Author: Alex Thompson

Meth Withdrawal: Symptoms, Duration, Coping Tips, and More

meth withdrawal

Once tolerance develops, people need to take higher doses of the drug to achieve the desired effects. They may start smoking or injecting meth to experience a stronger, more immediate high. The purpose of therapy is to help the person with the addiction determine the underlying causes of the addiction. It also teaches the person to identify triggers for drug use and learn to manage those triggers effectively. After detox is complete and withdrawal symptoms subside, formal counseling begins. BetterHelp can connect you to an addiction and mental health counselor.

  1. Attempting to quit alone or within an environment with addictive triggers can also make the process more challenging.
  2. After detox is complete and withdrawal symptoms subside, formal counseling begins.
  3. Tapering is the process of lowering the dosage slowly over time.
  4. The National Institute on Drug Abuse states that meth withdrawal symptoms can alter a person’s emotions.

They’ll also make sure it won’t interact with any other medications you take. You’ll definitely want to consider consulting a medical professional first if you also intend to stop using other substances you’ve been mixing with meth. This is especially important for alcohol, GHB (gamma hydroxybutyrate), GBL (gamma butyrolactone), or benzodiazepines, as these can be dangerous to stop using on your own. They may also develop a marked physiologic dependence to the drug, which is what precipitates the withdrawal symptoms upon cessation or reduction of meth use. If someone stops using methamphetamine, the brain must quickly adapt to this change. This kick-starts various processes that function to bring the brain chemistry closer to what it was before a person began taking methamphetamine.

Why do withdrawal symptoms occur?

The effects of meth use can be felt long after a person stops using the drug. Research has shown that cognitive abilities improve after three months of not using meth. However, individuals may not fully recover executive and motor function, attentiveness, memory and learning ability for up to four years. A 2005 study published in the journal Addiction indicated that amphetamine users can experience depression about seven to 10 days into withdrawal.

meth withdrawal

If a person uses it more than once or twice, they have a high chance of developing an addiction. Once a person becomes dependent, the body will go into withdrawal if they try to quit. Meth withdrawal symptoms may manifest during or after detox, which is the process of the body metabolizing and removing it. Most meth withdrawal symptoms peak 1 or 2 days after stopping consumption and go away within 7 days.

Inpatient vs. Outpatient Treatment

In addition to therapy, people with a meth addiction also benefit from other forms of counseling and support. For example, 12-step programs or similar long-term peer group support is effective for many. Certain medications are known to support successful recovery from meth addiction.

Giving your loved one support, a helping hand, and a listening ear during his/her time of need is very important and greatly improve the chances of making a full recovery. We will help you find the right treatment options for you or your loved one. Over time, the continued use of increasingly higher doses of meth produces changes in the brain of the user (both structural and chemical changes). The euphoric effects of meth are produced by its effect on the neurotransmitter dopamine. While it has limited medical uses (ADHD treatment, rarely), it is frequently abused.

While meth withdrawal is not typically life threatening, it is quite uncomfortable. A little supportive care at home can greatly improve the severity of the withdrawal symptoms. To address depression caused by meth withdrawal, rehab centers may provide antidepressants. Dehydration often accompanies the withdrawal process, which can be dangerous. For this reason, medically supervised detox can be a crucial part of a care plan.

Therapists are Standing By to Treat Your Depression, Anxiety or Other Mental Health Needs

Nutrition and hydration are very important during withdrawal, as it is easy to become dehydrated during long periods of sleep. Withdrawal symptoms may not begin immediately and may last longer compared to withdrawal from other stimulants. Our goal is to offer people a single source of relatable, reliable information at any stage of their recovery journey. This might involve attending a support group for people in similar situations.

We publish material that is researched, cited, edited and reviewed by licensed medical professionals. The information we provide is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. It should not be used in place of the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare providers.

You can try to anticipate the intensity of your symptoms based on your consumption patterns, but there’s no guarantee around how things will unfold. Shame and stigma can also have a negative effect on the post-meth experience for some people, notes Vivian Veronica, a methamphetamine specialist. Veronica works with Project Neon, a harm reduction organization.

People with substance use disorder (or family history) are likely to experience more challenges in withdrawing from methamphetamine. Attempting to quit alone or within an environment with addictive triggers can also make the process more challenging. Many people who quit using meth experience this condition, called anhedonia. Anhedonia can continue for years after a person stops the drug. Withdrawal symptoms are uncomfortable even if a person has only used meth for a short time.

Should you seek professional care?

As the United Kingdom’s National Health Service (NHS) explains, it can be challenging to care for someone who has a substance use disorder. People who provide such support should make sure to practice self-care. During a methamphetamine detox, some people may benefit from the support of family, friends, or partners.

The same 2011 study found that participants slept a lot in the first few days of not using meth and reported higher post-sleep refreshment. Yet the overall quality of sleep, measured by the length of time it takes you to fall asleep and the number of times you wake up, remained low even after 3 weeks had passed. When you stop using meth, though, your brain is left without enough dopamine or serotonin, causing withdrawal symptoms. These symptoms fade as your brain replenishes its store of dopamine and serotonin.