Physical detox can be tough, and for drugs like alcohol or sedatives, the first days of detox can even threaten life.
Fortunately, although the period of detox is never pleasant, with medical observation, the prescription of certain medications and general care, the days of detox can pass safely, and humanely.
Physical Detox is Brief
For most drugs, the intensity of physical detox pains last only a few days - rarely longer than a week - and although the fear of this period keeps too many using for too long, you can get through it, and with help it's not even that tough.
Once finished with physical detox though, you will feel much better. No longer will you need to drink or drug just to keep from feeling sick. Your mind will start to clear, and especially after spending a few days feeling quite sick, the contrast of health without detox pains feels wonderful.
Detox Is Not a Cure
Too many of us equate these new found sensations of health and vitality as a cure that it most certainly is not, and too many of leave treatment after detox only. There are two parts to addiction, and although after a brief period of medical detox we do overcome the physical addiction, we are still left to tackle the enduring psychological addition, and without bettering this lingering addiction to "getting high" we are almost certainly destined for relapse.
Physical detox alone is never enough for lasting sobriety. You may feel much better after a period of medical detox, but you have learned nothing towards keeping the gains of sobriety over the long term. You do not yet understand what it is that brings a compulsion for intoxication. You do not yet understand how you can minimize the cravings in life, and you do not yet have the tools you'll need to overcome the cravings that will inevitably arise.
Getting Better Takes Time
Although the physical detox is far more painful that a psychological "detox" it's the psychological addiction that we truly need to better, and it's the psychological addiction that takes a lot more time to beat.
Never detox without therapy. You waste your time and you waste your pain. After medical detox, always ensure that you get into a treatment program that will teach you greater self awareness and that will teach you what you need to stay sober. The psychological addiction lingers persistently and it is for this very reason that a continuing and long term participation the therapies of aftercare is so important.
You can beat addiction, millions do every year, but without a significant commitment to bettering the enduring psychological addiction, a medical detox causes suffering with little chance of long term success.
Get it right the first time. Get clean, and then learn what you'll need to now to stay clean!
Page last updated 23/05/2014