Alcohol and Drug Detox

Getting over a substance abuse problem is something we hope neither our loved ones nor ourselves ones will ever have to go through. Not only are the physical tolls great, but the emotional tolls are as well. If you or a loved one are having trouble tackling a tough alcohol or drug abuse problem, figuring out where to start is fairly easy - talk with the loved one that has the problem or, if the problem is your own, talk with those that care about you. Even if you believe you have no one to turn to, one of the many licensed counselors listed in our directory are more than willing to offer a helping hand with the patience and care you deserve. Once you receive the attention you need and are willing to get started with the healing process, you or your loved one may need to consider alcohol or drug detoxification. Continue reading...

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Alcohol and Drug Detox – continued…

But, how do you know what you need to look for in such a service? A good detoxification program should include an evaluation of your needs, close monitoring of your condition, medication and even counseling. After all, substance abuse is most often a symptom of a much deeper emotional problem that should be addressed by someone who can help identify the initial reason for the abuse. Keep these minimum requirements in mind as you choose the right detoxification program for you or your loved one. Putting substance dependency and abuse behind oneself demands this kind of care and attention.

At this point you may be wondering what exactly these factors entail. A detoxification program usually involves the use of antidotes, as well as techniques such as dialysis. With alcohol detoxification, the use of the substance is discontinued but replaced by a cross-tolerant drug that produces the same effect on a smaller scale in order to prevent withdrawal. This would be similar to a cigarette smoker using a nicotine patch to quit smoking. Following this detoxification, Benzodiazepines and barbiturates are commonly used to sedate and relax the patient, slowly reducing dependency to the drug.

Drug detoxification works very similarly, but varies depending on the specific substances that need to be purged. Naltrexone, buprenorphine and clonidine are commonly used in “rapid detox” programs but should be carefully considered with guidance from your doctor, as the effects of “rapid detox” are still not conclusive.

Please conduct your own research if you are considering an alcohol or drug detoxification program. Some helpful resources to keep in mind are listed below.

  1. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website provides plenty of helpful links for those with drug and alcohol problems. Their mission is to reduce the impact of substance abuse and mental illness on America’s communities through prevention, treatment as apposed to punishment, healthcare reform and public awareness among other initiatives.
  2. Alcoholics Anonymous is a fellowship of people who come together to share their experiences, strengths and hopes with others trying to surmount problems with alcohol. AA services are completely free and they can refer you to detoxification facilities across the country.
  3. This is a directory of alcohol and drug abuse programs around the country.
  4. This site provides plenty of invaluable information on services offered throughout California for those with substance abuse problems.

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