Natural vs. Medical Detox
When a person habitually uses drugs or alcohol, they are bound to develop tolerance and a physical adaptation to the presence of the substance in their body to the point that they need more of it to function. This is what those in the recovery community call substance “dependence”. Once achieving this status, a sudden cessation or abstinence from using their substance of choice will result in withdrawal symptoms that can range anywhere from mildly uncomfortable to life-threatening.
The emergence, timeline, and resolution of withdrawal symptoms vary from drug to drug and are also impacted by factors such as the half-life of the substance, the method of administration, frequency of use, and the dosage generally used over time. While some substances may not produce immediate withdrawal effects, you will likely feel withdrawal symptoms right away for some stimulant drugs, which will typically appear within a few hours to a couple of days after the last dose.
Withdrawal symptoms from heroin and painkillers may present within 6-12 hours after the last drug use and subside within a week. Long-acting drugs like methadone, usually have longer and delayed timelines, and once the symptoms emerge, they take even longer to dissipate. For an individual who is addicted to Xanax or alcohol, withdrawal symptoms tend to present within a few hours to several days after stopping use and improve in a few days. Valium symptoms, on the other hand, will be felt for a full week after the most recent dose and may not resolve for up to four weeks.
Some factors affect the severity and duration of withdrawal symptoms; for example, an older person may experience severe symptoms, depending on their gender, and mental health and physical state. Depending on the specific psychoactive substance, withdrawal symptoms can be unpleasant, causing the patient significant distress and even putting them in medical danger as their body adjusts to a lack of drugs in their system. In some cases, it is not uncommon for people to develop psychological issues during the withdrawal process or return to using drugs in order to relieve their severe symptoms, which is why it’s crucial to choose the right detox program.
Due to safety concerns and the risk of severe symptoms, natural detoxification should not be used to manage withdrawal from alcohol, benzodiazepines, barbiturates, or opioids because a patient may experience delirium, hallucinations even exhibit dangerous, and aggressive behaviors.
However natural interventions such as acupuncture, massage, herbal remedies such as juicing and yoga can be used to help remove toxic substances from the body following a successful medical intervention to keep the liver and other vital organs in good shape.
This is especially important if someone is withdrawing from alcohol or opioids such as heroin and in this case, a patient is given medication under strict medical supervision in order to alleviate discomfort and cravings as well as prevent further complications.
Detoxification from drugs or alcohol should always be done safely under the care of trained professionals because attempting to do it at home can have dangerous, even life-threatening consequences. Request a call back today to learn more about detox, the first step in your journey to recovery.