Drugs and alcohol affect several areas of the brain responsible for reasoning, self-preservation and self-control. It can be impossible for addicts to view their condition objectively, listen to logic or take reasonable action. Medical detox is currently the only scientifically valid method to manage addiction. This is the process of eliminating toxins from the body while under the care and supervisions of medical professionals. Treatment centers are there to help you through withdrawal as you enter rehabilitation.
Addiction being a mental disorder, it is approached through a two-pronged treatment strategy. Rehab programs begin with medical detoxes. Patients are separated from every temptation of drugs or alcohol, and are placed in a safe and comfortable setting without access to these substances.
Denied drugs, the body and the brain initially struggle to cope. Depending on the drug in question, the patient may experience cardiac irregularities, tremors, convulsions, pain and extreme agitation among other symptoms. The patient may obsess over cravings for drugs, and live through a constant state of distress.
Withdrawal symptoms are more than a mere nuisance. They may quickly turn life-threatening. They can also be painful enough to keep patients from even attempting rehab. The specialized medications that doctors offer patients through medical detox - buprenorphine, methadone, clonidine and many others -- help not only suppress withdrawal effects, but to keep the patient safe.
Many patients tend to resist submitting to treatment for the simple reason that the potentially painful experiences involved in detoxifying scare them. Lately, researchers have come up with faster options such rapid detox. Patients go into detox, get placed under general sedation, and receive intensive treatment with a cocktail of potent chemicals to quickly cleanse their systems out. When they wake up hours later, they find that their cravings have magically disappeared.
While this method may be tempting for its speed and pain-free approach, it is hardly a scientifically accepted one. Extremely intensive treatment methods can stress the body too greatly to be considered medically safety.
Patients usually have their choice of three basic approaches to detoxifying -- doing it as an inpatient at a residential rehab center, working at detoxification through an outpatient center, and taking up DIY detox at home.
Residential drug rehab plans tend to work far better in most cases. Patients need the guarantee of a drug-free environment, and the safety of constant medical supervision. Neither essential is available in outpatient or DIY choice. DIY detox is especially unsafe. With no access to medical supervision whatsoever, patients can quit or battle life-threatening conditions on their own.