What is Detox?

Detoxification, or detox, is the process of allowing the body to eliminate the build-up of drugs, chemicals, or alcohol in it. The purpose of detox is to safely manage withdrawal symptoms when someone stops taking drugs or alcohol.

Everyone has a different experience with detox. The type of drug and how long it was used affect what detox will be like.

Medications used in detox help keep former users comfortable while the drugs leave their body. More importantly, particularly in the case of alcohol, going “cold turkey” can be deadly, so medically supervised detox is a medical necessity. Serenity Lodge has licensed medical professionals and 24-hour nursing staff on duty to help patients manage symptoms as comfortably as possible.

Importance of Detoxing

Getting the existing drugs or alcohol out of your system is an important step to beginning treatment for addiction. Many drugs remain in the system for days or weeks after the last use. Detoxification can be an uncomfortable process because the body often exhibits withdrawal symptoms as it gets used to not having the drug available anymore. In some cases, these withdrawal symptoms can be dangerous, even causing seizures or a stroke. Most alcohol and drug treatment programs that include detoxification require that the patient be under the care of a qualified medical professional during the detox process. Being monitored by a physician also ensures compliance with the detoxification and treatment program.

What To Expect

It can take days or months to get through withdrawal symptoms for most drugs. The length of withdrawal depends on a number of factors, including:

  • Type of substance the user is addicted to
  • Duration an addiction has lasted
  • The severity of the addiction
  • Method of abuse (snorting, smoking, injecting, or swallowing)
  • The amount of a substance the user takes at one time
  • Family history
  • Genetic makeup
  • Medical condition
  • Underlying mental health conditions

Drug Detox

The specific details of a drug detox program depend on the drug or drugs that the user is addicted to. In most cases, the actual detoxification process takes only a few days to a week to complete. With some drugs,  tapered medical protocols are used to manage withdrawal symptoms safely and comfortably. Drugs that are short-acting tend to produce stronger but shorter-lasting withdrawal symptoms. The detox process for other drugs may require administration of medication, such as small amounts of methadone or suboxone for those with an opioid addiction.

Alcohol Detox

Detoxification from alcohol can be the most severe as withdrawal symptoms, such as delirium tremens, can be deadly. According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, most alcoholics require four to seven days to completely detoxify from alcohol. During detox, the patient may experience nausea, shaking, sweatiness, and anxiety as withdrawal symptoms.

After Detox

After completing a detox program, the individual in recovery still needs to go through treatment to complete his recovery. A large misconception among the general populace is that drug and alcohol addiction are connected to physical needs for the drug. Physical withdrawal is actually only a very small part of the recovery process, which is why extended treatment is always needed to rebuild the brain and mental health.

Therapy and group support programs are usually necessary to help the patient develop methods of dealing with problems and temptation without resorting to drug use. This therapy and support can be accomplished in a residential treatment clinic or through outpatient services. Without follow-up treatment, detoxification is unlikely to cause any permanent changes and the user is likely to relapse soon after the initial detox. However, participation in a treatment program can vastly improve the odds that the detoxification will lead to a permanent cessation of drug use. Contact us at (866) 755-9043 for more information.

Drug & Alcohol Detox at Serenity Lodge

Detox is one of the most common entry points for people entering recovery. There is a lot of fear around it being the worst part of the recovery process, but, with good care by medical professionals, like that offered at Serenity Lodge, it doesn’t have to be.

Located in California, our 22-acre, amenity-rich facility allows Guests to relax while focusing on recovery. During detox, men can take advantage of:

  • Gym for fitness therapy
  • Library
  • Pool and hot tub
  • Recording studio

Stop letting addiction control how you live. Our proven therapies can help you conquer substance abuse for good. Call Serenity Lodge at 866-379-4365.