Are you or a loved one suffering from drug addiction? Perhaps you’re trying to quit but you’re beginning to suffer drug withdrawal symptoms. Each individual experiences slightly different drug withdrawal symptoms, although there are general similarities from one person to the next. Depending on the severity of the addiction these symptoms can become dangerous, which is why taking advantage of a drug rehab center in New Hampshire offered by Granite Recovery Center is so important. This way, whether you identify signs of drug withdrawal in a loved one, or you yourself are trying to live a sober lifestyle but the withdrawals are too much, the support staff at Granite Recovery Center is here to help.
Breaking Down Drug and Alcohol Withdrawal
Each drug will have slightly different drug withdrawal symptoms, and each individual will demonstrate a varying number of these symptoms. However, when it comes to possible signs of drug withdrawal the potential symptoms are broken down into two categories: mental/emotional and physical.
If you believe a loved one is suffering from drug withdrawal symptoms you may not be able to completely identify the mental and emotional symptoms, but chances are you will be able to pick up on the physical symptoms.
Varying Detox Timelines
The kind of drug used will have the biggest effect on the length of your detox timeline. While each individual is unique, you can base your timeline on the general numbers of each drug type. The drug types are broken down into several categories, including:
- Opiates and Heroin
The most common drug stimulants are amphetamines and cocaine, although there are other forms of this drug type. In general, the detox timeline for stimulants will be around a week’s time. Because most stimulants hit your body quickly the drugs also burn through your system quickly.
The first three days are usually the worst, as you may feel suddenly depressed and completely tapped of energy. One of the main reasons why you should check into a recovery center for your detox is to provide proper help during these more difficult times of the detox timeline. This is especially the case when meth is the stimulant used. The Foundation for a Drug-Free World has reported that meth users experience a 93 percent relapse rate after the first detox, so having help (and a concrete after recovery plan) is critical.
Opiates and Heroin
No matter which of the two a user is addicted to the detox timeline is right around a week. Withdrawal symptoms do hit quickly, sometimes as fast as six hours (depending on how strong the addiction is). However, because withdrawal hits so quickly the symptoms do not last long (typically tapping out around five days or so). One thing to consider though is if you do have a strong addiction to heroin or opiates you might need to take maintenance medication for anywhere from a few months to several years. Going cold turkey on certain drugs will actually prove more damaging to your health than remaining on these maintenance medications.
Benzodiazepines, or benzo drugs, have the most variation within the detox timeline. Depending on the drug and the severity of the addiction it can range anywhere from a few days to several months. Benzos are usually longer-lasting drugs, which is why it can take longer to fully flush the drug out of the system. If you have been using Valium for an extended period of time (for example), it will take longer to work it fully out of your system.
When comparing the detox process, marijuana doesn’t have as extreme side effects. Outside of not feeling hungry and headaches, it’s relatively mild. With that said, the detox timeline can take around two weeks or so to fully work through the system.
Alcohol addiction will take about a week or so for the detox timeline to fully run its course. It can be an intense first few days though if the addiction has reached a point where it isn’t possible to function during the day without alcohol. Within 24-hours you might have everything from anxiety and depression to hallucinations. Detox from alcohol addiction needs to be performed within a recovery center as delirium tremens and even seizures are possible and staff should be on hand for this.
Mental and Emotional Symptoms
Over time your body will become dependent on the drugs and the chemicals released in the body. The human body does a good job at adapting to accommodate to changes in the hormonal and chemical balances within the body. So after an extended period of time, your body will simply expect certain chemicals and hormones to be released. When you stop taking a drug you remove this expected chemical balance within the body. This is like knocking over a load-barring pillar from a building. With it knocked out the rest of the building will need to shift and adjust to make up for it. As the removal of the drug-related chemicals is sudden, your body has no time to adjust, which can lead to these mental and physical symptoms.
The most common mental/emotional symptoms you can expect to see are:
- Poor concentration and memory. It’s difficult to remember events, dates, activities, and general knowledge you typically don’t have an issue remembering
- You struggle to sleep, staying asleep and falling asleep. This eventually leads to insomnia
- Anxiety is one possible mental and emotional symptom. You’ll suffer from more panic attacks, feel restless and may become easily irritable.
- Depression, much like anxiety, is more likely to affect you when suffering from mental and emotional symptoms. You might no longer take the same enjoyment out of certain activities, your appetite might be gone, and you might attempt to isolate yourself socially.
Physical Withdrawal Symptoms
If you are the one suffering from withdrawal symptoms than you likely are able to identify both the mental and the physical symptoms. If it is a loved one you are worried about you may not always be able to pick up on some of the mental problems, but make sure to watch out for these physical withdrawal symptoms:
- Skin will sweat more than normal. There may even be some tingling in the skin
- Headaches are more common in someone going through withdrawal. It may also lead to dizziness
- GI problems are common. This includes stomach aches, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea (often out of nowhere)
- Chest and heart problems are other areas of concern. A person going through withdrawals might have a racing heart, heart palpitations or the heart might skip beats. They may also feel a tightening chest and have problems breathing.
- Muscle problems come in several forms, including twitching muscles, tight muscles, aching muscles, and tremors. These look like severe signs of dehydration.
Help Is One Phone Call Away
Trying to comate drug withdrawal symptoms on your own isn’t easy. In some instances, depending on the severity of the addiction and the kind of drug it can even prove dangerous. That is why asking for help is the first step towards recovery. Granite Recovery Center wants to be there for you, so whether you know someone who is demonstrating signs of drug withdrawal or you are experiencing these drug withdrawal symptoms yourself, you’re just one phone call away at 855.712.7784 from the help and support you need.