According to the California Department of Public Health (CDPH), there were 2,826 opioid overdose deaths in California in 2020. This number includes both prescription opioids and illicit opioids like heroin and fentanyl. Additionally, according to data from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), in 2018-2019, an estimated 459,000 people aged 12 or older in California had used heroin in the past year.

Clearly, substance abuse in California has been an ongoing problem. Luckily the first step in overcoming substance use is detox. For individuals that have been suffering from alcohol or opioid addiction, medical detox is often necessary in order to break the physical dependence on these substances.

What is
Medical Drug Detox?

Medical drug detox, also known as medically assisted detox, is a process of removing toxic substances from the body under the supervision of medical professionals. This process is commonly used to treat addiction to drugs and alcohol and involves administering medications that can help alleviate withdrawal symptoms and manage cravings.

The goal of medical drug detox is to help patients safely and comfortably overcome physical dependence on substances such as opioids, benzodiazepines, alcohol, and others. The detoxification process can last from a few days to several weeks, depending on the severity of the addiction and the individual needs of the patient.

During medical drug detox, patients may receive medications to manage symptoms such as nausea, anxiety, insomnia, and seizures. They may also receive fluids and electrolytes to help replenish their system and prevent dehydration. Additionally, patients may receive counseling and support from medical professionals, such as psychologists or addiction specialists, to help them address the psychological and emotional aspects of addiction.

Overall, medical drug detox is an important first step in the recovery process for individuals struggling with drug or alcohol addiction. It provides a safe and effective way to manage withdrawal symptoms and gives patients the support they need to get on the path to long-term recovery.

Why is
Medical Drug Detox Necessary?

Medical drug detox is necessary for several reasons:

Detoxing from certain substances can result in severe or life-threatening withdrawal symptoms. Medical supervision ensures that patients are safe and stable during this critical stage of recovery.

Withdrawal symptoms can be extremely uncomfortable. Medical detox provides medication and support to help manage these symptoms and make the detox process more tolerable.

Detoxing under medical supervision can reduce the risk of relapse by addressing cravings and other challenges that may arise during the withdrawal process.

How Long Does
Medical Detox Take?

The duration of detox varies depending on factors such as the type of substance, the severity of the addiction, and individual factors. In general, drug detox typically lasts between 3-10 days. Alcohol detox may take longer, up to two weeks or more. However, it’s important to remember that detox is just the first step in the recovery process and doesn’t guarantee long-term sobriety. Ongoing treatment, such as therapy or behavioral counseling, is often necessary to help individuals maintain long-term recovery.

What Can I Expect During
Drug Detox?

During drug detox, patients can expect:

A medical evaluation is typically the first step in drug detox, and involves a thorough assessment of the individual’s physical and mental health to determine the appropriate level of care needed. This may include a physical exam, laboratory tests, and a review of the individual’s medical history and substance abuse patterns. The evaluation helps medical professionals create a personalized treatment plan that addresses the specific needs of each patient.

Medication is often used to manage withdrawal symptoms and reduce cravings during drug detox. The type and dosage of medications used will depend on the substance of abuse and the severity of the addiction. Medications may be administered orally, intravenously, or through other methods, and will be closely monitored by medical professionals to ensure patient safety.

Detox also involves emotional support, counseling, and therapy to help patients cope with the challenges of early recovery. This may include individual or group therapy sessions, education about addiction and recovery, and holistic techniques such as meditation or yoga.

What Substances Require
Medical Drug Detox?

Substances that typically require medical detox include:

Alcohol detox can be particularly dangerous and is known to cause severe withdrawal symptoms, such as delirium tremens (DTs), seizures, and even death in extreme cases. Medical detox is necessary to manage these symptoms and ensure the safety of the patient.

Benzodiazepine withdrawal can be especially dangerous, as it can cause seizures and other life-threatening symptoms. Medical detox is necessary to administer medications that can safely manage withdrawal symptoms and help prevent complications.

Opioid withdrawal can also be intense and is typically managed with medications to alleviate symptoms such as diarrhea, nausea, and muscle aches. Medical detox is necessary to ensure that the patient is safely monitored and that withdrawal symptoms are managed appropriately. Additionally, opioid withdrawal can be emotionally and psychologically challenging, and medical professionals can provide critical support and counseling during this time.

Methamphetamine withdrawal can cause both physical and psychological symptoms, such as anxiety, depression, fatigue, and insomnia. However, unlike alcohol or benzo withdrawal, meth withdrawal does not typically cause life-threatening symptoms, but it can be extremely uncomfortable and cause individuals to relapse.

Is Medical Detox Safe?

Medical detox is considered a safe and effective approach to managing withdrawal symptoms and transitioning into early recovery. Medical professionals monitor patients closely to ensure their safety and address any complications that may arise.

What Medications are Used
During Drug Detox?

Several medications may be used during drug detox to manage withdrawal symptoms, reduce cravings, and support overall health.

Medications such as methadone, buprenorphine, or naltrexone can be used to manage symptoms of opioid withdrawal and reduce the risk of relapse. Methadone and buprenorphine are opioid agonists that can help manage cravings, while naltrexone is a non-opioid medication that can block the effects of opioids.

Benzodiazepines such as diazepam or lorazepam can be used to manage symptoms of alcohol withdrawal, such as seizures or anxiety. Other medications, such as naltrexone, acamprosate, and disulfiram may be used to reduce alcohol cravings and help maintain sobriety.

Long-acting benzodiazepines such as diazepam may be used to manage symptoms of withdrawal and prevent seizures.

There are currently no medications approved specifically for stimulant detox. However, some medications, such as antidepressants, may be used to manage symptoms of mood disorders that may co-occur with stimulant addiction.

Overall, medication is just one component of a comprehensive detox and recovery plan. The use of medication should always be closely monitored by medical professionals to ensure patient safety and effectiveness. A holistic approach that includes emotional support, counseling, and therapy is often necessary to achieve long-term sobriety.

Contact California Addiction Treatment
Today to Learn More!

At California Addiction Treatment, our steadfast commitment to delivering exceptional addiction and mental health treatment is unwavering. We constantly endeavor to surpass our patients’ expectations through ongoing, candid feedback and relentless enhancement. Our clients’ experiences take precedence over our own. We pledge to maintain uncompromising ethical standards in the treatment of both our patients and staff. Our objective is to provide a superior treatment approach that is accessible to everyone affected by addiction.

To learn more about our effective medical detox programs in Orange County, CA contact us today! We can help you find the support in your recovery!

Medical Detox
in Orange County, California

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