Drug & Alcohol Withdrawal

Causes of Withdrawal

Causes of drug & alcohol withdrawal

Withdrawal occurs when a person who has been abusing substances attempts to abstain from those substances. As a person continues to abuse substances, his or her body becomes accustomed to the presence of those drugs. As a result, he or she requires more and more of his or her drug of choice in order to achieve its desired effect. This decreasing sensitivity to drugs that a person has been abusing is known as tolerance. Tolerance is one of the indicators that a person may be struggling with a substance use disorder and in need of help from a licensed addiction treatment center.

As a person begins taking increasing amounts of his or her drug of choice in order to overcome effects of tolerance, his or her body becomes more dependent upon the drug if it is going to function normally. Eventually, however, many individuals who have been abusing drugs stop using them for a period of time. Some people do this in an attempt to overcome what they recognize is becoming a drug abuse problem, while other individuals are simply unable to acquire more of their drug of choice. Whatever the individual’s reason for abstinence, when he or she abstains from using the drug, his or her body loses its ability to function effectively. As a result, the person begins a process known as withdrawal.

During withdrawal, a person’s body attempts to readjust to functioning without the drugs present. This readjustment process often comes with a series of uncomfortable and even painful symptoms, and withdrawal can sometimes even be dangerous or life-threatening. Unfortunately, the fastest way to relieve the symptoms of withdrawal is to simply take more of the drug that the person had been using, meaning that the temptation to relapse during withdrawal can be almost impossible to overcome without assistance from an addiction rehab center.

Withdrawal Signs

Signs of drug & alcohol withdrawal

The signs and symptoms of withdrawal very widely, and depend on what drug or drugs a person had been using, the length and extent of abuse, and the individual’s unique body chemistry. Some of the indicators of withdrawal may include:

  • Anxiety
  • Drastic mood shifts
  • Aggression
  • Depression
  • Agitation
  • Suicidal ideation
  • Irritability
  • Fatigue
  • Changes in weight
  • Changes in body temperature
  • Sleep problems
  • Appetite changes
  • Hallucinations
  • Poor concentration
  • Memory impairment
  • Stomach pain
  • Disturbances in vision
  • Stomach cramping
  • Diarrhea
  • Fever
  • Shakiness
  • Watery eyes
  • Runny nose
  • Excessive sweating
  • Bone pain
  • Muscle pain
  • Cravings for the drugs the person had been using
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting

If you suspect that you or someone you love is experiencing symptoms of withdrawal, seek medical attention as soon as possible.

Seeking Treatment for Addiction

Why seek treatment for drug & alcohol addiction

When a person is struggling with a substance addiction, there is almost no limit to the amount of harm that that person can experience as a result of his or her drug use. Furthermore, every day that goes by with a person continuing to abuse substances is another day that he or she is at risk for experiencing the worst consequences of drug use, including a potentially fatal overdose. Therefore, it is important that he or she receives treatment from a reputable addiction rehab center as soon as possible.

Continuing to abuse substances exposes a person to a wide range of negative consequences. The person may struggle to keep up with the demands of work, resulting in poor job performance, demotion, or job loss, as well as the severe financial repercussions of long-term unemployment. Drug abuse also affects an individual’s relationships, potentially straining them to the breaking point. People who continue to use drugs may cause irreparable damage to friendships, romantic relationships, and family relationships, resulting in the person experiencing social isolation and a lack of interpersonal support. Naturally, unabated drug use also can affect a person’s body, resulting in cardiovascular problems, organ damage, contracting infectious diseases, sustaining injury in drug related accidents or altercations, and even suffering an overdose.

Despite the severity of these negative consequences, there is still hope. It is possible to overcome substance abuse problems, as millions of people in Virginia and worldwide have. With the help of an experienced, top-notch treatment center, individuals who are struggling with drug abuse can take the first steps of a journey towards lifelong soliloquy. At Life Center of Galax, in Virginia, we pride ourselves on providing the care that enables individuals with drug abuse problems to overcome their drug abuse and rediscover a substance-free life. We have extensive experience helping people overcome substance use disorders and giving them the tools and support they need to build a new foundation for their lives. If you or someone you love would benefit from the high-quality treatment we provide, please do not hesitate to contact us. Tomorrow can be the first day of a life of freedom from substance abuse.

My life had been overrun by my addiction. The Life Center of Galax taught me that recovery was possible, through hard work and dedication, and I am capable of living a life free of addiction.

– Matthew
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