What Drugs Require Detoxification Programs?
One of the primary reasons you should seek the aid of a rehab facility when detoxing is that most patients can’t handle the withdrawal symptoms on their own. However, not all substances require supervised detoxes. If you are suffering from marijuana or cocaine addiction, for example, you can take part in rehabilitation sessions and treatments during the day but are allowed to go home at night.
The substances that do require a supervised drug detox program impose a higher threat for patients during withdrawal. Those suffering from alcohol addiction, for instance, the second most abused substance in America according to the Addiction Center, must go through detox in a rehab facility, as the symptoms they face during withdrawal might be life-threatening. Heroin, opioids, and prescription drugs such as Xanax, Vicodin, Hydrocodone, and Oxycontin also require medical detox.
Patients detoxing from these substances may experience vomiting, nausea, suicidal thoughts, seizures, hallucinations, and even comas. If they are under supervision, authorized medical personnel can keep these symptoms under control and administer adequate treatments.
What Is the Standard Timeline for Withdrawal?
Withdrawal symptoms will start once an individual stops consuming the addictive substance. Each substance can cause different symptoms, generally depending on the extent these drugs have affected the brain and body of the patient.
Withdrawal is a complex process that can be influenced by numerous factors, such as:
- The type of substance;
- The amount of time a patient abused the substance;
- The method of consumption (injecting, smoking, swallowing, or snorting);
- Genetic traits of the individual;
- Other medical or mental conditions the patient might have;
As such, a person who consumes large doses of addictive substances over the span of many years, has a family history of addiction, or an underlying medical condition, will present more intense withdrawal symptoms than a person who consumed smaller doses over a short period. Still, the Cambridge Health Alliance found that withdrawal symptoms usually appear in the following scenarios:
- Prescription Opiates: Withdrawal starts 8-12 hours after the last dosage, peaks at 12-48 hours, and lasts up to 10 days.
- Alcohol: Withdrawal may start eight hours or up to a few days after the last drink, and can last a few weeks.
- Heroin: Withdrawal starts 12 hours after the last dose, and continues up to a few months.
- Prescription Medication: Withdrawal starts 1-4 days after the last dose, and in some cases can last for months or years without treatment.