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Alcohol Detox

The first step to overcoming an addiction to alcohol is getting the substance out of your body and system. This process is called detoxification.

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Treatment Center Locator

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SOBA New Jersey

New Brunswick, NJ

Multiple Levels of Care

888-341-1174

Recovery Unplugged Lake Worth Detox, Rehab, and Treatment Center

Lake Worth, FL

Multiple Levels of Care

888-283-0199

Sober Life San Diego

San Diego, CA

Multiple Levels of Care

866-667-8629

Recovery Unplugged Austin Treatment Center

Austin, TX

Full Spectrum of Care

844-291-5968

Acadiana Treatment Center

Sunset, LA

Multiple Levels of Care

855-548-6273

St. John’s Recovery Place – Deland

Deland, FL

Multiple Levels of Care

877-660-1713

Recovery Unplugged – Austin Detox

Austin, TX

Detox

855-958-1650

Cornerstone Healing Center

Scottsdale, AZ

Multiple Levels of Care

844-931-1105

The Detox Center

Boca Raton, FL

Full Spectrum of Care

855-914-4757

Southeast Addiction Center – Nashville

Nashville, TN

Multiple Levels of Care

1-855-404-9855

Delta Med Center

Memphis, TN

Outpatient

877-235-0382

Oasis Behavioral Health Hospital

Chandler, AZ

Multiple Levels of Care

855-338-0838

Pocono Mountain Recovery Center

Henryville, PA

Multiple Levels of Care

844-589-1547

The Hope House – Scottsdale

Scottsdale, AZ

Inpatient

877-275-7008

Dana Point Rehab Campus

Dana Point, CA

Multiple Levels of Care

866-944-2609

Ambrosia Treatment Center – Westcoast

Beverly Hills, CA

Multiple Levels of Care

866-970-0918

Mount Regis Center

Salem, VA

Multiple Levels of Care

877-539-2026

Rebound Behavioral Health Hospital

Lancaster, SC

Multiple Levels of Care

855-336-7623

Cascade Behavioral Health Hospital

Tukwila, WA

Multiple Levels of Care

855-419-6205

The Refuge, A Healing Place

Ocklawaha, FL

Multiple Levels of Care

855-990-1029

Park Royal Hospital

Fort Myers, FL

Multiple Levels of Care

844-763-3294

Harbor Oaks Hospital

New Balitmore, MI

Inpatient

866-468-6148

Newport Institute for Young Adults – Southern California

Santa Ana, CA

Multiple Levels of Care

877-604-7184

Huntington Creek Recovery Center

Shickshinny, PA

Multiple Levels of Care

844-892-1288

United Recovery Project

Hollywood, FL

Multiple Levels of Care

877-586-7043

America’s Rehab Campuses

Tucson, AZ

Multiple Levels of Care

877-484-7367

Lakeview Behavioral Health Hospital

Norcross, GA

Multiple Levels of Care

855-337-9509

Life Center of Galax

Galax, VA

Multiple Levels of Care

855-428-7940

The Recovery Team

Lake Park, FL

Multiple Levels of Care

844-999-2545

Wish Recovery

Northridge, CA

Multiple Levels of Care

855-933-2789

Pacific Grove Hospital

Riverside, CA

Multiple Levels of Care

855-801-1534

Newport Institute for Young Adults – Northern California

Sunol, CA

Multiple Levels of Care

877-604-7184

Northbound Treatment Services

Irvine, CA

Full Spectrum of Care

877-918-9085

Willow Lane Health – Telehealth Addiction Treatment Services

Charlotte, NC

Telehealth

877-648-6250

Asheville Recovery Center

Asheville, NC

Multiple Levels of Care

877-542-1138

Northlake Recovery

Palm Beach Gardens, FL

Multiple Levels of Care

844-222-8954

Recovery Unplugged – Harrison House of Northern Virginia

Annandale, VA

Multiple Levels of Care

855-734-4364

Sunflower Wellness Retreat

Osawatomie, KS

Multiple Levels of Care

888-411-9183

Bedrock Recovery Center

Canton, MA

Multiple Levels of Care

877-401-1084

Atlantic Recovery Center

Davie, FL

Full Spectrum of Care

844-932-3093

Denver Recovery Center

Denver, CO

Full Spectrum of Care

855-729-4891

Options Behavioral Health Hospital

Indianapolis, IN

Multiple Levels of Care

844-530-2836

SUWS of the Carolinas

Old Fort, NC

Residential

844-811-2644

CNV Detox

Los Angeles, CA

Counseling

877-593-1597

Riverwoods Behavioral Health System

Riverdale, GA

Multiple Levels of Care

866-246-8017

MeadowWood Behavioral Health

New Castle, DE

Multiple Levels of Care

855-609-4051

Right Path Addiction Treatment Centers

Virginia Beach, VA

Multiple Levels of Care

855-982-0704

JourneyPure – Florida

Melbourne, FL

Multiple Levels of Care

(844) 899-9541

Ambrosia Treatment Center

West Palm Beach, FL

Inpatient

866-970-0918

Annie’s House

Draper, UT

Full Spectrum of Care

866-922-0448

Ambrosia Treatment Center – Northeast

Philadelphia, PA

Multiple Levels of Care

866-970-0918

Mountainview Recovery

Asheville, NC

Multiple Levels of Care

877-691-1098

Recovery Unplugged Fort Lauderdale

Fourt Lauderdale, FL

Full Spectrum of Care

855-900-6613

