Alcohol and drug addiction affects you both physically and emotionally. Your body becomes reliant on the substance that you’re using. Without it, your body doesn’t want to function properly, so withdrawal symptoms occur. The types of withdrawal symptoms that you experience depend on the substance that you use and your body’s individual reaction. You won’t know the extent of your withdrawal until you begin the detox process—but that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t know what to expect. Knowing what type of symptoms you might experience during detox will allow you to mentally prepare yourself for what’s to come.

Common Withdrawal Symptoms

Alcohol, opiates, and tranquilizers are known for producing significant physical withdrawal symptoms, but that doesn’t mean that you won’t experience any emotional side effects also. Drugs, such as cocaine, ecstasy, and marijuana, don’t produce a lot of physical symptoms, but they can produce a significant amount of emotional ones too.

Some of the physical withdrawal symptoms that you might experience during detoxification include:

  • Rapid heartbeat
  • Muscle tension
  • Hot and cold sweats
  • Tightness in your chest
  • Heart palpitations
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Runny nose and/or teary eyes
  • Nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea
  • Abdominal cramps
  • Headaches

Some of the emotional withdrawal symptoms that you might experience during detoxification include:

  • Anxiety
  • Insomnia
  • Irritability or Agitation
  • Depression
  • Lack of concentration
  • Low energy
  • Restlessness
  • Social isolation
  • Mood swings

Typically, it can take anywhere from a few days to a couple of weeks for the effects of the drugs and/or alcohol to subside. The physical withdrawal symptoms that you experience will usually fade faster than emotional ones. In fact, some emotional symptoms can last months after you’ve stopped using—this is especially true if you’ve been using high dosages of opiates. Fortunately, the staff at the Discovery Institute understands what you’re going through and has the knowledge needed to help you cope with any ongoing withdrawal symptoms that you might experience.

Serious Withdrawal Symptoms

Believe it or not, alcohol, along with tranquilizers, produces the most dangerous physical withdrawal symptoms. When you stop using either, it’s suddenly possible for you to experience a stroke, seizures, or a heart attack. Other dangerous withdrawal symptoms that those addicted to alcohol or tranquilizers could potentially experience include:

  • Hallucinations
  • Delirium tremens (DTs)
  • Grand mal seizures

If you’re addicted to alcohol or tranquilizers, a medically monitored detox program, such as the one offered at the Discovery Institute, can reduce the risk of dangerous complications.

What You Should Know About Withdrawal and Continued Recovery

Recovery from a drug or alcohol addiction is a continual process. You need to learn how to cope with life without the substance, which means you shouldn’t allow your recovery process to stop once you leave your detox program. It’s important to continue with outpatient treatment to ensure that you have the support you need to continue on your addiction-free path.

Recovering from addiction isn’t easy, but it is possible. The staff at the Discovery Institute understands what you’re going through and we strive to make your recovery as easy as possible by providing you the support and coping skills you need.  Call us today at 800-714-2175 to get your life back on track.

Reviewed for Medical & Clinical Accuracy by Dr. Jeffrey Berman, MD

Dr. Jeffrey Berman, MDDr. Jeffrey Berman is a psychiatrist in Teaneck, New Jersey and is affiliated with Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital. He received his medical degree from State University of New York Upstate Medical University and has been in practice for more than 20 years. He also speaks multiple languages, including French and Hebrew.

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