In the case of drug or alcohol dependency, medical detox describes the experience and process of a withdrawal syndrome under medical supervision. Professional medical detoxification is required for many substance use disorders, especially those with a physical-somatic withdrawal syndrome.
Medical detox is available at many drug treatment centers in Dallas. Medications are often prescribed during this process to help alleviate potentially dangerous withdrawal symptoms and speed up the recovery process, with ongoing medication therapy also needed in certain situations.
Detoxification is the process of removing toxic substances from the human body. In the context of drug and alcohol treatment, detox refers to the discontinuation of problematic psychoactive substances in preparation for further treatment.
While the process of detoxification can take place either with or without medications, drugs are commonly used to manage drug and alcohol withdrawal syndromes. Access to medical staff is also an important part of the detox process, with doctors and clinicians needing to stabilize and observe patients through the process. Once patients have stopped drug intake, behavioral therapy and counseling programs can be initiated to treat the precedents of drug addiction.
Get more information about rehab centers that offer medical detox by calling Dallas Drug Treatment Centers today at (214) 453-5663.
The Three Steps of Detox
According to the United States Department of Health and Human Services, there are three steps in every drug detoxification regime. The first step involves evaluation, with doctors testing patients physically for circulating substances and evaluating them mentally for co-existing substance use and mental health disorders.
This is an important part of the detox process, because it allows clinicians to thoroughly test patients before administering potentially dangerous medications. Cross-tolerant drug relationships and other complications can be avoided with a careful evaluation phase.
The second step of detox is known as stabilization, with patients typically given medications while they experience withdrawal symptoms. Depending on the substance and extent of addiction, a range of medications may be required to alleviate symptoms and reduce the opportunity for relapse.
Prescription opioids, benzodiazepines and naltrexone may all be used during this phase, with medical staff observing patients and helping them through the withdrawal syndrome in the safest way possible. The last stage of detox involves directing patients towards further treatment, with various psychotherapy and counseling programs available on a residential or out-patient basis.
What is a Withdrawal Syndrome?
A withdrawal syndrome is a specific set of symptoms that occur when someone stops consuming drugs after a period of dependence. Both physical-somatic and emotional-motivational withdrawal syndromes are possible, with physical symptoms often requiring extensive medication.
Drug abuse and dependence is a learned behavior that develops over time, with chemical changes in the body causing neuroplasticity changes in the brain as the system adapts to new conditions. Ongoing use creates tolerance and dependence, with drug discontinuation causing the body to experience withdrawal symptoms as it reacts to new conditions.
Prescription opioids like oxycodone and illicit opioids like heroin have a similar withdrawal syndrome, with early symptoms including agitation, insomnia, fatigue, muscle aches, anxiety, restless legs, dehydration, increased tearing, sweating, yawning and runny nose. Late symptoms will also be experienced in most cases, with possible symptoms including nausea, vomiting, dilated pupils, diarrhea, abdominal cramping, goose bumps and diarrhea.
The withdrawal syndrome from opioid drugs can be very extreme, with medications and medical staff required during the detox process. Once patients are clean and stable, they will generally be enrolled in a rehabilitation program where they can receive behavioral therapy and counseling support to treat the precedents of drug dependence.
If you or someone you love is struggling with chemical dependence and needs to undergo medical detox, Dallas Drug Treatment Centers can help you find rehab centers that offer the programs to meet your recovery needs. Dial (214) 453-5663.