What is medically monitored detox?

For many people, the first step in recovery is medically monitored detox. Detoxification or detox is a process of gradually removing drugs or alcohol from the body. While some people try to detox at home, the safest way to detox is under medical supervision. Drugs and alcohol impact the body in many ways, and stopping their use can cause severe health and emotional effects. A quality detox will provide medications and therapy to ease the physical and emotional impacts of stopping drug use.

The detox center at Singer Island Health is designed to offer superior clinical services to assist your recovery. Our clinical and medical team will monitor your physical and mental health. By regularly checking your vital signs, including heart rate, oxygen levels, and temperature, we can promptly treat any adverse symptoms. If necessary, you will be given medications on a tapered dose to help you safely stop using substances such as alcohol, benzodiazepines, and opioids/opiates.

The staff at Singer Island Health are experts in making the detox process safe and comfortable. Our team of trained doctors, nurses, and therapists will help you each step of the way through a combination of medications and therapy. This approach is one of the most effective ways to stop using, especially when followed by in-patient treatment.

Why do I need detox?

To recover from a substance use disorder, the first step is to stop using drugs or alcohol. This allows your brain and body to begin healing. A medically monitored detox will provide a safe space for recovery to begin. You can also expect:

  • Medications – These can be given to ease the physical symptoms of withdrawal.
  • Therapy – Support can help with mental cravings, anxiety, depression, and other emotional needs.

When you are using drugs or alcohol, your body will adapt to the substances, which leads to withdrawal symptoms. These include physical effects, such as sweating, nausea, and muscle pain. Emotional symptoms can include anxiety, insomnia, and depression. Life-threatening symptoms such as seizures or heart attacks are also possible. The longer you have used alcohol or drugs, the more intense your symptoms may be. Our goal at Singer Island is to provide a detox environment that promotes your healing, body, mind, and spirit. Staff provide round-the-clock care and will monitor you for any severe symptoms. Our comfortable, modern detox will help your body heal and prepare you to transition to our residential treatment program.

What happens in detox?

Our South Florida detox facility provides a serene setting where you can begin recovery in comfort. To start the detox process, you will have a thorough medical assessment to understand your needs. During the evaluation, you will be asked about your drug and alcohol use history, as well as any mental and physical health conditions. This forms the basis of your individualized detox treatment plan. This plan can help address your concerns about symptoms and symptom management while in our care. Many patients experience withdrawal symptoms which vary depending on:

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Why call us?

  • Substance used
  • How long you have been using drugs or alcohol
  • How much you use
  • General physical health

Symptoms, treatment, and timeline will depend on what you have been using.

6 – 24 hours after last use


Shaking and tremors


Trouble concentrating

Seizures (can be life-threatening)

Delirium (can include hallucinations and disorientation)

Tapered dose of benzodiazepine or barbiturate

Anti-seizure medication

Muscle relaxants

Anti-nausea medications

2 – 10 days
24 – 48 hours after last use




Agitation and irritability

Poor concentration and memory

Muscle tension and aches

Seizures (can be life-threatening)

Delirium (can include hallucinations and disorientation)

Tapered dose of benzodiazepines

Anti-seizure medication

Muscle relaxants

Anti-nausea medications

2 – 4 weeks
8 – 24 hours after last use

Abdominal cramps


Anxiety / Agitation


Fast pulse (tachycardia)

Muscle aches

High blood pressure

Tapered dose of buprenorphine or methadone

Muscle relaxants

Anti-nausea medications

OTC pain relievers

Sleep aids (e.g. trazodone, Benadryl, Vistaril)

4 – 10 days
8 – 24 hours after last use







Poor concentration

Benzodiazepines (short-term use)

OTC pain relievers

Sleep aids (e.g. trazodone, Benadryl, Vistaril)


3 – 5 days

An essential part of your treatment in detox is around-the-clock support from medical and mental health professionals. While medications can help the physical symptoms, having someone help you manage the emotional symptoms of withdrawal is invaluable. We pride ourselves on the compassionate and supportive clinical team available to you throughout your treatment at Singer Island Health.

How long does detox last?

While the length of time for detox varies from person to person, the average stay is 7 – 10 days. Factors that can influence this include:

  • Amounts of drugs or alcohol being used
  • Severity of withdrawal symptoms
  • Overall physical and mental well-being

Your detox progress is assessed daily, and your treatment team is essential to determining how long you will stay in detox.

What’s the difference between detox and treatment?

The goal of detox is to stop using drugs in a safe, structured environment. Treatment is designed to teach you the skills and coping strategies to stay stopped. Most people will transition from detox to a residential program, which typically lasts 30 – 90 days. A treatment program or rehab will offer services such as individual therapy, group therapy, recovery management, and education. Some also offer dual diagnosis treatment for individuals who have both a substance use and mental health disorder. Rehab immerses you into recovery, free from distractions, to guide you towards long-term success. At Singer Island Health, our treatment programs are designed to deliver success. Your treatment plan is carefully developed based on your unique needs and experiences. We use a variety of therapies including:

  • “Talk Therapy” or behavioral counseling in groups or one-on-one.
  • Medication management
  • Evaluation for co-occurring disorders
  • Treatment for conditions such as anxiety, depression, or trauma
  • Long-term planning and follow-up to prevent relapse.
  • Alumni network

Find Detox In Florida

A call to one of our compassionate admissions representatives will start you on the journey of a lifetime. Our center on Singer Island in Florida offers medically-monitored detox and residential treatment services. Our admissions representatives are available 24/7 to talk to you, verify your insurance and guide you as you make a courageous decision to change your life. Recovery is possible, we are here for you and we believe in you.