When do Withdrawal Symptoms Stop?

How Long Do  Withdrawal Symptoms Last?

While using drugs and alcohol your body chemistry will begin to adapt to fit your lifestyle.  The chemical imbalance created while dependent on drugs and alcohol is mostly reversible with the right treatment plan to combat the addiction.  Withdrawal symptoms vary widely in both severity and length of time.  Your body’s reset period depends on a number of variables.

Early withdrawal symptoms do not last long, but are intense.  It can take nearly two weeks for some substances to purge from your body before you are ready for the next phase of your treatment.  

Depending on your level of substance abuse it is important to seek the advice of a physician before quitting drugs or alcohol.  If your dependency is high, your withdrawal symptoms may be too much for your body to handle.  Some who try to detox alone require hospitalization, and some have had fatal results by not detoxing appropriately.

The next level of withdrawal symptoms is a repair phase for your body and mind.  These are milder than early withdrawal symptoms, but are still disruptive.  In this phase almost all people will experience depression or sadness as their body readjusts.  However, some may still experience milder versions of their initial symptoms: tremors, cognitive retardation, etc.   These symptoms depend on the substance was abused and how much was used.  This level of symptoms lasts eight to twelve weeks .

Final Stage Of Withdrawal

Final withdrawal symptoms will consist mostly of depression and sporadic, intense cravings to use.  In this stage many relapses can occur because people begin to lower their guard when the more intense withdrawal symptoms have passed.  Some in recovery report that they still experience cravings decades later.  For this reason it is important to pursue a treatment plan that is effective for the rest of your life.

Generally speaking, the intensity of these symptoms in the final stage will begin to taper off after twenty-eight weeks to one year.  Those in recovery report that the cravings become less frequent and many report that depression, specifically tied to their substance abuse, disappears entirely.   

Research shows that over twenty-four million people need treatment for substance abuse.  Less than three million sought treatment.  These numbers are a few years old and the gap has likely grown since then.  Even if you are suffering from withdrawal symptoms now, be encouraged that you are one of the few who have the courage to seek treatment.  If you are not yet in treatment, remember to consult a physician and a treatment center beforehand.  Your new life awaits.




The Lakehouse Treatment Center understands the worlds of active addiction and active recovery. Years of comprehensive experience have helped us build a unique program focused on changing lives and rebuilding families. From detox to sober living, The Lakehouse program focuses on learning how to live and have fun again- a treatment experience like no other. Call us anytime: 877.762.3707


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