Do It Yourself vs. Medically Assisted Detox

medically assisted detoxOver 20 million Americans find themselves deep in the trenches of drug and alcohol abuse. Without hope and healing, many of these individuals will continue destroying their lives. On an individual level, any kind of drug or alcohol abuse causes innumerable physical, emotional and psychological damage.  Close to 94 percent of users deny that they need treatment and only 2 percent will seek help.

Once committed to the treatment process, individuals face a journey that will require tremendous strength. The detox process is a fundamental step for healing from any addiction. For this reason, many individuals seek the assistance of medical and residential treatment programs. For other individuals, healing on their own is more appealing. While both approaches can be successful, individuals fair better when they have support in an established detox program.

Physical Concerns

Regardless of each user’s individual story, all drugs cause universal damage to the physical body. As a result, the first stage of recovery is that of a complete physical detox. While some individuals stop their habits “cold turkey,” many will require the assistance of trained professionals. As the body detoxifies, it is natural for individuals to experience a plethora of unpleasant physical symptom, including the following:

  • Increased sweat
  • Body chills and/or fever
  • Weight loss
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle aches

In addition to the common withdrawal symptoms, some individuals may experience unforeseen medical complications. In a residential treatment program, medical doctors are typically available to assist. However, if an individual is doing a detox alone, it may be difficult to obtain necessary medical help as emergencies arise. Given that the human body is unpredictable, it is nearly impossible to predict how an individual will react to the detox process. Therefore, having a medical professional on the treatment team may ease the experience.

Emotional Concerns

If ending a vicious cycle of addiction were easy, most people would not need help; they would simply stop abusing drugs or alcohol.  Because most drugs are addictive, choosing to break the cycle can be incredibly difficult. As the physical body detoxifies, it is natural for many emotions to arise. Similar to most addictive behaviors, drug abuse has served a vital role for the user.

At some time and in some way, all users found a way to cope through their addictions. Oftentimes, the addictive behavior distracted the user from intense emotions. With the healing of the physical body, individuals will experience any number of emotions. As the emotions resurface, it is not uncommon for individuals to experience profound anger, anxiety or sadness. Because these emotions have been buried by the addiction, they typically resurge with strength. As a result, many individuals may experience deep depression and even contemplate suicide. If an individual is alone when these emotions arise, it may be extremely difficult to abstain from using drugs; however, within a medical setting, individuals can enlist the support of trained professionals.

Therapists, mentors and other individuals recovering can offer insight and understanding as the emotions arise. Simply being in a community setting during recovery offers incredible benefits. With struggle come friendship and shared trust in a process that can feel frightening.

Acknowledging that you need help is something to be applauded. Here at The Oaks at La Paloma, we offer a medically supported detox program. Call us now for more information.

What are your treatment needs? We can make the arrangements (e.g. family mediator, sober companion, aftercare & support).