The Importance of Medical Detox
The road to recovery can be absolutely beautiful, but it is undeniably a difficult one to get started on. Addiction is a devastating disease – one that strips men and women of their friends, families, careers, and overall sense of purpose. Once an individual is in the mid-to-late stages of addiction, the hope for a fulfilled future will likely begin to dissipate. The idea of any future at all may seem dismal, and the afflicted individual may settle into a place of denial and utter hopelessness. For those suffering from addiction, this may seem like a rabbit hole far too deep to escape from. The truth of the matter is, no matter how far down the scale you have gone, recovery is always possible. In the majority of instances, all one needs is a brief removal from temptation, coupled with intensive and effective therapeutic treatment. This treatment process will almost always begin with a medical detox, during which an individual will undergo the symptoms of withdrawal in a safe, medically monitored environment.
What is Medical Detox?
There are three predominant steps when it comes to addiction recovery. All of these steps are equally as important, and skipping one will likely lead to eventual relapse. The first step is medical detox, which is designed to help alleviate the symptoms of withdrawal while exposing an individual to the remainder of the recovery process. In most instances, medical detox will last from several days to two or three weeks, depending on the severity of the symptoms, the length and frequency of use, and any potentially co-occurring disorders. Once an individual has agreed to seek professional help, he or she will be admitted into a detox, where a thorough evaluation will be conducted. A team of licensed medical professionals will decide which course of treatment will be the most effective, and then a personalized plan will be set in place. Because the symptoms of withdrawal can be so physically uncomfortable, many drug and alcohol-addicted individuals will return to using and drinking before the detox process is complete. This is why a closely monitored environment is necessary. Additionally, in some instances, withdrawal symptoms can be dangerous – even life-threatening. Certain types of chemical substances (such as benzodiazepines and alcohol) can lead to withdrawal symptoms such as decreased heart rate, seizures, and stroke. Other drug withdrawals may lead to severe psychological symptoms, such as extreme paranoia, insomnia, and suicidal ideation. Without professional, 24-hour supervision, these symptoms can prove absolutely devastating.
How Do I Know If I Need Detox?
If you or someone you love has been struggling with drug or alcohol dependency, medical detox is a necessary first step on the lifelong road to recovery. Fortunately, the resources needed to recover are readily available. We at Chapel Hill Detox have dedicated our lives to helping men and women of all ages make the changes needed to begin living a happy, fulfilled, drug-free life. No matter how hopeless you may feel, and no matter how much you have lost to the powerful grips of addiction, we are here to help.