Upon abrupt discontinuation or decrease in intake of substances of abuse, an individual goes into a phase called “withdrawal.” It happens after repeated use of opiates (pain pills/heroin), alcohol and benzodiazepines and buprenorphine (trade names: Suboxone, Bunavail, Zubsolv), a medication used to treat opioid withdrawal and cravings. Withdrawal causes acute physical distress and, in the case of alcohol and benxodiazepines, it can cause seizures or even death.
Opiate (pain pills, heroin) withdrawal symptoms include: anxiety, sweating, vomiting, diarrhea and shivers.
Suboxone withdrawal symptoms include: nausea and vomiting, muscle/body aches, insomnia or drowsiness, indigestion, anxiety, depression and irritability.
Alcohol withdrawal symptoms include: anxiety, depression, mood swings, tremors, shaking, irritability, nausea, seizures and delirium tremens.
Benzodiazepine withdrawal symptoms include: sleep disturbance, irritability, increased tension and anxiety, panic attacks, hand tremor, sweating, difficulty concentrating, headache, muscular pain, stiffness and dry wretching and nausea.
Cocaine withdrawal symptoms include: agitation and restless behavior, depressed mood, fatigue, increased appetite, vivid and unpleasant dreams, and slowing of activity.
Methamphetamine withdrawal symptoms include: deep, dark depression, emotional lability (exaggerated changes in mood), night sweats, teeth grinding, anxiety, anhedonia (inability to experience pleasure from activities usually found enjoyable), irritability, suicidal ideations, and suicide.
Spice withdrawal symptoms include: depression, headache, loss of appetite, headache, tremors, palpitation, confusion, psychotic episodes, restlessness, extreme sweating, hallucinations and seizures.
Ketamine withdrawal symptoms include: nausea, dizziness, diarrhea, flashbacks, aggressive behavior, irregular and rapid heartbeat, seizures and, possibly, death.
As is evident from the withdrawal symptoms listed above, stopping drug and alcohol use abruptly has its own risks, Consequently, when an individual decides to come off of drugs or alcohol, it is important to do it at licensed detoxification facilities under appropriate supervision and care.