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how long does detox take?

How Long Does Detox Take?

Many people, clients, family members, and loved-ones alike have concerns regarding detoxification. There’s a buzz which surrounds the process of detoxification. Most know it as a difficult period on a patient’s road to recovery but several questions surround the process itself. How will I feel during detox? What is the medical detox protocol for my specific addiction? And how long does it take to detox? Today, we will be exploring how long does it take to detox from the following drugs; alcohol, heroin, meth/methamphetamine, cocaine/stimulants, opioids, weed/marijuana/cannabis.

Before we look at individual detox timing for these specific addictions, we should better understand why detox has such effects. The impact, variety, and specifics of drugs are vast but they all affect our bodies from a chemical stand point, and after a certain period of time where a patient no longer partakes in the use of their addictive substances, an individual will start to experience withdrawal symptoms. Withdrawal symptoms occur when the body is craving the addictive substance and the symptoms can be quite intense. This is where detoxification comes in. Detoxification is the process which flushes out chemical toxins from the body, which allows the individual to achieve both physical and mental stabilization before starting their addiction treatment program. Now, because there are difference in the types of addictions and the effect of such substances, the time it takes to fully detox varies.

How Does It Take To Detox From Alcohol?

Alcohol withdrawal symptoms typically last 4 or 5 days after a patient’s last consumption of alcohol, but to detox fully from your alcohol addiction would likely require medication assisted treatment (MAT) and could take up to a full week. Post-detox, it would be recommended to remain at an addiction treatment facility for a full stay of 28 days, partaking in group and individual therapy sessions and relapse prevention programs.

How Does It Take To Detox From Heroin?

Heroin withdrawal symptoms typically last about a week, but depression and cravings can continue for several weeks thereafter. The medication assisted detox would last about a week, giving the patient time to rest before they begin additional therapies to help maintain their sobriety, and combat future cravings and dependency.

How Does It Take To Detox From Opioids?

With a variety of opioids in their own right, withdrawal symptoms vary for short and long-acting opioids. Short-acting opioids such as morphine and immediate release oxycodone, hydrocodone, and fentanyl, can last 8-24 hours, and can continue up to 10 days. Long-acting opioids such as methadone and controlled release morphine, oxycodone, hydrocodone, and fentanyl, can last 36 hours, and can continue up to 14 days.

How Does It Take To Detox From Meth/Methamphetamine?

Meth withdrawal symptoms will be most intense with 24-48 hours of the patient’s last use, but will continue for the first week of their sobriety.  There are no FDA approved medications to treat a meth addiction however, medications will likely be prescribed to ease withdrawal symptoms during detox. It is recommended to stay a full 28 days at an addiction treatment facility but may vary depending on the patient’s individual level of addiction and progression through their treatment.

How Does It Take To Detox From Cocaine?

Cocaine withdrawal symptoms typically resolve within several days, however, some people experience a more prolonged withdrawal period which can last several weeks. There are no FDA approved medications to treat a cocaine addiction addiction however, medications will likely be prescribed to ease withdrawal symptoms during detox. This period should last about a week, and another week should be taken to rest and recuperate.

How Does It Take To Detox From Weed/Marijuana/Cannabis?

Weed/marijuana/cannabis withdrawal symptoms, typically last up to 6 days, with the potential psychological symptoms lasting up to 5 weeks after quitting. There is no formal medical detox period for weed/marijuana/cannabis, however, medications can be used to help clients getting through their withdrawal symptoms.

We hope you found this information helpful, and if you need any additional assistance, or know someone in need, please reach out to Long Island Center for Recovery at 800-344-5427, and we’d be happy to assist you or your loved ones in any way possible.


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