To put it simply, detoxification is the elimination of drugs and/or alcohol from the body. The Washington Circle, a group composed of experts in the drug and alcohol abuse field, defines detox as “a medical intervention process that safely helps a substance abuser through the experience of acute withdrawal.”
In any kind of treatment facility, detoxification is the first step to a successful recovery. Some people can mistake the detox process as the entire treatment. However, this couldn’t be farther from the truth. Only going through detox does not address the deeper problems of addiction.
In addition, some people make the choice to go through the detox process on their own at home. It cannot be stressed enough how hazardous that choice could be. Choosing to go through medically assisted detoxification is the safest option and can help you be significantly more comfortable throughout the process.
There is no magic number for the length of time that detoxification is supposed to take. That being said, through research it has been possible to decipher some averages. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration reports that the average length of detox is less than 8 days. Every person and situation are different so it’s pretty hard to nail down an actual timeline, but sometimes seeing a ballpark range can be reassuring.
It goes without saying that when hearing the word detox, most people think of scary withdrawal symptoms. Withdrawal symptoms affect people both mentally and physically. Here are just some of those symptoms:
Most of these symptoms also carry over to post-acute withdrawal but in varying degrees. What makes post-acute withdrawal different is that symptoms occur two months or more after initial detoxification. These symptoms can also last several months. This is part of why being patient with treatment is so important. Since there is no timeline for the treatment or even some of the symptoms, being mindful of continuing what is learned even after treatment is crucial.
Finding a program that can help with a wide variety of disorders can be difficult depending on where you are. The Duck House is a well-rounded program that can address a multitude of issues. Providing detox and residential services allows patients to get the treatment they require.