There are a few different types of detoxification classes that encompass the majority of procedures or processes. These are generally defined by the American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM), and are described below. These may also be broken down into subcategories depending on severity and slight differential in requirements.
Ambulatory (Outpatient) Detox – An outpatient detox is often done in an office-type setting where people are able to either withdraw gradually off of a drug or use medication to assist in the weaning process. There are also cases with different types and quantities of drugs or alcohol where the person is able to stop without tapering. Either way, these people are routinely monitored for withdrawal symptoms.
Non-Hospital Residential Detox – This type of detox is most often completed inside of a residential drug or alcohol rehab center as part of the overall program. This is very common in treatment centers. While it does require 24-hour monitoring and sometimes the administration of a prescription, it does not involve daily contact with a physician
Medical Detox – A medical detox is generally considered the highest level of care. It is usually reserved for people on drugs where the withdrawal symptoms can be life-threatening or otherwise very severe. This can range from different types of opiates and prescriptions to heavy alcohol dependency. It is often done in a hospital or a similar setting with more nurses and repeated supervision by a doctor. It also involves the administration of medications to help stabilized the person through the withdrawal process.