Unfortunately, there is no one cure for addiction. While addiction is a disease, there is no magic pill you can pop to make you all better. There’s no secret serum only a fraction of addicts have gotten their hands on. In reality, there are a number of ways to go about treatment for addiction. Everyone is different and every experience with drugs is different. So, it doesn’t make sense to make treatment the same for every individual. In fact, even different aspects of treatment are different for each individual. The first step of the treatment process, detox, is one of the most important. Equally as important is the method in which people choose to go about detox. In this article, we’ll discuss the various types of detox available in treatment centers worldwide. This way, you can be confident in choosing the detox method which best suits you and your needs.
Commonly, this type of detox method is referred to as “cold turkey”. According to Wikipedia, this phrase was coined back in the early 1900s. Furthermore, it is derived from another common saying, “goose bumps”, which is a term to describe a bodily reaction otherwise known as chills. Because chills are a common withdrawal symptom individuals experience during a natural detox, people still use the term today. Typically, going “cold turkey” just literally involves waiting for the drugs to leave the body’s systems. And, while effective, this is more challenging than it sounds.
Withdrawal symptoms, while they do differ from patient to patient, are unpleasant. They can bring about aches, pains, and other very agitating symptoms. So, when people experience these symptoms, they may go back to using drugs just so the withdrawal symptoms cease. Additionally, detoxing from some substances can even lead to fatalities (benzos and alcohol) if people aren’t extremely careful. So, to help with painful symptoms and prevent emergency situations, it’s usually suggested that individuals don’t attempt a natural detox. Fortunately, there are other types of detox for those who don’t want to go about quitting “cold turkey”.
Inpatient Medical Detox
Many residential treatment facilities will offer a medical detox program. In these programs, individuals must remain in a hospital-like setting until the last dose of any substance extracts itself from the body. The benefit to a medical detox setting is around the clock care. This means that if anything is to happen during detox which puts a patient at risk for further health issues, a medical professional is already there to provide medical attention. Furthermore, medical detox allows for the use of prescription medications provided by an in-house doctor.
These medications can help reduce the severity of withdrawal symptoms so that the process is not as excruciating. However, residential detox does not permit that individuals leave the facility for any daily responsibilities as medical detox requires 24/7 care. So, while this is one of the best types of detox when comparing relapse statistics and comfort, there are outpatient options available to those who cannot commit to residential detox.
Outpatient Medication Assisted Treatment
Medication-assisted treatment is a detoxification method individuals struggling with addiction to alcohol, opioids, and opiates can benefit from using. And, because these addictions may require long-term detox periods, they are on an outpatient basis. Basically, with this type of detox, prescription medications provide for all needs during the withdrawal period. Instead of waiting it out, individuals take these medications which work to block brain receptors responsible for releasing hormones which create the “high” feeling drug users cling to. In turn, individuals no longer experience the severe effects of withdrawal symptoms. And, if they do use their drug of choice, they don’t experience the “high” they’re seeking.
While medication-assisted treatment may still be a controversial subject to the traditional addiction treatment believers, the proof is in the pudding. According to the National Institutes on Drug Abuse, implementing the use of medically assisted treatment has helped specific populations drastically reduce the number of opioid deaths. And, those who utilize this type of detox are more likely to continue with treatment once detox concludes than those who don’t.
Deciding the Types of Detox Best for Recovering People
So, now that you know of the most effective types of detox, you need to know which is best for you. Basically, what drugs you’re using, your history of drug use, and your medical history will help to best determine the types of detox you should be considering. Different types of detox may not be beneficial to your needs. So, you will need a medical professional to tell you of your best options. Here at Diablo Valley Drug and Alcohol Services, we conduct an initial assessment which helps our doctors to determine specific treatment tracks for individuals struggling with addiction. If you’re ready for your assessment, give us a call today at (925) 289-1430!