Overcoming the Hardest Drugs to Withdraw From
When it comes to drug and alcohol addiction, one of the biggest worries for addicts is the fear of the detox process. During this time, the body may react in unpleasant ways for an extended period, while it adjusts to ridding the body of certain substances. While no withdrawal is easy for anyone, there are ones that cause more severe symptoms that can actually be extremely dangerous or even fatal. For ultimate safety, drug withdrawal should be done in a medical setting or drug addiction treatment center. Here are some of the hardest drugs to withdraw from:
Heroin, Opiates, and Methadone
Heroin and opiate substances have similar reactions to the body, such as feelings of extreme pleasure and relaxation, and are both highly addictive due to the reduced perception of pain they cause. These drugs can be snorted, smoked, or injected intravenously. Opioid substances, such as the prescription pain medications: oxycodone, codeine, hydrocodone, and methadone, can be prescribed by a doctor; meanwhile, heroin is an illegal street drug.
Heroin is one of the hardest drugs to withdraw from because although it produces similar reactions to opiates, it’s still an illegal stress drug with no standardized chemical makeup. Street drugs can be mixed and cut with many different substances, so it’s more difficult to compare to the set chemical makeup of prescription medication. Either way, heroin can product the worst opiate withdrawal.
Regardless of legality, these substances affect the body in similar ways. Opiate substances attach to the brain’s pain receptors, which is why opiates can be the hardest drug to quit. Someone withdrawing from heroin or opiates can start feeling symptoms as soon as twelve hours after the last dose.
During detox, an opioid medication used to fill opiate receptors in the brain at a less intense rate as other opiates, methadone may be prescribed to help in cases with the worst opiate withdrawal. Long-term use of methadone can cause severe side effects such as reduced breathing and cardiac rhythm issues. These drugs can be highly addicting as well, even though its intent is to reduce feelings of opiate withdrawals and reduce pain. This drug can cause the worst opiate withdrawals, which can begin up to 30 hours after the last dose and last over a week (and in rare cases, up to a month).
Even though heroin and methadone are known to be two of the hardest drugs to withdraw from, the symptoms of opiate withdrawal may vary based on the individual’s overall health, type of substance, length of time of the abuse, and the amount being used. The physical symptoms of withdrawal can last over a week. However, the residual mental side effects from quitting opiates can last throughout a lifetime, which is why it’s known to be the hardest drug to withdraw from. Common mental side effects of quitting opiates may include depression, reoccurring anxiety, paranoia, cravings, and in serious cases, suicidal thoughts.
Other Difficult Withdrawals
While the opiate substance is known as the hardest drug to withdraw from, this does not mean that there aren’t other severe withdrawals associated with other types of drugs. Cocaine, methamphetamines, benzodiazepines, and alcohol produce some of the worst withdrawal symptoms as well and can be fatal if not done properly.
Even though opiates are considered to be one of the hardest drugs to withdraw from, there is hope for anyone out there willing to make the commitment to recovery. Don’t let the fear of detox or withdrawal intimidate you and steer you away from seeking drug addiction treatment, even if you feel your drug of choice is the hardest drugs to quit.
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.