Drug Detox

The Process of Drug Detox

Detoxification is the process by which the body purges itself of the drugs an individual consumed. It starts after the individual stops taking the drug and it is the first step in overcoming drug addiction. Everyone experiences drug detox in a different way and a lot depends on the type of drug used and how long the individual used it.

However, many people who are addicted to drugs experience painful, uncomfortable, and even life-threatening withdrawal symptoms during the detox process. These symptoms can last for days or months depending on the circumstances. If you want to end your dependence on drugs, you should speak to a professional at River Side Recovery Center so you can enter a supervised detox program. In the meantime, let’s discuss some of the basic things you need to know about drug detox and how you can ensure you get the help you need.


What is Drug Detox?

In order to recover from your addiction, you first need to stop using your drug of choice. It’s best that you enter a medical detox center that provides 24/7 monitoring by trained professionals. Some people who are struggling with addiction need medication to relieve the worst of their withdrawal symptoms and ensure they’re as comfortable as possible. If you develop physical or mental health challenges during the process, having medical staff on-hand will ensure you’re treated promptly. As we’ll discuss a little later on this page, supervised detox programs are much safer than trying to detox alone at home

What are Withdrawal Symptoms?

Withdrawal symptoms are the physical and mental effects that individuals experience after they either stop using a substance or drastically reduce their intake. Symptoms tend to include:

  • Drug cravings
  • Tremors
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Chills
  • Headache
  • Flu-like symptoms
  • Mood swings
  • Irritability or agitation
  • Insomnia

Some symptoms are specific to a particular drug. For example, if you are addicted to either prescription or illegal opioids, you may experience bone and joint pain, increased sensitivity to pain, muscle aches, and gastrointestinal discomfort. However, if you are addicted to cocaine or methamphetamines, your symptoms may include nightmares, depression, suicidal thoughts, and nerve pain. Physical symptoms are often accompanied by guilt, shame, or remorse.

A number of factors determine how long you’ll experience withdrawal symptoms. These include:

  • The type of drug you’re addicted to
  • Whether you snort, smoke, inject or swallow the drug
  • The duration of your addiction
  • The severity of your addiction
  • The amount of the substance you took at one time
  • Whether you have co-occurring mental health conditions
  • Whether you have a medical condition
  • Family history
  • Genetics

Why Is Drug Detox Necessary?

When people hear about how uncomfortable detox can be, they question whether they really have to go through it. However, you must allow your body to get rid of the substance(s) to which you’re addicted. That being said, you shouldn’t suddenly quit cold turkey on your own. Depending on the drug involved, you may benefit from tapering off your use or using medication to help you transition to a drug-free life.

Several types of medications can be used during detox including:

  • Benzodiazepines – These slow down the nervous system and are often used in alcohol detox programs.
  • Antidepressants – These counteract depression and anxiety and may be used to help people withdrawing from cocaine.
  • Opioid and non-opioid agonists – These can bring relief from withdrawal symptoms when individuals are addicted to heroin, codeine, morphine, hydrocodone, and oxycodone.

In a medical detox facility, you’ll have supervised access to these medications. You’ll receive comprehensive treatment while also learning additional strategies to help you cope with the withdrawal symptoms. Detoxing gives both your mind and body an opportunity to start the healing process.

Despite the importance of detoxification, it is important to note that withdrawing from a drug doesn’t cure addiction. You still need to address the underlying cause of your addiction and learn new coping mechanisms. Otherwise, you’re likely to relapse. That being said, making the decision to undergo detox indicates that you’re ready to make a major change in your life.

Can I Try At-Home Drug Detox?


Some people like the idea of detoxing at home alone or with a trusted friend or family member. While this offers more privacy than seeking addiction treatment in a detox center, it can be unsafe, and it is often unsuccessful. Individuals who detox at home are more likely to relapse. Some do so as soon as the withdrawal symptoms become too much and they may even overdose.

This is one of the most serious dangers of detoxing at home. Once you stop using drugs, your tolerance starts to decline. If you start using again and go back to the same amount you used before you quit, your system may not be able to handle it.

When this happens, there won’t be any medical professionals there to provide an immediate response. If you decide to detox completely alone, there won’t be anyone there to call for help. You also won’t be able to get medication to relieve your symptoms.

In contrast, if you enroll in a detox program at River Side Recovery Center, you won’t have access to drugs, and you’ll be free of the triggers you usually encounter. While it’s impossible to completely remove risks, you can ensure you’re in the best possible environment. You’re more likely to successfully complete detox, move on to rehab, and develop the skills to ensure you remain sober for the long-term.


Evaluation entails testing for the presence of substances of abuse in the bloodstream, measuring their concentration, and screening for co-occurring mental and physical conditions. The evaluation also includes a comprehensive assessment of the Guest’s medical and psychological conditions and social situation to help determine the appropriate level of treatment following detoxification.

Essentially, the evaluation serves as the basis for the initial substance abuse treatment plan once the Guest has been withdrawn successfully.

Detoxification is a
Process with Three
Essential Components

When you’re ready to get help for your drug addiction, there shouldn’t be anything standing in your way. That’s why we make it easy for you to enter treatment. We take most major types of insurance coverage and we offer fast insurance verification at no cost to you. Simply call us with your insurance plan details and we’ll let you know how much your policy will cover and how much you’ll have to pay out of pocket. We facilitate same-day admissions so you may be able to enter our detox facility mere hours after you call us. You shouldn’t have to worry about how you’ll pay for detox when you’re badly in need of professional help. Get in touch with River Side Recovery Center today.


When you decide that it’s time to enter a drug detox program, you’ll likely carry out a search online. But then, how will know which treatment facility is best for you?  You need to find a center that’s fully licensed to operate in California and staffed by highly trained professionals 24/7. River Side Recovery Center meets these criteria and more. We’re staffed by masters and Ph.D. level therapists and you’ll have access to treatment 24 hours per day. You’ll undergo detox surrounded by doctors, nurses, and therapists who will ensure you’re both safe and comfortable. Furthermore, you’re guaranteed privacy and confidentiality.

Detoxification prepares you to live a healthier, more rewarding life. It’s difficult but people in recovery find that it is worth the effort since it sets the stage for recovery from drug addiction.

After you successfully complete the detox process, we will recommend a course of action based on your unique circumstances. We provide a continuum of care that will help you to develop the skills and resources to live a healthy, drug-free life.


Addiction is a disease and not the result of a lack of willpower. Simply wanting to stop using drugs won’t be sufficient. Rather, you will need ongoing professional support if you are to quit your drug use for the long term. You’ll likely have to go through varying levels of treatment that may include:

  • Inpatient rehab
  • Partial hospitalization
  • Intensive outpatient care
  • Outpatient care
  • Aftercare

Reach Out to River Side Recovery Center Today and Start the Journey Towards Recovery

If you’re ready to turn your life around, call us or contact us via this website and chat with a member of our team. Drug rehab varies from individual to individual. It will likely result in unpleasant withdrawal symptoms but it’s important to remember that these are temporary. They are also necessary if you want to overcome your addiction. Fortunately, if you opt for a medically supervised detox, you won’t have to handle the pain and discomfort alone.

Rather, you’ll have support from professionals who can ensure your safety and comfort. You’ll have access to medication, counseling, and other interventions that will help to put you in the right frame of mind. Your likelihood of success will be much greater.

At River Side Recovery Center, we have the knowledge and skills to help you achieve sobriety. You’ll benefit from an evidence-based approach that takes each individual’s unique circumstances into consideration. A one-size-fits-all approach to addiction treatment isn’t usually successful so we cater directly to each individual who comes through our doors. Contact us today!