Detoxification, or simply detox, is the process of cleansing all the waste from the body. In recent years, detox has become a fad across the world wherein people try different methods and techniques to remove unwanted materials or toxins from the body. However, for someone grappling with substance abuse, detox is a common treatment method used to help them recover from their addiction. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), medical detoxification is the first stage of a treatment program to safely deal with the withdrawal symptoms associated with cessation of drug use.
There are different detox programs depending on whether they are for alcohol, illicit substances, or prescription drugs. Detox is a time taking process during which a patient exhibits withdrawal symptoms that are painful and discomforting. Therefore, it is always necessary to undergo a medically assisted detox wherein the patient is treated with medications that further help in managing the withdrawal symptoms with ease. Such medicines are known as detox drugs and are administered depending on the severity of the withdrawal symptoms. However, these detox drugs are also harmful. Following are the side effects of detox drugs given to a specific type of drug addiction:
- Opioid agonists
The most commonly used detox drugs for opioid withdrawals are buprenorphine and methadone, also called opioid agonists. Used for helping patient suffering from heroin or opioid addiction, these drugs require daily dose to combat the pain of withdrawal symptoms. Therefore, it often necessitates the patient to visit the doctor daily for the doses. However, these medications have their own side effects such as bluing of lips, dizziness, shallow breathing, slow or uneven heartbeat, sweating and seizures. In general, consumption of methadone can make the patient slightly high, hence it often involves the risks of being abused.
- BenzodiazepinesThese drugs are prescribed to patients undergoing detox for alcohol addiction. Common benzodiazepine medications are Xanax, Valium and Ativan. Quitting alcohol without any medical guidance can result in delirium tremens, which is a severe condition and can even lead to death if not treated on time. The condition affects about 10 percent of people who withdraw from alcohol. The use of benzodiazepines helps in calming psychomotor agitation. However, benzodiazepines are potentially addictive and can cause side effects such as depression, sedation, dizziness, loss of orientation, disturbance in sleep pattern, and aggression. Therefore, it is always advisable to consume the drugs under strict medical supervision.
- Drugs to treat Benzodiazepine withdrawalTreating benzodiazepine withdrawal can be challenging because people suffering from the addiction often also grapple with anxiety-related disorders. Therefore, treating the withdrawal includes tapering to help the person achieve relief even after shifting from benzodiazepines. Treating such addiction is difficult because the medication that is typically used to lessen the discomfort of withdrawal is the drug that the patient is addicted to.
Dealing with addiction
Though it may appear simple and easy to quit an abused substance, detoxification is a complex process. Sudden abandoning of the long-used drug, also known as cold turkey, can cause disruption in the body’s changed mechanism, which further results in withdrawal symptoms. Therefore, it is recommended to seek medical help and supervision when undergoing detox. Also, effective detoxification can only be achieved if the process is done in accordance to the degree and duration of the addiction, which is determined by a clinical diagnosis.
If you or your loved is suffering from addiction or experiencing withdrawal symptoms due to stopping of drug use, contact the Florida Detox Helpline that gives reliable information about one of the finest detox centers in Florida. You can call at our 24/7 helpline number (855) 920-9869 or chat online with one of our experts to get in touch with the best detox center in Florida.