Many experts would argue that detoxing is the most important part of the recovery process. Not only does it offer many benefits for the addict, but it can potentially save their life. Recovering from an addiction can be a challenge, but the right type of treatment can change a person’s entire life. It can mean the difference between a relapse and a positive long-term outcome.
There are people struggling and suffering because of an addiction in every state in the U.S. The State of Washington is no different. In fact, the Department of Health has stated that:
There are more than 7.6 million people who call Washington State their home. For these individuals, a significant number of them are battling an addiction. Many will keep their substance abuse a secret simply because they do not know how to get help, or where to turn.
We want you to know that recovery is possible, even if it seems difficult. With treatment that includes drug detox, people with addictions can have hope that they might not have otherwise.
When a person opts to go to drug detox, they are getting help for the physical part of their addiction. That means getting treatment for the withdrawal symptoms that are sure to follow once they stop using. We will talk in more detail about what that means in just a moment.
Drug detox is a place where people can come and talk with medical professionals about the best way to come off a particular drug. They are very inviting, and there are many different types of detoxification centers to choose from. Some offer outpatient services and others provide inpatient care. There are also those that have an in-house drug rehab center for patients to transition into.
The goal is to get people off their drug or drugs of choice safely. Once the detoxification process has been completed, people generally feel a lot better. They are also prepared to move on to the next phase of recovery, which is rehab.
According to the SAMHSA treatment locator tool, there are about 20 inpatient detox and rehab programs in the State of Washington. There are close to 50 substance abuse recovery facilities that offer both types detoxification and rehabilitation services. But when hospitals are included, there are even more.
This proves the fact that the type of help people need is readily available to them. But every effort should be made to choose a program that meets certain requirements. For example, people should opt for:
There are several types of drug detox programs that people can choose when they are ready to recover. It is important to know what they are and what their positives and possible negatives might be. But, as always, safety is our most important concern. There are some types of programs that can be dangerous, and therefore, we cannot recommend them.
Inpatient drug detox – This is the type of treatment that most experts recommend because it is the level of care that is usually needed. It involves staying in a facility for a period of time while receiving help for withdrawal symptoms. The patient must take time away from home, but that time is usually minimal.
Outpatient drug detox – There are some outpatient programs that offer detox services, but for the most part, we do not recommend them. There may be some individuals for whom this type of care would work, but there is always the risk of complications with withdrawal. Also, the risk of relapsing is higher when choosing this type of program.
Rapid drug detox – This method usually piques people’s interest because they like the idea of getting through the withdrawal phase quickly. There are many variations to rapid detox, but many of them involve going under anesthesia and taking IV detox medications. The process is typically over in a few hours, and the patient may be required to stay overnight for observation. Again, the risk of complications is high, and some people may have pre-existing medical conditions that would make this type of treatment dangerous.
Going to an inpatient drug detox facility has so many benefits over an outpatient program. Earlier, we mentioned the risk of complications, and that risk is very real for those who use certain types of drugs. For example, alcohol, opioids, stimulants and benzodiazepines all produce potentially dangerous withdrawal symptoms in some people. There really is no way to know whether a particular person might be at risk for complications or not.
Additional benefits of going to drug detox at an inpatient program include:
In addition, going through inpatient detox reduces the risk of complications because of the treatments that are offered. It makes sense to take advantage of the best possible medical care when coming off drugs or alcohol.
Most people who battle addictions do not maintain a proper or healthy diet while they are using. That can make it much more difficult for their bodies to process those toxins once they quit. Getting back on track with a healthy diet is a critical part of the recovery process. That is why so many drug detox programs recommend nutritional therapy.
The nutrition therapist will talk with the patient about their food intake, and will recommend specific changes. The goal is to improve the patient’s overall health and eating the right foods is an important part of that. Once they are eating better, they will notice that they feel better in general. As a result, the liver and kidneys will be better equipped to process toxins and help them recover.
