Withdrawal Symptoms During Detox

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) National Center for Health Statistics reported that during the 12 months ending in May 2020 approximately 81,230 drug overdose deaths occurred in the U.S. This represents the largest number of monthly increases in drug overdoses since the group began monitoring them. This alarming statistic means that more people than ever are in need of professional addiction treatment, which starts with the detoxification, or detox, process. 

When a person begins treatment for drug and alcohol addiction, they usually experience symptoms of withdrawal. Withdrawal is the body’s way of ridding itself of the toxins and harsh chemicals that were built up over a lengthy period of using addictive substances. 

Everyone experiences withdrawal differently, and different substances can cause different side effects and symptoms during the withdrawal process. Some substances cause physical withdrawal symptoms, like dizziness, heart palpitations, nausea, and sweating, while others cause emotional effects, such as anxiety, restlessness, and cravings. Withdrawal is the first step towards recovery, and it needs to happen before a person can start any other form of treatment.

Timelines for how long withdrawal symptoms last vary based on the type of substance, how long a person has been using it, and how much they usually take at a given time. Certain substances take longer to leave the body, while others get released more quickly. Here’s a look at the estimated withdrawal timelines for some commonly used substances.

If you’re recovering from a drug or alcohol addiction, you might be wondering how long it will take you to fully detox and start the healing process. But withdrawal timelines vary based on the type of drug, how long you’ve been using, and how much you usually take at a given time. Certain substances take longer to leave the body, while others get released more quickly. Here’s a look at the estimated withdrawal timelines for some commonly used drugs.

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Alcohol Withdrawal Timeline

  • Hours after the last does

    Withdrawal symptoms can start several hours after the last dose is taken, and often include anxiety and trouble sleeping.

  • Day 1-2:

    Withdrawal symptoms typically begin within 6-12 hours after a person last consumes alcohol. They may include stomach aches, nausea, headaches, and anxiety. Depending on the severity of the addiction, some people experience hallucinations and seizures. If they develop delirium tremens, it can result in respiratory arrest, aspiration pneumonitis, and other conditions that require immediate medical attention.

  • Day 3-5:

    Many people experience sweating, fever, rapid heart rate, and mental confusion. Symptoms typically reach their peak during this time period and begin to dissipate around the fifth day. 

  • Day 6+:

    Some symptoms continue to a lesser degree and psychological symptoms such as depression and moodiness are more prevalent.

Benzodiazepine Withdrawal Timeline

  • Hours after the last does

    Withdrawal symptoms can start several hours after the last dose is taken, and often include anxiety and trouble sleeping.

  • Day 1-4:

    Withdrawal symptoms can start several hours after the last dose is taken.
    Many people who use the drug for anxiety or depression will experience rebound effects, meaning their condition will get worse when they stop taking it. Other side effects include rapid heartbeat, sweating, and nausea.

  • Day 5-14:

    Most people will experience heightened depression, anxiety and insomnia for up to two weeks after they begin detoxing.

  • Day 15+:

    At this point, most symptoms will have disappeared. However, people who suffered from prolonged addictions may experience a random period of withdrawal symptoms for several months after their last dose.

Opioid Withdrawal Timeline

  • Day 1:

    Most people start experiencing the withdrawal symptoms of opioids about 6-24 hours after their last dose. The initial side effects include muscle aches, difficulty sleeping, restlessness, anxiety, sweating, runny nose, and high blood pressure.

  • Day 2-4:

    This is the period when symptoms are the most intense. Many people will experience nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, stomach pains, and depression. Intense opioid cravings typically set in within a few days after the last dose is taken.

  • Day 5-8:

    By this point, most physical side effects will begin to subside, although the mental symptoms can linger for several weeks. Depending on the severity of the addiction, some people will continue experiencing cravings.

Heroin Withdrawal Timeline

  • Day 1-3:

    Withdrawal symptoms typically start within 6-12 hours of the last dosage. Typical symptoms include muscles aches, shaking, anxiety, vomiting, diarrhea, insomnia, and drug cravings.

  • Day 4-7:

    The initial symptoms will become less intense and end after about one week.

  • Day 8+:

    Most physical withdrawal symptoms subside by this time but psychological ones such as depression and anxiety often continue.

Marijuana Withdrawal Timeline

  • Day 1:

    During the first 24 hours of withdrawal, many people will experience irritability, difficulty sleeping, decreased appetite, restlessness, and cravings for the drug.

  • Day 2-7:

    Over the next several days, some people will experience mental side effects, like anxiety, mild depression, and lack of motivation.

  • Day 8+:

    After the first week of withdrawal, most side effects should subside, although cravings may continue to pop up.

Crack/Cocaine Withdrawal Timeline

  • Day 1-3:

    Withdrawal symptoms can begin within the first few hours after the last dosage. Many people experience lethargy, irritability, depression, shaking, and heart complications such as arrhythmia.

  • Day 4-10:

    Many people experience dehydration, insomnia, restlessness, nightmares, and drug cravings.

  • Day 11+:

    For some people, their withdrawal symptoms continue longer than 10 days but should end after four weeks. 

Adderall Withdrawal Timeline

  • Day 1-3:

    Symptoms typically start within several hours of the last dosage. Many people experience feeling exhausted, difficulty concentrating, hunger, and depression.

  • Day 4-7:

    Symptoms usually peak during this time and may include anxiety, body aches, insomnia, irritability, and nightmares.

  • Day 8+:

    At this point, the main symptoms tend to be psychological, including depression, as well as cravings for the drug.

Drug Addiction Treatment in Los Angeles

Regardless of the type of drug you’re recovering from, it’s important to find a treatment center that can make the withdrawal and detox process as comfortable as possible. At Launch Centers in Los Angeles, we are committed to working with young people who suffer from addiction and helping them recover. We want to help clients detox safely so they can begin their recovery process and achieve their purpose in life. If you think you may need detox prior to coming to our program, we will be happy to help you find a center that can provide those services.

Contact Launch Centers today and start living the successful, fulfilling life you deserve.

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