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Withdrawal Tips

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Drugs and alcohol can make your feel wonderful for a short period of time, but when its effects begin to ware off your going to be left feeling low, uncomfortable and craving more of the substance to find relief. Most addicts become accustomed to the change between euphoria and withdrawal, as they experience them on a daily basis. However the withdrawal symptoms can intensify when beginning the detoxification process within recovery, causing even the most hardened addict to be overwhelmed in discomfort.

Put a Plan in Place

Physical symptoms of withdrawal may cause you pain, experiencing flu-like symptoms and even aches in your bones. The mental symptoms associated withdrawal can leave your overwhelmed with thoughts of the substance, cause you to become depressed and lose sleep. While most rehab facilities provide solutions to people going through the detoxification process it is important to be prepared and to have a plan in place that will help you cope with withdrawal symptoms.

Opiate Withdrawal

Opiate drugs include heroin, methadone and prescription painkillers. All of which cause withdrawal symptoms that seem to last for months. Even a single dose of heroin, which lasts 4 to 6 hours, can result in withdrawal symptoms for up to one week according to Harvard Medical School. Most symptoms of opiate withdrawal are uncomfortable, most are not life threatening.

It is important for anyone withdrawing from opiates to drink a large amount of cool fluids such as water or juice, especially if they are experiencing diarrhea and at risk of dehydration. Eating crackers and small amounts of a bland food can also help with the upset stomach due to withdrawal. You many also want to take several showers throughout the day, as you may sweat a great deal and dampen clothes and bedding. Staying in a dark and cool room can help you through feelings of aggravation and nervousness, helping you to feel more comfortable and safe. You may want to occupy your time reading books and magazine, even watching favorite TV programs.

Prescription Drug Withdrawal

According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, the most commonly abused prescription drugs include:

  • Painkillers (Vicodin or OxyContin)
  • Stimulants (Adderall or Ritalin)
  • Depressants (Valium or Xanax)
  • Cough and cold remedies

Each prescription medication has its own withdrawal symptoms and risks associated with it. Some prescription drugs have life threatening withdrawal symptoms, before discontinuing the use of any prescription medication it is important to consult your doctor or a treatment facility to ensure your health and safety. Most doctors will taper off your dose to help prevent any serious symptoms of withdrawal, as well as carefully monitoring your health to ensuring your safety throughout the process.

When stopping your medication you may rebound back to the symptoms which the medication was once treating, finding yourself depressed and anxious during detoxification. Many treatment centers use alternative therapies such as art therapy so that patients can express themselves as their feeling are changing rapidly. You may also want to start a journal about memories and sensations you are experiencing, as well as helping you throughout your recovery when looking back on after detox is complete. This is because you will be able to look back on the experience, why you stopped using drugs and what you went through and how you never would want to feel that again.

Marijuana Withdrawal

Marijuana is the most commonly abused drug throughout the world. Despite being a natural drug, it is still very powerful and those who have abused the drug over a long period of time can begin to experience symptoms of withdrawal when abruptly stopping its use. Insomnia is the most commonly experienced symptom of marijuana withdrawal, others report experiencing vivid and violent dreams that too prevent them from sleeping. Stopping all caffeine in your diet can help you in falling asleep during withdrawal, as well as drinking warm tea to help you relax.

Some people experience nausea and indigestion, completely curbing their appetite. Eating bland foods can help relax your stomach and still offer you nutrition during the withdrawal period. You may also experience changes in your mood or behavior, such as irrational anger. These feelings of anger will fade in time, to help prevent you lashing out at friends and family you may want to find an outlet, such as walking, singing or art.

Methamphetamine Withdrawal

The most common symptoms of methamphetamine withdrawal include: increased sleeping, increased appetite, depression, and anxiety, tending to be very intense during the first 24 hours and fading within a few weeks. It is important not to ignore what your body is telling you, get plenty of rest, eat what you desire and talk to friends, family and professionals about your feelings.

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