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Medical Detox in Iowa


Medical detox makes detoxing from alcohol or drugs an easier process to help the person begin recovery. Otherwise, detoxification can be a frightening, painful experience. Many drug treatment centers in Iowa include this program as part of the treatment plan for addicts. To understand the benefits of medical detox in Iowa, you need to know what happens in detox.

What is Detox?

Detoxification is the process of ridding the system of an addictive substance. Many addicts who come to treatment have the substance in their system and are unable to begin treatment. Detoxing can take from a few days to several weeks, depending on the substance and how quickly or slowly medical providers allow the person to move through medical detox in Iowa.

The system is altered because of the presence of an addictive substance. It often alters chemicals or depresses certain hormones. When the substance is absent from the system, it tries to compensate by changing the system. It can swing radically in different directions and cause the body and mind to feel various effects.

As the system goes through withdrawal of the substance, the symptoms gradually get worse. At some point, they begin to subside and the person moves through detox as the system returns to normal.

The Dangers of Detox

Detoxing can be quite severe and even dangerous as the system reacts in various ways. One of the primary dangers is the person will relapse and begin using the substance again. When they relapse, they are convinced they have failed and hesitate to try again because they believe they cannot make it through this process.

Another concern is the physical risks that come as the system tries to readjust. People with other medical conditions are especially at risk. They may face a higher risk of heart attacks, strokes or other medical emergencies. Iowa drug treatment centers can monitor the person and prevent many of these issues or treat them quickly if one should occur.

Withdrawal Symptoms

Withdrawal symptoms can vary widely, based on the substance. For instance, alcohol detox often causes withdrawal symptoms of nausea and vomiting, with depression which can lead to suicide in severe cases. Perhaps the most frightening symptoms is delirium tremens (DTs), which involves sudden changes in the nervous system. The person may experience body tremors, disorientation, hallucinations and even sleep lasting for more than a day. It can cause seizures that can lead to death.

Meth withdrawal is also serious and complicated. Many addicts become agitated and suffer from hallucinations. In fact, they often feel the sensation of bugs crawling on their skin and begin picking at their skin to try to get relief. This feeling is constant and can go on for hours. They also suffer from irritability and nausea and even paranoia.

How Medical Detox Works

In an Iowa treatment center, you can receive medical assistance when detoxing. The therapist prescribes medications to help alleviate the symptoms or slow down detox to make it more bearable. Several drugs are available for this use, and they can reduce the painfulness and unpleasantness of detoxing and make it a safer process.

Some of the most common drugs include the following:

  • Suboxone – used to treat opiate addiction; contains naloxone and buprenorphine; prevents the effects of the opiate, including the euphoric feeling
  • Antabuse – used in the treatment of alcohol addiction; causes severe symptoms if the person consumes alcohol, including nausea, sweating, thirst and vertigo

These are just a few of the drugs given to treat addicts in medical detox in Iowa. They help increase the success rate of detoxing and treatment.

If you or a loved one are struggling with addiction, find an Iowa treatment center that offers medical detox. It can help you start on the road to recovery.