Detox is the process of allowing drugs or alcohol to clear out of the body. If you or a loved one are considering a detox, you probably have questions like, “How long does detox take to clear your system?” Here’s what you need to know about the detox timeline and why you should always detox under proper medical supervision.
The Bluffs is an inpatient treatment center in Sherrodsville, Ohio. We offer a wide range of substance use treatment programs, including medically supervised detox.
Call 850.374.5331 today for more information on drug and alcohol detox at The Bluffs.
What Is Detox?
Detox is the process of clearing drugs or alcohol out of the body. Typically, detox is undertaken when a person has decided to enter addiction recovery.
When substance use is stopped suddenly, it’s common to experience severe withdrawal symptoms. For some substances, withdrawal can be primarily psychological. For others, withdrawal occurs because a person has developed a physical dependence on the substance used.
Withdrawal is often painful and can be dangerous for a person’s health. The preferred method of completing a drug or alcohol detox is to do so under medical supervision in a reputable treatment facility.
At a treatment center, a patient is monitored for adverse health effects and given medications that help ease the discomfort of the detox process.
How Long Does a Detox Take to Clear Your System?
You may be wondering, “How long does detox take to clear your system?” The answer is that it depends on many factors, including:
- Types of substances used
- How long a substance has been used
- How frequently a substance is used
- Level of tolerance
- Level of physical dependence
- Other health factors
Every person is unique, which means that there’s no exact timing for how long detox takes to complete.
The general estimate for a medically-supervised detox is four to seven days. With medical supervision and medication, it typically takes up to a week for substances to completely leave the body.
However, cravings and psychological dependence are rarely healed during a week-long detox. This is why the standard recommendation is for a patient to complete a full substance use disorder treatment program once detox is finished. In fact, effectively overcoming addiction requires more than just a detox program.
Why Detoxing at Home Is Dangerous
If you’re asking, “How long does a detox take to clear your system,” it might seem tempting to avoid the inconvenience of inpatient care in favor of an at-home detox. This, however, is a mistake. At-home detox is dangerous and can even be fatal under certain conditions. It also tends to be less effective and increases the risk of overdose.
Detox at home essentially means riding out withdrawal symptoms until they pass. Some of the most common side effects that can come with an unsupervised detox include:
- Severe dehydration
- Heart and blood pressure issues
- Delirium tremens
In addition to the potentially fatal side effects of withdrawal symptoms, at-home detox increases the risk of overdose. An individual who attempts to detox at home may not be able to take the physical and psychological symptoms. As a result, they may use substances again to find relief.
Even a day or two of abstinence can significantly alter a person’s tolerance. Individuals who relapse after an attempted at-home detox can easily misjudge their new tolerance level and accidentally overdose. Sadly, all too many people have lost loved ones in this manner.
Detox Safely at The Bluffs
Opting to undergo a medically supervised detox at a treatment center is the safest and most effective way to successfully move forward from substance use.
The Bluffs is a premier inpatient treatment center. We offer a drug and alcohol detox program, and our treatment team can suggest further treatment options to help a patient maintain long-term recovery.
Give us a call today at 850.374.5331 to learn more about detox and treatment at The Bluffs.