Before a patient can be admitted to a detox unit, a bio-psych-social assessment is completed in the screening department. A Medical Doctor is notified of the information obtained and determines if the patient is medically and mentally clear for admission to detox. Once the client is on the unit, vital signs and withdrawal symptoms are assessed and monitored every 2 hours until patient is stable. Librium or other benzodiazepines is given according to withdrawal symptoms such as body tremors, hallucinations, nausea, vomiting, and headache noted by staff members. Other medications are given according to symptoms. The danger of alcohol withdrawal is a seizure episode. The length of detox is determined according to the amount and years of alcohol use. Normally it takes 3 days.
Opiate drug withdrawal has a detox protocol with scheduled doses of medications such as clonidine to reduce anxiety and stabilize vital signs. Motrin is given to reduce muscle aches and pains. Medications for nausea, headache and diarrhea are also available. Normally the length of detox is 4 days.
Benzodiazepine’s such as Valium and Xanax are detoxed with scheduled Phenobarbital doses to avoid seizures and Vistaril to reduce anxiety. Other medications for physical distress are also available. Normally it takes 6 days to detox safely.
Cannabis and Cocaine do not require detoxification.