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Is Drug and Alcohol Rehab Really Better Than Quitting Cold Turkey?

(781) 622-9190
is drug and alcohol rehab really better than quitting cold turkey

Admitting to yourself that you have a drug or alcohol problem is the first step toward liberation from a dangerous and unhealthy lifestyle. If you are like most people afflicted with a substance abuse disorder, you probably went through some tough times that led you to this conclusion.

Debating the Best Method to Achieve Sobriety

Now that you realize that you have this problem, you are probably wondering what the next step is to arrest your addiction for good. Perhaps you have heard about drug and alcohol rehabs and are questioning if they are necessary or whether you can stop cold turkey by yourself without any assistance.

Can an Alcoholic Quit Cold Turkey?

Usually, when you reach the point where you recognize the severity of your problem with drugs and alcohol, your situation has become untenable. Recovery from alcohol addiction is a significant undertaking, and you should leverage all available options towards a successful outcome.

While some alcoholics can stop cold turkey, they are the exception, and most require some professional help to recover from addiction. For instance, in cases of alcohol withdrawal, severe alcohol dependence may lead to dangerous symptoms like delirium tremens and high blood pressure.

Can you quit alcohol using cold turkey approach with an alcohol use disorder

Can You Quit Drugs Cold Turkey?

Quitting drugs cold turkey is similar to quitting alcohol cold turkey. When it comes to quitting drugs, especially high-dependency drugs like opioid drugs or other prescription drugs, abruptly stopping can lead to potentially dangerous and life-threatening consequences due to the onset of withdrawal symptoms.

Withdrawal symptoms can encompass physical and emotional aspects, which can be challenging to navigate. In cases of opioid withdrawal, intense cravings, physical discomfort, and other symptoms may emerge. Quitting drugs abruptly, without proper medical attention, can lead to untreated withdrawal symptoms and potential relapse.

Quitting drugs cold turkey and drug withdrawal can be extremely dangerous

Cold Turkey Versus Rehab

Now, it is not impossible to quit drugs and alcohol cold turkey, and people have done it before. The problem with this approach is that the odds are stacked heavily against you.

Willpower alone does not work against chemical dependency as there are many factors involved when you are heavily dependent on drugs or alcohol, and thousands of addicts have found this out the hard way.

At Woburn Addiction Treatment Center, we can help you win the battle with your addiction. By combating emotional symptoms and physical symptoms, your healthcare provider will help you recover from drug addiction.

Rehabs Manage Your Withdrawal Symptoms

Depending on your drug of choice, you could experience withdrawal symptoms that make quitting extremely difficult by yourself. Often, when a chemically dependent person begins to encounter the effects of withdrawal, they feel so horrible physically and mentally that they are compelled to use again.

With medical detox or gradual reduction, stopping drug use and treating other withdrawal symptoms can be managed in a safe space.

Also, abruptly quitting some substances can be life-threatening. Immediate cessation of alcohol or benzodiazepines, for example, can result in grand mal seizures, even after days of sobriety.

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Medical Assistance for Intense Withdrawal Symptoms

Rehabs specialize in addressing withdrawal symptoms medically so that the patient is safe and does not go through the horrible discomfort that they would when quitting cold turkey.

Due to mental dependence as well as physical dependence, unpleasant withdrawal symptoms can be addressed with medication-assisted treatment. Doctors in treatment facilities prescribe medications for a detoxification protocol, and these meds differ according to your drug of choice.

Nurses monitor your vital signs on a regular schedule and adjust medications accordingly with the oversight of the physician. The goal is to prepare you physically and mentally for the remainder of your treatment and withdrawal process.

Rehabs Teach The Skills to Stay Sober For The Rest of Your Life.

If recovery from drugs and alcohol were easy, then every addict and alcoholic would be sober. Just like any other job that you are unfamiliar with, there are instructions to follow for a favorable result.

In a drug and alcohol rehab, you will learn life skills that will help you stay sober from trained professionals who specialize in addiction.

If you were to try and stop using by yourself, you would not receive any instructions on how to stay sober, and, at this point, you probably realize that your ideas in this regard have proved futile.

Rehab also allows you to interact with other addicts and alcoholics who are in the same position. There is comfort in spending time with others who understand what you are going through and can relate to your struggle.

Sharing your experience with others and listening to theirs is particularly therapeutic and lightens the load of your concerns. Trying to quit cold turkey is frightening because no one can empathize with your position. Addiction is a disease of loneliness, so trying to tackle it by yourself does not make sense.

Drugs or alcohol treatment program to maintain sobriety and avoid relapse curve with controlled noninferiority trial

Rehabs Give You The Time That You Need for Your Brain and Body to Heal.

Addiction is a chronic disease that wreaks havoc on the organs of your body and your brain. Neurotransmitters, synapses, and other components of cerebral functionality are all adversely affected by addiction and prolonged drug abuse. Your liver, kidneys, heart, and lungs might also have issues to address.

Ailments, such as liver disease, are subject to monitoring and medical care. Our medical professionals can address any medical conditions and safely stop alcohol abuse in a safe environment rather than attempting the cold turkey method at home without medical supervision.

Going to a healthcare professional for long term abstinence from drug use

Co-Occurring Mental Health and Addiction Treatment

When working with a medical professional at Woburn Wellness, we specialize in the diagnosis and treatment of addiction-related illnesses.

Anxiety and depression are common conditions reported by recovering addicts, and staff mental health professionals can treat the symptoms.

Addressing any underlying mental disorders can aid in the emotionally difficult aspects of substance abuse treatment.

Joining Support Groups

To compliment your recovery, we recommend attending support groups in order to assist in maintaining long-term sobriety.

Both Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) and Narcotics Anonymous (NA) provide an outlet and strong support network as you embark on the journey of lifelong sobriety.

Get The Care You Need and Deserve

Woburn Wellness Addiction Treatment is a leader in the addiction treatment field, with proven success in facilitating long-term recovery.

Our team of top clinical & medical experts specializes in treating addiction coupled with mental illness, ensuring that each person receives individualized care. Call us at (781) 622-9190.

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Medically Reviewed By

Inessa Maloney, MS, LMHC Clinical Director
Learn about Inessa Maloney

Inessa Maloney, MS, LMHC has been dedicated to the mental health and substance abuse field for a decade, providing her expertise to guarantee quality and accuracy.

  • Specializes in outpatient services with a focus on substance abuse
  • Expertise in reality-based therapy, CBT/DBT, and motivational interviewing
  • Holds a Master’s Degree in Professional Counseling
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We believe everyone struggling with substance use disorder deserves the treatment they need. Our team is here to help you every step of the way.

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