The serious nature of methamphetamine use is difficult to ignore. Equally hard to overlook are the severe physical and mental changes that are associated with chronic use, which can be both shocking and disturbing to behold. These negative effects can also severely hinder a person’s desire to stop taking the drug. Meth abusers who attempt to stop using are faced with problems that can make them a danger to themselves and to others. True Recovery can help get you on the path to overcome meth withdrawal symptoms courtesy of our highly trained staff, who provide a high level of care and guidance to facilitate your successful recovery.
What Causes Withdrawal?
When a person uses meth, it causes their brain to release excessive amounts of a chemical called dopamine. As a result, the body begins to crave and depend on the feelings that come from this excess. When a meth user stops taking the drug, their dopamine levels decrease, and there are fewer dopamine receptors left in the brain. This causes the user to struggle to feel pleasure without having taken the drug. In addition, this deprivation causes them to experience physical and mental symptoms that are known as withdrawal.
Factors That Affect Withdrawal Symptoms
A number of factors affect the type and degree of meth withdrawal symptoms that a person experiences. Two important factors are the length of time using the drug and how much of it is used. The more dependent a person is, the more severe their symptoms will be. Other issues that influence withdrawal symptoms include the user’s body weight and age, as symptoms are generally worse for older individuals. The presence of pre-existing health conditions, both physical and mental, can also impact a person’s experience. People who use other drugs in addition to meth may also have more intense withdrawal symptoms.
Symptoms of Meth Withdrawal
Withdrawal symptoms experienced by meth users are extremely difficult and unpleasant. Users undergo extreme cravings for the drug in addition to other problems. A person who is undergoing meth withdrawal after short-term use, for example, may experience symptoms that include feelings of depression, fatigue, and an increase in appetite, particularly for starchy foods and other carbohydrates. Long-term users may experience additional symptoms such as excessive sleeping and psychological symptoms that include anhedonia, hallucinations, agitation, aggression, psychotic behavior, paranoia, and suicidal thoughts when they undergo withdrawal from meth.
How Long Does Withdrawal Last?
Withdrawal symptoms can start within a few hours after one has last used meth and can continue for up to four weeks or longer. The symptoms are typically the most severe within the first 24 hours after the last use and gradually lessen by the end of the first week. This is the first stage, known as the acute withdrawal stage. After the acute stage, symptoms continue with lesser intensity for the remainder of the withdrawal period. When one’s symptoms continue for more than one month, it is known as post-acute-withdrawal syndrome.
Withdrawal from meth isn’t easy, nor is it something that one should go through without professional assistance. At True Recovery, we’re here to help. For those currently undergoing withdrawal, we’ll handle the arrangements for detox at an appropriately licensed and accredited facility. Once your detoxification is completed, we’ll make sure your transition to our intensive outpatient treatment program (IOP) is as seamless as possible. With us, clients have access to addiction counseling and extended care programs that are individualized to help you find your life’s passions while also meeting your recovery goals. To learn if True Recovery accepts your private insurance, fill out our verification form. If you need more information, call today to speak with an admissions counselor: Our staff is available 24 hours a day to guide you toward goal-oriented addiction recovery.