If you have an alcohol use disorder, the first stage in treatment might be alcohol detox. This is the process of flushing dangerous toxins from your body, which can take anywhere from one to three weeks. Once your detox is complete, you can focus on a comprehensive addiction treatment program, which increases your chances of reaching long-term recovery.
With an alcohol use disorder, the detox process can be serious and even life-threatening. This is not something that you want to undertake at home. Because the side effects of detoxing from alcohol can be severe, a medical detox is recommended. Here are seven things you should know about alcohol detox before you begin.
1. Symptoms Can Be Severe
Some of the symptoms associated with alcohol withdrawal include vomiting, nausea, insomnia, sweating, headache, anxiety and agitation. Severe symptoms, known as delirium tremens (DTs), can include tremors, hallucinations, seizures, elevated blood pressure and disorientation.
2. Delirium Tremens Can Be Deadly
One of the reasons that a medical detox is necessary for alcohol withdrawal is that DTs can lead to drastic blood pressure, heart rate and respiratory changes, which can cause a heart attack or stroke.
3. Detox Is Not The Same as a Hangover
While some of the minor symptoms associated with alcohol detox appear similar to a hangover, they are not the same. Alcohol withdrawal syndrome kicks in when the body adapts to having alcohol and then is suddenly absent. The symptoms can be severe, unpredictable and long-lasting.
4. Alcohol Detox Is Not Inpatient Rehab
It is a common misconception that the only thing required to break free from alcohol addiction is a quick detox. While detox is a vital first step, there is an entire addiction treatment process that follows a medical detox.
5. Medical Detox Is Available at Many Rehab Centers
Many addiction treatment centers now offer on-site medical detox services. Ask questions before you agree to attend any treatment center to see if it offers detox on-site.
6. Detox Should Be Performed With Medical Supervision
Although not always life-threatening, the symptoms associated with alcohol detox can be uncomfortable. When you have qualified medical supervision, there are often medications that help ease any troubling symptoms to make your experience more comfortable.
7. Alcohol Detox Is a Significant Accomplishment
Addiction recovery can be challenging. It is important that you acknowledge every milestone, and completing detox is a major accomplishment. This is something that you should be proud of as you move on to the next step.
Get Alcohol Detox and Treatment Now
The Orlando Recovery Center has vast experience helping clients with drug and alcohol detox. Our facility ensures that you receive the best care possible as you go through a medical detox and then transition into the addiction treatment program that best suits your needs.
If you deal with an alcohol use disorder, you do not have to do this alone. Contact Orlando Recovery Center now to discuss the next steps in your journey toward recovery.