First, depending on the severity of your drug or alcohol misuse, detox might be medically necessary.
Attempting to detox from alcohol on your own, for example, can cause heart attack or even death. Many residential treatment facilities are not equipped to monitor people through this stage, and will turn you away if they don’t have a detox on site.
Second, withdrawal can be the most precarious point in your journey to recovery.
Faced with brutal withdrawal symptoms, many people relapse rather than continue. This is obviously easier to do on your own, but even in a residential treatment facility you may be tempted to leave if you’re not receiving medically appropriate treatment to ease your symptoms.
Third, you can’t do the psychological and emotional work that will keep you sober until you cleanse your body of drugs and alcohol.
If you don’t complete a full detox before attempting rehab, you’re wasting your time. It’s impossible to try to get at the root of your emotional problems and pains while your body and mind are still under the effects of drugs and alcohol.
When you detox in a medically managed facility, you can focus on getting yourself clean, without having to do anything else.
Deciding to get clean and sober is a great move – no matter where you decide to do it. But beginning with detox puts you on the road to success from the start.
Or, if you’re not sure whether it’s time to quit, try our ten-question quiz HERE.