Dealing with Drug Withdrawal Symptoms

drug withdrawalDrug withdrawal can cause a variety of emotional and physical side effects. Common symptoms of withdrawal include anxiety, depression or social isolation from an emotional standpoint while physical effects such as sweating, difficulty breathing or nausea are also likely to occur. Depending on the type of drug and length of use, more serious symptoms of withdrawal can include seizures, heart attacks or even strokes.

Drug withdrawal symptoms vary based on drug type

  • Depressants: Drugs that fall under the depressant category include barbiturates or benzodiazepines, which are often used for treatment of anxiety and insomnia. Ironically, the minor side effects of withdrawal from the overuse of depressants include restlessness, anxiety and sleep deprivation. As time goes on, extreme reactions like hallucinations and full-body tremors can occur.
  • Stimulants: Cocaine and Ritalin are examples of stimulants and can cause depression, increase fatigue and generate intense cravings upon initial drug withdrawal. Symptoms can eventually intensify to paranoia or suicidal thoughts and attempts if abuse of the drug continues.
  • Opioids: Drugs such as heroin, morphine, codeine and OxyContin that fall under the opioids category encompass the basic symptoms of drug withdrawal mentioned earlier. However, withdrawal from these drugs can produce the most severe physical effects such as abdominal cramps, tremors, bone and muscle pain, vomiting and diarrhea.

Coping with withdrawal symptoms is not an easy or simple process. It is most important to note that a user should not stop abruptly, as this can cause several mental, physical and emotional problems. It is best to wean off of the drug under proper medical supervision. Over-the-counter drugs (or OTCs), such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen, are often prescribed to aid the small aches and pains that occur as the drug exits the body. Aside from medical assistance, support groups or sober living environments are also encouraged to assist on the road to sobriety.

Middle River North offers a sober living environment for those looking to take the next step towards recovery. Open twenty-four hours a day with an encouraging, supportive and understanding staff, clients are likely to attain long-term recovery.

Image from: SpringdaleClinic

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