Detox centers are places that an addict or an alcoholic can (and should) go when they cannot stop drinking or using drugs on their own. In some cases, this is especially important because detoxing from certain drugs (including alcohol) can be dangerous and even fatal. People can die from not taking a drink, because their body has become so dependent on the alcohol. The same can be true from some other types of drugs, including some tranquilizers and barbiturates. Stopping these types of medications “cold turkey” is definitely not recommended. Medical supervision is strongly suggested.
On the same note, certain combinations of drugs can be particularly dangerous. For example, any combination of alcohol and any of the pills mentioned above can be especially tricky to detox from. What is even more problematic is that many alcoholics end up taking these combinations as directed by their own doctors. A typical scenario is that an alcoholic will tell their doctor that they have anxiety, and of course they are referring to when they are sober. They normally use alcohol to self medicate their anxiety. In a lot of cases, their doctor will prescribe them an addictive medication to help treat the anxiety, without knowing about their alcoholism. This produces real problems when the person is taking both the anxiety medication and also drinking every day on top of this. Then when they attempt to quit all of these drugs cold turkey, including the alcohol, their body absolutely freaks out and goes into overdrive, producing a very high likelihood of seizures.
It does not take a doctor to see these types of patterns in detox centers around the world, as these types of situations happen over and over again with alcoholics. Another major trend in detox units over the last few years is the stark increase in treating opiate addiction. Opiates are things such as heroin or prescription painkillers, and the withdrawal from opiate based drugs is particularly uncomfortable. In spite of this extreme discomfort, the withdrawal is not nearly as dangerous as other drugs, and in fact is almost of no medical concern at all outside of minor issues such as dehydration. Nevertheless, the addict is generally much more miserable when coming off of opiates compared to other drugs, and therefore there is a high demand for detoxing opiates. In addition to this, the use of opiate drugs for recreation has been on the rise in recent years, and it has basically become the new gateway drug of choice among younger people, even overtaking marijuana and teenage drinking in some studies.