Medical Detoxification

In simple, the process of medical detox, with regard to drug addiction-substance abuse and alcoholism, is when someone coming into the treatment process is medically managed out of their substance abusing patterns into a sober existence.  As one continues to abuse drugs or alcohol the body begins to build both, physical and psychological dependence on that substance.

There is much variation from substance to substance in terms of level and manner of withdrawal.  There is also the distinction of psychological withdrawal symptoms vs. physical withdrawal symptoms.  The term “physical withdrawal” refers to the normal flu-like symptoms common in these scenarios, such as; fever, sweats, diarrhea, hot/cold flashes, sleeplessness, body aches, etc.  Below is just a general breakdown of what to expect based on many years experience:

  • MARIJUANA – Minimal to no physical withdrawal symptoms.  Psychological withdrawal can occur in the form of depression, boredom, gloom, etc
  • COCAINE/CRACK – Minimal to no physical withdrawal symptoms.  Psychological withdrawal is quite likely to occur at least to some varying levels consisting of, depression, melancholy, etc.  People withdrawing from cocaine, and even more so crack-cocaine, are very likely to sleep and eat much more than normal in the first few days of sobriety.
  • METHAMPHETAMINE – Minimal to no physical withdrawal symptoms.  Psychological withdrawal is quite likely to occur at least to some varying levels consisting of, depression, melancholy, etc.  Those withdrawing from Methamphetamine (speed, crystal, crank, etc.) will often times be suffering from mass sleep deficiency coupled with inability to sleep, as well as malnourishment and overall poor health.  Methamphetamine, more so than other drugs, can have longer-lasting psychological withdrawal symptoms and thus, is it is often recommended to engage in healthy dieting, herbal supplements, exercise, etc.
  • HEROIN/OPIATES/OPIOIDS – Narcotic pain killers are basically pharmaceutical forms of heroin with varied characteristics.  Examples would be; Vicodin, Norco, Oxycontin, Hydrocodone, Oxycodone, etc.  In terms of physical withdrawal, the opiate category of drugs is known to cause flu-like symptoms depending on the user’s length and quantity of use.  While the physical withdrawal can feel absolutely horrible and create the feeling of being on the verge of death or collapse, the likelihood for fatal consequences are very low.  The most common drug used for opiate withdrawal is called Suboxone.  On rare occasions other drugs such as Subutex or Methadone will be used.
  • ALCOHOL – The detoxification from alcohol can be difficult and very dangerous if not conducted under the close supervision of a licensed physician.  This of course can vary on the drinker’s length and quantity of abuse.  Alcoholics in the detox process can have what are called “alcoholic seizures” which can be fatal.  Please do not attempt to ween yourself alcohol if you have been drinking heavily or even moderately for an extended period of time.
  • BENZODIAZAPENES – This class consists of such drugs as; Xanax, Librium, Valium, Diazepam and many more.  Often termed “Benzos,” this class of drugs can also present potential fatal consequences if not medically detoxed under the close care of a licensed physician.

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The information above is intended as a general guide based on the experience of many. The creators of this web page are not licensed physicians; we are caring individuals whom have experienced the horrors of addictive-type illnesses on many levels. We speak from many years of personal and professional experience. Please feel free to contact us for any reason at:



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