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March 2021 | Cenikor Foundation

What Happens During Detox?

About 23.5 billion Americans are addicted to alcohol and drugs. That’s one in every 10 Americans above the age of 12! Meanwhile, only 11% of addicts receive treatment.

Are you considering making a positive change in your life by detoxing? It’s important to prepare yourself first. Otherwise, you might fail to detox in a safe environment.

What happens during detox? Keep reading to find out. In this guide, we’ll review everything you need to know before starting the detox process.

With this guide, you can prepare yourself for the road to recovery. Get started by learning what to expect during detox today.


What is Detox?

First, let’s answer the question that’s likely on your mind: what does detox mean?

The detox process allows you to remove all traces of alcohol and drugs from your body. After a detox, you should feel physically stable. Detoxing can prepare your mind and body for therapy.

Over time, your body can become accustomed to having drugs or alcohol in your system. You could become dependent on drugs. Meanwhile, your body can build a tolerance, requiring you to use more to experience results.

When you reduce and remove these substances from your system, your brain will need to adjust. Many people experience withdrawal symptoms during the detox process.

A professional detox from drugs and alcohol can help minimize your withdrawal symptoms. A professional team will ensure you’re as comfortable as possible. With their help, you can detox safely.

Detoxing alone, however, is unadvised. You might not receive the care you need in time. If you fail the process alone, your motivation to complete a successful detox could drop.

Look for a detox facility that offers access to medically trained specialists. You’ll remain under the care of healthcare professionals, including nurses and doctors, during the detox process.


How to Tell You Need to Detox

The number of alcohol liver disease deaths has already reached 24,110 a year. By determining if you need to detox, you can avoid long-term consequences, including death. Here are a few signs that could indicate you need to start the detox process.

One of the main signs you need to detox from alcohol or drugs is an increased dependence. Do you feel like you can’t get through the day without drugs? It’s likely you need to start the detox process.

Do you need to use more of a substance to feel its effects? You’ve likely developed a tolerance. You could overdose as a result.


Here are a few other ways to tell you should start the process of detox.


  1. Addiction Symptoms

Have you started demonstrating symptoms of addiction? For example, maybe you’re taking reckless risks while under the influence. Perhaps you’ve developed a habit of driving while drunk.

If you’ve started making dangerous, life-threatening choices, you might want to consider getting treatment. Start detoxing before you put your life in jeopardy.

Talk to your doctor, too. Have they noticed your health has deteriorated over time? Drug and alcohol use can damage essential organs.

You could put your heart, brain, and liver at risk.

Drug and alcohol use can also increase your risk of hepatitis C, heart failure, HIV, and other conditions.

Have your friends and family members started commenting on your substance abuse? They’ll likely notice signs of your addiction before you do. If they’re concerned, don’t shrug it off.

Instead, take their warnings seriously. It’s likely they only want to help.

Your addiction could get you in legal trouble, too. For example, you might get arrested for buying or selling drugs. You could get caught stealing or driving drunk.

Violent behavior is a common issue, too.

Are you neglecting your responsibilities? Have you missed work or school as a result of your addiction? Consider getting help.

If you don’t know how to stop using, look into local detox centers. Professional medical help will ensure you detox in a safe environment. Otherwise, detoxing alone could prove detrimental to your health.


  1. Exhaustion and Stress

Alcohol and drug abuse can impact both the mind and body. If you’re feeling stressed, it could lead to other health issues, including weight gain and sleep deprivation. Stress can also trigger depression and other health issues.

You might rely on drugs and alcohol even more to minimize your stress.

Learning more about what happens during detox could help. During a detox, you can focus on improving your mental and physical health. You can minimize the stress in your life and find healthy coping mechanisms.


  1. Skin Issues

Substance abuse can impact your skin health, too. Toxins will start to build up under the skin. Meanwhile, toxins can also overload your liver.

You could experience acne, itchy skin, eczema, and other issues.

