You may have reached a point in your addiction that has left you feeling sick, tired, and utterly lost. It is at this point that many people decide to quit using once and for all. The guilt and shame that often comes with addiction can cause you to resist seeking help and instead try on your own. Attempting to self-detox is a bad idea for several reasons.
First and foremost, it’s dangerous. Withdrawal from drugs and alcohol wreaks havoc on the body and can actually be lethal. Secondly, it is highly ineffective. The most important thing to remember when you are ready to quit using is that you have nothing to be ashamed of. Asking for help could quite literally save your life. Let’s learn more about why self-detox is not the answer, and what to do instead.
The Problems With Quitting Cold Turkey and Self-Detox
Have you ever heard the saying, “I got myself into this mess, and I can get myself out”? While that may be true in some cases, it is a dangerous attitude to take when it comes to detoxing from drug or alcohol abuse. Going ‘cold turkey’ may seem like the quickest and easiest way to quit using drugs or alcohol, but in fact, it can lead to a host of issues.
First, quitting cold turkey is typically very ineffective. When you are addicted to a substance, you do not have control over that substance; if you did, you wouldn’t be addicted to it! If there is nothing but your own sheer will and determination keeping you from using again, chances are that you’re not going to be able to stick with it once withdrawal sets in. This doesn’t mean that there is something ‘wrong’ with you or that you have no hope for getting clean and sober. Instead, it means that addiction is powerful, and to truly quit you need to be able to rely on other people for help.
Moreover, quitting cold turkey doesn’t address the reasons the addiction developed in the first place. Most of the time, people become addicted to substances to numb painful feelings of depression, anxiety, or trauma.  When you attempt sobriety alone, you don’t allow yourself time to heal from your past and learn healthy coping mechanisms.
What Are the Complications of Self-Detox?
Aside from it being ineffective, self-detox also comes with some major complications. Withdrawal from drugs and alcohol is not only extremely uncomfortable, it can be dangerous. In some cases, withdrawing from alcohol or Benzodiazepines can be deadly. 
Below is a list of common side-effects of drug and alcohol withdrawal: 
- Increased Blood Pressure
- Nausea and Vomiting
- Severe cravings
While it may not seem like some of the above symptoms are that bad, they can lead to serious complications. High blood pressure can lead to stroke. Severe seizures can leave lasting brain damage.  Hallucinations can cause you to harm yourself or others. This is why seeking help for detox is the safest option.
Benefits of an Inpatient Detox Facility
Detox is an inevitable part of getting sober. Whether you go it alone, or you seek help for it, your body has to go through a process of getting rid of the toxins in your system. The safest way to do this is through an inpatient detox facility. While the thought of detoxing in a medical facility may seem overwhelming to you, it is actually a place of peace and comfort to jumpstart your healing.
One major benefit of detoxing with medical care is that it’s much more comfortable. You will be surrounded by a team of medical professionals who have years of experience helping to keep you comfortable while you detox. You’ll be given healthy food, water, and all the rest time you need. Everything is taken care of for you so that you can focus only on getting better.
Another benefit is that it is the most effective way of getting sober. When you are kept comfortable and safe, you are more likely to stick to staying sober. You won’t have the painful withdrawal symptoms that will leave you craving your substance of choice, so you will feel empowered to keep going.
Lastly, you’ll be much, much safer. The physicians at an inpatient detox center will give you medications to prevent or counteract some of the dangerous effects of withdrawal. So you’ll get through without the worry of having a seizure, blood pressure spike, or any of the other dangerous effects.
Best Inpatient Detox Center
At Ocean Hills Recovery, we have medical detox available to help you through the most difficult phase of your journey. If you are ready to kick your addiction once and for all, contact Ocean Hills Recovery today!
About the author:
Greg opened his home and heart to alcoholics and addicts in 2003. He is a Certified Addictions Treatment Counselor (CATCI). Starting in 2009 Greg has fostered the growth of Ocean Hills Recovery into one of the most respected and effective treatment centers in the area and has been working with people with addictions since March of 2001. Greg believes in a holistic approach to recovery. His focus is on drug alcohol addiction treatment with a combination of 12 Step work, therapy and counseling, and the rejuvenation of the body through healthful eating and exercise. He has designed his program to foster a family-like atmosphere and believes that people in recovery are just beginning their lives. He encourages the people he works with to learn to enjoy life in sobriety. Greg is married to Nicole; they have two adorable sons together and an energetic yellow Labrador Retriever.