Withdrawal from heroin (cold turkey) is never easy. Here is everything you need to know about heroin withdrawal symptoms. What you can expect if it’s your first time to try quitting heroin. This is a timeline of heroin withdrawals you should be familiar with:
- - For heroin, the cold turkey symptoms start within the first 24h. Depending on the daily intake, the first heroin withdrawals might start within 4h, but this is not common. 6h to 12h is more common time for the first heroin withdrawal symptoms to occur.
- -From the last heroin intake, peak would come within 36h to 72h. The heroin withdrawals symptoms are the worst then.
- -The cold turkey symptoms will last 7 to 10 days for most people.
The severity and duration of heroin withdrawals may depend on the following
- How long was heroin used
- The amount of heroin taken
- Method of heroin use
Why does it come to heroin withdrawal?
Heroin has the biggest effect on parts of the brain responsible for pleasure and motivation. Over some period of time, the brain starts to adapt to the substance and therefore relies on it to feel ‘normal.’ The more the brain is exposed to drugs like heroin, the less the brain feels like it has to produce natural opiates. The opiates produced by brain are called ‘endorphins’.
Because of this, when a person stops using heroin, there are not enough natural brain chemicals to help the person feel normal, so they feel all the symptoms of withdrawal. These symptoms are also cold “cold turkey symptoms”.
Over time, the brain will start to make more opiates naturally to restore the person back to normal. It usually takes 12 months for the brain to recover fully.
There are several issues to detoxing at home. First of all, the risk of relapse is substantially higher when someone tries to detox by themselves. This is because the symptoms of withdrawal can be much more intense and harder to deal with than they expected.
Unfortunately, when someone tries to detox alone and then relapses, they are also more likely to accidentally overdose. This is because their tolerance will be lower than it was before. Therefore, when they take heroin again at the same level they used to, they may overdose.
Finally, when someone detoxes at home, they usually go cold turkey. It is very much recommended for the heroin detox to be medically supervised. When someone tries to do heroin detox by themselves, the withdrawal symptoms can be too much.
What to Expect from Heroin Withdrawal
You can expect to feel sick during heroin withdrawal, as many of the symptoms feel very similar to the flu. It is important to have realistic expectations of what is going to happen because when people do not they will often resort to taking the drug again to feel relief.
Additionally, taking a drug such as heroin often affects the parts of the brain that control good and logical decision making/reasoning. After withdrawal, your decision-making skills will probably get better, but during it may get worse.
That is part of the benefit of an inpatient program; there will be people that will be able to keep you away from heroin when you are willing to do anything to get some.
Heroin withdrawal symptoms
We have listed some of the most common heroin withdrawal symptoms. While these sensations can be unpleasant, it is crucial to remember that relapsing to heroin will only prolong the recovery process. It will not help in the long run.
- Muscle and bone pains
- Running eyes and nose
- Dialed pupils
Full heroin detox uk is the equivalent of going ‘cold turkey,’ which means stopping the intake of heroin completely and all at once. This can make the detox process shorter, but the withdrawal symptoms are generally much worse.
Cold turkey detox most people attempt to do by themselves, and then, unfortunately, end up relapsing. If you do decide to stop using heroin suddenly, it is essential that you seek medical advice and conduct this detox process under the care of a medical professional.
At our inpatient detox clinic, our expert care team will go through your options with you and decide which type of detox suits you best.