Detoxing can help remove the toxins from your body to minimize skin problems.


  1. Sore Joints and Muscles

Are you experiencing more aches and pains throughout the day? It’s possible your body is inflamed. Inflammation is the body’s natural response to illness, disease, and toxins.

Too much inflammation over time can cause sore joints and muscles.

In addition to detoxing, you can add anti-inflammatory foods to your diet. Consider using ginger, turmeric, and garlic to ease inflammation.


  1. Digestion Issues

Are you experiencing stomach pains and digestion issues? You might experience bloating, diarrhea, or gas. Listen to your gut!

It’s telling you something is wrong.

If you’re experiencing digestion issues, take it as a sign you need to detox from alcohol or drugs. Otherwise, substance abuse can cause your entire body to deteriorate over time.


The Detox Process

With treatment, about 70% of alcoholics can decrease the number of days they consume alcohol. They can also improve their overall health within six months.

Are you thinking about undergoing the detox process? Here’s what happens during detox. By learning more about the process, you can prepare yourself before treatment.


Medical Assessment

What happens during detox? First, you’ll need to undergo a medical assessment.

A medical professional will gather information about your medical history. They’ll also ask for information about your addiction, including your substance of choice. This assessment will help them determine your unique needs.

Your team might need to take blood work to assess your health. They’ll also use testing to check your mental and physical wellbeing.

An assessment will help your medical team create your personalized detox plan.



The detox process ensures you safely manage your withdrawal symptoms under medical supervision. When you quit using dangerous substances, your body will need time to adjust. Without drugs or alcohol in your system, you’ll experience withdrawal symptoms.


These symptoms can include:

  • Fever and flu-like symptoms
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Extreme fatigue
  • Irritability
  • Moodiness
  • Aggression
  • Headaches
  • Skin-related changes (acne, itching, rashes, etc.)
  • Body aches and pains
  • Physical and emotional symptoms
  • Anxiety
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Shainess
  • Unstable blood pressure and heart rate changes
  • Sweating
  • Depression
  • Hallucinations

You could also experience delirium tremens (DTs). The DTs are a life-threatening concern. You could become restless, confused, or get upset.

You might experience seizures, hallucinations, and develop a fever, too.

Every detox process is different. The type of substance you used and the severity of your addiction can impact your detox. If you’ve used drugs or alcohol over years, your body’s reaction to detoxing could become more intense.

During the detox process, you might need to take medication to ease your symptoms. These symptoms could last for a week or more. The worst of it will occur within 24 to 72 hours of starting the detox.


A Safe Environment

Detoxing with professional help will ensure you remain in a safe environment. You’ll likely start your detox in a hospital-like setting. You’ll have privacy as you begin your detox.

Detoxing in a safe environment will ensure you don’t have access to drugs or alcohol.

Your detox team will monitor your overall health. They’ll determine which medications and treatments you need for successful treatment.

Once you complete the detox process, you can move into an inpatient care facility.

There are two types of detox programs: inpatient and outpatient. With inpatient treatment, you’ll remain in a detox clinic, rehab center, or hospital. You’ll receive around-the-clock care.

With outpatient treatment, you’ll live at home. You could visit a health care professional regularly during the course of your treatment.

Inpatient care ensures you require help 24/7.



During your detox process, you’ll have a team of dedicated professionals supporting you. They’ll help you manage your physical and psychological symptoms. You’ll also have a licensed counselor on your team.

They’ll help you adjust to any emotional components of your disease.

Make sure to look for a program that gives you access to certified and licensed providers.


What Happens During Detox: Your Guide to Getting Clean

You don’t have to go through the detox process alone. Now that you know what happens during detox, you can get the help you need. Consider finding a detox facility to begin your treatment today.

With professional help, you can detox safely and successfully.

Eager to start your detox process? We’re here to help.

Contact us at 1-888-236-4567 today to get started.


