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Drug Detox

More Americans are addicted to illicit and prescription drugs and alcohol now than at any other time. In the years between 2004 and 2006, the number of people seeking help from a drug detox program rose a little more than forty percent. A recent study by SAMHSA says that one in five Americans between the ages of eighteen and twenty-five needed the services of a drug detox or treatment program during the past year. 2007‘s report goes on to tell us that almost four million people in this country sought help for a drug problem. With all these people looking for help with their addictions, detox centers are working hard to meet the demand. Here is a breakdown of the various ways that people sought help for drug and alcohol problems:


If you need help in beating a drug addiction, you should know that it’s not possible without a detox program. No matter what drug you are addicted to, the three phases of detox are essentially the same. Here they are, along with a brief explanation:

Medical detox is where a person is supervised by physicians so that they can observe the person to make sure they don’t use drugs or alcohol, and to help them get through the hardest part of any detox program– the withdrawal symptoms.

Physical detox is the next step. The addict relearns how to live a normal, healthy and drug-free life. They learn strategies for dealing with stress and temptation. Every detox program’s methods are a little different, but they all share a common goal.

After the physical detox is complete, the patient goes through emotional detox. This phase is to the mind and soul what the other two phases are to the body. As the detox program is finished, the person will probably need help for years to keep from relapsing and to make up for the void left by the drugs.

As we mentioned, prescription drugs like Valium and Vicodin are just as addictive and dangerous as meth and cocaine. Every addict needs a detox program to remove the drugs built up within their body and to manage their withdrawal symptoms, which can include irregular or rapid heartbeat, anxiety, fear, and seeing things that aren’t there. Most addicts can take a few days to a couple of weeks to finish a detoxification treatment.

Many detox programs take a holistic approach, but many use certain medications to reduce the patient’s compulsion to drink and to mitigate their withdrawal symptoms. But, if the person is given medicine, they must be watched to make sure they don’t leave the center with an all-new addiction. Most residential treatment facilities include a detox program, as do many outpatient centers.

No matter what kind of detox program you enter, you need a genuine desire to quit using drugs to be a success. If you or someone you love has a problem with drugs or alcohol, get evaluated by your doctor. They will determine what kind of detox program will be best for you.

Drug Enforcement Agnecy (DEA) –
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services (SAMHSA) –
National Institue of Health (NIH) –

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