9.4% of Americans report using illegal drugs in the past month. You’re far from alone in your addiction.
Addiction itself is complicated and is often compounded by the fact that many people become physically dependent on the drug.
After taking it for a while recreationally, individuals may develop withdrawal symptoms if they do not continue. These symptoms are generally extremely unpleasant, and meth withdrawal symptoms are no different.
Some drug users say that withdrawal feels like having the worst flu of your life. Read on for some tips on how to manage withdrawal symptoms if you’ve decided to take the first step toward recovery, which is detox.
What to Expect When Detoxing From Meth
Detoxing from meth is especially tricky because the drug offers such a euphoric feeling for users. As a result, many find that the toughest part of detox isn’t the intense physical symptoms, but the cravings for the drug.
Although there are many different reasons why individuals take drugs in the first place, many do so in order to self-medicate. They may have depression that is chemically based or linked to a traumatic episode in the past. Or, they may use meth as a way to cope with current circumstances, such as homelessness.
If you’re detoxing from meth, the physical symptoms will be uncomfortable, but you’ll need to find serious support for managing the cravings. As such, detoxing in a medical facility, or a facility specifically for drug addicts, helps increase the likelihood that you won’t give in to the cravings.
While you can detox on your own in theory, doing it alone without the proper support is often a recipe for disaster.
Additionally, the physical symptoms many people experience when detoxing from meth are often related to severe mood swings and emotions that feel all over the place.
Coping with the First Few Days of Meth Withdrawal Symptoms
The first 24 hours of meth withdrawal can be the most difficult, and when the cravings are most acute. In the first 24 hours after your last dose of meth, you’ll begin to feel symptoms as most meth users take the drug at least a few times per day.
These first 24 hours are crucial, though cravings will continue for several weeks to months after your last dose.
In these first 24 hours, you may experience high anxiety and psychosis. Psychosis refers to hallucinations; thinking you see and hear things that aren’t really there. Although hallucinations are not dangerous on their own, your reaction to them can be. As such, you should be under the care of an inpatient team if you are experiencing psychosis.
Some individuals check into mental health hospitals to help them deal with this intense side effect. If you detox in a facility specifically for drug detox, the staff will most likely already be looking for signs of psychosis and understand how to manage it.
Lethargy, Fatigue, and Intense Hunger
During the first few days, you’ll also become lethargic and tired. You may have trouble getting up or doing much of anything. As such, if you work, it is important that you take time off in order to fully detox. If you need to get somewhere, you may find yourself using to keep yourself awake. It is important to let your body rest during this time.
Additionally, you may also become ravenously hungry, especially craving carb-heavy food. Many people do not eat much when they are actively taking meth, so they’ll want to eat all of the time once detoxing.
Listen to your body, but do not eat until you make yourself ill.
Anxiety and Depression
Most people who detox from meth feel depressed and anxious after ceasing to take the drug. As mentioned previously, this is partially because the drug offers such a sense of euphoria that taking it away can make the brain begin to experience incredible lows.
Depression typically begins to taper off by two weeks after you’ve had your last dose. Anxiety may continue for up to five weeks. Individuals who suffer from something known as post-acute withdrawal system (or PAWS), may suffer from anxiety, racing thoughts, and obsessive thoughts for weeks to months after their last dose.
Because of this, it is important that you detox while being monitored by a medical professional. Anxiety and depression can be debilitating, as it is important you have a plan in place should the anxiety or depression become too much.
There may be a temptation to use the drug again to help ease symptoms, which will put you back at square one. Other individuals may experience suicidal feelings or thoughts, so it is important to ensure you’re safe as you detox.
Meth cravings will, unfortunately, continue up to several months after your last dose. During this time, the desire to use again will be incredibly strong. You’ll be fighting the urge to call your source and use again for the entirety of the detox period.
This can be one of the more difficult symptoms to deal with, as running back to the drug can make you feel as though all of your problems fade away. But, you’re likely already aware that this will only make things worse. As such, you should have some kind of support system to help you quash the cravings or at least a person to sit with you while you wait for them to pass.
Dealing with Withdrawal
Meth withdrawal symptoms make getting off the drug very difficult, but by no means is it impossible. You can, and deserve, to live your life free from the grips of meth.
If you’re ready to start the journey today, contact us now. We’re here to help you detox, as well as the resources to help your entire family heal from the pain of the disorder.