When it comes to detoxification from addictive substances, two stages of symptoms occur. Acute withdrawal happens first. These symptoms occur during the initial phase of detox. They can happen when a person has stopped their usage of the drugs or alcohol to which they were addicted or if they significantly reduce the amount they take. There are a number of dangerous drugs to detox from, which necessitates that medical professionals have an understanding of how to keep their patients safe. It also means that an individual who has reached the point of wanting to stop drinking or using drugs must understand the dangers.
Time Table for Acute Withdrawal Symptoms From Dangerous Drugs
The symptoms experienced during the first stage of detoxification fall under the label of “acute withdrawal”. While the exact length of time that the symptoms of acute withdrawal last vary by individual, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration states that the average length of time is as follows:
- Alcohol: 5-7 days
- Benzodiazepines: 1-4 weeks. They may last 3-5 weeks if the person reduces their dosage slowly
- Cannabis: 5 days
- Nicotine: 2-4 weeks
- Opioids: 4-10 days; Methadone: 14-21 days
- Stimulants: 1-2 weeks
Most people realize there are dangerous drugs to detox from, but they may be unclear on what the danger entails. Acute withdrawal symptoms can be difficult to endure. People with substance abuse disorder who are going through acute withdrawal often feel frustrated and doubt their ability to complete the process.
When acute withdrawal symptoms begin, they may want to throw in the towel and return to their addiction. Some people increase the amount of alcohol or drugs they normally take in order to try to circumvent painful symptoms of withdrawal.
All of this makes it imperative that these individuals seek professional treatment while detoxing. Being part of a residential or hospitalization program that oversees detox helps increase the odds of success. It also allows for medical staff to monitor symptoms and administer any needed medication that can assist in reducing or stopping withdrawal symptoms.
Symptoms of Acute Withdrawal
Many of the symptoms experienced during acute withdrawal from various substances overlap with each other. The following list includes common symptoms for detoxing from different substances. Other symptoms may occur.
- Increased blood pressure
- Raised heart rate
- Delirium tremens (commonly known as the DTs)
- Blurry or double vision
- Body aches
- Shallow breathing
- Difficulty sleeping
- Night sweats
- Decreased appetite
- Weight gain
- Mood swings
- Difficulty sleeping
- Flu-like symptoms
- Mood swings
- Slow heart rate
- Body aches
- Increased appetite
- Slow movements
Post-Acute Withdrawal Symptoms From Dangerous Drugs
After the initial acute withdrawal symptoms subside, many people experience post-acute withdrawal symptoms (PAWS). While acute withdrawal symptoms mostly involve physical maladies, PAWS has more to do with psychological and emotional challenges. PAWS symptoms can last anywhere from a few weeks to several months. Depending on how long a person remained in their addiction and the amount of drugs or alcohol they became reliant on, PAWS can last over a year.
While acute withdrawal symptoms need to be monitored by medical professionals, the same can be said for PAWS. A person who has spent a great deal of time numbing their emotions through drug and alcohol abuse often finds this secondary set of symptoms to be challenging.
A person under the care of a residential facility such as a sober living house has an advantage over those who return home after detoxification. Long-term treatment programs typically offer round-the-clock supervision and management. The trained experts who oversee the programs understand dangerous drugs to detox from. Trained in how to recognize PAWS in a resident, they can step in and offer advice and support.
Treatment for Addiction Along With Mental Health Adds a Safety Factor
A list of dangerous drugs to detox from would not be complete without factoring in mental health. Millions of people who struggle with a substance use disorder also have at least one mental health diagnosis. Often part of the reason a person becomes addicted to drugs and alcohol has to do with an attempt to cope with troubling mental health issues.
People who use drugs and alcohol as a barrier between themselves and issues like depression and anxiety may find it alarming to have to cope with it once they have begun to live a sober life. The temptation to return to drugs and alcohol to avoid feeling panic, anxiety, depression, and other mental health issues commonly occurs. Suicidal tendencies may also develop.
The potentially deadly combination of withdrawal symptoms and mental health diagnoses affects millions. This reality contributes to the need for people to use long-term treatment programs to address the situation. The time spent in residential and sober living housing can help keep a person safe. For this reason, many treatment facilities treat both addiction and mental health.
Detox Programs in Texas
Purpose Driven Recovery offers sober living facilities designed to help you succeed in becoming sober and staying that way. Our gender-specific sober living homes in the Houston area offer 24/7 onsite management, sober coaching, therapy, and transportation to activities such as support groups, work, and church. Contact Purpose Driven Recovery today by calling (713) 266-1507 or by clicking here.