What to expect during detox treatmentA detox programme is a highly utilised addiction treatment, in place to influence drug or alcohol withdrawal. It is a proactive and safe process where toxins or harmful chemicals are removed from the body through a cleansing process.

Completing a detox treatment is customary for a large proportion of rehab clients. When a drug or alcohol addiction is experienced, a build-up of those addictive substances will remain. In order to deter that build-up and remove all traces of the substances, a detox will be recommended.

Detox programmes are understandably known as challenging treatments to complete. As regular consumption levels will be reduced, placing the body and mind into shock, withdrawal symptoms will show themselves. These withdrawal symptoms are known to disrupt recovery processes for some clients. Yet through a medically supervised detox programme, you can expect to continue on a road to recovery, by utilising replacement medications and therapies.

Working through a detox is imperative if you’re hoping to recover from drug and alcohol addictions. With this in mind, if you’re looking at rehabilitating or understand that this will be a necessary process in the future, familiarising yourself with detox treatments is recommended. Here’s what to expect during detox treatment, along with the benefits of working through the challenges to reach full withdrawal.


What is a detox?

Withdrawing from drugs or alcohol, safely and effectively is completed through a detox treatment. As the body will become custom to a certain level of drugs and alcohol, and their effects, stopping that consumption at a rapid rate will not be recommended. This is commonly known as the cold turkey approach.

Alternatively, a detox programme should be completed, to slowly ease down consumption levels. Here is where replacement drugs and therapies will be promoted to progress detoxification, while also improving comfort through withdrawal symptoms.

Completing a detox can influence the initial stages of recovery. Once physical withdrawal from drugs and alcohol has been experienced, greater motivation and responsiveness of alternative therapies is likely. Yet, by avoiding a full detox programme, physical cravings will remain, ultimately refuelling the consumption cycle.

With this in mind, a detox treatment is a large part of drug and alcohol rehabilitation. It can have a direct impact on your recovery ability. If you’re hoping to recover, embracing a detox and seeing those withdrawal symptoms as a sign of progression will be recommended.


What to expect during detox treatment?

Although addiction recovery will vary for all individuals, a detox treatment will usually follow a similar course of action. Here is what to expect during detox treatment via a specialist rehab facility.

  • Assessment

Before starting detox treatment, it is important that all clients complete a medical assessment. As drug or alcohol consumption and addictive behaviours can vary from person to person, resulting in different side effects, assessments are necessary.

Through a medical assessment, your personal needs will be gauged, along with a clearer picture of your health history. Through this data, a personalised detox programme will be formed, ensuring that you can withdraw safely and productively.

  • Withdrawal

Once a personalised detox programme has been formed, clients will usually move through to the withdrawal phase. Here is where consumption levels will slowly be reduced, where withdrawal symptoms are likely to appear.

These withdrawal symptoms will mark the removal of toxins from the body. Here is where chemicals will start to balance out, where reactions will heighten.

Withdrawal symptoms through a detox can vary from person to person. Factors which can influence these changes include the length of consumption, the type of substance which has been consumed, the consistency of consumption, and general physical and mental health.

Common withdrawal symptoms to expect during detox treatment include:

  • anxiety
  • Irritability
  • Headaches
  • Nausea
  • Abdominal cramps
  • Muscle pain
  • Flu-like symptoms
  • Insomnia
  • depression
  • Increase blood pressure
  • Tremors
  • Delirium
  • Hallucinations

Withdrawal symptoms through detox treatment can vary in strength. Some will be mild, while others can last longer, carrying discomfort. Through the next stages of a detox treatment, these withdrawal symptoms will aim to be eased.

  • Medication

To cope through the detox process, replacement medications will commonly be used. These medications will carry similar effects to the abused drug, however, will not result in similar feelings. By using replacement medication, withdrawal symptoms can be controlled, ensuring that the detox process can continue.

Medications will also be used to promote better sleep, while controlling discomforting symptoms, such as anxiety and nausea. In tandem with this, natural hormones may also be provided, such as vitamin C to improve physical and mental health.

Please be aware that the use of replacement medications may not be used throughout all detox programmes. Likewise, the form of medication may differ depending on your personal needs and response to detoxification.

  • Support and additional treatment options

Alongside detox treatment, you should expect to complete additional treatment options. Although a detox will influence physical withdrawal, psychological support will usually be required to treat the lasting damages of an addiction. Please be reassured that you will be supported and observed on a 24/7 basis while completing a detox programme, ensuring that you can uphold your health and safety through the duration of your detox.


How long will a detox usually last?

If you’re wondering what to expect during detox treatment, including its duration, timescales can vary depending on a number of personal factors. The average detox treatment will last between 7-10 days. However, down to uncontrollable factors, such as withdrawal symptoms and responsiveness, timeframes may have to be delayed slightly.

Factors which can delay your detox include the amount of drugs/alcohol which are present prior to a detox, physical and psychological health, and the severity of personal withdrawal.

Alongside detox treatment, you can expect to complete a comprehensive treatment programme. With this in mind, your rehabilitation process can last around 28-days, starting off with your detox treatment, soon followed by therapy.

We hope that this overview has provided some insight into the detox process, increasing your awareness of necessary withdrawal steps. If you have any questions on what to expect during detox treatment, feel free to contact our team. We can also point you in the right direction, ensuring that you visit a rehab centre which offers specialist and medically assisted detox treatment.