When helping a loved one transition into alcohol detox, there is something known as “the three A’s.” These include “awareness” that they have a problem, “acknowledgment” that they need help, and a willingness to “accept” that help. Once these three elements are present, the chances of recovery become exponentially greater. However, we have to help them get to where they need to be before they can establish themselves in recovery.
What Exactly Is Alcohol Detox?
Many people may not be aware of how dangerous suddenly reducing or abstaining from alcohol can be for someone with alcohol use disorder (AUD). In fact, withdrawal from alcohol can be more than dangerous – it can even be deadly.
According to Doctors Newman, Gallagher, and Gomez in their clinical write-up titled Alcohol Withdrawal, “Alcohol withdrawal symptoms occur when patients stop drinking or significantly decrease their alcohol intake after long-term dependence. Withdrawal has a broad range of symptoms from mild tremors to a condition called delirium tremens, which results in seizures and could progress to death if not recognized and treated promptly.” Also, “The reported mortality rate for patients who experience delirium tremens is anywhere from one to five percent.”
Alcohol detox is the process of mitigating and managing alcohol withdrawal symptoms as they go through their period of dissipation. Now, it is also important to note that a responsible alcohol detox is going to be administered by medical professionals and mental health and addiction specialists. Without the assistance of these professionals, detox can inform the dangers mentioned previously. Thus, since detoxing on their own can be so dangerous, it is important to help a loved one transition into an alcohol detox that is safely monitored and in a secure location.
How to Help a Loved One Transition Into Alcohol Detox
The truth is that helping a loved one transition into detox can go one of two ways, depending on the individual and their willingness to get help. If a loved one is not ready to get help, the right move may be to hold off until the time is right. As many say in the recovery industry, “They have to want it if they are to get it,” and “We should never get in the way of someone’s ‘bottom.’” Of course, the situation is different if they are in immediate danger of hurting themselves or others. If that is the case, it is necessary to seek medical support immediately.
On the other hand, if a loved one is ready to get help, there are certain steps we can take to help them transition into alcohol detox. The first step is finding a reputable detox facility. These can be found via a primary care provider, an insurance representative, or researching for a recovery center that is right for you.
The next step is connecting with the loved one’s insurance to see what their recovery options are. If they are uninsured, we can identify other options for their detox, keeping in mind that finance should never get in the way of anyone’s health. For instance, an emergency room will accept someone without insurance who needs to detox. The key is to get them into a professional detox as soon as possible.
What to Expect After Helping a Loved One Transition Into Alcohol Detox
After we help a loved one transition into detox, the next step is reaching out and finding a treatment program that makes sense as their next step. Being in contact with the doctors and specialists who are monitoring the detox can advise with this determination.
More often than not, the next step after detox is admittance to a residential recovery center. Here, an individual can stay in close contact with both recovery professionals and “recovery peers” which can help with the beginning of the treatment process.
We can also help a loved one with their outside responsibilities while they are in detox. This may include connecting with their work or school and taking care of their finances. Now, this does not mean that we pay their bills; rather, it means that we can be the go-between that they may need to not default on any financial responsibilities. Lastly, we can also help by supporting other family members who may need guidance and comfort. After all, addiction is a “family disease.”
The Primary Purpose of Progress Not Perfection: The Phoenix Recovery Center
Here at The Phoenix Recovery Center, we understand that helping a loved one transition into alcohol detox can be a challenging experience. Honestly, it can be one of the most demanding things we may ever have to do. Yet, we also know that on the other side of that challenge can be a life that is beyond what could have ever once been imagined.
At The Phoenix Recovery Center, the goal has always been “progress, not perfection.” Helping a loved one transition into alcohol detox is the start of that progress, and that is as perfect of an act of love as anything else we can think of.
For more information on what to expect when helping a loved one transition into alcohol detox, and how to find the best detox center, please reach out to The Phoenix Recovery Center today at (801) 438-3185.