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Drug Detox
 
 

Drug detox is a serious medical procedure and drug detox should not be considered a quick fix for addiction. Drug detox, or drug detoxification, is a systematic process to help a drug addict recover from the immediate physical threats of drug use. There are often misunderstandings that drug detox can be a stand alone treatment but this is misleading. Drug detox helps eliminate only the drug from the body which is necessary in order to begin to think clearly. In this way drug detox is very effective as a forerunner to treatment but should not be used by itself if permanent recovery is sought.

By speeding up the physical recovery, the patients mind and body respond better to treatment because they are able to think clearly and don't suffer with the pain of withdrawal. Many addicts who have tried to stop on their own are familiar with "getting sick" to the point where it seems like using again to stop the pain is a better than even the terrible results that using brings. Drug detox is a medical process and it is important that it be supervised by a licensed medical doctor. Not all treatment centers have a doctor on call or on the premises and it should be part of your criteria for a drug rehabilitation center. Prescriptions are available for drug detox from a variety of drugs including:

Opiates: heroin, morphine, codeine, fentanyl and opium
Stimulants: amphetamine, cocaine, ecstasy, methamphetamine
Depressants: barbiturates, GHB, benzodiazepines
Alcohol

Within many of these categories are some of America's most prescribed medications. Valium, Xanax, Oxycontin, Tylenol with Codeine and Ritalin all have the potential for severe abuse. Drug detox can be a medical requirement for alcohol, barbiturates and sedatives so if you or a loved one is abusing these drugs it is imperative that you seek counseling from a physician. Again this is only a beginning because drug detox does not take in hand the social, environmental or behavioral and thinking problems of the drug user. For this reason drug detox by itself does not offer lasting changes in behavior required for recovery. Yet some may find it difficult to accept recovery without it so choose licensed detox centers that offer drug detox services.

Another element of drug detox is to allow several days for rest and recuperation. Vitamin replacement therapy is common to aid the bodies healing and fluid replacement is often necessary as well. The length of time varies depending on the drug but most of the serious threats of withdrawal or taken care of in a couple of days. Sleeplessness, depression and anxiety are a few symptoms that can continue for several weeks but these are addressed in therapy of the rehabilitation center and a good facility will do all that is possible to make the client comfortable. Studies show that rehabilitation center clients have a greater success rate if they continue with inpatient residency after drug detox.

This process should be aided by a licensed drug abuse counselor who can address the concerns of the client and help with often overwhelming feelings and emotions in the early stages of recovery after drug detox. Any counselor will tell you the most important element is to seek drug treatment right now, as early as possible to increase your chances for successful rehabilitation.

 

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