Before an alcoholic can enter rehab they must first go through a medical detox. Some rehab facilities offer that on site but others do not so the addict would have to attend medical detox and then return to complete the drug rehab program when the detox is complete. Either way, the person in recovery must withdrawal from drugs and/or alcohol which will be made more comfortable by the drug treatment center than the person could achieve on their own as without professional help, withdrawal can be very uncomfortable without treatment for it.
Withdrawal occurs when an alcoholic stops drinking. Many symptoms will surface almost immediately in heavier drinkers and nausea or vomiting, sweating, shakiness, and anxieties are just the tip of the iceberg for most. Withdrawal can last a few days to a few weeks. These symptoms are reduced effectively with a detox program where medication is used to stifle the unpleasant withdrawal symptoms. For some, drug detox is the hardest part of rehab. Others find that several weeks into treatment they begin to experience cravings for their drug of choice. This is because the brain of the alcoholic has become unable to function normally in the absence of alcohol.
Now accustomed to functioning in the presence of drugs, the addicted brain, in essence, has become unable to function normally in their absence. This manifestation of alcohol addiction can be resolved with a long term treatment approach. This effectively gives the central nervous system time to readjust to the drug free- state that once existed before the consuming of alcohol began. The goal of alcohol rehab is to return the individual to productive functioning in the family, workplace, and community. While in alcohol rehab, recovering people can expect to learn about addiction, recovery and relapse. They will address misguided beliefs about themselves and others as well as make positive changes in their life. Alcohol rehabilitation also includes acquiring coping tools as well as refusal skills. These tools and skills will help them to identify relapse warning signs and challenge thoughts that could lead to relapse.
Nearly all alcoholics believe they can stop using on their own in the beginning, and most try to stop without treatment. However, most of these attempts result in failure to achieve long-term abstinence. Research has shown that long-term addiction causes significant changes in brain function that can persist for months after the individual stops using. The length of time required for alcohol rehab and detoxification dependent upon the individual. In general, detoxification can take between 3 and 7 days. The medical process of detox usually includes administering a variety of substances to relieve the withdrawal symptoms and minimize the potentially harmful consequences.
Dealing with pain and guilt is an important process for any recovering person to address and resolve in rehab. Often, they will attempt to ignore their emotions and not confront the consequences of their actions. Whether the pain and guilt they are feeling is towards themselves or if they have hurt someone they care about.