Things You Should Know About Drug Withdrawal

Experiencing drug detox withdrawal symptoms? Learn how each substance causes specific withdrawal symptoms in the body.

Are you scared to go through withdrawal for drug or alcohol addiction? Withdrawal from substance abuse covers a lot of territories and is dependent on what substance you are withdrawing from. Severe addiction to certain substances can cause life-threatening complications during the withdrawal process, and it should never be attempted alone. If you have an addiction to drugs or alcohol, your safest place to go through withdrawal is at a drug rehab center where you will receive a medically assisted detox process. You should get the facts before you make any decisions about withdrawing from drugs or alcohol. Here is a list of things you should know about drug withdrawal:

  1. Drug detox withdrawal symptoms will vary based on what drugs were taken. Withdrawal symptoms of drugs or alcohol can affect the addict both physically and mentally and usually begin soon after the last dose was taken or reduced. Both illicit and prescription drugs can cause withdrawal symptoms, and should never be stopped abruptly. Once a tolerance has built up in the body, dependence to the substance begins. The body becomes used to the substance and adapts to its presence in the body, and the body will react if the substance is reduced or stopped.
  2. Alcohol withdrawal can start producing symptoms within 12 hours after a reduction or cessation of drinking. Symptoms of alcohol withdrawal include anxiety, rapid heartbeat, hallucinations, vomiting, confusion, trembling, irritability, seizures and delirium tremons. There are medications available to help ease withdrawal symptoms. An alcohol rehab center with an experienced and knowledgeable medical staff is the safest place to withdraw from alcohol.
  3. Cocaine is a popular illicit drug that can cause a host of adverse withdrawal symptoms. Withdrawal from cocaine can last from a week to months after cessation of the drug. Some of the many withdrawal symptoms of the drug are anxiety, depression, paranoia, anger, fatigue, strange dreams, seizures, impaired motor function and speech, hallucinations, and suicidal thoughts.
  4. Opiate withdrawal can last from one week to a month or more, and begin within 12 to 30 hours after cessation of the drug. The worst day of opiate withdrawal is around 72 hours after cessation when the symptoms begin to peak. Opiate withdrawal symptoms usually include agitation, sweating, muscle aches, stomach cramps, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, paranoia, delirium, self-harm, racing heart, depression and more.
  5. Amphetamines are potent stimulants that affect the central nervous system. Withdrawal from amphetamines can be dangerous and should only be done with the help of medical professionals who are experienced in amphetamine withdrawal. Some withdrawal symptoms can include: extreme depression, delusions, paranoia, hallucinations, aggression, psychosis, violent behavior, extreme fatigue and hunger, and intense cravings. Symptoms can last from about five days up to three weeks or more.
  6. Sedatives are another class of drugs that can produce serious withdrawal symptoms. Sedative drug detox withdrawal symptoms can include panic attacks, crying, confusion, fatigue, psychosis, shaking, fatigue, delirium, seizures, convulsions, mood swings, shallow breathing, suicidal thoughts and acts, and death. To detox safely from sedatives, the addict should have a medically supervised detox process at a drug rehab center by medical professionals experienced in sedative withdrawal.

The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) defines addiction as a chronic brain disease that causes an addict to compulsively use drugs or alcohol, regardless of the unfavorable effects that it causes. Addiction is considered a brain disease because substance abuse changes the physical, chemical and psychological structure of the brain. Rehabilitation programs should be at least 90 days or more to be successful when treating serious addiction. The program should include a variety of recovery treatments that may include: a medical detox, individual and group counseling, behavioral modification, relapse prevention, family therapy and aftercare. The patient will be equipped with the tools he needs to continue his recovery journey after he leaves the rehab center.

If you or a loved one needs help with abuse and/or treatment, please call the WhiteSands Treatment at (877) 855-3470. Our addiction specialists can assess your recovery needs and help you get the addiction treatment that provides the best chance for your long-term recovery.

About the Author

is a proud alumni member of WhiteSands Treatment. After living a life of chaos, destruction and constant let downs, Mark was able to make a complete turnaround that sparked a new way of life. He is serious about his recovery along with helping others. At WhiteSands Treatment, we offer support to you in your homes or when you are out living in your daily lives.