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Do I Need Detox?

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Medically Reviewed By: Ashley Levin

Clinical Director

Making the decision to seek professional help for a substance use disorder is rarely easy. Because addiction is a chronic and progressive medical condition, you might find yourself unable to quit on your own despite accumulating negative consequences. If you have tried to quit with limited success, entering into a medical detoxification program is likely a good idea.

At Pacific Sands Recovery, we have developed a drug and alcohol detox program in Orange County, California that helps clients move through a safe, pain-free withdrawal. We believe that medical detox should focus on more than physical stabilization. Therefore, we focus on the restoration of mental and emotional health as well. In addition to providing around-the-clock medical care, we offer therapeutic intervention and a holistic approach to recovery.

Contact us today to learn more about our detox center in Orange County, California, or to begin your personal journey of addiction recovery.

Do I Need to Detox?

When a person uses drugs or alcohol for a prolonged period of time, they eventually develop a physical dependence. Their body becomes accustomed to the presence of the chemical substance. When they stop using the substance, the physical body goes into a state of shock, and physical symptoms of withdrawal begin to develop.

Anyone who has experienced the onset of withdrawal symptoms when attempting to quit using their substance of choice would benefit from inpatient detox.

A person might also need detox if:

  • They have attempted to quit or cut back on their drug use or drinking with limited or short-term success.
  • They have been combining chemical substances (using more than one chemical substance at the same time).
  • They have pre-existing physical or psychological conditions.
  • They have been using a chemical substance that can result in potentially dangerous withdrawal symptoms, like alcohol or benzodiazepines.

What Type of Detox Program Do I Need?

The type of detox program a person needs depends on the substances that they use and the severity of their addiction. The following are common types of detox programs offered in Orange County, California:

Do I Need Alcohol Detox?

The physical and psychological symptoms associated with alcohol withdrawal can be severe. If a person is suffering from a mild, moderate, or severe alcohol use disorder, medically monitored detox is the first step on the road to recovery. Symptoms of alcohol withdrawal include severe anxiety, body tremors, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, severe stomach cramping, increased heart rate, increased blood pressure, hallucinations, delusions, and seizures.

Do I Need Drug Detox?

The physical and psychological symptoms of drug withdrawal vary depending on the type of drug being used. At Pacific Sands Recovery we treat the following:

  • Opioid withdrawal (heroin, prescription painkillers, fentanyl)
  • Benzodiazepine withdrawal (Xanax, Klonopin, Ativan)
  • Methamphetamine withdrawal
  • Cocaine withdrawal
  • Prescription stimulant withdrawal (Adderall, Ritalin, Concerta)

In some cases, medications are prescribed to treat the more severe and potentially dangerous symptoms of drug withdrawal. All medications are administered by a team of licensed clinicians, and vitals are checked periodically to ensure no complications develop.

Do I Need Inpatient Detox?

Generally speaking, inpatient detox is the most effective. In an inpatient setting, clients reside in the detox center as they undergo withdrawal. Benefits of inpatient detox include:

  • Around-the-clock care is provided by a team of licensed medical practitioners
  • Withdrawal symptoms are addressed and effectively treated as soon as they develop
  • Clients have access to individual and group therapy sessions
  • Clients are introduced to the 12-Step method of addiction recovery
  • Clients live in a safe, structured, substance-free environment
  • Access to a range of comfort-based amenities, including nutritious meals

Making the decision to seek professional help is not easy. At Pacific Sands Recovery, we take the guesswork out of addiction recovery by adequately preparing our clients for the road ahead. We are more than happy to answer any questions about the detoxification process. Contact us directly to learn more.

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Visit the admissions page at Pacific Sands Recovery today to learn more about our 12-step recovery program.

Signs You Need Medical Detox

Medical detox is an important part of the recovery process. For many, detox serves as the very first step on the road to long-term sobriety. While anyone with a substance use disorder benefits from detox, seeking detoxification services is essential in the following instances.


The person develops withdrawal symptoms when they stop using drugs or alcohol. This is one of the clearest indicators that medical detox has become necessary. Not only are the physical and psychological symptoms of withdrawal uncomfortable, but they can be life-threatening in severe cases. While the symptoms will vary depending on the type of substance being used, they might include nausea, vomiting, stomach cramping, body aches, muscle/joint pain, increased heart rate and blood pressure, body tremors, anxiety, suicidal ideation, insomnia, and seizures. Fortunately, these symptoms are effectively treated in a medical detox setting.


