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drug and alcohol detox

What Happens During Detox?

For many people, detox is the first step on their addiction recovery journey. If you are seeking treatment for yourself or someone you love, you may be wondering what detox entails and how it can help. Here’s an overview of what happens during detox to help you make an informed decision on whether it’s the best way to establish a life of sobriety.

What Is the Goal of a Detox Program?

Whether it’s with alcohol, prescription medication or drugs such as meth or cocaine, ongoing substance abuse can create a physical dependence. The detox process involves managing withdrawal symptoms and keeping people safe and comfortable as their bodies and minds become free of the chemicals.

Not all people who have a drug or alcohol addiction will need to go through a complete detox process before moving into a qualified treatment program. However, detoxing is beneficial for people with severe addictions or those who haven’t been able to successfully detox on their own.

While long-term recovery involves getting to the root of the behavioral patterns, co-occurring disorders, and environmental factors that lead to addiction, the focus of detox is on safely purging the system of toxic substances to prepare for the later phases of the continuum of care.

Medically Supervised Detox

Cleansing the body and mind of drugs or alcohol can cause varying degrees of physical symptoms. Individuals who have used a drug longer often have a greater dependency on the substance, which can lead to more intense symptoms when the drug is no longer present.

Depending on the nature of the addiction, common withdrawal symptoms may include:

  • Anxiety
  • Sweating
  • Headaches
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Shaking or tremors
  • Fatigue
  • Irritability
  • Insomnia
  • High blood pressure
  • Racing or irregular heartbeat

Unlike trying to quit using drugs or alcohol cold turkey at home, medically assisted inpatient detox can minimize withdrawal issues and ensure a detox process takes place in safety and comfort. Medical professionals provide ‘round-the-clock monitoring and intervene according to your individual needs.

How Long Does It Take to Detox?

The length of the detox process varies depending on each recovering person’s unique circumstances.

Factors that may affect the length of detox include:

  • The substance you are detoxing from
  • Length and history of abuse
  • Amount of substance recently consumed
  • Severity of withdrawal symptoms
  • Degree of medical assistance required
  • Co-occurring disorders

Determining the Next Step in Addiction Treatment

While detox addresses the immediate cleansing of the body, long-term recovery requires addressing factors beyond physical dependence. The process provides a vital foundation for those addicted to substances like opiates, alcohol and benzodiazepines, but it is not a cure in itself.

Because detox alone does not equal recovery, it is essential for you to identify which course of treatment to pursue after you have completed your detox program successfully. These facilities offer individual counseling, group therapy and other measures to address the addiction itself, as well as any co-occurring mental health issues like PTSD, depression or anxiety. Completing a long-term rehabilitation program after detoxification will provide you with healthy coping mechanisms and teach you how to avoid common relapse triggers.

Contact Our California Detox Facility

At Inland Detox, we set the stage for a life of freedom from drug and alcohol addiction by helping our clients safely rid themselves of toxic substances before transitioning into the next level of care. There’s no reason to struggle with addiction any longer. Contact our team today to get started.