The body naturally detoxes itself from everyday toxins. Unwanted chemicals and toxins that may be harmful to the body are filtered through the liver. Prolonged opioid drug use can be damaging to the body and incredibly taxing on organs such as the liver, since it now must be working harder and longer to perform its regular functions.
Ridding the body of drugs is an important step in the path to recovering from opioid addiction. Often when people speak of drugs and detoxes they are referring to a medical detox.
Medical detoxes from opioids, such as painkillers, are performed in drug addiction and rehab centers across the country.
“Rapid detox” is another term that is popular in the field of addiction treatment and medicine. Rapid detox is advertised as being fast and effective despite major concerns regarding both of those claims.
The definition of detox is a process or period of time in which one abstains from or rids the body of toxic or unhealthy substances; detoxification.
Stopping the use of drugs should be done under medical supervision. Some individuals may believe they can quit cold turkey or taper off of drugs themselves, but these methods are not advised. Complications can arise that can lead to side effects ranging from mildly uncomfortable, to as severe as coma, seizures, or even death.
The good news is that the body is designed to heal itself naturally. When we give it the proper support and treatment, it is even possible to undo some of the damage caused by drug use and abuse.
A natural detox from opioids does NOT include any kind of herbal concoctions that are sold over the counter or pills or any sort. Instead, natural drug detox takes into account how to help assist the body in the healing process without medication or extreme measures.
Proper hydration is important for everyone, but even more so for an individual who is trying to overcome addiction. How much water should you drink in a day? It is recommended to drink approximately 11.5 cups of water a day for females and 15.5 cups of water daily for males.
Water can help ease withdrawal side effects such as headaches, muscle pain or spasms. It can also help increase overall energy. Water is a key element when doing a natural detox as it aids in flushing the system of unwanted chemicals and toxins, leaving the body through urination.
The importance of nutrition is becoming more widely recognized in playing a role in mental illness as well as other physical ailments.
When it comes to individuals who have used or abused opioids for a period of time, it is crucial to replenish the body with lost vitamins and minerals. Nutritional deficiencies are extremely common among people who have suffered from opioid dependence.
While everyone’s individual chemistry is different, vitamins that help support the brain such as omegas 3 and 6 can be beneficial. A study published in the Iranian Journal of Public Health, shows that individuals who have been addicted to opiates may have deficiencies of calcium and magnesium. These deficiencies can contribute to muscle pain and spasms.
The body needs many vitamins and minerals to function at optimal levels. It is possible for a physician to run blood tests in order to determine if you have a nutritional deficiency that can be supplemented.
There are foods that are considered powerful due to their natural antioxidant properties. Some antioxidant rich foods to incorporate into a diet for a natural detox include blueberries, kale, avocado, and green tea. Avoiding refined sugars and junk food and focusing on eating more whole, natural foods like fruits, vegetables, organic meats, and whole grains, is also recommended.
Exercising is another tool that can help the body heal from drug use. Most human sweat is made up of water and not toxins, contrary to popular belief. However, there is evidence that exercise supports mental well-being in addition to its physical benefits.
Lastly, a detox from unhealthy habits and relationships will help support your new, sober lifestyle. Surrounding yourself with a support system of friends and family who want to see you succeed is invaluable. Recovery support groups and social clubs also exist to provide a sense of community in sobriety.
While a natural detox is not a cure-all for opioid dependence and should not substitute proper medical addiction treatment, the importance of nourishing the body physically as well as mentally and emotionally, should not be overlooked when detoxing from opioids.