Detoxification is one of the biggest obstacles to recovery for most addicts.
The First Step: Detox at Divine House
What Is Detoxification?
Detoxification is the process of eliminating substances within the body in a controlled environment, so as to ease the symptoms of withdrawal. Detox is the first step in treating substance abuse, and is usually followed by a residential addiction recovery program. Patients with active addictions and serious withdrawal risks must go through detoxification before they can be integrated into any long-term treatment programs.
Not everyone who enters addiction rehab actually needs detox. Detox and residential care are targeted toward individuals who are currently struggling with substance addiction and are physically or psychologically dependent on the substance and its effects. Once the substance is no longer available to them, the physical and mental distress can range from mildly uncomfortable to potentially fatal. For all these reasons, detox is usually the first stage of treatment and almost all clients will spend their first 24 to 48 hours at the detox level of care just to make sure they are medically safe to begin their residential program.
Medically Assisted Detox Protects Against the Risks of Withdrawals
The reality of detoxing from drugs and alcohol is far less simple than many people realize. While it might seem like a good idea to lock yourself in a room for a few days, trying to handle detox on your own can actually be extremely dangerous.
When a person becomes dependent on drugs and alcohol, their body becomes physically dependent on the substances to function normally. When they are suddenly withheld, even basic bodily processes begin to falter. This period of struggle is known as withdrawal, and it can be extremely physically and mentally difficult.
The intensity of a person’s withdrawal depends on a variety of factors, such as the type of substance, the typical dosage, the frequency of use, and how long they’ve been using it. For someone in poor general health, the strain of withdrawal on their body may even be fatal.
Detoxing in a safe environment with professional medical support drastically reduces withdrawal risks and improves outcomes. It’s also much more comfortable than trying to detox alone; staff are always on hand to help patients with their needs, and doctors can prescribe temporary medications to help ease uncomfortable symptoms.
Common Withdrawal Symptoms
Everyone’s experience with withdrawal and detox is unique, but there are a number of common symptoms that can occur.
Examples of withdrawal symptoms include:
- Tremors (shaking)
- Nausea and/or vomiting
- Fever and/or chills
- Hallucinations (visual, auditory, etc.)
- Muscle pain
- GI distress (cramps, diarrhea, constipation)
- Anxiety and/or paranoia
- Increase in mental health symptoms (depression, mania)
These symptoms may be more intense for some than they are for others. Even when withdrawal symptoms aren’t severe, it can still be extremely difficult to withstand without support. This is when substance cravings hit the hardest, and it’s the point where many relapse without professional help.
Our Unique Approach to Detox
One of our greatest assets is our strong basis in healthcare. Unlike most other treatment facilities, Divine House is founded and run by board-certified doctors and other trained medical professionals that work onsite and in direct contact with each patient. Instead of sending patients out to third-party clinics and detoxification centers, we’re able to provide all of the initial care in a peaceful setting with 24/7 monitoring.
Medical detoxification is a medication-assisted treatment process with clinical supervision. By administering long-acting small doses of medication that mimics the drug, medical staff are able to free the patient from their dependency with safe, systematic withdrawal. If the patient is at risk of life-threatening withdrawal complications (such as with alcohol and benzodiazepines), a doctor may administer additional detox medications to prevent them.
How Long Does Drug and Alcohol Detox Take?
At Divine House, this first step is typically a 5- to 7-day drug detox program, but it can take more or less time depending on the nature of the dependency and how quickly a person’s body is able to eliminate remaining substances. Factors like substance type, dosage, age, weight, gender, and overall physical health can all play a role in how long detox lasts.
What Happens Next?
Detoxification from substances is only the first step in addiction treatment. Next, patients begin working through an individual comprehensive treatment program. Once the physical dependency has been broken, various therapies can be used to target the psychological and emotional aspects of addiction. For someone trying to stop drinking, a 7-day alcohol detox program opens the door to the path of rehabilitation.
After completing residential treatment, we help patients continue their care in our outpatient program or transition back into their lives. Regardless of their path, our help includes securing housing in one of our sober living facilities, employment, trade schools or continued academic education and even personal betterment endeavors such as volunteer and community service work that boosts esteem and fosters gratitude.
Types of Substance Abuse Issues We Treat
The umbrella of substance use disorders covers a wide range of substances and experiences. Whether you’ve been struggling with drug addiction for years or have just realized you’ve been relying on alcohol, professional treatment can redirect the path of your life. Our supportive alcohol and drug detox center provides a comfortable opportunity to rest and focus on yourself.
We help patients with physical and psychological addictions to various substances, such as:
- Prescription painkillers (Dilaudid, Vicodin, OxyContin)
- Cocaine, crack
- Stimulant medication (Adderall, Strattera, Vyvanse)
- Benzodiazepines (Valium, Ativan)
Detoxing from different substances requires different methods. Regardless of the type of substance you’re addicted to, our experienced doctors will create a detailed detox plan tailored to you, your needs, and your withdrawal risks.
Safe, Comfortable Drug & Alcohol Detoxification in San Diego
We help individuals from all walks of life at any point in their journey, no matter what they’re dealing with physically and psychologically. Whether you’re a veteran trying to escape PTSD or a college student who started self-medicating for anxiety, individual and family counseling can help you work through the underpinnings of your addiction and create a better future.
If you or a loved one needs help with a drug or alcohol addiction, contact us today to find out how our San Diego detox and treatment facility can help you see a future of sobriety.