The person experiences intense cravings for their substance of choice throughout the day. Cravings can come on suddenly, impacting day-to-day life and preventing a person from staying sober for longer than days (or hours) at a time. In medical detox, cravings are effectively treated. Additionally, inpatient detox provides a structured, substance-free environment in which a person can live safely until cravings subside.

Dual-Diagnosis Disorders

The person is using drugs or alcohol to self-medicate an underlying mental health condition. In many cases, substance use disorders and mental health disorders co-occur. This is known as a dual-diagnosis disorder. At Pacific Sands Recovery, we offer a dual-diagnosis detox program for clients experiencing physical and psychological symptoms.

Dishonesty With Self & Others

The person has been dishonest about the frequency of their use and the amount of the substance they use. Many people who are struggling with an addictive disorder will lie about their use in order to protect themselves. Even when personal consequences become entirely unmanageable, people tend to stay in denial about the impact of their addiction. Medical detox is a great way to break through the denial and begin the journey toward recovery.

Risk of Overdose

The person is at immediate risk for overdose. Medical detox is crucial for people who have been suffering from an opioid use disorder. The majority of heroin that is currently in circulation has been cut with fentanyl, a synthetic opioid that is approximately 100 times more potent than morphine. Anyone who has been using heroin is at risk of an overdose. However, because the physical symptoms associated with opioid withdrawal are so uncomfortable, people find it impossible to quit on their own accord. This is where medical detox comes into play.

Risk-Taking Behaviors

The person engages in risk-taking activities while under the influence. In some instances, a person might repeatedly put themselves and others at risk when they use drugs and alcohol. This could look like getting behind the wheel of a car when drunk or high, looking after young children while intoxicated, or spending time with strangers.

family has intervention for loved one who needs detox services

Get the Help You Need Today

If you or someone close to you is struggling with drug addiction or alcoholism, Pacific Sands Recovery is available to help. Our Orange County, California detox center combines professional medical care with therapeutic intervention, laying a solid foundation for continued success in sobriety. Medical detox is an important first step on the road to freedom from addiction.

For more information on our detoxification program or to begin your personal recovery journey, contact us today.


  • I would just like to share how Grateful I am with my experience through my addiction at this facility. I couldn’t possibly ask to be in such a “SAFE/COMFORTABLE” environment while receiving treatment for my addiction. I would just like to say Thank you sooo much to ALL the staff there from the Nurse’s to counselors and therapist all of you are a True Blessing in helping me through my journey of sobriety. I couldn’t feel more comfortable there on how they monitored my physical health and on dealing with my emotional health with there therapy sessions and groups I truly see them ALL as Family!

    Andrew N.
  • As a professional in the recovery field I have worked with many detox centers and none compare to The this one. Their staff is incredibly attentive and knowledgable regarding the needs of individuals seeking recovery from the very start. Their facility is welcoming and homey while remaining very luxe. I would recommend this facility to any loved one or friend looking to start down their journey of sobriety.

  • This place helped saved my life, and a great stepping stone to get my life on the right track. Was there first client under new management, caring staff and owners, comfortable place to get you on your feet in sobriety.

  • Great Staff. Comfortable Environment. Awesome place to Get Clean and Sober. Thank you guys for everything.


    Pacific Sands Recovery Center

    1909 W Carlton Pl
    Santa Ana, CA 92704


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      Ashley Levin

      Clinical Director

      Ashley always knew she wanted to be a therapist since she was 13 years old. Ashley believes in helping individuals and families by encouraging openness in communication, restoring trust to self and others, and setting boundaries. Ashley started as an Associate Marriage and Family therapist in 2016 and obtained her license in 2019. Ashley is trained in Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Dialectical Behavioral Therapy, and Attachment Behavioral Therapist. Ashley has experience in working with children, adolescents, and adults in a variety of different settings. Ashley obtained her Bachelor’s in Psychology from California State University Long Beach in 2013 and received her Masters Degree in Psychology with an emphasis in marriage and family therapy in 2015.