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Drug detox is one of the first steps in the treatment process toward recovery from drug and alcohol addiction. The goal of detoxification is to rid the body of toxins accumulated by drug use. These days there are few people who use one drug exclusively. It is very common to see individuals in drug detox that use alcohol and cocaine, or alcohol and prescription medications for example.
Detoxification should cover all aspects of the individual's withdrawal and purification from drugs. The removal of drug residuals is the key goal in drug detox. Without this process, drug residues can remain in one.s body and cause cravings for years after drug use has ceased. A vital step in a successful drug detox as well as drug rehabilitation is flushing out these accumulated toxic residues so that the individual no longer experiences unwanted adverse effects from the drugs they have taken.
The principles of a successful drug detox include expert medical and clinical staff, a safe and supportive environment, and a solid introduction in to the principles of recovery. The very first step of drug detox is withdrawal. Drug withdrawal is "the act or process of ceasing to use an addictive drug." Once an individual has discontinued using drugs, physical and behavioral withdrawal symptoms may follow. The character and severity of the withdrawal symptoms vary greatly depending on the particular drug and amount administered daily. Drug detox is a process that helps diminish the uncomfortable symptoms of drug withdrawal.
Drug detox can be viewed in three separate stages:
1. Medical Detox: A medical doctor will need to supervise your medical withdrawal from drugs, ensuring you complete this phase safely and with minimal complications. Medical detox can take several days.
2. Physical Detox: Once your body is no longer dependent on drugs, you will need to work on building up your physical health. A nutritionist can be helpful during this phase, enabling you to develop a balanced diet to help you through the rest of the drug detox process.
3. Emotional Detox: Detox can be extremely difficult on your emotional health, which is why most treatment centers offer counseling during detox. Because drugs have become an integral part of your mental, emotional and social life, you will need emotional help as you detox.
Drug detox is performed in many different ways depending on where you decide to receive treatment. Most drug detox centers simply provide treatment to avoid physical withdrawal to alcohol and other drugs. Others provide the individual with counseling during detox to help with the physical withdrawal and the psychological root cause of the individual's addiction problem. This helps to decrease the chances of relapse. It is important that the detox staff works closely with the medical professionals to insure the highest standards of quality and treatment are met. While the individual is in detox as well as throughout the program it is important that every effort is made to see that the individual is as comfortable as possible.
The capability of a detox drug to handle all types of drug addiction: heroin, cocaine, crack, meth, marijuana, ecstasy, prescription drugs and alcohol is vital. Many successful programs believe that the ability to accomplish a complete recovery from drug addiction must be based on the belief that an individual is not powerless, and in fact, must take responsibility for his or her own actions. Graduates of a successful drug detox and rehabilitation program are individuals who can stand on their own feet and live drug-free, productive lives.
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