As patients enter treatment for alcohol and drug addiction, their bodies begin to feel the effects of withdrawal as substance effects wear off. Withdrawal of some substances, such as alcohol, can be dangerous and even deadly. For an addicted person to have the best chance at recovery, professional medical alcohol and drug detox is needed.
Begin your search for relief from addiction at Alcohol/Drug Medical Detox Treatment Centers, Willimantic.
Drugs and alcohol have the capacity to be addictive because they act on the brain’s limbic system — its reward center. The limbic system is designed to reinforce useful actions by rewarding them with positive feelings such as satisfaction, confidence and joy. Alcohol and drugs hack into this system and try to tap into these positive feelings on demand.
The limbic system releases torrents of positive emotion when exposed to these drugs and creates a strong and reinforced positive connection to drug use in the brain. This, in short, is what addiction is—the brain and body’s conditioned responses to continuous exposure to chemical substances and the subsequent withdrawal that a person feels when the substance supply is cut off.
Medical detox attempts to reset the brain, breaking the positive feelings that the brain retains for drugs. The body is gently weaned off of the chemicals it has grown used to so that the brain and body can heal from their damaging effects and begin to function normally again.
The United States Department of Health and Human Services describes detox as a series of three steps:
Evaluation: The patient is assessed by experts for their state of addiction, and for co-occurring mental disorders and addictions. This helps treatment experts create a rehab treatment plan that addresses patients’ full spectrum of physical and psychological needs.
Physical stabilization: Patients are treated in order to restore their bodies’ natural, healthy functions. This process seeks to gradually reduce and eliminate the addictive substances to allow the brain and other organs to heal and operate naturally over time. Close monitoring is needed to prevent shock, pain, and other severe patient reactions to withdrawal.
Psychological stabilization: Medical detox is only able to help the physical effects of withdrawal. Patients require psychological treatment as well to address any mental disorders or emotional factors tied with their drug and alcohol use. Proper treatment can help patients establish strategies and plans for maintaining their recovery.
Every drug produces a different type of chemical reaction with the body’s natural functions and comes with different withdrawal symptoms:
Meth: Tiredness, treatment-resistant depression, agitation, insomnia, lucid nightmares and suicidal obsessions are all common.
OxyContin: Severe diarrhea, vomiting, and other stomach-related disorders. Sweating, sleeplessness, depression and anxiety are common.
Alcohol: Body tremors, sweating, irregular heartbeat, confusion, physical pain, anxiety and extreme nausea may occur.
Heroin: An intense craving for heroin is one of the most troubling symptoms of withdrawal from the drug. Patients may have drug-use related dreams for up to a year after stopping use. Other symptoms tend to be physical — muscular cramping, diarrhea, pain and nausea have been observed.
Medical detox specialists address these symptoms in one of two ways. To begin, the patient is offered sedation. While under sedation, the patient suffers very little. To help curb cravings, doctors administer drugs such as naltrexone. These medications block receptors that would normally signal the patient to crave their substance of choice.
Professional medical and psychological help is needed to make detoxification as effortless and painless for addicted patients as possible. If you worry about what your loved one will go through in medical detox, find the resources you need as well as finding the best rehab centers to fit your needs with help from Drug Treatment Centers, Willimantic, call today at (860) 207-8364.