Alcohol Detox - Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is covered in the price?

We can offer a fixed VAT-exempt price which covers everything for an all-inclusive stay at the retreat for 10-14 days and includes all food, drink, detox medication and supervision, laundry, retreat facility usage, nursing care and support staff. Recovery meals outside the retreat are also included. About the only things that are not included are travelling expenses and any specialist tests or diagnostics. Please contact us for further details.

2. How long does it take?

Normally – between 5 to 10 days on medication until your withdrawal symptoms fully subside but the medication is individually adjusted to suit your needs and is tailed off gradually. You can leave as soon as your medical treatment is ended but you should schedule for staying for up to a maximum of 14 days just in case - if you are booking 10 holiday days from work, try to wrap them around weekends/public holidays.

3. Are you a medically approved facility?

Yes - Tranquillity UK's Alcohol Detox Programme and its retreat are approved and regulated by the Care Quality Commission (The CQC is the regulatory body that oversees and regulates medical health care facilities in the UK).

4. How can I explain my absence from work for two weeks?

Easily - Tranquillity Alcohol Detox Programme is carried out at a retreat which promotes a large range of non-alcohol-related life skill and relaxation courses. We fully understand that it may be career suicide to admit your current situation to your employer (or friends, colleagues and partners for that matter). You can simply tell everybody that you are going on holiday to a retreat to get some well-earned rest without mentioning alcohol treatment. In fact you can even point them to www.tranquillityuk.com where the home page quite clearly states that it is a place to come to relax, chill-out, learn and think.

5. I am self-employed and need to be able to continue working whilst at Tranquillity, can I bring my mobile phone and laptop and deal with calls, e-mails etc?

Yes - but we suggest that you use this period of detox as a break. It may well be that the stresses of your business have contributed to your high intake of alcohol. However, we recognise that it can cause more stress if you are worrying about clients not getting hold of you about important matters. We advise that you attempt to take a 'holiday' but will not ask you to be completely inaccessible. You may bring a laptop with you or use your smartphone or tablet and there is free wireless internet access available here. We advise that you plan to get three clear 'working' days at the start of detox as this is when the medication is highest and you may be very drowsy. You don't want to lose an important contract with a garbled and ill-constructed e-mail or Skype call.

6. Will I be expected to take part in Group or Individual Therapy

No - this is YOUR detox, we will have agreed with you how it should be conducted. We would always encourage you to open up about areas of your life that cause you concern and provide that opportunity but we will not ask you to do anything that you feel uncomfortable with.

7. I smoke cigarettes, will I be able to smoke at Tranquillity?

Yes - we have an outdoor covered smoking area with heating. Smoking is banned inside to comply with the law. We do NOT encourage people to stop smoking at the same time as they stop drinking – however you may be pleasantly surprised how little you end up smoking.

8. How many other people will be treated at Tranquillity at the same time as me?

A maximum of two - we have three bedrooms that may be in use at any one time. However, we can arrange for you to be treated at a time when you will be the only client if you prefer or require this. There will be extra charges for this as the other two bedrooms would be empty for the period of time you are here.

9. I have had three detoxes before and started drinking again. Does this mean I will never successfully stop drinking?

No, it does not - there are many people who manage to successfully stop drinking on the first attempt but there are plenty who slip and need a further detox or more before they succeed. It is one of the most difficult problems to overcome but many do it successfully and go on to have happy productive lives without alcohol.

10. I heard something about you taking clients to pubs and restaurants for some of their meals, this isn't true is it?

Yes, it is – towards the end of your detox, we do – we call these recovery meals. It would be both unreasonable and unrealistic for us to send you away with the idea that you can never risk going near any place that serves alcohol again - especially pubs and restaurants. You will be in situations in the future where you will be in places where alcohol is available and it makes little sense (or may even be impossible) for you to avoid those places forever. We encourage you to learn to be in such places making a choice to drink non-alcholic drinks and any trips to the pub or a restaurant that we make are designed to show you that you are quite capable of doing this.

11. Who will look after me during my stay?

The first answer is YOU - we are not in the business of taking away all your independence. There will be support staff there who will help with anything you can't manage at the start of detox when your medication is high but they will always encourage independence. Those staff, the manager and the qualified nurses (nurses will not be on site all of the time) will be available to talk to about any issues you have whether these are physical or emotional.

12. I am arriving at Tranquillity in a couple of days time for detox, what do I need to do to prepare?

Very little - you will need to arrive with the belongings you would need as if you were going on a two week all-inclusive holiday and any medication you are currently taking. We ask that you do not attempt to stop drinking totally in advance of your detox as this can cause serious withdrawal symptoms which can be dangerous. You should not turn up drunk at Tranquillity as we will not be able to admit you in that condition. We advise that you continue drinking steadily up until a few hours before detox (don't be tempted to have 'one last binge') and, top up as necessary. For example, if you have severe withdrawal symptoms if you don't have a drink first thing in the morning, have the smallest amount you need to avoid these symptoms. We will check your alcohol levels on arrival (we expect there to be a smallish amount for some clients) and this will determine when we can admit you and start your medication.

