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What to Expect at a Medical Alcohol Detox

a person talks to a therapist at a medical alcohol detox

The process of getting free from serious alcohol addiction can feel like a massive undertaking, but with professional support, it is manageable. An important primary move toward long-term sobriety and health is entering a qualified medical detox program. This is so because detox helps you fully break the initial tie to your addiction. For information about medical alcohol detox, contact Evoke Wellness today. Our staff is available at 866.429.2960 or online and is happy to answer your questions or help you with enrollment.

What Alcohol Withdrawal Symptoms Are Likely to Occur in the Medical Detox Process?

Simply put, medical detox is the effort of ridding the body of toxins present from alcohol or drug use. It also involves going through primary withdrawal symptoms, which can be quite uncomfortable and even dangerous. Given these facts, alcohol detoxification is best tackled within a qualified rehab center with specially trained clinical staff.

Alcohol withdrawal syndrome (AWS) refers to the set of side effects that heavy drinkers often face when they suddenly stop. These symptoms are usually most severe within three days after their last drink, but some continue for up to two weeks. Among the most common AWS symptoms are:

  • Mood shifts such as anxiety and agitation
  • Energy and sleep-wake cycle changes like fatigue and insomnia
  • Headaches and gastrointestinal discomfort
  • Uneven heartbeat and high blood pressure
  • Fast and uneven breathing
  • Overheating, aka hyperthermia
  • Visual, auditory, or tactile hallucinations
  • Shaking and tremors, especially in the hands, but sometimes so severe they escalate to dangerous full-body seizures
  • In rare cases, delirium tremens, which typically occurs two to three days after the last drink and involves delusions, hallucinations, and trouble regulating vital functions like blood pressure and heart rate

The benefit of undergoing withdrawal in a detox center is that patients are monitored and receive rapid intervention if needed. In case of severe reactions like seizures and hallucinations, medical care helps ensure basic safety. Supervision and access to pain mitigation medication can also limit the odds of relapse during early withdrawal.

What Services Follow Medical Alcohol Detox in an Addiction Rehab Program?

While detox is an essential first step in treatment, it’s almost meaningless without ongoing intervention.

Individual Therapy

Following the process of getting free from the toxins and immediate effects of alcohol, patients enter individual counseling. Here, they access tools like cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), which teaches them to identify the negative cognitions that often underlie substance abuse. They then work to reframe these thoughts to more positive variations so they can move forward with greater agency. Individual therapy also helps treat any dual diagnosis mental illness that may be present and solidifies relapse prevention plans.

Group Therapy

Group therapy is likewise a key part of most alcohol recovery programs. Formats like the 12-step model are especially popular because of their long history and high success rates. In this format, patients work to admit their role in addiction, repair damaged relationships, and build community. For people desiring a purely secular outlook, many parallel versions of group therapy are likewise available.

Holistic Therapy

Finally, holistic interventions tend to pair well with alcohol recovery as well. For example, nutrition counseling is a vital part of treatment for many patients since alcohol severely compromises vital bodily systems. Eating a healthy, balanced diet that provides all the nutrients the body needs can substantially aid its healing process. Physical exercise and mindfulness activities like yoga and animal-assisted therapy can also work wonders for patients. These help them step outside their inner experience, engage with others, and generate mood-boosting chemicals like endorphins through natural means.

Reach Out Now for Alcohol Detox and Treatment at Evoke Wellness

The disease of alcohol addiction claims countless lives each year, both directly and indirectly, through incidents like drunk driving deaths. Better to get addiction recovery help sooner than later if you or a loved one could use it. At Evoke Wellness, we’re here to help you take back control of your life through effective detox and treatment. Call 866.429.2960 or send us an online message to enroll in one of our centers in Chicago, Texas, Florida, Ohio, and Massachusetts.