Benefits of Inpatient Alcohol Detox
As with most every substance abuse problem, there’s no quick fix for alcoholism. The treatment process must unfold in stages with inpatient alcohol detox marking the starting point.
Anyone who’s abused alcohol for a while well knows how comfortable an oncoming withdrawal episode can be. Once a person reaches the point where something’s got to change, the pain of detox withdrawal can loom like a dark chasm up ahead.
Helping recovering alcoholics make it past this first stage of the recovery process is what inpatient alcohol detox programs do best. As long-term alcohol abuse can cause considerable physical and psychological damage, inpatient alcohol detox programs address the effects of withdrawal on both a physical and psychological level, according to the U. S. National Library of Medicine.
Making it through the detox stage becomes the biggest challenge a person faces at the start of recovery. The benefits afforded through inpatient alcohol detox greatly increases the chances of a successful detox process.
A Plan for Treatment
Over time, alcohol deteriorates vital brain regions, making everyday normal functioning difficult for most people. While a person can try to detox on his or her own, the ability to follow-through becomes all the more difficult in light of the brain’s dependence on alcohol’s effects.
Inpatient alcohol detox programs devise a plan of treatment that incorporates a person’s medical, psychological and addiction treatment needs. As withdrawal effects and drug cravings can drive even the most determined person to relapse, inpatient programs operate within a tightly controlled, structured environment that enables people in recovery to focus on getting well.
People detoxing from alcohol addiction go through a roller coaster of emotions as the brain struggles to function in the absence of alcohol’s effects. During this time, it’s easy to get discouraged in light of the sleepless nights, nausea and bouts of depression that develop.
In order to help ease a person through this difficult stage, inpatient alcohol detox programs provide a wide range of motivational supports, some of which include:
- Daily support group meetings
- Outdoor activities
- Exercise plans
Psychotherapy interventions play a central role in the recovery process. While the body’s physical dependence on alcohol must be addressed, it’s the psychological aspect of addiction that keeps a person trapped inside the bottle.
Throughout the course of inpatient alcohol detox treatment, residents take part in intensive psychotherapy work that helps them work through the issues that drive addiction behaviors. Psychotherapy interventions also benefit people who’ve developed co-occurring psychological disorders, such as depression and anxiety, as a result of long-term alcohol use.
Alcohol withdrawal can be especially uncomfortable for long-time drinkers with withdrawal aftereffects lasting for months or even years into the recovery process. Under these conditions, an inpatient alcohol detox program may prescribe medication therapies that help support damaged brain functions.
Medications, such as methadone and buprenorphine can help alleviate much of the discomfort experienced during the detox stage. These medications can also be used on a long-term, maintenance basis.
When all is said and done, getting the type of treatment a person needs should be the primary goal when entering recovery. Inpatient alcohol treatment offers the level of care and support needed to overcome the effects of alcoholism on the mind and the body.