During a drug detox, and well into rehab, individuals can experience withdrawal symptoms. Often, these symptoms require treatment. That’s just one of the many reasons that professional treatment has to be a priority. With medical support and care, clients can get 24/7 assistance for all their common, mild and severe withdrawal symptoms.
Whether you’re overcoming an addiction to drugs or alcohol, the most common withdrawal symptom will be gastrointestinal distress. In fact, it is rare to ever come through withdrawal without some kind of intestinal discomfort. Fortunately, this is rarely a serious issue, but it can be unpleasant. The right treatment can make all the difference.
Gastrointestinal distress is especially common for those overcoming an opioid addiction. Opiates cause constipation, which means that detoxing can have the opposite effect. Some clients experience abdominal cramping, diarrhea, and nausea.
Vomiting during withdrawal is more than just unpleasant. If clients inhale vomit into the lungs involuntarily, it can cause aspiration pneumonia. This can be prevented with around-the-clock monitoring and aids that prevent unnecessary vomiting.
Help Available for Withdrawal Symptoms
Diarrhea is a common condition, but treatment isn’t always clear cut. Many people are surprised to learn that common remedies like Imodium actually contain a small amount of opiates. Medical supervision is necessary to make sure that clients are taking the right amount of anti-diarrheal medication and not harming their addiction recovery in any way.
All of this intestinal discomfort means that it is hard to keep any fluids down. Trying to eat can feel like a monumental task. Just like when you have the flu, it is important to stay hydrated to avoid further health complications.
Dehydration might seem like a minor issue, but it can cause bigger problems. Severe dehydration can cause an abnormal heartbeat, which can lead to cardiac conditions or even a heart attack. Simply put, dehydration during withdrawal can’t be ignored.
In addiction treatment, clients will get the necessary treatment to stay hydrated. This can come in a range of ways. Ending any diarrhea will help tremendously, but so will electrolyte salts and beverages. In some cases, medical professionals can even administer an IV with a saline solution to help provide sufficient hydration.
Muscle Cramps and Joint Pain
More of the most common withdrawal symptoms are muscle cramps and joint pain. These happen for a number of reasons, and both are normally mild but unpleasant side effects of addiction recovery. Treating these withdrawal symptoms at home, however, can be risky. It is always best to seek treatment in a detox or rehab facility staffed with medical professionals.
Muscle cramps are a normal part of withdrawal. They can happen even if you’re perfectly hydrated, but they definitely increase in intensity when you’re dehydrated. Sometimes, increasing electrolytes is a simple solution that helps decrease cramping quickly.
Joint pain can happen during any kind of drug withdrawal. However, it is most common in an opioid or painkiller withdrawal. During withdrawal, many clients experience an increase in pain sensitivity. This doesn’t mean there is actually more pain, just that people can perceive it as more painful.
The good news is that this kind of increased pain perception isn’t a long-term condition. Most clients will adjust over time once they are free from drug addiction.
Some individuals that experience these painful withdrawal symptoms want immediate treatment. While that can be okay, self-medication is never a good idea. Using a strong painkiller when you’re already in treatment comes with risks. That’s why it is so important for clients to defer to medical professionals and only use what is prescribed.
Taking painkillers while in rehab might temporarily reduce muscle cramps and joint pain, but it could lead to a secondary addiction. This should be avoided because it only prolongs treatment and makes it harder to enjoy a full recovery.
Withdrawal symptoms can impact all aspects of health. Cardiac problems are incredibly common, although most clients will experience very mild problems. Severe cardiac problems, while rare, are some of the most dangerous withdrawal symptoms out there. It’s vital that individuals have medical care and supervision to prevent any serious or lasting cardiac issues.
Withdrawal is a kind of stress on the body. Withdrawal symptoms are manifestations of the body’s stress, which is normal. The heart is especially sensitive to these levels of stress. Just like your heart rate increases when you’re scared or you’re running on the treadmill, it will increase when you’re under the stress of withdrawal.
