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Understanding how the body works is necessary when learning about heroin, meth, cocaine, alcohol, or prescription drug detox programs.

The body operates on the following two main principles of health:

  1. Growth and Rebuild
  2. Detoxification and Repair

Think of the latter as a cleaning process in which the body works to clean itself out in order for the repair to begin. Both of these processes occur on a daily basis - even without consumption of alcohol or drugs. During the detoxification process, your body will clean itself of waste from additives and chemicals often found in the food that you eat and even heavy metals and chemicals from the air that you breathe.

When you start consuming alcohol or using drugs, you add one more burden to the detoxification systems of your body. The toxins from the alcohol and drugs are just as harsh as other toxins. Toxins negatively affect the body because they disrupt its normal biochemical and metabolic processes. The toxins accumulate inside the cells, and they have to be removed. If they are not removed, then eventually, the cell will be killed by the toxins.

Drug detoxification results in the removal of any toxins that remain within the cells. This allows the cells to return to their original state. Alcohol detoxification does the same thing.

Drug and alcohol detox centers in Texas, New Mexico and Utah are similar that they are initiated the moment you stop using alcohol or drugs like heroin, meth, cocaine, or even prescriptions drugs and enter you into an alcohol or drug rehabilitation center. From the moment you stop using drugs or consuming alcohol, the body will kick in with its own detox process. The body wants to operate on a high level, and it doesn’t want to have toxins inside. The changes that will occur over the following hours are known as the drug detox or alcohol detox process.

The amount of time it takes for alcohol or drug detox will depend on the amount of time it takes for the body to remove the amount of toxins inside the body and reset the cells. Even headache medications, prescription medications, blood sugar lowering medications and statin drugs need to be detoxified within the body. This all occurs through the liver, kidneys, colon and skin.

However, both prescription and street drugs have what is known as a half-life. This is the amount of time that they will remain in the body. For some, the drugs will only stay in the body a few days, which is why users take it more often. Other drugs will remain in the body for a much longer period of time—possibly a month or longer. All medications inadvertently impact the body’s cells, resulting in damage. Keep in mind that the time it takes for the body to heal itself from this damage is not included within the half-life’s length of time that it will take for the drug residues to be removed from the body.

Opiates like morphine, oxycontin and heroin will remain in the body much longer than other types of prescription medications. Therefore, when you go through the drug detox process in Utah, Texas, New Mexico, or any other state, it will take longer. In addition, these types of drugs do a significant amount of damage to your receptor sites for endorphins. This is why the process of drug detox is a minimum of several weeks. Generally, at least a 30-day minimum is preferred.

If you are looking for the detoxification process to completely heal you from your addiction, then you should expect additional time. There are mineral and vitamin deficiencies that result from drug abuse, and it will take more time for these to be repaired. However, after you go through your initial personal, medical and physical history and examination with a health care provider at an alcohol and drug detox facility, you should be able to get an expected timeframe on how the process should take. Generally, alcohol and drug detox take a similar period of time.

Pain is a common withdrawal symptoms experienced throughout drug and alcohol detox. In some cases, individuals’ condition is considered life-threatening. The symptoms depend solely on the exact type of addiction(s) that they have, how long they have been addicted to the substance and how often the substance was being used.

The reason for pain being present during the detoxification process, regardless of the state that the person is in, is due to the body’s need to adjust to lower endorphin levels. The main role of endorphins is to block pain levels in the body, and when there are elevated endorphins levels in the body, you will have a sensation of being “high”. During the detox process, the body doesn’t get those elevated levels of endorphins. This allows pain to become present as a symptom. If painkillers are given during the detoxification process, it will prolong the process.

The following are some of the symptoms you my experience during the alcohol detox process:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Headaches
  • Fatigue
  • Irritability
  • Anxiety

In addition, seizures and delirium tremens—referred to as DTs—may present, in addition to extreme agitation and hallucinations. Interestingly, these symptoms are a result of magnesium deficiency, so it is important that your caregivers at the alcohol rehab center recognize it throughout the detox process.

The following are some of the symptoms you my experience during the drug detox process:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Chills
  • Sweating
  • Irritability
  • Anxiety

There is also a chance that seizures can occur.

There are a variety of different kinds of detoxification programs available, such as:

  • Medical
  • Non-medical
  • Outpatient
  • Inpatient

With outpatient detox, you will be treated by a physician and then released to go home, to school, to work, or just go about your day. You won’t have to stay for an extended period in a facility. An outpatient detox can be medical or non-medical in any state in the U.S.