Binge Drinking and Alcohol Abuse Facts

Did you know that an estimated 3 million deaths (over 5% of all deaths) occur as a result of alcohol worldwide every year? Do you worry that you or a loved one is dealing with binge drinking or alcohol abuse, and may become part of that statistic?

While not always related, binge drinking & alcohol abuse are closely tied. Many people don’t recognize that they have a problem until it’s too late, and then they have to go through a painful detox and recovery period.

We want to keep you informed with binge drinking & alcohol abuse facts so you know what to look out for, what risks are associated, and how you or your loved one can recover. Keep reading to learn more.


What Is Binge Drinking?

Binge drinking is a common practice and most people who binge drink don’t suffer from an alcohol use disorder. That said, it isn’t safe and someone who binge drinks on occasion should stay aware of their alcohol intake and keep tabs on their health

When someone binge drinks, it means that they’re drinking enough to raise their blood alcohol content (BAC) to over .08%. The amount of alcohol that causes your BAC to rise that high varies based on multiple factors including altitude, body weight, speed, food intake, and sex (men can often drink more than women).

On average, 5 drinks for men and 4 drinks for women (within two hours) is considered binge drinking.

Binge drinking is common amongst college-aged adults and often normalized to the point that no one considers it a health concern. Binge drinking may result in alcohol poisoning or risky behaviors.


Is Binge Drinking Always Alcohol Abuse?

As we mentioned, binge drinking isn’t always an indication of an alcohol use disorder. While these people are technically abusing alcohol by drinking too much, it doesn’t mean that they have an alcohol problem per se. You need to look at it on a case-by-case basis.

For example, someone who drinks too much at the occasional party or event, or someone who misjudges their tolerance based on new factors (like medication, weight loss, or food intake for the night) likely doesn’t have an alcohol use disorder as long as they later recognize their mistake.

When someone binge drinks often, though (like every week or even every day), it’s a problem. This is one of the primary issues with the normalization of binge drinking for college students.

When partying too hard is the norm, these students are at risk of developing alcoholism and future health problems. They aren’t yet aware of important alcohol abuse facts, so they’re putting themselves at risk.


How Do You Know If You Have an Alcohol Problem?

If you’re reading this, it’s likely that you’re worried that you or a loved one has a problem with alcohol. Whether you’ve had one bad night out or you’ve noticed unhealthy patterns, it’s great that you’re doing your research.

There are several key signs that someone may be abusing alcohol to the extent that it’s become a problem. They include:

  • Withdrawal from friends and family
  • Neglecting responsibilities (like school or work) in exchange for alcohol
  • Frequent stomach pain
  • An inability to know when it’s time to stop
  • An increased alcohol tolerance
  • Mood disruption
  • An inability to feel “normal” when not under the influence of alcohol
  • Frequent alcohol cravings
  • Drinking in excess when alone

From time to time, most of these things can be normal. In combination, though, they’re problematic. These factors are a sign that it may be time to seek out counseling or a recovery center. It’s also a good idea to talk to friends and family to see if they’ve noticed any strange behavior.


What Are Alcohol Abuse Risk Factors?

Did you know that there are some things that make people more susceptible to abusing alcohol?

Because many people use alcohol to self-medicate, both mental illness and chronic pain are large risk factors for alcohol abuse. Unfortunately, because alcohol is a depressant, these people are actually doing more damage.

While they may get relief from pain or mental struggles for the moment (because alcohol inhibits the central nervous system), in the long run, they’re harming their minds and their bodies and preventing themselves from healing.

The more alcohol you drink, the less that it affects you (which is why people drink greater amounts over time).

A family history of alcoholism or addiction is another risk factor for alcohol abuse, as well as a family or friend group that’s normalized binge drinking even without alcoholism being a factor.

Being in college or in an industry where drinking is the norm (such as bartending) is another risk factor.


What Are the Dangers Associated With Alcohol Abuse?

People seek recovery because alcohol abuse is dangerous. Are you familiar with the harm that it causes?