Many clients will experience withdrawal symptoms related to the cardiac system. It is normal to have an increase in blood pressure or an increase in heart rate. While common, these changes can’t be ignored.
Whether clients are in detox or they have transitioned to addiction treatment at Healing Springs Ranch, they need to have their cardiac signals monitored. This doesn’t have to be time-consuming. In fact, checking vitals upon admission and then once a day might be all that is required. These small actions ensure that there are no seriously worrying changes.
As an example, take Client A. He has a normal heart rate and blood pressure on admission. During withdrawal, his vitals go up to elevated but normal levels. If something skyrockets, however, medical professionals can identify and then prevent any problems before they become a heart attack or stroke.
At home, these withdrawal symptoms are rarely noticed until it is too late. No one should ignore the risk of cardiac problems in detox or in rehab.
Many clients experience difficulty sleeping during addiction treatment. This might be more pronounced during detox, but it can carry over to residential treatment at Healing Springs Ranch. Many people think that sleep issues are just part of recovery. While that may be true, guests should still access treatment that helps.
Insomnia is one of the most common withdrawal symptoms. Whether clients are struggling with alcohol addiction, opiate addiction, or anything in between, insomnia is normal.
Sometimes, insomnia is a result of discomfort. Getting resources and treatment for any pain or discomfort can go a long way in reducing or even eliminating insomnia. At Healing Springs Ranch, we aim to provide comfortable accommodation that makes it easy to feel safe and secure each night at bedtime.
Other clients face insomnia because they are worried about the future. This, too, is perfectly normal. Addiction recovery is a time of profound change, and certain aspects of life will be different when you’re sober. Counseling and therapy can help clients work through some of these concerns and improve sleep.
Nightmares or vivid dreams can also impact sleep significantly. Chemically, the brain is changing during withdrawal. Even at night, it can react in unusual ways, and those ways sometimes include strange dreams. Being able to separate dreams from reality is key to sleeping well through the night.
In certain cases, medical professionals can administer sleep aids to clients. Medical experts will know which drugs to administer and how much is the proper dosage. Every prescription medication is carefully considered, ensuring clients don’t suffer from further addictions or health problems in the future.
Psychological Withdrawal Symptoms
Not all withdrawal symptoms are physical. Some of the most disruptive can actually be psychological. These symptoms need just as much attention and treatment. At Healing Springs Ranch, psychological symptoms are given a priority throughout the recovery process.
Some psychological symptoms can crop up during detox. These might include paranoia or anxiety. If these are new symptoms that didn’t exist before addiction, they may be temporary. Often, they go away once detox is complete.
Clients who have a history of mental health disorders, however, may find that certain symptoms are renewed during addiction recovery. This creates an opportunity for clients to receive dual diagnosis treatment that addresses their physical and mental health at the same time.
Whole Person Approach
This is part of the whole-person approach at Healing Springs Ranch. A person’s well-being is about far more than just their vital signs. Individuals deserve to get to the root of their problems and feel fulfilled, happy and healthy.
Treating withdrawal symptoms should be a completely individualized effort. This is especially true when it comes to psychological symptoms. No two people are the same, so no two clients receive the exact same treatment.
Sometimes, clients will be anxious about the future. Counselors can help clients decrease anxiety by helping them sign up for job training or higher education classes online. Other patients might struggle with a history of trauma, and extensive individual therapy can pave the way for a positive breakthrough.
More of the treatment methods used at Healing Springs Ranch include the following:
- Dialectical and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
- Group therapy
- Dual diagnosis treatment
- Family program
- Relapse prevention
There’s no need to suffer through withdrawal symptoms alone. At Healing Springs Ranch in Tioga, Texas, you can get the support and resources you need to enjoy a happier, healthier and more satisfying life. Begin your recovery from addiction today by calling 866-656-8384.