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So It's Over, This Time I Know It's Gone

Acknowledging a problem and deciding to change that situation is a significant first step towards recovery. While dealing with addiction, the thing that has to be kept in mind is no cure, only recovery. The longer the recovery, the better are the results. The road to recovery starts with acceptance.

Just like the addiction developed over several days and abuses, recovery will be a long process. There will be challenges, drug and alcohol withdrawals and cravings, but it is crucial not to give up. It might not show results at first, but that is no excuse to discontinue.

Most substances affect our minds and bodies in a complicated manner. Thus it takes time for the body and mind to come to terms and adjust the process. To make it easier on the person, there are several withdrawal techniques in de-addiction that are used. Like therapy, withdrawal techniques are not one size fits all, and there could be different reactions to the same technique depending on the individual.

It is essential to keep in mind that we are fighting the addiction and not the individual. Hence the approach should entail minimum harm to the person with maximum efficiency. There is a broad spectrum of how de-addiction is treated, from medical interventions to going cold turkey. Tackling addiction should be treated as a collective responsibility, minus the abuse.

withdrawal techniques in de addiction

Dealing with Physical Dependence

Physical dependence is when a person who abuses the substance for a prolonged period with regular use develops unpleasant physical symptoms when they stop taking the drug or take it in smaller doses. This happens because the drug changes the natural state of being and the mind and body crave for the substance when stopped. Physical dependence makes the withdrawal symptoms stronger. The following can cause physical dependence –

  • Alcohol
  • Heroin
  • Meth
  • Morphine
  • Brown Sugar
  • Cannabis
  • Valium
  • Xanax
  • Phenobarbital

Physical dependence can be linked with withdrawal symptoms; there can be several ways to cope with this. Some therapies help you to tackle this dependence. A person can be addicted without showing physical dependence on the substance. And the opposite can also happen. A person may show signs of physical dependence without being addicted. Patients with chronic pain who take opioid medications are an example of this. There are several signs of physical dependence –

  • Depression
  • Sleeplessness or Insomnia
  • Shaking, sweating and seizures
  • Sudden bursts of anger

Setting Things Straight – Dealing With Withdrawal

There can be several withdrawal techniques associated with drug abuse. Withdrawal management is medical and psychological care given to those who have stopped or reduced their drug intake. There can be different types of withdrawal depending on the class of drug –

  • Alcohol Withdrawal
  • Opioid Withdrawal
  • Benzodiazepine Withdrawal
  • Stimulant Withdrawal
  • Inhalant Withdrawal
  • Cannabis Withdrawal

Drug withdrawal treatment often goes hand in hand with detoxification, and there can be two types of substance withdrawal management –

  • Medical Withdrawal Management – In this case, the person is assisted with medication to curb their use or tackle the symptoms they exhibit.
  • Non-Medical Withdrawal Management – The person goes through withdrawal without the use of medical assistance.

It is common for people who undergo withdrawal management to relapse to drug and alcohol use. It would not be wise to think that withdrawal techniques in de-addiction are synonymous with abstinence. On the other hand, detoxification or withdrawal management is the first step for recovery.

Alcohol Withdrawal – Symptoms, Management and Care

One of the most common problems of addiction that has been prevalent in India is alcoholism. There are over fifty-seven million people who need help with alcohol addiction. Unfortunately, less than 3% of people with a drinking problem get any alcohol withdrawal treatment. Prolonged abuse and excessive drinking can cause coma and severe internal organ failure, and death in extreme cases. People grow a tolerance for alcohol and continue to consume more of it to have the desired effect.

Living with an alcoholic is tough. Their parents and loved ones get affected. It also affects the person's work, daily activities and social circles. The person might get violent and start misbehaving or show signs of aggression. Their partners suffer the most, and it affects their relationship, finances and everything else. Alcoholics lose their sense and indulge in domestic violence, sexual abuse with their partners, or risky and illegal behaviour. They have increased tendencies of causing harm to themselves and others and develop suicidal tendencies.

While undergoing alcohol withdrawal, a person can show several symptoms and undergo mild, moderate and severe alcohol withdrawal management treatment, depending on their level of addiction. Alcohol withdrawal symptoms appear within six to twenty hours after stopping alcohol consumption. These symptoms are the most severe by thirty-six to seventy-two hours and last anywhere from two to ten days. This can change depending on the severity of the patient. Alcohol withdrawal symptoms include –

  • Anxiety
  • Dehydration
  • Insomnia
  • Diarrhoea
  • Vomiting
  • Nausea
  • Tremors
  • Shaking of Hands
  • Excessive Sweating
  • Increased Heart Rate
  • High Blood Pressure

In cases where the person is undergoing severe withdrawal treatment, they can have complications like –

  • Hallucinations
  • Seizures
  • Extreme agitation
  • Confused thinking
  • Reduced awareness of surroundings
  • Extreme Fluctuations in body temperature
  • Extreme changes in blood pressure

Management of alcohol withdrawal should be done by careful observation and continuous monitoring at an alcohol abuse treatment centre. There needs to be a plan for managing the withdrawal symptoms of the patient. An Alcohol Withdrawal Scale (AWS) is charted, and the factors are ranked 0-4 based on different criteria. Factors include –

  • Perspiration
  • Tremor
  • Anxiety
  • Agitation
  • Temperature
  • Hallucination
  • Orientation

Based on the AWS scores, the suggested withdrawal management is followed –

  • AWS Score 1-4: Mild Withdrawal Treatment
  • AWS Score 5-14: Moderate Alcohol Withdrawal Treatment
  • AWS Score 15+: Severe Alcohol Treatment

The follow-up care for alcohol withdrawal treatment is extensive and requires psychosocial treatments and ongoing vitamin B1 supplements. It is just the first step of the de-addiction process and does not guarantee alcohol abstinence.

SimranShri Rehabilitation Centre – Helping Men With Alcoholism

At SimranShri, we treat drug and alcohol addiction through a holistic approach. With a scientific approach that empowers natural healing, we help men with alcohol withdrawal so that they can have a better life ahead. There are several benefits of abstaining from alcohol and other substances –

  • Less prone to accidents
  • Heart gets healthier
  • The liver starts to heal
  • Immunity increases
  • Lowers your blood pressure
  • Weight management becomes easier
  • Improvements in Relationships
  • Regain interest in activities
  • Lower cancer risks
  • Increase in sex drive
  • Increases concentration and ability to focus
  • It results in better sleep

Keeping all these benefits in mind, we at SimranShri aim to provide the best treatment so that your loved ones can lead a better, longer, healthier and happier life. This makes us the best addiction treatment centres for those who need us. We take a pledge to take care of your loved ones so that they can get free from the shackles of alcoholism.

With more than thirty years of experience curing alcohol and substance abuse, our team of health and wellness centres leaves no stone unturned. Reach out to us for the best professional help, and our counselling team will make sure that you get the right help. Contact us to know more about alcoholism, its effects and how these treatments can help your loved ones.

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