With inpatient detox, you will stay in a detox facility for an extended period of time. The period of time that you are at the facility varies depending on the exact type of detox and your specific treatment program.

A medical detox program utilizes prescription medication throughout the detoxification process. Generally, the medication will be administered orally or through intravenous (IV) therapy.

The oral medications tend to include the following two types that assist opiate detox:

  1. Suboxone
  2. Methadone

Therefore, meth, cocaine, heroin and prescription drug treatment all involve these two medicines.

It is important to note that while these two medicines assist in the detoxification from street and prescription drug opiates, they are both used as a substitute. You will need to wean yourself from them eventually.

During alcohol detox, the oral medications tend to include benzodiazepines such as the following examples:

  1. Ativan
  2. Librium

A non-medical detoxification program won’t use any type of oral or IV prescription medication throughout the detoxification process. Instead, the non-medical detox program will utilize a variety of health building and pain relief techniques such as the following:

  • Diet Therapy
  • Vitamin Therapy
  • Saunas
  • Acupuncture
  • Meditation
  • Yoga

There are some insurance companies that offer coverage for detox programs in some U.S. states. However, it is important to understand that the coverage may be limited to the number of days or the maximum amount of money that will be paid on your behalf for the detox program. If you have a co-pay or deductible that has not been met, you will likely be expected to pay a certain percentage yourself. Therefore, prior to signing up for a detox or rehab program, make certain to check with your insurance company about the coverage and get the specifics.

The cost of any rehab will vary greatly and depend on the type of program that is chosen as well as the length of time before you are discharged. For instance, prescription drug, meth, cocaine and heroin treatment all entail that the body’s opiate receptors be restored to their original state. This takes longer, making the programs are more expensive.

As you can imagine, outpatient detox treatment is less expensive than having to check into an inpatient detox treatment facility. Non-private inpatient detox centers are also less expensive than private inpatient detox treatment facilities. However, private facilities offer a variety of incentives like scholarships and discounts that may not be available at non-private centers.

The cost of the detox program should carefully be considered as it compares to the state of your health. Afterall, it is an investment. If you allow your addiction to continue, it could lead to further costs and, eventually, death. It is for this reason that prescription drug and heroin rehab can save lives.

So, ask yourself a few questions.

  • How much is your life is worth to you?
  • How much is it worth to those who love you?
  • Do you see another 10 to 20 years of alcohol or drug addiction? If so, where is that addiction going to get you in life?
  • Are you going to have more money in that same timeframe? (Especially considering inflation, lost job opportunities due to your addiction and other related factors)

Alcohol and drug addiction both have the ability to destroy one’s desire to be happy and healthy as it interferes with any health-building habits like exercising, eating healthy and not smoking, drinking alcohol, or using drugs. Therefore, throughout the inpatient detox program, many individuals must learn how to be healthy again. During these programs, it is often taught how to eat healthy, how to exercise, how to think healthy thoughts, how to meditate and much more.

The 12-step program is found in numerous detox facilities throughout the country. The process is founded on the idea that the addiction is not curable, and instead, genetic. Therefore, the philosophy is that you will require treatment for the remainder of your life. The 12-step program offers psychological methods for dealing with a variety of life stressors. Additionally, it offers an accountability component so that you are fully accountable to a mentor for your own individual actions and success.

Some individuals want this type of program to get them through the next several months (or more) once they leave rehab. Others disagree with its core belief that addiction is not curable and opt for other resources.

Addiction occurs for quite a few reasons. In some cases, it’s the result of medications.  Some argue that the addiction is the fault of the physician’s, while others take responsibility for medication misuse. Whether is be because of a genetic predisposition or not, sometimes it only takes a single dose to become addicted to any medication, substance, or alcohol and require addiction treatment.

Regardless, the first step in the detox process is psychological. This is admitting that you have a problem. The next steps will involve that you take personal responsibility for the choices that you have previously made. If you found yourself “stuck” in a situation where you took an addictive prescription drug because of pain, then the solution is reducing the source of your pain. If the pain was eliminated, you would not need those prescription painkillers. This is why you need to work with medical providers who are can work to help your body heal its source of pain prior to going to the detox treatment center.

For more information about the detox process, rehab center, or your individual situation, give us a call at Shadow Mountain Recovery. We are happy to talk with you about any questions or concerns that you may have.

Don’t wait another day to get the help you or a loved one needs. Call us now.

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