have anxiety, insomnia and gastrointestinal problems.
- Weeks to months after last drink – You may continue to experience mild anxiety, lethargy and other psychological symptoms as your brain continues to rebalance and your body mends from the damage of alcohol abuse.
Opiate detox – Withdrawal typically begins within one day if you’ve been abusing opiates. The first 72 hours are usually the most difficult with elevated heart rate, vomiting, chills, stomach cramps and intense cravings. Typically these symptoms subside by day three to five leaving fatigue, chills and muscle soreness. Psychological symptoms like depression and anxiety may last for several weeks or months.
Benzo detox – The first three days can be the toughest. Without medical treatment you may experience psychotic episodes, heart palpitations, panic attacks and seizures. Less intense symptoms like insomnia and anxiety get less severe over several months.
Stimulant detox – The length of stimulant withdrawal depends on the type of stimulant. It also depends on how fast-acting the stimulant is. Usually you’ll experience a “crash” within a day or two of the last dose. During this time, methamphetamines and cocaine can bring about physical and psychological complications. Withdrawal symptoms range from paranoia and depression to tremors and aches. Sleep issues as well as depression or anxiety may linger for several weeks.
What Happens After Drug and Alcohol Detox?
Detox is an important step in sobriety, but it’s not the last. For the best chance of staying sober, detox should be followed by comprehensive addiction treatment. Just eliminating drugs and alcohol from your body doesn’t help to address the reasons you were abusing substances in the first place. Detox only begins to touch on the mental and emotional issues that could be fueling drug abuse.
Inpatient drug rehab provides a safe place away from triggers to focus on yourself and getting better. Individual and group therapy help you learn why you’ve abused drugs and connect with people going through similar experiences. Sober activities, alternative therapies and aftercare planning help you build a strong foundation so you can stay sober after leaving addiction treatment.
Take the First Step to a Better Life
You aren’t expected to have a clear plan for how to get from where you are now to where you want to be. You may not feel ready to give up drugs and alcohol. You may not know what’s next for you after detox. That’s why we’re here – to guide you along the path to recovery, one step at a time. Call us today. We can help!
To learn more about Drug and Alcohol Detox, call 844-876-5568