Steps Recovery Center – St. George

St. George, UT

Full Spectrum of Care

844-919-0017

Northeast Addiction Treatment Center

Quincy, MA

Multiple Levels of Care

855-831-4406

Burkwood Treatment Center

Hudson, WI

Residential

844-251-2961

Indiana Center for Recovery

Bloomington, IN

Full Spectrum of Care

866-657-4490

White Deer Run

Allenwood, PA

Multiple Levels of Care

877-638-3697

Pinnacle Peak Recovery

Scottsdale, AZ

Multiple Levels of Care

844-225-8937

Aftermath Addiction Treatment Center

Wakefield, MA

Intensive Outpatient

855-389-4132

North Palm Beach Recovery Center

North Palm Beach, FL

Multiple Levels of Care

844-694-6458

Timberline Knolls Treatment Center for Women

Lemont, IL

Multiple Levels of Care

855-200-8406

Amethyst Recovery

Port St. Lucie, FL

Multiple Levels of Care

888-965-6726

Ohio Hospital for Psychiatry

Columbus, OH

Multiple Levels of Care

866-439-6540

The Camp Recovery Center

Scotts Valley, CA

Multiple Levels of Care

877-282-5771

New England Recovery & Wellness

Concord, NH

Multiple Levels of Care

844-408-1433

Newport Academy – Teen Rehab Center – Washington

Port Townsend, WA

Multiple Levels of Care

833-768-7536

North Tampa Behavioral Health

Tampa, FL

Multiple Levels of Care

844-870-8069

Southeast Addiction Center

Atlanta, GA

Multiple Levels of Care

855-614-6174

Boca Recovery Center – New Jersey

Galloway, NJ

Full Spectrum of Care

855-628-9076

St. John’s Recovery Place – Crescent City

Crescent City, FL

Multiple Levels of Care

855-825-4311

Blue Ridge Mountain Recovery Center

Ball Ground, GA

Multiple Levels of Care

844-498-9407

Life Healing Center

Santa Fe, NM

Multiple Levels of Care

844-285-2916

Bayside Marin Treatment Center

San Rafael, CA

Multiple Levels of Care

866-886-6071

Spring Hill Recovery

Ashby, MA

Full Spectrum of Care

866-380-1395

Bradford Recovery Center

Millerton, PA

Multiple Levels of Care

844-769-9928

Recovering Champions

Falmouth, MA

Outpatient

855-980-4625

Asana Recovery

Costa Mesa, CA

Multiple Levels of Care

877-899-6056

Addiction Recovery Centers

Phoenix, AZ

Multiple Levels of Care

877-814-9868

Vermilion Behavioral Health Systems

Lafayette, LA

Multiple Levels of Care

888-494-6620

Southwest Wellness Group

Phoenix, AZ

Multiple Levels of Care

855-518-1067

Northlake Behavioral Health System

Baton Rouge, LA

Full Spectrum of Care

855-402-5289

Newport Academy – Teen Rehab Center

Bethlehem, CT

Multiple Levels of Care

833-768-7536

Oceanside Malibu

Malibu, CA

Full Spectrum of Care

866-275-3956

JourneyPure – Tennessee

Knoxville, TN

Multiple Levels of Care

(844) 899-9541

Azure Acres Recovery

Sebastopol, CA

Multiple Levels of Care

866-477-0274

Duffy’s Napa Valley Rehab

Calistoga, CA

Multiple Levels of Care

844-766-4576

Steps Recovery Center

Payson, UT

Full Spectrum of Care

877-696-0054

Starlite Recovery Center

Center Point, TX

Multiple Levels of Care

855-349-1116

Trustpoint Hospital

Murfreesboro, TN

Multiple Levels of Care

888-925-9448

Twelve Oaks Recovery Center

Navarre, FL

Multiple Levels of Care

844-885-1218

Recovery Unplugged Nashville

Nashville, TN

Full Spectrum of Care

877-463-0080

Moonlight Mountain Recovery – Nampa

Nampa, ID

Multiple Levels of Care

855-248-2193

Wilmington Treatment Center

Wilmington, NC

Multiple Levels of Care

877-257-1203

Boca Recovery Center – Florida

Boca Raton, FL

Full Spectrum of Care

888-608-4977

Silver Lining Recovery

Huntington Beach, CA

Multiple Levels of Care

844-940-0031

St. John’s Recovery Place – Beachside

Cocoa Beach, FL

Multiple Levels of Care

855-807-1577

Riverwalk Ranch

Mansfield, TX

Multiple Levels of Care

866-634-7479

Keystone Treatment Center

Canton, SD

Multiple Levels of Care

855-417-3666

Recovery Unplugged Austin Rehab Center

Austin, TX

Multiple Levels of Care

844-817-9493

Greenleaf Behavioral Health Hospital

Valdosta, GA

Multiple Levels of Care

866-692-1694

1st Step Behavioral Health

Pompano Beach, FL

Full Spectrum of Care

844-334-8400

Clear Life Recovery

Costa Mesa, CA

Full Spectrum of Care

888-638-7182

Cove Forge Behavioral Health Center

Williamsburg, PA

Multiple Levels of Care

844-225-6578

The Haven Detox

West Palm Beach, FL

Multiple Levels of Care

855-409-5866

Northbound Treatment Services – San Diego

Irvine, CA

Full Spectrum of Care

866-938-0142

Moonlight Mountain Recovery

Pocatello, ID

Multiple Levels of Care

866-831-4706

Sierra Tucson

Tucson, AZ

Full Spectrum of Care

855-889-6553

Bowling Green Brandywine

Kennett Square, PA

Multiple Levels of Care

844-797-7507

What Is Alcohol Detoxification?

