Some alcoholics wishing to rid themselves of their addiction will decide to go through alcohol detox at home. It is a period of cleansing that the body will go through to withdraw from the drug it has been so used to processing.
Others choose to do this in a clinical setting like a rehabilitation unit. There are pros and cons to both approaches; here we will have a look at both.
After prolonged use of alcohol, the body must go through a period of adjustment to get used to the absence of this chemical once the alcoholic quits drinking. During this time, the person may go through many different things:
- Nausea and vomiting along with chills and intense shivering can all be initial reactions in the body
- Feeling confused, disorientated and foggy
- Extreme edginess, cranky, moody
- Raised temperature
- Depression and anxiety
These are just a few of the various symptoms you may have while going through detox.
It is important to note here that not everyone will have all or even any of the above symptoms and as with all major changes you should consult a physician before you begin.
Someone who has an underlying medical condition may need a more supervised detoxification program.
However lots of people can successfully undergo an alcohol detox at home. It is only a minority who actually need the assistance of medical intervention to safely detox. I suggest you let your doctor guide you as to which route is best for you.
how to begin
Your first stop is your physician or family doctor. Outline your desire to stop drinking alcohol and get their involvement in your plan from day one. Often doctors will prescribe Librium, Valium or equivalent, on a reducing dosage to be taken over several days.
Once the start date for your home detoxification has been set then you will need to take diet into consideration. Fresh fruit should be easily to hand. Supplements like Centrum, Supradyn Forte and salmon oil tablets should also be purchased prior to starting your alcohol detox at home.
Next you need to let someone in your family and/or a close friend, know that this is your decision. That way you will have the beginnings of a support system and at the same time deter family or friends who drink from bringing alcohol to your home or drinking it (or indeed smelling of it) while around you.
The best scenario would be to have someone who would not mind staying with you for a short time. This could help strengthen your resolve as well as have a safety net should you be one of the few who needs additional medical attention.
Please remember this. The withdrawing alcoholic needs to be reminded of why he or she is doing this during the detoxification process. Encouragement and reinforcement that they are doing the right thing is very important. There is a much brighter future for them and they are now that much closer to attaining it.
After going through this alcohol detox at home, you will now need to structure your life around new habits. Avoid situations that used to be a part of your drinking lifestyle, like a favorite restaurant that serves alcohol or a friend who is a heavy drinker. The detox itself was an important first step but it is by far not the only one on this journey.
As days become weeks and weeks become months you will become stronger in your resolve not to slip back. You’re not going to have to go without your favorite restaurant etc forever, just for a while until you are stronger.
Once your mind has become less muddled with alcohol then you need to heal the past, accept the present and build small goals for the future.
My Holistic Alcohol Recovery Program is designed to do just this. Using skills and techniques from neuro-linguistic programming, hypnotherapy and TimeLine therapies, we help you deal with any unresolved issues from the past. Set achievable, timed and measurable goals for the future and create the self-confidence and self-reliance that is necessary to succeed in the longer term.
Surrounding yourself with a good support network is important to your continued success. In the short-term organizations like AA can set you up with a sponsor whom you can call and talk with should you feel the urge to drink.