12 Feb Things to Expect when Planning to Get a ‘Drug-Detox’
Drug Detox in San Diego
Drug detoxification is a term used to describe the interventional act of withdrawing oneself from the physical dependence of a drug; experiencing drug withdrawal symptoms; and undergoing appropriate medical treatment to flush out the excess toxins and chemicals from the body, which have accumulated due to a history of drug overdose and addiction.
The process of drug detoxification does not address the complex social and behavioural factors or psychological precedents causing addiction; rather the detox process only focusses on curing the physiological symptoms and health issues, which intermingle with chronic drug use.
Understanding the three steps of ‘Drug Detox’
The Drug Detoxification process has been sub-divided into three steps, (as acknowledged by The United States Department of Health and Human Services):
- Evaluation or Initial Assessment
In this first step of detox, the patient’s blood profile is tested to check what specific drug substances are presently circulating in the blood stream along with their precise concentrations. Potential co-occurring disorders, mental and behavioural issues, and other such dual diagnoses are thoroughly evaluated by the clinicians.
In the second stage of detoxification, the subject is guided through a clear explanation of the entire process of detox with or without the help of drugs to establish physical and mental stability. The patient’s close family and well-wishers are brought in at this time to provide moral support and backing. The patient is also made aware of the treatment goals, recovery process, and generally what to expect throughout the course of detoxification.
- Medical Treatment-Guidance
The final stage of the drug detox procedure involves readying the patient for real medicinal intervention and actual recovery process. As the medical treatment begins, the physical dependency on illicit drugs or alcohol is curbed with the help of the appropriate medicines and prescription drugs. Apart from controlling the physiological withdrawal symptoms, the drug detoxification process does not help in dealing with the psychological aspects of addiction. In this final stage, the patient ought to give consent to complete the detoxification process by officially enrolling in a drug rehabilitation program.
Fighting the initial stages of ‘Drug Detox’
For most patients, the most challenging and intense stage of rehabilitation program is the first few hours and days of detoxification. A number of issues such as violence, aggression, suicidal tendencies, psychosis or physical illnesses may be presented during the first few hours of drug withdrawal. It is vital to have efficient medical and psychiatric support at hand, at all times in the detox-clinical facility until full physical and psychosocial stabilization is achieved.
Common withdrawal symptoms observed in patients suffering from addiction to any drug type are:
- Mood swings and mental instability and irritability.
- Intense fatigue and muscle weakness.
- Disturbed sleep and insomnia.
- Sweating, fever, chills, tremors, nausea, vomiting, headache, and flu-like symptoms.
- Strong cravings to go back on drugs to avoid the withdrawal symptoms.
Perhaps, the most difficult stage to cross, the severity of the withdrawal symptoms can depend on the type of drug dependence and duration of drug addiction in the patient. Further complications could occur if the patient has other underlying medical disorders, which could worsen the treatment progress and recovery. Therefore, it is of prime importance to isolate and understand all symptoms displayed by the subject and carefully prescribe the right treatment methodology.
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