For those with alcohol dependence issues who are ready to make a change, alcohol detoxification (detox) may be in order. This is the first step to stop all alcohol intake along with substituting medications and/or supplements similar to alcohol’s effects to soothe withdrawal symptoms. If alcoholism kills – detox is the first line of defense to save you or someone you love.
What to Expect From Alcohol Detox
“Going it alone” is not wise or safe when breaking free from alcohol addiction. It is also very painful. During the process, you may experience these symptoms:
- Sleep disruption
- “Heavy” head
- Rapid heartbeat
- Pale skin.
With a doctor-assisted alcohol detox program, you have the necessary physical and psychological assistance you need to manage withdrawal symptoms. To “detox” involves eliminating all traces of alcohol from your system and it can take anywhere from a few days to two weeks to fully complete. Treatment includes counseling to discuss why the addiction developed in the first place and how to avoid the types of behavior that would lead to addiction again, a restructuring of your habits, as it were.
An alcohol detox may be completed effectively and safely in both inpatient and outpatient settings – but always under medical supervision with personnel trained specifically for these situations. Medications may be decreased and eventually stopped by the end of the detox process.
Should You Endure an Alcohol Detox?
The strength of your motivation will determine if you should endure a detox. Your recovery cannot begin without undergoing one. While very few have had success detoxing at home, experience has shown inpatient treatment allows you to focus on yourself rather than on familiar surroundings. Going to another living area allows you to create a different mindset in which you mentally prepare for your journey to recovery.
Since a detox involves eliminating poisons from your body it makes sense to not add to its burden of elimination by using cigarettes and other harmful substances before, during or after the process. All of these toxins would be counterproductive to your success.
Whether you choose an inpatient or outpatient facility, make sure it will support you should you have a relapse. An extended care program or a structured sober living environment will help you meet your needs while often being financially covered by your insurance granted the facility is state-licensed. If insurance does not cover your visit, many treatment centers offer a variety of self-pay options.
With most medically based inpatient or outpatient alcohol detox programs you’ll be reminded of the dangers of addiction and offered options to cleanse toxins from your body that include more water intake and fresh fruits and vegetables. A nutritionist will also prepare a meal plan customized for your health and food preferences.
Should you decide to take the step to eliminate alcohol addiction from your life, you will need compassion and assistance – not judgment. An alcohol detox process may just be what you need to take you in the new direction you are wanting to go.