Drug and alcohol abuse takes a significant toll on the body. There are long term effects that come from substance abuse and addiction. Some illnesses and diseases occur as a result of substance abuse, such as cirrhosis, dementia (alcohol-induced), and several mental health diagnoses.
What many people don’t realize is that substance abuse and addiction can result in an even deeper rooted problem in relation to sobriety and potential for relapse. The body makes all attempts to maintain function and balance, and when a person is addicted to drugs or alcohol, the way the body responds to these substances may lead to unseen consequences.
Drugs Can Stay In Your Body After You Stop Using
Long-term substance abuse or high levels of substance abuse can result in traces of the substance remaining in the body long after the person has stopped using. This is a direct result of the body attempting to maintain safe function organ systems. Too many toxins can cause organ systems to become permanently damaged or stop working completely.
For example, the brain knows how much the liver can process at any given time. When the levels of drugs or alcohol rise to levels that damage the liver, the body begins to store excess toxins in other areas, like fat cells. With continued high levels of abuse, more and more toxins are stored in alternative areas.
What began as a way to protect organs from permanent damage can actually be harmful to a person in recovery. The toxins (in this case, the drug of choice) start to slowly release into the bloodstream once the body determines they are not a threat to the liver. This can cause cravings and possibly result in relapse.
Research has shown evidence that drugs like cocaine, heroin, and certain designer drugs have been found in fatty tissues of people after death, and in some cases in higher levels than were in the bloodstream at the same time. This finding indicates that the body had been storing these toxins for a period of time, and possibly releasing them into the bloodstream a little at a time.
Because these toxins are released into the bloodstream, they can potentially find their way to the brain and activate those same neurons that were responding to the drugs when the person was abusing them. This can be a reminder, or a trigger, to past substance abuse and result in relapse.
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Biophysical Drug Rehab And Detoxification
Biophysical is actually the combinations of two terms; “bio” which has to do with a living organism, and “physical” which refers to the body. Biophysical in regards to addiction explores the physical aspect of addiction to drugs and alcohol and the idea that addiction can be cured.
A substance abuse treatment facility that uses a biophysical approach will work toward repairing the body at a cellular level. This means no additional medications will be introduced to the body during detoxification and treatment, instead of using alternative approaches to help rid the body of toxins introduced during substance abuse.
Biophysical drug rehabs use many of these alternative options during detox and throughout substance abuse treatment:
- nutrition therapy
- light therapy
- special sauna rooms
- Tai Chi
Combining exercise with the addition of vitamins and nutritional supplements during the detox phase can help restore vital nutrients the body has lost due to substance abuse. Exercise can also help the body expel more toxins that can cause cravings.
Using saunas, the dry heat can also help to flush out the body. Afterward, replenishing the body with water and other supplements, like potassium and sodium will help prevent dehydration and restore valuable minerals to the body.
Biophysical Drug Rehab And Mental Addiction
Addressing the way the mind is affected by addiction is just as important as dealing with the physical aspect. Exploring underlying issues that contribute to addiction and substance abuse are very important to biophysical treatment programs.
A key difference in biophysical drug rehab is that residents do not participate in group therapy. This is to remove the possibility of group sessions tend to provide a segway into storytelling about substance abuse, and become more of a trigger than a therapeutic intervention method.
Biophysical drug rehab also removes the spiritual element from substance abuse treatment. It is an option for those who choose to include it, but it is not a requirement like in traditional 12-step programs.
Instead, biophysical drug rehab tends to focus on empowerment, communication, control, self-discovery, and confronting the underlying causes of addiction. This is accomplished by using individual therapy sessions to address emotional pain and supports long-term sobriety.
Biophysical Drug Rehab Facilities
Although biophysical drug rehabs are only recently gaining in popularity, these methods have been around for decades. There is plenty of research to support the success of this alternative, non-12 step treatment style.
If you think that biophysical substance abuse treatment may be a good option for you or your loved one, or if you even just want to discuss the options available, contact us today. We are available to answer questions or help guide you to the services that meet your needs.Sources
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration - 9 Substance-Induced Disorders
Journal of International Medical Research - Safety and tolerability of sauna detoxification for the protracted withdrawal symptoms of substance abuse