There are several holistic treatments that detoxification facilities might utilize during withdrawal. Physical exercise helps because toxins are released from the body through the pores as the patient sweats. Yoga and meditation are also highly recommended because they can help with depression and anxiety – two common withdrawal symptoms for many drugs.
Detoxing off drugs is important for a number of reasons. We already discussed the risk of complications, which can be quite high, depending on the type of drug the person was using. But the other reason it is so critical is because of the risk of relapsing, and how that can put a person at risk of a fatal overdose.
It has been proven that relapses are a part of the recovery process. While that may be true, that does not mean that relapsing is safe. It is quite dangerous, and many people die from overdoses as a result. This occurs because when a person relapses, they are usually unaware of how their drug tolerance has changed while they have been off their substance of choice. The changing tolerance level means that their bodies no longer need the same dose of the drug to get the desired effects.
Out of habit, the relapsing individual uses the same amount they always use. But that amount is too much for them to handle, and the result is a relapse. Detoxing can prevent multiple relapses and overdoses. It is a lifesaving form of treatment that just about everyone with an addiction needs.
Withdrawal symptoms can vary, depending on the type of drug a person has been using. But there are some that are quite common for many different types of drugs. They include:
There is also the risk of experiencing serious medical issues, such as:
Alcohol withdrawal can be very dangerous, which is something that many people are surprised to hear. They often assume that because it is easy to get, and legal, that stopping it should not cause any problems. Unfortunately, they are incorrect. The truth is that it can be deadly, which is why it is so important to go through alcohol detox during recovery.
Some of the more common alcohol withdrawal symptoms include:
Some alcoholics will suffer from delirium tremens, which is a type of alcohol withdrawal that can be fatal. With proper treatment during the detoxification period, the DTs can be avoided. But symptoms include:
The duration of withdrawal really depends upon a number of different factors, such as:
It is a good idea to take a look at various drug withdrawal timelines to get information on a specific drug. Every one of them has their own half-life, which determines how long the drug stays in the body.
For most people, detoxing off drugs will take between one to two weeks, which most people needing about 10 days. But of course, that is an average. There are those who detox faster because they have faster metabolisms, and some people need longer for a number of reasons.
Regardless of how long it takes, detoxing is so important, and it is a big part of recovering from an addiction.
One of the key factors that usually deters people from finding out more information about drug detox in WA state is the costs associated with this type of treatment. Up until a few years ago, not every insurance plan offered payment for any type of drug treatment. However, The Affordable Care Act has changed that significantly. Thanks to this new law, all insurance companies are now required to provide at least partial coverage for addiction treatment, and in many cases, that includes drug detox.
The fact is that more and more physicians are realizing that drug detox is so crucial to recovering from a drug addiction.
The individuals who have received the most participated in this type of treatment are generally the ones who go on to avoid relapsing in the future. This realization has spread, and now insurance companies recognize the value in providing benefits for it.
Of course, everyone's insurance company is going to be different. Some insurance companies offer full coverage for drug detox, while others may offer only partial coverage. Even so, co-payments are generally not very large. These changes have made getting affordable drug detox in Washington State so much easier, and that means more people can finally get the help they need to overcome addiction.
All insurance companies offer some type of coverage for drug detox programs in WA. That means that as long as you have health insurance, you should have benefits available to you to use. Perhaps you're not sure what those benefits are, and you're not even really sure how to find out. If that is the case, the best way to get that information is to contact Northpoint Washington to talk about your options for treatment. The person you speak with will be able to listen to your history, and based on that, he or she will recommend a course of treatment for you. It will most likely include a recommendation for drug detox. Once you receive a recommendation, the addiction specialist will contact your insurance company on your behalf to determine what your benefits are. This is great because you will not be left with any questions as to what your coverage is, and you can plan accordingly for any out of pocket costs you might incur when you get to drug detox.
It's important to remember that every insurance company is different, but you can get the information you need to know about your individual plan when you talk with the specialist.
