Medical Detoxification

For many people, drug or alcohol rehab begins with a period of medical detoxification.

Fairfax Behavioral Health provides adult medical detox and a separate detox program for adolescents. We provide a symptoms management approach by utilizing oral medications to minimize adverse reactions during the withdrawal process.

The Fairfax Medical Detox Program allows patients to withdraw from drugs or alcohol safely in a controlled environment while doing so in relative comfort. Without medical care, these withdrawal symptoms are quite unpleasant, dangerous and in some cases, even life-threatening.

24-hour Nursing Supervision

Our program begins with a complete physical exam and chemical dependency assessment by our clinical team. Around-the-clock physician and nursing care ensures safety through observation and vital sign monitoring and certain medications can reduce the severity of withdrawal symptoms, as well as decrease the dangers of this initial period.

As patients stabilize, they are introduced to group therapy and planning for recovery.


Who Needs Medical Detox?

Not every patient requiring a stay in drug rehab needs to begin with a medical detox period. People who need medical detox meet one or more of the following criteria:

  • Have a physical addiction to certain drugs
  • Would experience great discomfort withdrawing without assistance
  • Would risk their health withdrawing without medical supervision
  • People using any of the following drugs may need medically supervised detox:
  • Heroin – Although opiate detoxification is seldom dangerous, the withdrawal pains of heroin detox require medical li management for comfort.
  • Prescription pain pills – Prescribed opiates, like Vicodin, OxyContin and Percocet, induce a withdrawal period very li similar in nature to heroin.
  • Alcohol – Alcohol’s withdrawal symptoms are among the most dangerous, and can be life-threatening in severe cases. A li medicated and supervised detox is safe, comfortable and very necessary.
  • Cocaine/Methamphetamine – Some people with stimulant addiction require medical detoxification to cope with the extreme li mood imbalances experienced during early abstinence.
  • Benzodiazepines – Suddenly stopping the use of benzodiazepines (like Xanax or Valium) can be life-threatening and should never be attempted without medical supervision.

Club drugs, inhalants, marijuana and other drugs – Depending on the situation (dual diagnosis, heavy use, poly-drug addiction), people abusing drugs other than those listed above may require a medical detox as well.


How Long Does Detox Take?

There is no set duration for medical detox. The length of time required will depend on the drug abused, the medical history of the patient and the extent of use. Detox durations range most commonly from a few days to about a max seven days. It is covered by most insurance plans with the exception of Medicaid. To inquire about admission, please contact us. Help is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Is Medical Detox Enough to Treat Addiction?

Although patients will often leave a medical detox facility feeling better than they have in years, those that do not transition from detox to continuing addiction treatment are almost certain to relapse.

Medical detox is a first necessary step which readies a person for addiction treatment. Medical detox alone is not addiction treatment and offers very little promise of continuing sobriety. Detox should always be followed by immediate entry into a residential or outpatient addiction treatment program.