Substance Use & Addictive Disorders – Detox

If you have a substance use or addictive disorder, detox, as mentioned previously, is best carried out under medical supervision. Whether this be at a private rehab clinic or with the support of your GP or support group, it is always best to try and involve friends and family, if only to try and ensure that they have an understanding of what you are going through. If they choose to try to help then this is a great support at a difficult time.

The more severe your dependency and/or addiction is, the more severe the symptoms of detox will be. If you have a substance use or other addictive disorder , a medically supervised detox is usually recommended. During the detox period medications may be provided to limit the withdrawal symptoms and ease the process, they also limit the likelihood of dangerous withdrawal effects.

Basically, substance use and addictive disorder detox is abstaining from the substance or behaviour to which the person is reliant. Inpatient programs will be best for people with a significant history of substance use involving alcohol, heroin and prescription sedatives; also people who require round the clock medical and emotional support.

Outpatient programs may work well for some dependencies and/or addictions, where symptoms do not require round the clock monitoring and support. This option is good for people who have a lot of family and community support in their recovery.

Going “cold turkey” alone can be extremely dangerous. However, for those whose withdrawal symptoms are not particularly dangerous and who have reliable family and friends to support them, doing a detox at home may be a desirable option.

Alcohol Detox

Jordan was three months clean from cannabis and steroids. He was attempting a natural home detox without any support. It was at this time Jordan took his own life. He had little or no support from anyone but me! I feel his mental and emotional health from long term cannabis and steroid use was impaired. He suffered deep depression, anxiety, feelings of hopelessness and could no longer feel happiness. This is an example of how crucial support can be to the person going through this; often the person who has a dependency and/or addiction issue cannot see this. In Jordan’s case, towards the end, he did not want help. Had this website been created then I could have pointed him towards it so that we all could have understood the severity of untreated dependency and/or addiction.

During the detox period the person can expect to experience a whole range of symptoms. The most common drug/alcohol withdrawal symptoms include:

  • sweating
  • chills
  • tremors
  • running nose
  • flu like symptoms and nausea
  • sleeping problems including insomnia
  • mood swings
  • agitation
  • anxiety
  • nervousness and difficulty concentrating,
  • depression and feelings of worthlessness
  • body Discomfort
  • cravings for drug/alcohol

Detox is just the first part of recovery from dependency and/or addiction. Detox on its own is often insufficient for a successful recovery.

People experiencing addiction/dependency also need to address the psychological part of their problem – often they can accomplish this with counselling, support groups, the tools detailed on this website and a rehab/recovery programme if available.

You can also use a functional and nutritional doctor during and after the detox period to help balance the brain chemistry naturally, Peter Smith is an expert in this field. This can help alleviate painful withdrawal symptoms and assist greatly in substance recovery along with the other tools on this website