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Medical Detoxification Programs in Fort Pierce, FL (772) 882-3621

Drug or alcohol detoxification is the first step of any drug rehabilitation program and involves removing the substance of addiction from the body. Because addiction changes the structure and function of the brain, when the drug is withheld, the brain continues to operate in its new fashion, causing the onset of withdrawal symptoms.

Medical detox is designed to ease the symptoms of withdrawal to make it less uncomfortable and to shorten the duration of the detox process. Medical detox involves administering various medications to reduce the intensity of cravings and other physical withdrawal symptoms, and it must be performed in an inpatient drug treatment facility or as part of an outpatient rehab program.

Medical detox is preferred to the “cold turkey” detox approach, which can be dangerous or even fatal for those withdrawing from alcohol or central nervous system depressants like Xanax or Valium. During the medical detox process, mental health professionals at Drug Treatment Centers Fort Pierce will evaluate any underlying issues, mental conditions, or physical illnesses that have contributed to the addiction so that these may be addressed in treatment. Call us today at (772) 882-3621 and begin your journey toward recovery.

Unsupervised Detox is Dangerous and Often Ineffective

Alcohol withdrawal symptoms may include delirium tremens, or DTs, a condition marked by increased blood pressure, heart rate, and breathing rate. Around five percent of those who experience the onset of DTs will die from it if medical treatment isn’t immediately sought. Quitting depressants cold turkey may also cause dangerous and potentially fatal shifts in body functions like temperature control and heart rate.

A large number of patients who try to detox on their own will relapse almost immediately because using the substance is the only way to stop the often-excruciating withdrawal symptoms and intense cravings.

Types of Programs

Inpatient detox is ideal for those who have a long history of drug addiction or abuse or who have a co-occurring mental illness or a co-existing or secondary addiction. It’s also essential for those with any ambivalence toward recovery. Inpatient detox allows the patient to focus on recovery and avoid the stress and triggers at home while receiving around-the-clock care.

Outpatient detox is ideal for those who have a deep, personal commitment to recovery and a strong support base at home. Outpatient detox allows the patient to continue to meet responsibilities at home and work or school, and it provides more privacy since there’s no need to explain an extended absence.

Withdrawal Symptoms and the Medications Used to Treat Them

Each type of drug has its own set of withdrawal symptoms and treatment medications. Not every patient will experience every withdrawal symptom, and symptoms may range from mild to severe. Cravings are the most common symptom that occurs during withdrawal from drugs.


Withdrawing from methamphetamine produces symptoms that are similar to those of withdrawing from other stimulants like cocaine and the prescription drugs Adderall and Dexedrine, but it’s typically more intense. Because meth has a very high relapse rate, getting help through inpatient treatment is generally recommended. Withdrawal symptoms for meth include:

  • Excessive lethargy
  • Extreme depression
  • Anxiety
  • Paranoia
  • Psychosis

While there are no drugs approved specifically to treat stimulant withdrawal, bupropion (Zyban) can help alleviate the intense cravings and depressive symptoms associated with withdrawal.


Prescription opiates like OxyContin and Vicodin and illegal opiates like heroin cause withdrawal symptoms including:

  • Anxiety, agitation, and irritability
  • Insomnia
  • Hot and cold sweats
  • Muscle and joint pain
  • Abdominal cramping and diarrhea
  • Nausea and vomiting

Medications used to treat the symptoms of opiate withdrawal include:

  • Methadone to reduce the intensity of cravings and other symptoms
  • Clonidine to reduce anxiety, agitation, and aches
  • Subutex to help alleviate symptoms and reduce the duration of detox
  • Paxil to help reduce depression and insomnia


Withdrawal from alcohol may cause dangerous changes in body function and should always be conducted under medical supervision. Withdrawal symptoms associated with alcohol include:

  • Tremors
  • Anxiety, paranoia, and depression
  • Insomnia
  • Hallucinations
  • Seizures
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Delirium tremens

Medications used to treat alcohol withdrawal symptoms include:

  • Neurotonin to prevent or treat seizures and help restore normal brain function
  • Paxil to alleviate depression and insomnia
  • Antabuse to change the way alcohol is metabolized in the body, used for maintenance after detox

Call Drug Treatment Centers Fort Pierce to find out more about these and other treatment protocols we offer. Call us now at (772) 882-3621.

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