At Northpoint Washington, we understand the importance of both drug detox and rehab for our patients. Detox is needed to address the physical side of the addiction, and it should always be done first. This helps the patient get through withdrawal and get their symptoms under control and better managed. Afterwards, rehab is necessary to determine the underlying cause of the addiction so that it can be treated.
But there is no arguing that detoxing is the foundation upon which treatment is built. Our drug detox program is among the best in the State of Washington.
When people enter into Northpoint Washington’s drug detox program, they are beginning 28 total days of recovery (including rehab). They will receive medication assisted treatment, which is what most doctors recommend as being the best way to recover.
Our goal is to address the individual’s physical dependence upon drugs with a personalized treatment plan. Through therapeutic activities, medications and other forms of treatment, our patients will feel better faster than they would if they quit on their own. Typically, our drug detox program will take about 7 days. But again, this can vary, based on individuals’ needs.
As we mentioned earlier, alcohol detox can be dangerous for recovering alcoholics because of the risk of complications. That is what makes this program so vital for anyone who is recovering from this type of addiction.
Just like with drug detox, a personalized treatment plan is necessary for anyone who is in need of alcohol detox. The approach will typically be to prescribe medications to help calm withdrawal symptoms and avoid delirium tremens.
People are usually feeling better within about a week. But, depending on the severity of one’s alcoholism, they may need to remain in the detox stage a bit longer. Afterwards, it is crucial for the patient to continue to alcohol rehab to get further recovery help and assistance.
Medical detox is often referred to as medicated detox. It simply means to place a patient on medications to help with their withdrawal symptoms. There are many different opinions about this because some experts believe that addicts will only be exchanging one addiction for another. That is an understandable concern, but it is also one that can be addressed.
The medications that patients receive during detox are not intended for long-term use. When they are taking short-term, and according to the doctor’s instructions, they can be very beneficial. In fact, there are many people who might not be able to recover at all without them.
There are a number of drugs that can be used to treat alcohol withdrawal during recovery. They include:
Vivitrol is another medication that has been approved to treat alcoholism and alcohol withdrawal. Research shows that there is no risk of forming a secondary addiction to this drug. It is given once per month, and patients must agree to a counseling program at the same time.
The medications that are prescribed for patients during drug detox are all dependent upon the type of drug they are addicted to. For some people, they may be prescribed a drug on the list above. Others may be given specific medications to help with particular symptoms. For instance, if a person is considered at risk for seizures, they may be given an anti-convulsant. If depression or anxiety are a concern, an antidepressant may be prescribed.
For patients who suffer from opioid addiction, medication assisted treatment (MAT) is usually recommended. This involves taking a drug that has been FDA approved to treat that specific substance abuse problem. Typically, that means taking a different type of opioid that has been shown to be effective.
There are several types of MAT medications, such as:
Vivitrol has also been approved to treat opioid addiction, and because it is not addictive, it is becoming the more prominent choice.
Fortunately, the State of Washington is taking its drug problem very seriously. That is why the Washington Recovery Help Line has put out an MAT Locator to help as many people as possible.
The MAT Locator offers an online map that shows people where they can get medications to treat opioid addictions. As most people are aware, the opioid epidemic has become a national health emergency. For those who suffer from this type of addiction, knowing where to get help is the key. Many simply do not know where to turn.
It is clear that a medical approach to recovery is necessary in order for most people to be successful. At Northpoint Washington, it is our goal to stay up to date on the best forms of treatment so we can help as many people as possible.
At Northpoint Washington, it is an honor for us to be able to work with people who live in this beautiful state. We know that for many, their lives have been ravaged because of their dependence upon drugs and alcohol. But with the right treatment, and by starting with drug detox, they can achieve their recovery goals.
Our drug detox program is set in a lovely facility in a very relaxing atmosphere. We aim to keep our patient population small to increase the amount of time our staff can spend with their patients. That allows them to get the attention they need and focus on achieving sobriety and freedom from addiction.
Do you have questions about drug detox and how you can get started with your addiction treatment? We are here to help. Please contact us right away.