Alcohol detox – sounds like it should be just a case of drying out for a few days, and that is that. Of course it is not that simple though. Alcohol addiction is one of the most prevalent addictions in the world. Close to 18 million Americans have abused alcohol at one time or another in their lives, and when you add that to the nearly 100,000 annual alcohol related deaths in the United States alone, it becomes abundantly clear that alcohol abuse and addiction are major problems, and that the need for alcohol detox is monumental.
Thorough alcohol detox is the crucial first part of any complete, long-term alcohol rehab program. There are detox programs in which medications are used to significantly ease the patients withdrawal symptoms. These symptoms may include anything from vomiting, anxiety, and hallucinations, to hand tremors and even seizures.
Most alcohol detox programs are inpatient due to their intense nature, and requirement for around the clock physician’s care. Generally speaking each patient has their own individual treatment program, and they are treated in comfortable, easy going environments to avoid adding extra stress to the overall process.
Those in need of alcohol detox programs have a history, recent and protracted, of drinking to complete excess. While these individuals may appear normal as a result of the incredibly high tolerances that they have built up, their bodies have been ravished by alcohol, their livers may have begun to shut down, and they are certainly in need of expert assistance.
Symptoms of Dramatic Alcohol Abuse
When an individual has been drinking great amounts for long periods of time, there are often side effects that occur, which mean that the time has truly come for alcohol abuse detox. The symptoms may include:
- Mood swings
- Sleep disorders
- Profuse sweating
For most families dealing with an alcoholic of this magnitude, alcohol addiction detox may be their last step, their final attempt at doing what it takes to keep the alcoholic alive and their family together. Alcohol addition detox may be the only treatment left that can stop; reverse, or at least slow down, the devastating physical and emotional effects of chronic alcohol abuse.
An alcohol detox program can allow even the most diehard alcoholic a shot at “miracle” healing from chronic alcoholism. Top quality alcohol detox programs also teach coping mechanisms to help the alcoholic stay sober and loved ones and family to continue their support. After alcohol detox, most people, especially those who have been drinking long term, often require a follow up specialty rehabilitation program. The first positive step is encouraging the alcoholic for making the choice to actually attend therapy, no matter how many times they have tried, or how badly they hurt the family.
The only way that someone who has been through alcohol detox can say goodbye to alcohol once and for all, is by truly embracing a treatment program, and completely changing their lives forever. Of course, an alcoholic can seek out professional one-on-one counseling after treatment, but, if they attend a holistic treatment center from the start, then they can in all likelihood handle everything under one roof, kind of like one-stop shopping.
What Alcohol Detox Is All About
An alcoholic can choose to speed up their demise through liver failure, cirrhosis, or even incurable insanity, or, they can choose to regain their sanity, and live life as a human being once again.
Many drugs are ritualistic when it comes to their use and abuse. Many addicts have whole systems, which they follow each time they use – while alcoholics sometimes do have these rituals they are far less common.
Far more common with alcoholism is its physical effect. For example, when an individual stops drinking they very often develop Delirium Tremens, extreme shaking, convulsions, and seizures.
Delirium Tremens are quite horrific and can be extremely dangerous as well. These intense side effects are simply part of the alcohol detox process. This is one of the main reasons why a holistic program is so highly suggested. The reasons why people drink are incredibly varied, unique to each person, and go so deep that only a program that deals with every part of the person can truly be effective.
Can Alcohol Detox Be Done Alone
Alcohol detox is never something someone should try to do on his or her own. It is very risky, very dangerous, and potentially deadly. When someone goes into an alcohol detox program they generally receive medications that help to ease the most severe symptoms and side-effects of withdrawal. Under direct and proper medical supervision withdrawal can be managed so as to avoid the worst outcome. But many alcoholics do try to dry-out alone, and if the physical damage is not too severe, and the problem not so long-standing, then they may succeed. There are things an alcoholic can do while drying out that will help, but please be clear, it is not advisable to detox from alcohol addiction without appropriate medical support.
- Drinking lots of water and fresh fruit juice help to flush out the alcohol, and helps keep hydration consistent. This is vital as the renal and liver functions are compromised first by the alcohol and subsequently by the process of detox.
- It is the general expert opinion is that those in withdrawal should drink, in ounces, half their body weight per day, for example someone weighing 190 pounds should drink 90 ounces of water per day. But this needs to be carefully monitored, with already impaired liver and kidney function the body will struggle with the cleansing process and there is an additional danger of fluids building up that may affect the respiratory and cardiac systems.
- Sugar levels in the body are altered by the damage done to the natural cleansing organs – the liver and kidneys. So it is important to help adjust the levels throughout detox.
- Apples and beets help, fresh fruits and vegetables all add to the immune systems capacity and are far more easily digested than processed foods or heavy proteins.
- Carrots are excellent for boosting the immune system.
- Vitamin B-100 in liquid form is also great for cleaning out the system as well.
As you can see, drying-out is not simple, alcohol detox needs to be managed and monitored to prevent more damage to the vital organs as well as the mind of the alcoholic. For some, detox is started when they have collapsed and rushed into hospital as emergency cases. They will be rehydrated via drip, sedated to give the body an opportunity to begin to repair and monitored every 15 minutes until they stabilize, the process can take days or even weeks.
It is vital to remember that alcohol detox is a full body, mind, and spirit clean out. To attempt the process alone could be said to be foolhardy in the extreme. A process the magnitude of alcohol detox is one that is without doubt best handled by experts who know how to deal with all aspects, again, mind, body, and spirit.
Holistic alcohol detox programs are now available all over the world. Addicts, who are serious about turning their lives around, and actually doing something with them, are fortunate that this is so.
Understanding of the physical, scientific and emotional aspects of alcohol addiction and detox are greater now more than ever, and in turn professional carers and counselors have developed the best programs to have ever existed. If an alcohol addict is able to decide that it is time to turn their life around they have at their disposal the best of the best programs and processes to do just that.