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Alcohol Detox: The Danger & The Solution

Nearly 30 million people annually battle alcohol use disorder. Alcohol is one of the most commonly used and abused drugs in the country. Over time its abuse destroys health, collapses mental and emotional well-being, and wreaks havoc on relationships. The irony of it all is that while quitting the drink is what needs to happen, stopping can be a dangerous situation. The detoxification process for alcohol addiction poses significant danger and should be approached with caution. In this blog, we will explore the potential risks associated with alcohol detox and discuss effective solutions to ensure a safer and more successful recovery journey.


Alcohol Detox: The Dangers


Withdrawal Symptoms

Alcohol addiction will often result in both physical and psychological dependence. When this occurs, the abrupt cessation of drinking results in life-threatening withdrawal symptoms. These include, but are not limited to, anxiety, nausea, tremors, cold-sweats, diarrhea, hallucinations, and seizures. These symptoms can all range from moderate to severe. In extreme cases of alcoholism, DT’s (delirium tremens) can manifest. DT’s are an extreme case of alcohol withdrawals and medical help should be sought immediately. 

Medical Complications

The physical toll of alcohol detox can lead to various medical complications, such as dehydration, electrolyte imbalances, and cardiovascular issues. The importance of utilizing proper medical care when undergoing detox cannot be stressed enough. If left unchecked, alcohol withdrawal symptoms can escalate into serious medical conditions. They can also exacerbate underlying medical symptoms further complicating the detox process and putting the individual in serious danger. 

Risk of Relapse

It’s an unfortunate truth that relapse is always a possibility. However, going through alcohol detox without additional clinical support increases the likelihood of relapse. Unmanaged withdrawal symptoms and the intense cravings for alcohol can overwhelm even the most strong-willed person leading them to drink again. Going through withdrawal with the right support can mean the difference between continued pain and suffering or long-term recovery. 


Alcohol Detox: The Solution


Professional Supervision

Professional behavioral health and medical specialists can make a world of difference during the detox process. Therapists and clinicians can provide therapeutic support and help set up continuing care post detox. Medical professionals can monitor the entire process to ensure the safety of the individual and manage their withdrawal symptoms to make the entire ordeal as comfortable and safe as possible. Not only does this protect their health and well-being but it also increases their chances of continued sobriety.

Inpatient Rehab Programs

Detox is just the first step on a path to sobriety. With detox you are treating the symptom. With a residential addiction program you are treating the disease. A good inpatient rehab will provide a comfortable and supportive clinical environment where, post detox, those suffering with substance abuse issues can examine the causes and conditions behind their use. With 24/7 medical supervision, counseling, and a range of therapeutic interventions, these programs offer a comprehensive approach to address both physical and psychological aspects of addiction.

Aftercare Planning

In a perfect world the trifecta of treatment would consist of detox > inpatient treatment > aftercare. Most addictions are years in the making and real recovery takes longer than a 5-7 day detox program. Whether you’re going into residential rehab following detox or pursuing outpatient therapy and support groups, aftercare is crucial to continued success. Addiction thrives in isolation and recovery blossoms in community. The aftercare component of treatment is where the community starts. Take aftercare suggestions seriously. Follow through. 


Next Steps


Now that you know the dangers of alcohol detox and you’ve been presented with a safer alternative to doing it alone, what next? If you are serious about getting sober, research local detox programs in your area. You can also call Holland Pathways and speak with our admissions team. We can talk to you about our detox program, answer any questions, and make referrals to trusted resources if you don’t feel like we’re the right fit. Holland Pathways is here to help in whatever way we can. Call today.