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What You Should Know About Alcohol Detox

When it comes to addiction treatment, there is no one-size-fits-all solution. Your pattern of alcohol abuse can vary in the amount of disruption it brings to your life and the lives of those around you. You may need to seek treatment for a co-occurring disorder such as PTSD or depression alongside your rehabilitation. And, in many cases, you will see the best success in your recovery if you begin with an alcohol detox program.

Some people become both psychologically and physically dependent on alcohol. When they try to cut drinking out of their lives, they experience uncomfortable or even dangerous withdrawal symptoms. Despite their best intentions to stop drinking, the intensity of these symptoms makes them return to using alcohol to ease their suffering. That’s where detox comes in.

What Is Alcohol Detox?

The first thing you should understand about detox is that it isn’t a stand-alone treatment. However, if you have developed a dependence on alcohol, medical detox lays the groundwork you need to begin your recovery. During your detox program, you will spend six to 10 days freeing your body and mind from alcohol while a team of medical professionals monitors your symptoms and helps ease your discomfort.

Withdrawal symptoms happen when a person whose alcohol use has hijacked their brain chemistry suddenly stops drinking, thus depriving their brain of the substance it relies on for balance. The symptoms can kick in within six to 24 hours after your last drink, and can even happen while you still have alcohol in your bloodstream.

Depending on how long you abused alcohol, you may be more likely to experience alcohol withdrawal symptoms when you stop drinking. For some people, these can be intense and even life-threatening, and include:

  • Anxiety
  • Delirium tremens
  • Depression
  • Visual or auditory hallucinations
  • Insomnia
  • Shakiness, especially in your hands
  • Fluctuating blood pressure and heart rate

Do You Need Alcohol Detox?

People who become addicted to alcohol may initially begin using it because they see drinking as a fun and relaxing activity. However, as their addiction takes control, drinking becomes increasingly less of an outlet that creates pleasure and more of a way to avoid pain. If you know alcohol is adversely affecting your life and relationships, but you have trouble feeling normal without drinking, you likely need help to break out of the damaging cycle of addiction. For many people, detox helps them build the foundation they need to transition smoothly into their next phases of treatment.

Another thing you should understand about detox is that it is not the same as quitting drinking cold turkey. Though the goal of alcohol detox is to free you from your chemical dependence, getting through your detox program relies on more than your willpower and desire to quit. If you are in alcohol detox at Vista Taos, you will be in a comfortable inpatient treatment setting where a compassionate team of medical professionals will monitor you 24/7 and provide the care you need to ease your withdrawal symptoms.

Begin Your Road to Wellness at Vista Taos

At Vista Taos, our addiction specialists understand you’re more likely to stick with a recovery program when you have plenty of support. That’s why we offer full-time detox treatment as part of our range of holistic healing options for addiction treatment. We know it’s never too late for you to get the help you need and discover how to live a rich, rewarding sober life. Contact our team today to get started.

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