There are lots of misunderstandings and preconceived ideas about alcohol detox and rehab that have evolved from popular culture. Celebrities openly entering and quitting rehab in a negative cycle that attracts media attention and movies portraying alcohol withdrawal as a dark and distressing experience have served to create several myths about alcohol detox.

When someone has accepted their need to achieve sobriety and are contemplating which alcohol treatment center to choose, it’s important that these myths are put to rest. In many cases, they are the primary reasons people needing alcohol detox treatment fail to seek it.

Here we break down the myths around alcohol treatment and dispel them once and for all:

Myth 1: Detox won’t work unless someone accepts they need help

This is possibly the most common myth that often prevents loved ones of someone with alcoholism from intervening. Leaving someone with addiction issues to their own devices is never a good thing and it compounds their feelings of isolation to an extent that they may possibly be driven further into alcoholism. Simply put; some people just cannot see the damage they are doing themselves and are unlikely to volunteer to make a change.

Although it is, of course, easier to treat someone who accepts they have a problem, it is a fact that not all alcoholics achieve sobriety as a result of them reaching out for treatment. There are plenty of people successfully completing alcohol detox and rehab treatment and going on to remain sober who didn’t take the first step to get help out of personal choice.

Myth 2: Alcohol detox is a painful and distressing process

Everyone has their own detox experience and while some may find it more uncomfortable than others, it is not universally true that everyone has severe withdrawal symptoms. Much depends on how long patients have been using alcohol and how dependent they have become together with other socio-economic factors.

Myth 3: Private detox and rehabilitation centers are only for celebrities

There is a wide range of variety when it comes to choosing an alcohol rehab facility, which varies greatly in cost and also the kind of treatment options they have available. Naturally, the more you pay for any kind of rehab center treatment program, the more private and luxurious it is likely to be. However, the level of luxury does not have any bearing on the actual alcohol treatment program itself.

Myth 4: Someone is ‘cured’ as soon as detox is completed

Detox is a very significant part of rehabilitation from alcohol abuse or dependency, but it is not sufficient on its own to prevent someone from relapsing. Detox is, of course, important for ridding the body of toxins so that patients are free from the influence of alcohol when they take the next steps of rehabilitation. This will include individual and group therapy to determine the underlying causes for a patient’s dependence on alcohol so that behavioral therapy can be introduced into their treatment plan for more effective care.

Myth 5: Relapse is to be expected

Many people falsely believe that relapse is part of recovery from alcoholism, which can be detrimental to patients by creating a self-fulfilling prophecy. Having the right mindset when leaving rehabilitation is essential for treatment to be effective and that is one of the most important things that detox and rehab achieves.

Myth 6: DIY detox is effective

The reason why it is never advisable for someone to attempt their own detox is because sudden abstinence can cause medical complications that simply can’t be foreseen. The benefit of alcohol withdrawal treatment is that patients are under medical supervision throughout detox and can relieve any difficult withdrawal symptoms as and when they appear.

Myth 7: Alcohol detox takes a long time

Detox is probably the fastest phase of rehabilitation although there is still much work to be done once it has been completed. Whereas alcohol detox may take anything from 7 to 10 days depending on dependency, a complete rehabilitation program is more likely to last anything from 3 to 18 months. It is also important to accept that the quest for sobriety is life-long.