Third Step: Detox

The detox process has the potential to be uncomfortable, and when done incorrectly, dangerous. Going through detox in a facility that specializes in helping you safely and comfortably clear substances or alcohol from your system can offer an excellent first step in addiction recovery

Once you’ve completed the intake process, you might head directly to detox. This process will eliminate drugs or alcohol from your body. However, it can be a difficult time, which is one of the reasons that undergoing detox in a safe, medically supervised environment is essential.

For some, the detox process is relatively easy. They feel decent and are motivated to begin group and individual therapy sessions at this time. Others want and need to rest. Either choice is fine. It’s your recovery, and your needs guide the process.

What does medically supervised detox mean?

Depending on the source of one’s addiction, trying to quit using or drinking cold turkey (immediately without help) can be dangerous. Doing so can result in:

  • Seizures, comas
  • Vomiting
  • High blood pressure
  • Dehydration
  • Slow or rapid heartbeat
  • Insomnia
  • Physical aches and pains

These are just some of the challenges that you could face when working to cleanse your body of alcohol or other substances. Without supervision, quitting some substances (such as alcohol) can be fatal.

Detox protocols depend on what the addictive substance is as well as the frequency of use and the severity of the addiction. The protocols work to normalize and regulate the body’s physical functions and address the discomfort that the detox process can create.

Medically supervised detox procedures ensure that your bodily systems are functioning and that you can more safely navigate the dangerous aspects of the detox experience. You’ll receive consistent medical attention, and staff members will monitor you to ensure that you’re as comfortable as possible.

What does the medical team do to make detox easier?

Medically supervised detox processes remove alcohol or drugs from your body, so they can be intense. However, doctors and nurses can take measures to keep Monarch Shores residents safe and comfortable.

Measures include maintaining hydration and blood pressure, encouraging nutrition, and offering certain medications to relieve pain or ease withdrawals. These options can help people cleanse their systems and reduce the risk of relapse.

Certain methods, including medications, will likely need to be discussed between our doctors and the team of doctors that your insurance company has assigned to your case. This is to ensure that you receive the best level of care for your situation and that you receive coverage for different aspects of your treatment.

Where will I stay during detox?

While you’re undergoing detox, you’ll stay in our facility. Although you’ll be staying at Monarch Shores, detox procedures aren’t technically part of your residential treatment program. Your medical condition and health insurance provider will determine how long you’re able to stay in different levels of care.

Most people who seek treatment undergo some kind of detox procedure before beginning their treatment programs. Doing so reduces your risk of relapse and can help you enter a rehab treatment program with a clear head and intentions.

Alcohol-free and drug-free facilities can also ensure the safety of all the center’s clients.

How long does detox last?

In general, detox usually lasts from seven to 10 days. However, the length of detox can depend on the:

  • Severity of the addiction.
  • Amount of substances or alcohol you typically consume.
  • Any underlying mental or physical conditions you may have and your body composition.
  • The time when you last drank or used drugs.
  • How well you’re progressing through detox.

Detox processes in some cases can be shorter, but it is up to the medical provider to make that decision.

What about medication-assisted treatment, or MAT?

If you’ve been using substances such as heroin for a long time or have a severe addiction, medication-assisted treatment is a possibility. This approach also goes by other names, including medically assisted treatment and MAT.

Medication-assisted treatment is an option that uses prescription medications to help people fight the cravings and urges they may face long after they complete detox. There’s evidence that MAT may help people overcome their addictions to substances such as opioid drugs in the long term.

MAT may be an available option, depending on many factors. Such factors include the source of your addiction, the amount of time that you have been struggling with substance abuse, the terms of your insurance, as well as the diagnoses from our doctors and the doctors with your insurance company.

What happens after detox?

After you complete detox, your insurance coverage determines whether the level of care you receive will involve residential treatment, a partial hospitalization program (PHP), or an intensive outpatient program (IOP).

During this time, our medical staff will assess you. Your insurance company doctors will review your case to decide the level of care you need and determine the potential for a healthy recovery based on various treatment options.

Medical disclaimer:

Sunshine Behavioral Health strives to help people who are facing substance abuse, addiction, mental health disorders, or a combination of these conditions. It does this by providing compassionate care and evidence-based content that addresses health, treatment, and recovery.

Licensed medical professionals review material we publish on our site. The material is not a substitute for qualified medical diagnoses, treatment, or advice. It should not be used to replace the suggestions of your personal physician or other health care professionals.

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