What to Bring to Drug and Alcohol Detox

When you're detoxing from drugs and alcohol, it can be a painful and difficult process to undergo without professional help. It can also be difficult to detox from drugs and alcohol while still maintaining a certain level of comfort. Fortunately, there are professional rehab centers, like Chapman House in Orange County, that can help you undergo detox and successfully start drug and alcohol treatment. 

Below are some of the ways you can prepare for detox, including things you should bring and leave at home while undergoing detoxification. Knowing what to bring to a residential treatment center is just one of the many ways you can prepare for your sobriety journey.

What is Drug and Alcohol Detox?

People with substance use disorder and alcohol use disorder might not be able to quit cold turkey. The more the body is exposed to a substance, such as:

  • Alcohol
  • Opiates
  • Opioids (like OxyContin and Morphine)
  • Benzodiazepines 
  • Amphetamines

The tougher it will be to stop using these substances without the body going through withdrawal. Withdrawal symptoms can be severe, and in the case of alcohol use disorder, they can be fatal. 

Common withdrawal symptoms include:

  • Shakiness
  • Anxiety
  • Agitation
  • Sweating
  • Restlessness
  • Fever
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea 

Inpatient detoxification and inpatient rehab can help people stop using substance and minimize these symptoms with the supervisor of a medical provider. 

Where Does Detox Take Place?

Depending on how severe your substance or alcohol use disorder is, you can detox in an inpatient treatment facility or in an outpatient facility.

An outpatient facility might be suitable if you can safely detox at home using medications. For instance, methadone is commonly used to help people stop using opiates like heroin, and it can be safely administered in an outpatient setting.

However, an inpatient treatment center can provide detox services that offer:

  • 24/7 nursing staff
  • Medical providers
  • Medication to help minimize symptoms 
  • A secure facility to help prevent relapse

Your treatment provider can determine if you need inpatient or outpatient treatment. If you're experiencing severe withdrawal symptoms, have built a high tolerance to a substance, or are scared that you'll relapse before you complete detox, then an inpatient setting might be a better choice to begin treatment.

What Should I Bring to Detox?

During inpatient detox, you will only be allowed to bring a few items while you undergo treatment. A detox facility is similar to a hospital, where you will be closely monitored by medical staff. As such, they will provide you with meals and medications. 

In order to make your time more comfortable, you will be allowed to bring (according to your facility):

  • Personal clothing (check with your facility for specific number of each clothing items)
  • Puzzle books'
  • Books that are deemed appropriate by your facility
  • Portable DVD player
  • Journal to write in
  • Contacts or eyeglasses
  • Toiletries or hygiene products like shampoo, soap, loofah or washcloths
  • Family pictures
  • Debit or credit card
  • Insurance information

What Should I Leave Behind?

After you complete detox, you might continue to attend inpatient rehab. You should know what to take to inpatient rehab and what to leave behind. In general, you will need to leave behind:

  • Drug paraphenalia
  • Cell phone or laptop 
  • Furniture like desks, TV's, or mini fridges
  • Pornography
  • Cigarettes or lighters 
  • Over-the-counter medications like Tylenol
  • Weapons
  • Protein powder or other unapproved substances

After a certain number of days in rehab, you might be allowed some of these items, such as your laptop and cell phone. Follow your faciliy's instructions.

Begin Your Recovery Journey Today at Chapman House

At Chapman House, we offer a wide range of drug and alcohol treatment programs, including detox. We want to be with you every step of the way as you recover from substance and alcohol use disorder. Call us today for more information or visit our website to find out more about inpatient and outpatient treatment, and to begin healing.


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