Deciding you want to quit drugs or alcohol is an important first step toward creating a new life, but what happens next? Clearing drugs or alcohol from your system is vital in the beginning of the recovery process, and perhaps you’re thinking you can go it alone by quitting cold turkey.
While the idea may seem like a good one — and some battling a substance use disorder are able to quit on their own — there are some pretty major drawbacks when detoxing without proper medical supervision.
The chance of achieving lasting recovery is lower when quitting substances suddenly since withdrawal symptoms can be extremely painful and uncomfortable, both physically and psychologically.
Some of the side effects from detoxing cold turkey could include cramps, nausea, insomnia, anxiety and depression. Depending on the severity of the addiction, seizures, coma and even death may be real possibilities as well. Many can’t cope and go back to using in order to end the pain.
Another disadvantage to not weaning off drugs or alcohol gradually with medical supervision is that the body loses its tolerance to the abused substance. This could lead to an increased chance of overdosing if you were to relapse.
At The Mend, our staff of medically trained care coordinators will do everything to ensure you go through the detox process in the healthiest and most comfortable way possible, including with the use of safe and effective medications to ease withdrawal symptoms.
You will also have the support of staff, as well as the encouragement of peers who are on the same journey toward a rich and rewarding life free from drugs and alcohol.
If you would like to learn more about detox or are ready to begin recovery now, contact one of The Mend’s care coordinators to discuss your options.
If you’re still not sure whether the time is right to quit drugs or alcohol, take our 10-question quiz HERE.