So, you have come to acknowledge that you are struggling with addiction and are ready to seek professional help. Perhaps your friends and family have urged you to enter treatment or maybe your substance use has begun to spiral and create undeniable negative effects in your life.
Whatever the reason, recognizing addiction is a huge step that requires courage.
Many of those struggling with addiction choose the route of denial.
They are unwilling to admit their powerlessness over their substance of choice, too stubborn to ask for help, and too proud to put their well-being in the hands of another.
Admitting you cannot resolve your addiction on your own is very brave, and can result in a feeling of alienation.
But despite the loneliness you may feel, remember that 22.5 million Americans need treatment for addiction, and a little more than 18% (that’s 4.2 million people!) will take action and seek help. You are doing the right thing and are certainly not alone. But what comes next?
Addiction treatment looks different for everyone. At Alo House, we offer special programs such as equine therapy, dual diagnosis, meditation and yoga classes, and nature therapy to help our clients learn important skills that will give them power over their addiction.
Each day in treatment includes important lessons for establishing healthy habits and good nutrition, therapy sessions, and plenty of relaxation to foster healing and connection.
But before all that, it is necessary for each client to eliminate the toxins introduced into their body through substance use, a process commonly known as detox.
What is Drug and Alcohol Detox?
When a person stops using drugs or alcohol they will begin to experience strong negative effects of the substance they were using. These symptoms encourage the use of more substances in order to avoid the feelings of withdrawal.
Over time, it will require more of a substance to achieve the same high resulting in a physical dependence, and more severe withdrawal symptoms.
To overcome this cycle of dependence, the body must go through detox as the brain, nervous system, and organs become drug-free.
What to Expect From Detox
The detoxification process looks different for everyone and could take anywhere from a matter of hours to a couple weeks.
The residual effects of detox, also known as post-acute withdrawal symptoms, may last for up to 6 to 12 months.
The severity of symptoms depends on the length of time a person has been using drugs, the amount of drugs being taken, the types of drugs being taken, and whether or not the client has a dual diagnosis or other health conditions.
The symptoms may also range from physical to emotional, as drug dependence affects both the body and the mind.
Here is a list of potential detox symptoms:
- Overpowering cravings for drugs or alcohol
- Nausea, vomiting and diarrhea
- Chills, cold sweats and goosebumps
- Tremors or seizures
- Muscle and joint pain
- Irritability, anxiety or hostility
- Depression and suicidal thoughts
- Sleep disturbances
- Extreme hunger
- Physical and emotional fatigue
- Difficulty concentrating and remembering
The Alo Approach to Drug Detox
We know the idea of detox sounds daunting, painful, and scary. But despite what is shown in the media, detox is not alienating. It is important to us that we provide comfortable detox guided by the most experienced addiction doctors.
We tailor our treatment accordingly for each client to ensure as little discomfort as possible, and treat every client with the appropriate medication so that the process is mostly pain free.
We provide a 24-hour staff to monitor vitals while the client is left to enjoy luxury amenities, eat chef-prepared meals, and relax in order to ease the tension and begin the healing process.
While we do everything in our power to create a safe, comfortable, and supportive environment for all of our clients, a successful detox also requires client cooperation. It is essential that those seeking help practice patience, determination, and show a willingness to be honest and transparent.
A full detox may take time and is most effective when our doctors know the full scope of the clients’ addiction and substance use.
While a person may feel better after the withdrawal period, it takes much longer for the body to reach an optimal state of physical health, which is why we strongly recommend longer treatment at one of our residential facilities, rather than opting for a stand-alone detox service.
Detox is the necessary first step for treatment, and we make it our mission to keep our clients as comfortable as possible, setting them up for a successful, full recovery.
Find out more about our approach to detox.