13. After my detox, is that it?

No - we have an Extended Alcohol Recovery Programme which you may wish to do. Click the link for more details. Whether or not you do this further programme, we will never refuse a phone call from you if you would like to talk. We cannot offer ongoing intensive intervention with you as we would be very quickly snowed under if we did that for all of our past clients but we will offer some advice and support at the time you call us.

14. What happens if I get physically ill during my stay?

No problem – although we have no doctor on site, our qualified nurses (who are always on call even when not present at the retreat) can help with most ailments. We will be able to take you to a local GP or, in more serious cases, to the hospital if the issue is such that it can't be dealt with at Tranquillity.

15. Do you also carry out drug detoxification?

No – we only carry out alcohol detox treatment at the retreat. However, if you have a problem with other substances, we may be able to offer help outside of the Tranquillity Alcohol Detox Programme so please contact us.

16. Will I need to bring money with me?

No - everything you would normally need is included in the cost of detox. However, you may smoke and need more cigarettes or fancy a special treat from the local shop and it would be useful to have a small amount of cash with you for these.

17. How are meals organised?

Flexibly - we fully realize that the timing of your meals may vary, especially at the beginning of your detox. At the start of detox, you may be a little too drowsy to prepare meals for yourself, we will ensure that you are served nutritious meals but as soon as you are able to prepare food for yourself, you will be encouraged to do this. If other clients are present at the same time as you, you may decide between yourselves how and when meals are prepared and by whom.

18. May I bring my own food?

Yes – however we will always discuss any special dietary requirements with you before your arrival and will try to ensure that we can provide for this as part of your treatment package. If you have a particular preference for particular foods you are welcome to bring them with you and prepare them yourself but we need to supervise you because of health and safety rules and insurance compliance.

19. May I make myself a hot drink?

Yes - there are tea and coffee making facilities in the kitchen and in bedrooms and you are free to make (or ask our staff for) a drink whenever you want. Cold drinks are always available but we may restrict your access to kettles during the first few days to avoid the risk of scalding yourself while taking high levels of medication.

20. May I leave the retreat while being treated?

Yes - however we do not recommend that you go out alone for the first few days while detoxing as you will be on high doses of medication which can make you drowsy and put you at risk. When your medication has reduced sufficiently, we can discuss this with you if you need to leave the premises without being accompanied.

21. May I bring my car?

Preferably not - we ask that you don't do this because there is limited parking at Tranquillity. You would also be breaching the terms of your insurance and the law by driving while under the influence of high doses of medication that affect your ability to drive safely so you wouldn't be able to drive for a large part of the detox period anyway. There are excellent public transport links to the retreat and we can arrange to have you picked up from and taken back to the local rail/bus station.

22. May I have visitors?

Yes – but this must be agreed with us in advance. We will discuss this with you when we plan your detox with you. You may prefer to hide away while detoxing or it may be that seeing the people close to you is key to the success of your treatment. We don't believe it is helpful for your friends or relatives to be present all day every day because this will not allow you time to reflect on your life but those decisions will be made in discussion with you and not dictated as set rules.

23. May I watch television?

Yes - there are televisions with DVD players built in, in all rooms including your bedroom. These also have USB and HDMI ports and you are welcome to attach equipment such as games consoles and laptops. The retreat also has a range of books and DVD’s that you can read or watch.

24. May I take photographs?

Preferably not - we do not ban all photography but it is essential that we maintain the confidentiality of other people at the retreat. No person should be on the photographs without their informed consent and that needs to be given at a time that they are fully capable of doing so, i.e. not in their first few days of detox when their medication is at high levels. We also need to ensure that no photograph identifies the location of Tranquillity as it is important that this remains discreet.

25. I have a disability, can you accommodate me at Tranquillity?

We would like to accommodate everybody. Normally bedrooms are upstairs and we have no lift. However, we would like to be able to help and may be able to arrange for a ground floor bedroom. Please contact us to discuss your needs.

26. I am not in the United Kingdom. Can I still come and stay at Tranquillity to do a detox?

Of course you can. We have no rules about where you come from. However, we need you to be able to speak a reasonable level of English so that we can understand what you need and also for you to understand any advice we give to you regarding your treatment.

27. How do I know that you are a reputable organisation and that I will be in safe hands?

We chose to be approved by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) which is the independent regulator of health and social care in England. It was not necessary for us to do this, but we felt that we should do so in order to ensure that we were meeting the required standards and so that we could assure our clients that we are independently assessed to ensure that we continue to operate within national guidelines. Many other providers of alcohol detox are not approved by the CQC.