When an addict does not receive the proper level of care – inpatient alcohol rehab – for their advanced alcohol addiction, so many things can go wrong. What most people do not understand is that there are serious physical consequences to depriving your body of the drug or substance that it relies on to survive. Withdrawal symptoms vary for each individual but they include nausea, vomiting, seizures, even death. This is just one of the many reasons why inpatient alcohol rehab is crucial to an addict’s survival. They will swear that they can stop drinking all on their own, but as soon as their body begins to detox itself and the pain becomes intolerable, they will pick up a new bottle just to avoid getting sick.
This morning I read an article that reminded me to be thankful for my own story, to be thankful that I found Behavioral Health of the Palm Beaches in time. It made me remember what my life was like before I went to an inpatient alcohol rehab. It made me remember how, at the height of my addiction, I had no desire to live. But for some reason, actually, for one reason, I did live: inpatient alcohol rehab.
Not every addict is blessed with the gift of time, or the gift of a second chance at life. The article told the story of a woman who violated her probation and was subsequently incarcerated. The detention officer who booked this woman recalls her saying that she needed to get out of there because it was her son’s birthday that week, and she could not possibly miss it. At the time, the detention officer did not pay much mind to the comment. After all, every one gives at least one reason why they should not be locked up while they are being placed behind bars. Little did this detention officer know, but she would remember those words for a long time to come.
Records show that while this woman was being booked into the detention center, she had mentioned to the guards that she had been drinking a lot of vodka and wine. In addition to her alcohol binge, she was also taking significant amounts of anti-anxiety medication and an anti-depressant called Effexor for her suicidal inclinations. She also continued to explain to the guards that she had epilepsy and suffered from delirium tremens, otherwise known as severe withdrawal symptoms when she would stop consuming alcohol.
Approximately forty hours after returning behind bars, this woman died from cardiac arrest that was caused by acute alcohol withdrawal. This did not have to happen. If the woman had been placed into an inpatient alcohol rehab instead of a jail cell, chances are, she would still be alive today. She probably would have missed her son’s birthday that year but she would not have missed the birthdays to come.