Wednesday, January 2, 2013

What You Need to Bring to Drug Detox


Drug detox often poses a barrier to treatment to many addicts and alcoholics simply because they don't know what to expect. This includes everything from the therapies involved to symptoms related to acute withdrawal syndrome to whether cell phones are allowed or not. However, one of the most common questions people entering recovery have about detox is what they should bring. This article outlines the 6 most important things to bring to drug detox:
First, people who are seeking recovery should understand that detox isn't a lengthy process. For most people the medical part of withdrawal and detox is over in a few days, and overall treatment ends in around ten days, but possibly as long as two weeks for some people with chronic addictions. Because of this short time period, it's important to pack lightly and only bring the essentials. This is especially true considering that all of an addict's time while in detox will be dedicated to treatment, so there's little need to bring much.
1.) Identification
Most importantly, you'll need to bring identification to verify who you are, confirm your insurance for drug detox, if any, and ensure that all applicable federal, state, local and health related laws and regulations are observed. In most cases a simple valid driver's license will do, but check with your intake specialist before arrival just to be sure. If you don't have a license a birth certificate, passport, military ID or other suitable form of identification may be accepted.
2.) Clothing
Bring comfortable clothing for the duration of your stay. You may be in hospital scrubs during part of all of your stay, so be sure to check with the detox center you choose to see how many changes of clothes you'll need. In any case you'll need the clothes you'll arrive in and a set of clothes to wear the day you leave, so two good sets of clothing should be enough to get started. You can always have family members bring you additional items if needed while you are in treatment.


3.) Limited Toiletries
In most cases drug detox patients will be provided with everything they need, including a toothbrush, soap, shampoo, etc. In fact, many detox centers restrict what they will allow in considering that some addicts may attempt to sneak drugs in containers meant for toiletries. Don't bother bringing mouthwash or anything with alcohol in it - these items will be denied. But if you need special creams for skin problems or have a favorite hairbrush, then in most cases it will be okay to bring these items with you.
4.) Contact List
In the frenzy of arranging treatment, many addicts leave their contact lists at home and then cannot reach family or friends when they need to during treatment. Be sure to bring a list of your most important contacts with you - especially contact information of anyone who will be a part of your treatment (i.e. in group or family therapy, etc.)
5.) Personal Memento
Most detox centers will allow you to bring one or two small personal items, such as a locket or picture, a stuffed animal or perhaps a meaningful book. Just be sure to check with the intake staff in advance in order to be sure that the items you want to bring are allowed.
6.) A Deep Conviction to Change and an Open Mind
Most importantly, if you're checking in to a detox, then you need to have a deep conviction to change your life and get clean legitimately, and you need to have an open mind. Unless you've been to detox before, this will be an experience unlike anything you've been through before: it's a deliberately life-changing experience and therefore should be approached with an open mind. If you can't bring these two items with you to drug detox, then you might not be ready to stop using yet.
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