Drug Abuse Withdrawal Symptoms

Drug addicts who seek treatment or try to kick the habit by themselves can rest assured that they will experience withdrawal symptoms at some point. Withdrawal symptoms occur when the brain and the body react adversely to the absence of a particular drug in the body after it has gotten used to the substance and developed dependence.

This is best explained by the spring theory. Drug misuse leads to a strong dependence on drugs. When addiction sets in, the brain works in much the same way as a spring. The drug on which the addict is hooked on takes up the role of a brain depressant and consequently pushes down the spring. The drug suppresses the production of neurotransmitters such as noradrenalin by the brain.

Addict-CeasesOnce the addict ceases taking in drugs, the weight that was holding the spring down is lifted off and the brain goes through a strong rebound. This results in the production of an adrenaline surge that marks the onset of withdrawals. Adverse reactions occur when the body becomes accustomed to illicit drugs before the supply is cut off.

Withdrawal symptoms are synonymous with heroin addiction, cocaine addiction, crystal meth addiction, opiate addiction, marijuana addiction and other forms of substance abuse. According to SAMHSA, different drugs produce different levels of physical withdrawal symptoms. Tranquilizers, opiates and alcohol produce considerable physical withdrawal symptoms.

Ecstasy, marijuana and cocaine on the other hand produce intense emotional withdrawal symptoms and little physical symptoms. It is also important to note that every person’s withdrawal experiences are different. Some people experience subtle withdrawal symptoms that may be hard to pin down.

Physical-WithdrawalsHowever, this does not in any way mean that they are not addicted. Their withdrawals may be more on the emotional side. Withdrawal symptoms can be broadly classified into two categories: emotional and physical withdrawal symptoms.

Emotional withdrawals are found in almost all cases of substance abuse. Addicts suffer from these irrespective of whether they have the physical ones or not. Physical withdrawal symptoms are prominent or outstanding with tranquilizers, opiates and alcohol.

Emotional Drug Abuse Withdrawal Symptoms

  • Anxiety
  • Insomnia
  • Headaches
  • Depression
  • Irritability
  • Restlessness
  • Social isolation
  • Poor concentration

Physical Drug Abuse Withdrawal Symptoms

  • Tremor
  • Nausea
  • Chills
  • Diarrhea
  • Sweating
  • Vomiting
  • Palpitations
  • Racing heart
  • Muscle tension
  • Chest tightness

The most dangerous physical withdrawals are associated with tranquilizers and alcohol. Sudden cessation of tranquilizer and alcohol intake can result in heart attacks, strokes or seizures. Some common dangerous symptoms associated with these drugs include:

  • Strokes
  • Heart attacks
  • Hallucinations
  • Delirium tremens
  • Grand mal seizures

Withdrawal symptoms shouldn’t be taken lightly and can be connected to many health conditions. If you are experiencing emotional and physical distress, then always consult your doctor because your bodily functions can deteriorate over the time and leave serious consequences. The faster you treat them, the better you will feel.

Mary J. Anderson