When someone’s battling addiction, it affects every part of them. Their body, emotions, family, and friends. They feel like they’re stuck, doomed to repeat the same mistake over and over again.
If you or a loved one are dealing with addiction, you’re not alone. Studies show almost 21 million Americans deal with some type of substance abuse problems.
Wanting to help, friends and family members might suggest different treatment options. Yet, it can be difficult to know which one would work best for your situation. Read on to learn about when medical detox is the right choice.
Understanding Medical Centers
What do you think of when you hear the word medical detox? Many people instantly imagine a hospital setting, similar to being in jail.
If this is the type of image you picture, you’ll be happy to know it’s not the reality of detox centers. Here are a few of the things you can expect at a detox center.
- Expert medical attention
- Caring staff
- Substitute drugs
Keep in mind, you don’t have to go to an inpatient center to go through medical detox. You can choose to do an outpatient program or partial hospitalization.
Dangers of Withdrawal
When you’re dealing with an addiction, you have more than one challenge to overcome. Addiction affects your mind, body, and emotions. Here’s a look at what withdrawal symptoms can look like.
- Chest Pains
- Racing Heart
- Muscle Tension
The above symptoms are just a few of the side effects that occur when you stop using an addictive substance. The time it takes to detox from a substance is different for everyone.
In certain cases, life-threatening withdrawal symptoms can happen. With the help of professional detox, you can be proactive to prevent or treat any potentially fatal problems. Here are a few of the more serious withdrawal symptoms that can occur.
- Heart Attacks
- Seeing Visions
It can also be unpredictable how you, as an individual, will react to the situation. Some people struggle with suicidal thoughts, while others find themselves falling back into using again.
Addictions Medical Detox Can Help
Medical detox is for people who need to attend to the physical part of their addiction, before handling the mental and emotional aspects. Once you finish detoxing medically, you’ll want to find some form of continued support to continue healing.
So, how do you tell the difference between the two types of addictions? How do you know when someone needs to medically address the physical part of their addiction, before moving forward?
There’s no clear cut, black and white, answer for who should receive medical help. Yet, there are a few guidelines that can help steer you in the right direction. Here are a few questions you can ask yourself to determine what you personally need.
- Have you been using drugs or alcohol for an extended period of time?
- Do you experience physical withdrawal symptoms when you try to quit?
- Do you feel intense cravings for your drug of choice?
If you’re answering “yes” to the questions above, clinical detox may be right for you. You are more likely to experience intense withdrawal symptoms and cravings. Next, we’ll look at what your body is trying to tell you when you experience a craving.
Intense cravings can pop up for some addicts when they’ve only been without their substance for a few hours. Their mind can become consumed with wanting to get high. Suddenly nothing else matters, no matter what the cost.
The guilt, shame, and, anger you can feel after using, is almost unbearable. Yet, all it takes is a few hours or days, and suddenly, BAM! You’re feeling the same craving all over again.
Cravings are a part of addiction because the body has learned a certain way of being. Addictive drugs have chemicals in them that give the user a sense of euphoria.
Over time, as tolerance builds, it’ll become harder to feel as good as they first did. Still, the substance will produce enough pleasure in the body to keep it satisfied. Let’s take a look at how long term drug use, can deplete your body of chemicals it needs.
Rebuilding Dopamine and Seratonin
Dopamine and serotonin do a lot more than only make you happy. Dopamine is responsible for making you feel motivated and giving you a reason to get up in the morning.
Because an addict receives pleasure from the addictive substance, the body stops producing certain feel-good hormones. Hormones like dopamine and serotonin.
Seratonin helps regulate how you behave, how hungry you get, and your ability to digest food. In fact, serotonin can even help you sleep better, remember more things, and perform well sexually.
When you stop using your drug of choice, your body has nowhere to get pleasure from. It doesn’t have any naturally produced dopamine or serotonin, and you’re no longer tricking it into feeling good with drugs. Now, it’ll take time for the body to readapt, and start producing the feel-good chemicals again.
Importance of Battle Buddies
Stopping the use of a drug requires courage. Simply exploring options, and ways to quit like you’re doing right now takes courage. Yet, remember, you aren’t in this battle alone.
Here at The Center, we’re passionate about helping you and your family feel whole again. We offer a rare blend of clinical expertise, effective treatments, and a transformational life model.
If you’re considering medical detox, but aren’t sure if it’s right for you, we can help. Take a moment to explore our about us page. At the bottom of the page, you’ll find several ways to reach out to us.