Detox Taper: Medications That May Cause Serious Issues if Stopped Abruptly

Addiction Recovery Publishing Alcohol Detox June 25, 2023

Detox Taper: Medications That May Cause Serious Issues if Stopped Abruptly

The thought of detox can be overwhelming, scary, and uncomfortable. At Exclusive Hawaii Rehab, your safety is our number one priority during detox. We are committed to supporting you and doing whatever we can to make the process as safe and comfortable as possible. When you arrive, you will go through a thorough intake and assessment process. Our naturopathic and medical doctors can then develop a personalized detox protocol just for you. 

Detox should never be done alone. If you or a loved one are looking for a detox program that integrates a naturopathic approach with medicine, look no further than Exclusive Hawaii Rehab. This article will go into detox tapering and explain the process. It will also discuss medications that can cause potentially harmful effects and talk about Exclusive Hawaii Rehab’s unique detox program. 

What Is a Detox Taper?

Tapering refers to gradually reducing the dose of a substance or medication in order to ease withdrawal symptoms. When on a detox taper, an individual will be given decreasing dosages of a drug at specific time intervals. This process helps give the body time to adjust to the changes happening in the brain and body. 

As a person uses drugs over time, the body becomes used to the constant presence of the drug. This presence can cause chemical imbalances in the brain and body. Many drugs impact the levels of important neurotransmitters, like dopamine and serotonin. These chemicals play a significant role in many functions, such as mood, sleep, and motivation. 

Throughout the detox tapering process, a medical professional will be there to support and monitor you and make any adjustments as needed. Each individual’s detox tapering protocol should be specific and personalized to fit their needs. 

What Are Some Medications That Can Cause Serious Issues if Stopped Abruptly?

You should always consult with your doctor or healthcare provider before stopping taking any medications or substances. However, some of the medications that are known to cause serious issues and harm if stopped abruptly can include:

  • Methamphetamine
  • Depressant prescription drugs or benzodiazepines such as Xanax, Ativan, Valium, Ambien, etc. 
  • Opioids such as Oxycontin, Percocet, Vicodin, etc.
  • Stimulant prescription drugs such as Ritalin, Concerta, Adderall, etc. 
  • Alcohol

These drugs can impact major systems, hormones, and neurotransmitters, leaving the body unbalanced. 

What Are the Risks of Stopping Medication Suddenly?

Individuals who stop taking medication suddenly are at a higher risk of experiencing withdrawal symptoms and are more likely to experience the return of their original mental health problems. In some cases, it can worsen, and it can be very dangerous for one’s physical health as well. 

For example, general drug withdrawal symptoms typically include mood changes, anxiety, insomnia, gastrointestinal problems, changes in blood pressure and heart rate, and general discomfort. Other drug withdrawal symptoms can also include bone and muscle pain, abdominal cramps, restlessness, nausea, vomiting, and uncontrollable leg movements. Severe withdrawal symptoms can include hallucinations, pain, and seizures.

How Does a Detox Taper Work?

Every detox tapering method is different. The length of time it takes to do a detox taper depends on how the individual and their body respond to the decrease in the drug. If more frequent or larger doses are given, the individual is more likely to experience more severe withdrawal symptoms. This is why many detox programs use a slower approach to help reduce the risk of experiencing serious symptoms.

What Is a Detox Taper Protocol?

At Exclusive Hawaii Rehab, when you arrive, we work with you, and our expert team will design a personalized detox taper protocol that is made for your specific needs. A detox taper protocol outlines the specific needs of the individual and determines the best way to taper off a drug. 

In a medically supervised detox, individuals may also be given medicine to help reduce or prevent withdrawal symptoms. Medical detox may also reveal co-occurring disorders or other concerns. In this case, medications may also be prescribed to manage these co-occurring conditions, such as depression, anxiety, schizophrenia, or hypertension.

We assess each individual based on the American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) Standards. If an individual’s detox is level four or higher, according to the ASAM guide, we will transfer you to a partnered hospital. There, they can provide around-the-clock care for a few days until you are ready to come back.