Alcohol detox (or detoxification) is defined as the natural process that occurs in the body as it attempts to rid the system of waste products and toxins from excessive, long-term alcohol consumption. In a treatment setting, alcohol detox is usually accompanied by medication, medical observation, and counseling.

Detoxification is a period of medical treatment, usually including counseling, during which a person is helped to overcome physical and psychological dependence on alcohol.

- National Institutes on Health
People who have been drinking heavily for a long time are more likely to experience negative side effects during detox, some of which can be dangerous.

Prolonged alcohol abuse can lead to tolerance and biological changes that create a false homeostasis. Disrupting this balance and restoring the user to a healthy state is a process that is as essential as it is delicate.

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The Process of Detoxification

Alcohol Detox Is A Critical First Step Of The Recovery ProcessAlcohol detoxification is the preparatory step before a longer treatment program. Detoxification can be safely performed at both inpatient and outpatient facilities, but round-the-clock medical monitoring is recommended for heavy users. In most cases, the detox process involves three steps:

  1. Intake. The medical team will do a comprehensive review of drug, medical and psychiatric histories of incoming patients to fully understand each situation.
  2. Medication. Many detoxification programs include medications that mimic the effects of alcohol to mitigate withdrawal symptoms. Medications may also target co-occurring disorders or general discomfort.
  3. Stabilization. The patient undergoes medical and psychological therapies to help them reach a balance of mind and body.

Side Effects of Alcohol Detox

Although medically-assisted detox limits some of the negative side effects the user experiences, some are unavoidable. Generally different side effects will appear during the two phases of alcohol detox.

Phase 1: During Acute Withdrawal

Phase 1 occurs within hours of an alcoholic ceasing consumption of alcohol and continues for days or weeks. This is generally when the most severe side effects occur, including:

  • Anxiety
  • Visual and auditory hallucinations
  • Convulsions
  • Whole body tremor
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Insomnia
  • Profuse sweating
  • Shakiness
  • Hypertension
  • Heart failure

Phase 2: During Early Abstinence

The second and longer phase of alcohol detox occurs over months as the brain slowly begins to regulate and get back to normal functioning. This is called Post-Acute Withdrawal Symptom and includes symptoms such as:

  • Anxiety
  • Restlessness
  • Insomnia
  • Diminished appetite
  • Mood-swings
  • Depression

Drugs Used in Alcohol Detox

Part of the detox process includes keeping the patient’s system in balance and avoiding major physiological upsets. Sometimes medications are necessary to do this. Benzodiazepines, including Librium, Valium, and Ativan, are commonly used for alcohol treatment because they reduce alcohol withdrawal symptoms and also prevent alcohol withdrawal seizures. Seizures are one of the most common causes of fatality in alcohol withdrawal, so additional anti-convulsant drugs, such as Keppra, are often used as well.

While benzodiazepines have been proven effective in treating or preventing certain symptoms of alcohol withdrawal, it is imperative that a recovering alcoholic only use medically recommended amounts of the drugs. Benzodiazepines are addictive substances in their own right, and use should be closely monitored.

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Dangers of Detoxing Alone

Especially in the cases of long-term alcohol abusers, detoxing cold turkey can be dangerous and even fatal. Although rare, some of the severe side effects of alcohol detox include:

  • Seizures
  • Anxiety
  • Aspiration pneumonia
  • Heart arrhythmias
  • Insomnia
  • Headache
  • Kidney or liver dysfunction
  • Fever
  • Depression
  • Intense cravings
  • Extreme nausea
  • Hallucinations

It is always recommended to seek medical attention for an alcohol detox to mitigate these side effects.

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Life After Alcohol Detox

Detox is merely the first step of treatment for people trying to overcome their alcohol addiction. Ridding the body of alcohol will not cure alcoholism, it clears the mind and heals the body so that a person suffering from alcohol addiction may pursue full treatment. To find out more about alcohol detox and your treatment options, contact a dedicated treatment provider today.

Treatment professionals are waiting for your call

(855) 826-4464