In the United States, approximately 7.4 million people abuse drugs. A little more than three million of those individuals are hooked on opioids like heroin and prescription painkillers, while the rest are addicted to drugs like meth, cocaine, ecstasy, and prescription drugs. When added to instances of an alcohol use disorder, there are more than 21 million people in the country who are struggling with addiction. And, despite this many people experiencing substance use disorders, just shy of 4 million of those individuals obtained treatment and drug detox in 2016, according to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH).
For some people, the first thing they need to do in order to recover is to detox. Not everyone who is addicted to drugs requires this step, however, those who are dependent on drugs often do. At Forever Recovery in Battle Creek, Michigan, our dedicated staff takes every precaution to make drug detox a comfortable experience.
Drug Addiction and Dependence
Addiction and dependence are not interchangeable terms, as they do not mean the same thing. When someone is abusing drugs, chances are they will become dependent on drugs before they become addicted. Dependence refers to the physical necessity for the drug while addiction refers more to the psychological need to use. In fact, it is the abuse of drugs that triggers the onset of the disease of addiction, as the abuse itself changes the chemistry in the brain.
Someone who is dependent on drugs will likely experience the following:
- Intense cravings to use
- The onset of withdrawal symptoms when unable to use for a period of time
- Feeling ill or generally unwell when coming down from a high
Unlike dependence, symptoms of addiction are slightly different and include:
- Making attempts to stop using but not being able to
- Spending a lot of time thinking about drugs, using them, or acquiring them
- Feeling unable to function without the use of drugs
- Being unsuccessful in controlling how much of a drug you consume
- Engaging in deceitful behaviors in order to get drugs, continue using drugs, or hide drug use altogether
It is common for most people who are addicted to drugs to also have some level of dependence on them. While some people only experience minor symptoms, such as headaches and feeling slightly queasy, others suffer significant symptoms that can interrupt their lives.
Drug Withdrawal Symptoms
The withdrawal symptoms that you experience when you stop abusing drugs will depend on what drug you are addicted to. This is because each drug has its own effects. Specific drug withdrawal symptoms include the following:
- Stimulants (Adderall, cocaine, meth)
- Slowed speech
- Increased appetite
- Opioids (heroin, fentanyl, oxycodone)
- Sweats and chills
- Muscle aches
- Stomach cramps
- Benzodiazepines (Ativan, Valium, Klonopin)
- Muscle stiffness
- Heart palpitations
- Hallucinogens (ecstasy, PCP, Ketamine)
- Detachment from reality
- Mood swings
- Increased heart rate, blood pressure, and breathing rate
- Muscle stiffness
More than three million people experience drug withdrawal each year in the United States. As you can see, there are differences between drugs and their associated withdrawal symptoms, however, drug withdrawals of all kinds tend to produce the following:
- Changes in sleeping patterns
- Changes in eating habits
- Gastrointestinal problems
If you are dependent on drugs, chances are you will go through withdrawal. However, making attempts to detox on your own can be challenging and unsuccessful. By attending a detoxification program, you can stop your substance abuse safely and effectively.
What to Expect in a Drug Detox Program
A detoxification program can help give you the support you need in order to detox and stay in your sobriety, rather than using again when the going gets tough. Of course, all drug detox centers are different, but for the most part, they tend to offer similar services.
The first thing you can expect when entering into a detoxification program for your substance abuse problem is participating in an assessment. The staff will work to gather as much information about you as possible. This information can help them provide you with the services that may work best for you.
Upon admission, you are given a clean, safe, and comfortable space to detox in. You will have access to addiction specialists and staff members 24/7 and can rest comfortably knowing that medical professionals are supervising your wellbeing around-the-clock. You will get connected to mental health professionals should you begin to experience psychological withdrawal symptoms that you cannot manage on your own.
Depending on the type of drug that you are detoxing from, you may have the option of utilizing prescription medicine during this time. For instance, individuals addicted to benzodiazepines are usually provided with a medical taper during withdrawal. What this means is that they are given smaller amounts of benzos over a determined amount of time to prevent throwing the body into “shock” (and to help minimize the pain of withdrawal symptoms). Those detoxing from opioid addiction can use methadone or Suboxone, both of which can also help decrease the severity of withdrawal symptoms and help to curb cravings.
The majority of drug withdrawal symptoms begin to subside after one week after the person’s last use. Of course, this timeline can fluctuate based on other factors. Generally, however, you can move on in your treatment once you have finished detox. Should you still continue to experience withdrawal symptoms, you may be experiencing post-acute withdrawal syndrome, or PAWS. Those who have PAWS continue to struggle with specific withdrawal symptoms for months to years after they stopped using. Usually, these symptoms are more psychological and include symptoms of depression and anxiety.
Above all else, you can expect that a drug detox program will give you the time, space, and tools needed to get through the withdrawal symptoms and move into therapeutic care.
Do You Need Treatment for Substance Abuse?
If you are addicted to drugs and located in the Battle Creek, Michigan area and want to stop, but are afraid of going through withdrawal, call us right now. We can help make this process less painful.
So, do not wait any longer. Call A Forever Recovery Right Now. We can help you – starting with drug detox.