There are plenty of short-term and long-term dangers that you should be aware of so that you can keep an eye on your own condition.


Short-Term Dangers and Side-Effects

There are some dangers that aren’t only associated with alcoholism, but also with short-term alcohol overuse (including binge drinking). Many people who have experienced the aftermath of too many drinks are familiar with these side-effects.

They include:

  • Headaches
  • Dehydration
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Mood disruptions
  • Fatigue

There are dangers associated with this kind of drinking as well. While the previous “hangover” symptoms go away, some dangers are deadly, even when they’re the result of a single night of drinking.

They include:

  • Recklessness and risky behaviors
  • Risky sexual encounters (that could end in STDs)
  • Fetal alcohol poisoning (if pregnant)
  • Car accidents
  • Alcohol poisoning

People are more likely to engage in risk-taking behaviors after they’ve been drinking too much because of how alcohol inhibits the nervous system. You’re unable to make clear decisions.

This is the primary factor behind drunk driving. No one sets out to drive dangerously; they don’t realize that they’re too drunk to drive.

This is also what leads to plenty of injuries from other risk-taking behaviors like swimming while drunk, trying to perform physical feats, and getting into fights.

While a single night of alcohol overuse doesn’t usually have serious results, these also aren’t uncommon.


Long-Term Dangers and Side-Effects

When you abuse alcohol for a long time, you have a greater chance of experiencing negative side-effects and dangers. This is why it’s so important to catch alcohol abuse before it turns into alcoholism.

Side-effects include:

  • Frequent fatigue
  • Irritability when sober
  • Personality changes
  • Isolation
  • Poor school or work performance

While these side-effects may seem mild, they’re signs that you need to stop or you’ll start facing serious consequences. Those consequences may include:

  • Alcohol poisoning
  • Alcohol addiction
  • Liver damage or disease
  • High blood pressure
  • Heart disease
  • Memory problems
  • A weakened immune system
  • Various types of cancers
  • exacerbated mental health problems
  • Withdrawal

Many of these dangers can end in severe illness, or worse, death. While it’s not considered as “serious” as addictions to hard drugs, alcohol abuse and addiction can still be disastrous.


How Can Someone Recover From Alcohol Abuse?

If you’re worried that you’ve been abusing alcohol, the first thing that you should do is see if you’re able to cut back on your own. Abusing alcohol doesn’t automatically mean that you have an addiction.

Reduce or omit alcohol from your life for a few weeks and if you feel the need to reintroduce it during social events or gatherings, don’t have more than a single drink.

If this is too difficult and you find yourself craving alcohol or feeling withdrawal symptoms, it’s time to seek out professional help. Withdrawal is dangerous, so having professionals on your side is the best way to go.

There are plenty of recovery options for people who choose to seek treatment. They usually start with detox to rid your body of residual alcohol so you can begin to recover.

After this, you can choose between inpatient and outpatient treatments. Inpatient (or residential) treatment is for serious recovery. People in residential treatment are removed from the stressors of everyday life and put into intensive counseling programs to get them ready to return to a healthy life.

People who can’t afford to stay in a residential treatment center (whether for financial reasons or because of responsibilities) may benefit from outpatient treatment. You still get high-quality counseling and support, but you’re able to continue living at home.

The most important part of recovery is developing an effective support system.


Binge Drinking & Alcohol Abuse Are Serious

Binge drinking & alcohol abuse don’t always end in alcohol addiction, but they still present health risks and addiction is always a possibility.

If you’re worried that you’ve been consuming too much alcohol and you don’t feel capable of handling it on your own, it may be time to seek professional help.

Do you want guidance for your alcohol abuse problem? We’re here to support you. With detox programs, inpatient treatment, outpatient treatment, and recovery support, we at Cenikor want to help you heal.

Contact us at 1-888-236-4567 to talk to one of our compassionate advisors about your treatment options.

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