When you are making the decision to break free from drug and alcohol addiction, one of the first things you’ll be doing is undergoing withdrawals.
What is Detoxing?
Detoxification is the process of getting rid of toxins from the body. These toxins may come from alcohol, prescription medications, or other illegal drugs.
For those entering addiction rehabilitation, detoxification is often done before starting any type of therapy. Due to the general discomfort surrounding the withdrawal process, it is posited that clients would have a significantly harder time being able to receive therapeutic care.
How Long Does Detox Last? There are many factors that play into the timeline of substance use withdrawal; including the person's physical state, as well as the substance being taken. Most withdrawal symptoms usually appear within 24 hours after discontinuation of opioid use. Symptoms may vary depending on the type of drug taken However, as a general note, one can expect to see most of the acute withdrawal symptoms tapering off within one week
What Are Some Common Physical Symptoms of Withdrawal During Detox?
While some withdrawal symptoms can differ depending on the substance used, these are some generally common symptoms:
- Muscle Aches
- Intense Cravings for Psychoactive Substances
- Weight gain
10 Techniques to Help Mitigate Anxiety During The Detox Process
When it comes to detoxing, it is best to utilize all the tools and knowledge you have available to make the process as smooth as possible. While Medically-Assisted Withdrawal procedures do well to mitigate the withdrawal symptoms, you can still benefit from utilizing the techniques we have listed below:
1. Exercise Regularly
Exercise has been proven to help alleviate stress and anxiety. If you’re feeling anxious about the detox process, exercise regularly to help ease your tension.
2. Eat Healthy Foods
Eating healthy foods can help you feel better overall. Eating nutritious food can help you avoid cravings and overeating. It can be tempting to eat fatty foods during detox, but the process will go much smoother if you eat more healthily during this time.
3. Ride out the cravings
Alcohol withdrawal symptoms can be intense. While there may be times when you feel like drinking, it is important to remember that cravings are temporary. Your body needs time to adjust to not having alcohol in its system. Being able to rationalize these feelings can help get a clearer picture of what you are going through, and can better ward off panic attacks and anxiety.
Meditation is another technique that can help you relax and calm down. Meditation can help you focus on breathing deeply and relaxing your muscles. This will allow you to cope with the anxiety and panic of detox more effectively.
5. Take Time Off From Work
Taking time off from work can help you decompress and recharge. This can help you feel better and enjoy life more. Having fewer tasks to manage can help immensely when it comes to anxiety.
6. Get Enough Sleep
Getting adequate sleep can help you feel better. It’s recommended that adults should get between seven and nine hours of sleep each night.
Proper sleep can actually speed along the withdrawal process. In fact, studies show that brain cells can reduce up to 60% in size while asleep, allowing for toxins to be removed from your system more easily.
7. Use intentional breathing techniques
Deep breathing helps you re-engage the prefrontal cortex, which is responsible for critical thinking and reasoning. If you feel like eating something, try taking a deep breath before doing so. You should inhale for four seconds, hold for four seconds, then exhale slowly for four seconds. If you practice breathing techniques regularly, you’ll notice that you feel calmer when you’re stressed. And you’ll be less likely to smoke when you’re feeling down.
8. Grounding Exercises
There are grounding exercises that help reorient oneself to their physical space. One of the most popular exercises is called the “5-4-3-2-1”.
5. Start by visually acknowledging five physical objects around you.
4. Then you acknowledge four physical objects you can touch.
3. Acknowledge three sounds around you.
2. Acknowledge two smells.
1. Acknowledge one thing that you’re tasting.
When you finish doing all of this, you’ll have acknowledged five items that you can physically see around yourself, touched four things, heard three things, smelled two things, and tasted one thing. Doing this will help you to calm down and help mitigate symptoms of anxiety and panic attacks.
9. Talk To A Professional About Your Symptoms
If you’re suffering from anxiety during the detox process, talk to a professional about your symptoms.
Talking about your feelings always helps. When you feel anxious, it’s natural to want to keep it inside. But talking about it brings it out into the light. You’ll get advice that will help you manage it. And if you need help managing it, you’ll get it.
They can also help you find ways to cope with your feelings and emotions.
10. Remember that you are not alone
Addiction is a chronic condition that affects many people around the world. Many people with addiction convince themselves that they are the only ones going through their experience. It can comfort them to know that millions have already gone through withdrawal. Consider your part of a strong community that stands together to help each other get healthy. Stand in solidarity with others who have chosen to address their substance use disorders and the challenges required to achieve a healthier lifestyle.
Let The Commitment House Help You Undergo Withdrawals Safely and Comfortably
Withdrawal is one of the most daunting prospects when it comes to starting a new life in recovery. However, it is undoubtedly the most important. Detoxification is typically the first step toward recovery. By managing it well, individuals will be able to build a strong foundation for long-term sobriety.
After detox, individuals must immediately enter an addiction treatment center in order to build upon those healthy habits. The real miracle of recovery lies in the therapeutic phase after detoxification, but it’s important that you’re supported through this period.