What Medications Are Used in Medical Detox?

Different medications may be used to help a person manage their withdrawal symptoms as they go through a medical detox. For example, both short-acting and long-acting benzodiazepines are commonly used to help treat alcohol withdrawal. Benzodiazepines can be helpful in reducing the severity of withdrawal symptoms, as well as reducing the risk of life-threatening seizures. 

Some individuals going through alcohol withdrawal may also benefit from other medications during the detox process. This may include carbamazepine, propranolol, gabapentin, or clonidine. The two main medications used to treat opioid withdrawal include methadone and buprenorphine.

At Exclusive Hawaii Rehab, our expert doctors and team will work to determine what the best options are based on your needs. Our care is integrated with naturopathic approaches and medicine. This approach promotes true healing on the inside and helps ensure that you are as comfortable as possible throughout the entire process.

What Happens When a Person Becomes Dependent on a Substance?

When a person uses a substance over a certain period of time, they begin to develop a tolerance. Tolerance develops when a person needs more and more of a substance to produce the same desired effects. For example, a person facing challenges with alcohol abuse may notice that having the same amount of drinks as they normally do doesn’t produce the same effects anymore. They may start to drink more to feel “drunk.”

Over time, tolerance can develop into dependence. Dependence is where the body becomes used to these unnatural levels of chemicals and substances. At this point, a person will feel that they need the substance in order to function properly, whether it be physically, psychologically, or both. If they try to stop taking a substance or significantly and suddenly decrease their use, they can experience withdrawal symptoms that can be severe and, in some cases, life-threatening. Substance use disorder (SUD) or addiction occurs when a person loses control over their substance use. They continue to use the drug, despite the negative consequences it has on their life and health.

How Long Do Withdrawal Symptoms Last?

The length of time withdrawal symptoms last depends on a variety of different factors. This can be the individual themselves, how long they have been using the substance, how high a dosage they take, and many other factors. 

Withdrawal symptoms can begin within hours of a person taking their last dose. For some people, it can be a few days until they start to experience symptoms. These symptoms can last for days or sometimes even weeks depending on the substance being used, how long it was being used, the amount being used, and how often it was being used. The detox process typically takes anywhere from a few days to a few weeks as the body finds balance again. 

At Exclusive Hawaii Rehab, our detox tapering program helps individuals detox in a relatively short amount of time. We use the integration of modern psychology and treatment models combined with traditional models of eastern Ancient medicine and naturopathic medicine. Our approach can help reduce the shock of the changes the body undergoes. As well as make the transition a bit easier and uncomfortable. 

Is It Safe to Just Stop Drinking?

If you have alcohol use disorder (AUD) or have faced challenges with alcoholism, you should not stop drinking without the supervision or advice of a medical professional. Doing so can result in serious and harmful withdrawal symptoms. Alcohol withdrawal symptoms can range based on the individual. However, potential symptoms can include tremors, insomnia, nausea, vomiting, hallucinations, and seizures. 

What Are Some Ways to Make Detox Easier?

Detox should be done under medical supervision, but there are some things you can focus on doing for yourself to help make the process a little easier and more comfortable. 

Eating healthy and staying hydrated is important in giving your body and mind what it needs. As it goes through these changes and rebalancing, it can be a tiring process. Your body needs the energy to help begin healing from the inside out. It is also important to get good rest. Your environment can have a lot to do with your detox experience. 

At Exclusive Hawaii Rehab, we provide a serene and calming setting where you are surrounded by the beauties of nature. Our peaceful environment located on the Big Island of Hawaii can help separate you from your normal settings, keep your stress levels down, and give you a place where you can find clarity and peace. We integrate mindfulness therapy into our programs, and you can do things such as meditation, yoga, hiking, adventuring, and so much more to help you flush out those toxins and destress. 

How Does Exclusive Hawaii Rehab Help You Detox?

At Exclusive Hawaii Rehab, we use a slow tapering off schedule that is designed for the needs of each unique individual. Each person is monitored for comfort and safety, and our staff will update and adjust as needed. We want to ensure that you are as comfortable as possible throughout the whole process. 

