All addictive substances cause an individual to develop a chemical dependence over time. Onceuse of the substance has stopped, uncomfortable, and sometimes painful, side effects occur. This is known as withdrawal. Defined by the American Psychological Association, withdrawal is a syndrome that develops after cessation of prolonged, heavy consumption of a substance, with symptoms varying by substance but generally including physiological, behavioral, and cognitive manifestations.
Withdrawal symptoms differ based on the substance of abuse, with some manifesting mild withdrawal symptoms while others yield painful and dangerous symptoms. Regardless of the substance that has been abused, withdrawal can be very uncomfortable, which is why it is highly recommended to seek a professional detox clinic to assist in the process. Clinicians at these facilities will monitor the withdrawal process and ensure the individual feels safe and comfortable.
How Long Does it Take to Withdraw From Meth?
Methamphetamine, commonly referred to as meth, is becoming prevalent throughout the U.S. As stated by the National INstitute on Drug Abuse, approximately 964,000 individuals struggled with a methamphetamine use disorder in 2017 alone. Although aware of their addiction, many individuals continue to use meth to either feed their addiction or to avoid unpleasant withdrawal symptoms. This raises the question – how long does it take to completely withdraw from methamphetamine?
The answer depends on the length of addiction and the quantity regularly used. Those who have abused meth for a short time, or only used very little, may have a significantly shorter withdrawal period and display relatively mild symptoms. In contrast, those who have struggled with meth abuse for an extended amount of time, or in large quantities, may experience an extended withdrawal stage and more uncomfortable symptoms.
Methamphetamine Withdrawal Symptoms
Symptoms of meth withdrawal vary based on the length of addiction. For the average individual, symptoms appear after the first 24 hours and gradually dissipate throughout the first week. Depending on the length of addiction, mild symptoms can remain present for up to a few weeks. Symptoms include:
- Extreme fatigue
An individual who has been using methamphetamine for a prolonged period of time likely did not sleep due to the stimulant quality of the drug. Once use is ceased, the individual will feel very tired.
Meth chemically alters the brain when abused; therefore, anxiety is very common among individuals withdrawing from the drug.
Hallucinations and delusions may occur in the first few days of withdrawal. Because methamphetamine can cause this psychosis when it is being used, the withdrawal stage may provoke any residual psychotic reactions.
Similar to anxiety, individuals who have abused meth have caused a chemical alteration within the brain. Once withdrawal begins, they may feel depressed as meth is no longer stimulating the neurotransmitters as it once had done.
- Profuse sweating
Sweating is common when going through withdrawal. This is the physical body’s way of ridding itself of all remaining traces of the substance.
- Increased appetite
Because methamphetamine is a stimulant and appetite suppressant, people high on the drug can go days without eating. Once use of meth has stopped, the individual going through withdrawal will likely feel hungry again.
Due to the severity of some of these symptoms and the potential for life-threatening side effects, clinical supervision within a professional detox facility is highly recommended.
Asheville Recovery Center Can Help
It is extremely important to seek help immediately if you or a loved one is struggling with substance addiction or withdrawal. The founders of Asheville Recovery Center, as well as many of our addiction therapists, have struggled with addiction and now enjoy life in recovery. They understand the struggles of addiction and how difficult it is to overcome alone.
While we do not have a detox facility, we can refer you to a quality clinic where experts can supervise your withdrawal phase. Upon successfully completing the detox process, we will work with you to formulate a custom treatment plan designed to fit your individual needs. If you feel that you or a loved one is struggling with substance abuse, our specialists are on standby and ready to help. Call (828)518-6996 and speak with an addiction expert today so you can take the first step towards a rewarding life of sobriety.