Withdrawal signs are something that someone with an addiction experiences when they stop taking drugs and/or alcohol. Physiological withdrawal symptoms affect nearly all individuals who are addicted to any substance, with rates as high as 90%. There is no way to determine if you will be in that percentile and experience withdrawal symptom, nor is it possible to know how they will affect you if you do.
Some people who experience withdrawal report only mild signs of withdrawal. They may be unable to sleep for a couple of days or might be unable to eat. Others will experience a full onset of most all of the withdrawal symptoms that can be absolutely horrid to experience. The drug will play a part in those withdrawal symptoms, as well as the individual body chemistry of the person.
Withdrawal symptoms vary according to the drug of choice. Some of the harder drugs, such as heroin, cocaine and meth, have excruciating withdrawal symptoms that can make the user feel like they are dying. These symptoms can include vomiting, insomnia, irritability, the feeling of going “crazy,” chills and fever, flu-like symptoms, depression, tremors, slurred speech, rapid heart rate and even body aches and pains. You can be assured, however, that even drugs you may not think of having withdrawal symptoms, like prescription medications, do and they can be just as difficult and painful to deal with.
The length of time the signs of withdrawal will be present is also something unknown, as each person, and each incident, is different from the next. It is said that drugs take an average of 7 days to leave the body (after the last use) but it can take much longer to get over the withdrawal for some. Some people with severe addictions have reported withdrawal symptoms that last 21 days and longer.
Detox programs will help ease some of the signs of withdrawal. They are staffed with health care professionals 24 hours per day, there to provide as much comfort as much as possible. The detox program is usually followed by a inpatient treatment program.
Your recovery journey will be in multiple stages. Experiencing withdrawal symptoms is just one of those stages. Withdrawal signs do not last forever, and you will be able to overcome them all and live your life anew, experiencing the glories of sobriety! New Directions for Women offers options for detox for women of all ages, pregnant women, and women with their children. Know someone who needs treatment (even if they are not a female)? Contact us on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, or simply by phone at 800-939-6636. We can help.