Alcohol detoxification (also known as withdrawal} is defined as the physiological process which takes place in the human body when it attempts to rid it of harmful toxins and waste products after excessive, prolonged alcohol consumption. The toxins accumulated in the liver over the course of alcohol dependence can cause a variety of serious problems, which may include lethargy, seizures, comatose, and even death. To help overcome alcohol dependency, alcohol detox is a popular option. However, it should be remembered that detoxification is not a simple process. It is necessary to follow certain guidelines in order to successfully undergo treatment.
When it comes to severe cases of alcohol detoxification, several treatment settings exist. For instance, inpatient treatment facilities employ a mixed range of therapies in order to treat patients who have severe alcohol dependencies. While inpatient treatment programs offer both inpatient care and outpatient care, they differ in terms of how intensive the treatment is and the time commitment required.
Other treatment settings for alcohol detoxification comprise of both inpatient and outpatient treatment programs. In an inpatient setting, patients receive inpatient treatment in a residential facility or other secure environment for the duration of the program. Patients are provided with onsite supervision, including onsite monitoring and supervision by medical staff. Some clinics and rehabilitation centers also provide extended care if more inpatient treatment is needed, including support services such as aftercare education and socialization. Many clinics and hospitals also utilize a dual care approach, which means that patients are treated for alcohol dependence in addition to conventional medicine, therapy, and medication. Dual care detox protocols vary by facility but can include several of the same elements.
Even though inpatient programs are among the most successful methods of alcohol detoxification, patients can sometimes feel uncomfortable in a residential setting. This is often due to feelings of anxiety about withdrawal, even if the anxiety is unwarranted. However, research has shown that genetics may play an important role in the development of alcohol dependency. If there is a family history of alcoholism in the patient’s parents or immediate family members, chances are good that the person will become dependent on alcohol.
When a person is undergoing alcohol detoxification from a substance abuse or dependence program, doctors will use a variety of medications to help the patient return to a normal lifestyle. Among these medications are anti-anxiety medications, sedatives, antidepressants, and even beta blockers. While a majority of these prescription medications are commonly used to treat anxiety and depression, some of them have been found to be effective in combating the symptoms of withdrawal during the detox process. Some recent studies even suggest that the fixed tapering dose regimens combined with specific anti-anxiety drugs may be as effective in achieving success as long as the patient is undergoing the program under the care of a physician.
Doctors may also recommend taking certain vitamins or herbal remedies to help keep a patient’s body temperature under control. These measures are designed to prevent a possible return to alcohol consumption after a successful alcohol detoxification session. Unfortunately, some of these herbal remedies can be dangerous when taken in high doses and in combination with alcohol consumption, since they can cause severe side effects or even alcohol poisoning. Some patients may need to be hospitalized in order for medical professionals to administer these treatments.