Heroin Detox Timeline: What to Expect During Withdrawal
Heroin is a highly addictive opioid that is difficult to quit. Many people battling heroin addiction often feel as if they will never get sober. Some tried to quit the drug on their own only to fall back into substance abuse. But it is totally possible for you or a loved to beat addiction by going to a heroin detox center in Florida. Detox is the first step on the journey to long-term sobriety, and knowing all you can about the heroin detox timeline helps to prepare you for what’s to come.
Heroin Addiction Affect Millions
In 2017, 1.9 percent (approximately 6.2 million) people in the US aged 12 or older used heroin at least once in their life. The risk of dependency is high even after the first use since the drug quickly binds to the natural opioid receptors in the brain. This activates the brain’s reward system which then forces the user to continue drug use to feel the euphoria. However, frequent and repeated use build tolerance for the drug. At this point, a person may begin injecting heroin. Or, they may use it with alcohol or other drugs to get a “better” high. But this only worsens the addiction and makes it far more difficult to withdraw on your own.
Why Professional Heroin Detox is Important
Severe, life-threatening symptoms can develop during the heroin detox timeline. For this reason, trying to quit heroin at home, “cold turkey” increases the risk of relapse and overdose. Here are some of the important benefits of checking into an accredited detox center:
- It can give you the peace of mind you need
- An experienced medical detox staff will help you manage severe withdrawal symptoms and intense drug cravings
- Medication therapy is provided to help improve symptoms of conditions, such as anxiety or depression (if needed)
- Withdrawal is more tolerable in a medically and emotionally supportive environment
- Having a trained physician to monitor you during the process increases your chance of coming off heroin
By offering these advantages, a Florida drug detox center can help you get clean from heroin and learn how to reduce the risk of relapse.
The Heroin Detox Timeline
Several factors help determine the heroin detox timeline. They include the potency of the drug, dose level, frequency, duration, and method of use. People with mental health problems such as anxiety, bipolar disorder, or depression usually have a more challenging time dealing with withdrawal effects. Dual diagnosis therapy can help alleviate these mental health symptoms so each individual can focus wholly on recovery. It is also one of the main reasons some individuals take a longer time to withdraw than others.
Heroin withdrawal symptoms usually start within 6-12 hours of the last dose. They peak around day 3, and can last about 7-10 days. Here is a general heroin detox timeline that can help you to prepare to conquer any fears you may have about the process:
Day 1-2: Symptoms such as muscle aches, pain, runny nose, and cravings may start around 6 hours after the last dose and continue throughout the first 24 hours. They may increase in intensity over the first 48 hours and peak at day 3. Other symptoms may develop including anxiety, sleep disturbances, panic attacks, diarrhea, and tremor.
Day 3-5: Withdrawal is at its highest point by the third to fifth day. Typical symptoms at this stage include nausea, vomiting, abdominal cramps, cold sweat, fever, and chills.
Day 6-7: The acute withdrawal symptoms present during days 1 to 5 begin to fade. The client may begin to feel physically normal again. However, post-acute withdrawal symptoms (PAWS) usually start from around week 2. They include increased anxiety, depression, trouble sleeping, panic attacks, mood swings, and irritability which can last for months.
Your doctor can monitor your breathing and heart rate during this time and may give you approved medications to help manage the physical and emotional side effects. You will also prepare to move to behavioral therapy which is the second stage of a heroin addiction treatment program.
Safely Withdrawing From Heroin at Serenity House Detox
Serenity House Detox is a professional detox center in West Palm Beach, Florida that offers a men’s detox program, women’s detox program, and support services. The goal is to help your body and brain lose dependency on heroin. The compassionate medical detox and mental health staff will help you manage withdrawal symptoms as you begin your journey to sobriety. Please call 866.294.5306 to find out about an inpatient or outpatient detox program that suits your needs.