While a client is preparing to undergo a medical detox for drugs or alcohol, questions frequently arise about smoking and taking medications during the detoxification process.
It's a common concern for people in treatment, as studies have shown 65 to 87 percent of people seeking addiction treatment use tobacco. Also, medications may have been previously prescribed for health reasons, such as medicines for heart conditions, high blood pressure or acid reflux.
Each person's circumstances are unique, and the broad answer to what is allowed during detox is to speak to the healthcare professionals who are conducting the detox to find out what's best for a particular individual's situation. The answer will vary according to the combination of tobacco, what prescribed drugs are needed and which specific substances were abused.
Tobacco During and After Detox
Since a detox cleanses the body of all addictive substances, it's the perfect time to stop smoking. The chemical nicotine is why many people seek out tobacco products, and a detoxification clears out the nicotine, giving the individual a fresh start. This makes detox one of the best times to leave cigarette smoking behind.
Staying away from smoking during and after a detox is an important decision from a health standpoint. People suffering from an addiction are more likely to die from tobacco-related illnesses than from any other addiction-related diseases.
There is also a school of thought that believes if a person is to be truly sober, he or she should be free of all addictions, and since smoking is a nicotine addiction, they aren't fully sober and are more prone to relapse. Since the mental aspect of sobriety is being influenced by a nicotine habit, individuals who continue to smoke aren't experiencing a full commitment to sobriety. This puts people in recovery at risk for relapse back to other addictions.
Eliminating the health and relapse risks are sound reasons to stay away from smoking during a detox, which is the best time to leave the habit behind with a newly cleansed body that's ready for further addiction treatment.
Medications During and After Detox
Taking medications during and after detox will depend on the individual's health, what the medications were prescribed for and how those medications would interact with detox medications. Since this is going to vary widely for each person, it's important that a full health assessment is completed before a detox, so all medications are identified and can be evaluated.
A doctor who has all the necessary information can help an individual make informed decisions about what medications can be taken during and after a detox, and what medications might be eliminated. The doctor may also prescribe new drugs to help with any medical and addiction issues. A fully informed decision helps keep the client safe, while utilizing medications that are needed to maintain sobriety as well as good physical and mental health.