For those who have experienced drug withdrawals, you understand how painful and severe the symptoms can be. These withdrawal symptoms are what stops most solo attempts at sobriety dead in their tracks. How various drugs interact with the brain and body is well known, but how they react differs from person to person.

Regardless of the drug being consumed, the processes that it impacts start becoming reliant on the drug’s presence. The central nervous system will adapt to outside substances hijacking certain functions which means it has to relearn how to operate when the drug is no longer around. This is what leads to withdrawal symptoms.

Illicit Drugs With Severe Withdrawal Symptoms

When we think of withdrawals, many of us think of individuals who have had their entire life taken over by drug addiction. At times this is the case, but drugs commonly found on the streets can lead to withdrawal symptoms even if the user is still functioning in society.

One of the more common drugs that Americans struggle with withdrawals from is heroin. A potent painkiller, heroin creates an intense feeling of euphoria that is impossible to achieve naturally. As such, users become psychologically dependent chasing that state which leads to physical dependencies. Withdrawal from heroin can include:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Irritability
  • Tremors
  • Seizures
  • Muscle aches
  • Insomnia

Another popular category of illicit drugs is stimulants. Cocaine, crack and meth are all names of various stimulants that quickly create dependencies in the user. Withdrawal symptoms from stimulants mirror their effect in that fatigue, depression and paranoia are commonly felt after ending stimulant use. Since the brain has to learn how to develop its own dopamine, the “happy” chemical, there is often a long period of time where previous users experience episodes of heavy depression and night terrors.

Prescription Drugs Can Lead To Withdrawals Too

The logic that prescription drugs are safer than illicit drugs looks only at cases where the prescription drug was taken as intended. When doctor’s orders aren’t followed, prescription drugs become just as likely to be abused as their illicit counterparts. Unfortunately, withdrawal symptoms can happen after completing a prescription that was taken exactly as prescribed.

Creating its own epidemic, prescription opioids are responsible for quick but severe withdrawal symptoms. The painkilling and euphoric effects are similar to that of heroin which means breaking away from use can be extremely difficult. Withdrawal symptoms are also shared, with cravings sometimes lasting months after use has ceased.

Getting more into the psychological territory of withdrawal symptoms we have benzodiazepines, commonly referred to as benzos. Typically used to treat anxiety and panic disorders, benzo withdrawal symptoms can include:

  • Anxiety
  • Insomnia
  • Irritability
  • Tremors
  • Sweating
  • Hyperventilation
  • Panic attacks
  • Hypersensitivity to external stimuli
  • Depression
  • Hallucinations
  • Delirium

It’s not uncommon for these symptoms to lead to relapse as they impact both the mind and body in extreme ways. If the detox process is handled without medical supervision, the effort can be lost quickly and lead to individuals choosing to continue drug use instead of finding sobriety.

Nearly Any Substance Can Cause Withdrawals

When it comes to addiction, anything that impacts how our mind or body functions can create dependencies that lead to withdrawals down the road. Caffeine is the substance with the most users worldwide and it’s available at every store and restaurant. Similarly, alcohol is a widely abused but readily available substance that’s highly addictive and socially accepted as such.

Attempting to stop drinking cold turkey comes with its own set of withdrawal symptoms that can be life threatening depending on the individual. It’s never wise to go through detox without proper supervision and medical attention.

If the time has come for you or a loved one to overcome drug addiction, we encourage you to get in touch with our team here at America’s Rehab Campus. Together, we can create a unique treatment program that addresses every concern and goal.