Medical Detox at Horizons Recovery
There are many ways to treat substance use disorders, from intensive medication programs through to behavioral therapy and counseling. Medical detox programs are designed to kick-off the treatment process, with various medications used depending on the substance and extent of addiction. Medical detox is always advised when physical-somatic withdrawal symptoms are present, and can also be used to enforce abstinence and stabilize patients when emotional-motivational symptoms are present. Dedicated medical detox clinics can be found via Horizons Recovery and across the United States, with detox also available from some private hospitals and rehab centers.
Medical Detox Stages
According to the United States Department of Health and Human Services, medical detox is applied in a series of three separate yet integrated phases. The first stage involves various physical and mental examinations, with clinicians testing for currently circulating drugs, secondary addictions, and mental health problems among other things. Once these tests have been carried out, the medication process can begin. During the second stage of detox, clinicians attempt to stabilize the patient using appropriate medications, with a wide range of drugs used depending on the substance and extent of addiction. For example, heroin addicts may be given methadone and alcoholics may be given Valium. The third and final stage of detox attempts to get people into long-term rehabilitation programs to address the psychological issues that surround drug addiction. Detox is not enough when administered in isolation, with behavioral therapy and motivational programs also needed to support long-term changes.
Alcohol Withdrawal and Detox
Alcohol dependence is recognized by increased tolerance and the existence of physical withdrawal symptoms upon cessation of use. Common symptoms include nausea, vomiting, sweating, hand tremors, headaches, dizziness, and insomnia. If withdrawal symptoms progress beyond a few days, patients may also experience more severe symptoms such as seizures, hallucinations, and delirium tremens. A medical detox period is often advised to treat alcohol dependence, followed by rehabilitation programs and aftercare support regimes. Benzodiazepine medications such as Valium and Serax may be applied to help reduce the severity of withdrawal symptoms and stabilize patient prior to rehab.
Heroin Withdrawal and Detox
Heroin is a very strong and highly addictive opiate drug known to produce both physical and psychological withdrawal symptoms upon cessation of use. Typical heroin withdrawal symptoms include nausea, vomiting, insomnia, cramps, involuntary limb movements, anxiety, and depression. A medical detox phase is normally recommended to treat heroin dependence, with other opiate drugs often prescribed to help alleviate and manage withdrawal symptoms. Methadone and buprenorphine are the most widely prescribed medications, with these drugs sometimes used for an extended period in the context of opiate replacement therapy. If you or someone you know needs to access a medical detox program, just call Horizons Recovery at PHONE NUMBER today.