Withdrawal: Types, Symptoms, Treatment

Its goal is to safely manage withdrawal symptoms and help individuals overcome physical dependence on drugs. Acute withdrawal is the first detoxification phase, usually lasting one to two weeks. It occurs when a person suddenly stops using a drug or drinking alcohol after heavy use and is the most dangerous withdrawal period. Drug withdrawal refers to the physical and psychological symptoms that occur when a person stops using drugs after a long period of drug or alcohol abuse.

  1. Its goal is to safely manage withdrawal symptoms and help individuals overcome physical dependence on drugs.
  2. Withdrawal is your body’s response when you suddenly stop using a certain substance, such as alcohol, nicotine, marijuana, medications, or other drugs.
  3. LifeRing is a secular recovery organization that aims to help people share practical experiences and access sobriety support.

When the alcohol is then abruptly stopped after long, heavy use, the brain, unable to immediately readjust its chemistry, is suddenly subject to overstimulation. Among the consequences are tremors (“the shakes”), spikes in heart rate and blood pressure, irritability, nausea, and anxiety. Hallucinations—especially seeing small moving objects—and seizure can occur.

What is cocaine withdrawal?

When a person stops using these drugs, dopamine levels can drop, leading to distressing withdrawal symptoms and intense cravings. When an individual abruptly stops or reduces their alcohol consumption, the brain struggles to readjust to the lack of alcohol’s sedating effects, causing a range of withdrawal symptoms. In severe cases, these symptoms may even cause suicidal thoughts and risk of relapse. Long-term drug treatment is vital to overcoming the psychological impacts of substance withdrawal.

Recognizing unhealthy drug use in family members

Physical symptoms of anxiety can make you feel as if something scary is happening. Your breathing and heart rate might increase, sometimes to the point where you feel you can’t catch your breath, or that you’re having a heart attack, even though you’re not. As with depression, some anxiety during withdrawal alcohol effects on eyes bloodshot puffy yellow eyes after drinking is to be expected. If you took a drug or drank alcohol to relax, you’re likely to feel tenser. Likewise, if you were essentially self-medicating, you might fear what will happen without your usual way of coping. Your doctor may diagnose withdrawal based on your symptoms and a physical exam.

Medical Professionals

If a person is experiencing cocaine addiction or withdrawal, they can contact a healthcare professional for support and treatment. The sooner you seek help, the greater your chances for a long-term recovery. Talk with your health care provider or see a mental health provider, such as a doctor who specializes in addiction medicine or addiction psychiatry, or a licensed alcohol and drug counselor. This is typically a good time to get treatment, which will help you understand why you drank or used drugs in the first place, and help set you up for a life without alcohol or drugs. Some people can do this on their own, but many benefit from extra support during the first few months to avoid relapse. While most symptoms of nicotine withdrawal are not life-threatening, depression and other mental health concerns that may occur are linked to suicide.

Support Groups

These may include anti-anxiety medications, anticonvulsants, antipsychotics, or other drugs designed to treat nausea or sleep problems. If you have been using a substance with a high potential for dependency and you stop suddenly or abruptly or you cut down your use drastically, you can experience a variety of withdrawal symptoms. The intensity and duration of these withdrawal symptoms can vary widely, drug overdose: definition risks signs and more depending on the type of drug and your biological makeup. People may experience physical, behavioral, and cognitive symptoms when discontinuing substances. These symptoms may range from mild to severe depending on the person, their history of use, and the substance or substances used. Symptoms of cocaine withdrawal include depression, excessive sleep, increased hunger, and a general sense of unease.

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