Medical detoxification is the first step in the opioid treatment method. It is followed by behavioral therapy, medication, and follow-up care.

Detoxification is the process of eliminating toxins from a patient’s body that is addicted to a substance. It’s designed to help people cope with the physical consequences of stopping smoking as well as the withdrawal symptoms that come with it.

Who needs Drug and alcohol medical detox?

When a person uses alcohol or other drugs for an extended period, his or her body becomes dependent on the presence of the substance. The brain gets used to the way the drug affects it and adapts so it can function normally. Eventually, a person builds tolerance, meaning they have consumed higher doses of the drug to feel the same effects.

Examples of drugs that can cause addiction:

  • Alcohol
  • Opioids (such as oxycodone, hydrocodone, and heroin)
  • Benzodiazepines (such as valium, Xanax, Halcion, Ativan)
  • Stimulants (such as cocaine, and crystal meth)
  • Prescription stimulant (such as Adderall and retain)
  • Synthetic drug (such as spice and bath salts)
  • Drugs that contain THC (such as marijuana and hashish)

Without help, recovering from meth addiction can be challenging and risky. Supervised detox improves the chances of a patient’s long-term recovery and provides a supportive environment during the initial stages of recovery.

What is the medical detox process?

In general, medical detox is the three-step process:

Evaluation, stabilization and preparation for future. Patients should speak about their addiction, attend therapy sessions, and attend support group meetings during detox. These are alternative treatments, not detox stages.

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Evaluation usually involves a questionary, a physical exam, blood test, and screening for co-occurring mental health disorders or other medical conditions. The therapist will determine the person a psychological state and the strength of personal support during evaluation. A physician will then develop a treatment plan using that information.


Stabilization is the process by which people stop using drugs and are assisted by health providers in achieving sobriety and a medically stable condition. Certain drugs, such as alcohol, cigarettes, and opioids, can be used to help with withdrawal symptoms. The severity and duration of withdrawal symptoms are dictated by the type and severity of the addiction. The time it takes for things to settle down is normally between one and three weeks.


The patient should be prepared for additional treatment following detox. The most uncomfortable physical side effects of recovery usually occur during detox, but detox does not prepare the patient for psychological challenges they will face afterward. Health professionals should educate the patient about the importance of beginning therapy, entering a 12-step program, or finding some form of long-term treatment to increase the chances of recovery.


  • Detox is a part of a continuum of care for addiction.
  • The detox process consists of evaluation, stabilization, and preparation of recovery.
  • Regardless of the seriousness of their illness, individuals should engage in the whole process.
  • The detox plan should be individualized.
  • After detox, both patients should be referred to treatment.
  • Insurance pal should be cover the full range of detox services.
  • Services could be able to accommodate culturally diverse needs.
  • Involvement in and adherence to future care may be used to determine success.


Patients are sedated when receiving a drug that triggers rapid withdrawal in ultra-rapid detox… The belief was the patient would sleep through the worst parts of withdrawal. However, studies have found that when patients awoke, they had withdrawal symptoms that were close to those encountered by patients who had not received the medication. The method didn’t accelerate the process, and patients with preexisting medical conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, AIDS, or co-occurring mental health disorders were at the risk of complication.


The goal of medication-assisted is to rid the body of dangerous substances and make the patient feel as comfortable as possible. Most medications treat side effects of withdrawal such as headache, fevers, seizures, tremors.

  • Anticonvulsants
  • Antidepressants
  • Methadone
  • Antipsychotics
  • Barbiturates
  • Buprenorphine
  • Clonidine

There are no medications that quicken the body’s ability to get rid of drugs, but some medications can reduce cravings.