Our program also includes holistic therapies in our detox, such as supplementation with vitamins, minerals, and herbs to promote the body’s natural detoxification. In some cases, a person may require an acute detox. If this is the case, we can transfer you to North Hawaii Community Hospital or Hilo Hospital so that you can be in a hospital setting for your safety. Providing supplementation with vitamins, minerals, and herbs to promote the body’s natural detoxification processes can help individuals find more comfort and ease as their body transitions to a more balanced state.

Can I Detox by Myself?

Trying to stop using a substance on your own can be dangerous and should not be done without medical supervision. Having medical support throughout withdrawal and detox helps a person manage their symptoms in a safer, more controlled environment. A person should never attempt to taper off a drug without medical supervision, as it can cause dangerous results and complications. 

How Detox and Withdrawal Are a Part of the Recovery Process

Completing a detox program does not mean you are done with your recovery journey. However, it is a great and big step you should be proud of. In order to help bring the body and mind back to balance and find healing, the body has to rid of the drug, and natural balances have to take time to restore. 

Healing at the core root level also means a person has to heal their body from within. Once they start returning to their natural state, they can begin to work on what is truly going on. Recovery can be a lifelong process. At Exclusive Hawaii Rehab, we understand this and want to help you find true healing. We are not here to just provide a temporary treatment where we help you detox and send you on your way in 30 days. 

Addressing the problem at its core root can help individuals facing challenges with substance abuse and addiction to find acceptance, compassion, and insight into and around themselves. Through new perspectives, clarity, and mindfulness tools, a person can truly change unhelpful thoughts, feelings, and behaviors and overcome their challenges. 

Medical detox is an important step in recovery, but it does not prevent a person from drinking or using substances again on its own. After detox, going through a treatment and healing program from 30 to 90 days can help a person learn how to deal with triggers and develop healthier thoughts and behavior patterns. At Exclusive Hawaii Rehab, we don’t focus on simply providing treatment. We focus on true healing at the core root level. In our program, we take a holistic approach with a medical background that integrates healing for the mind, body, and spirit. After detox, a person can continue to heal through therapy, peer support, sober living, and much more.

How Can I Help Myself or a Loved One Who Needs to Detox?

If you are trying to stop taking a substance, seek professional help right away. If a loved one comes to you for help, the best thing you can do is help them get connected to professional support. When someone is going through a detox program, it can be challenging and require that they take some time away, even from their loved ones. However, it is important that they know their loved ones are supportive and there for them when they need them. At Exclusive Hawaii Rehab, we allow family and friends to visit. We encourage loved ones to come at least once during the duration of their program to take part in family therapy together and spend time together. 

What Is Different About Detox at Exclusive Hawaii Rehab?

At Exclusive Hawaii Rehab, we offer privacy, exclusivity, and serenity in our secluded setting among 30 acres of beautiful landscape. Detox is not an easy thing to do and should not be done alone. With the best-in-class care and a special and healing environment, Exclusive Hawaii Rehab provides a safe and private place to heal the body, mind, and spirit. 

We have expert staff who is there to provide care and support personal to your needs. Our detox tapering protocol is specifically designed for each unique individual. We ensure safety and strive to make your experience as comfortable as possible. Our integrated naturopathic and medical approach allows us to offer the highest level of alcohol and drug detox safety. 

Effective recovery begins with medically supervised detox. At Exclusive Hawaii Rehab, we take an integrative medicine approach that combines the best-known methods of treating and managing withdrawal symptoms while focusing on the nutrients and minerals your body needs. The moment you arrive, we will work with you to develop a personalized detox tapering plan catered to your needs. Your safety and well-being are our number one priority. Our slow tapering method, coupled with holistic approaches, helps promote true healing at the core root level. Exclusive Hawaii Rehab provides luxury, exclusivity, and privacy in a safe and healing environment. If you or a loved one are looking for substance abuse or addiction support, contact our professionals today and call (808) 775-0200.