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What are Signs Your Body is Detoxing?

What Are Signs Your Body is Detoxing?

When detoxing from drugs or alcohol, your body goes through a process that can affect several bodily functions and systems. Some of these signs your body is detoxing aren’t comfortable but are well worth it.

Discover what those signs are and how you can help minimize their effects on you.


What is Detox?

When a drug is stopped, whether abruptly or slowly, your body goes through the withdrawal process of getting the drug completely out of your system. The long-term use of a drug or alcohol changes the brain to a new “normal,” meaning it becomes dependent on that substance to achieve a high or euphoric state or a woozy, relaxed state. Once a person takes a drug, it elicits a response in the brain. Whether it’s to block pain, create a buzzed or high feeling, or alters your thinking, it adapts, therefore, creates a dependency on the drug, if continued.


Your body, once the drug is stopped, has to readjust itself back to the old “normal,” but that takes some time. Meanwhile, your body starts to feel the effects of not having the drug in its system and begins to rebel, if you will. Detoxification is cleansing the body of the drug so that the brain can make its needed adjustments.


Signs of Detox

The signs your body is detoxing occur quite rapidly after stopping the substance—sometimes within hours. Depending on what type of substance you used, it could have differing effects. Here are the signs to be aware of:


  • Anxiety
  • Irritability
  • Body pain
  • Tremors
  • Changes in appetite
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Fatigue
  • Sleeplessness
  • Sleepiness
  • Leg cramps
  • Cravings
  • Sweating
  • Shivering


Your skin also shows signs of detoxing. You could break out in a rash, itch, or sweat more than usual. Emotionally, your moods can change from anger to sadness to anxiousness or depression. Cognitively, your motor reflexes could be slower. Major detox signs include seizures, delirium, and hallucinations.


Length of Detoxing

Detox signs start showing up anywhere from 8 to 24 hours after the drug is stopped, and can last for days or a few weeks. Again, this all depends on what substance was used and for how long. For example, people undergoing heroin detox show signs of peak symptoms within 72 to 96 hours, with opioid users going as long as 14 days after taking the last dose. For sedatives and hypnotics, you could be in withdrawal for 2 to 10 days.


Stimulants, such as cocaine or amphetamines, could cause excessive hunger and psychomotor dysfunction that can last two days, with milder symptoms lasting upwards of two weeks. Although the physical signs and symptoms of detox last for a few days to a week, the psychological effects can last longer.


Get Help with Detox

If you or a loved one is ready to detox from drugs and alcohol, you need a recovery center that understands your needs and offers care and support. At Ardu Recovery Center, we focus on the whole person and design treatment around the individual and their needs and comfort level. We are located in Provo, UT, and serve all of Utah and beyond. Please give us a call today and let us help take back your life or your loved one.

We offer caring, supportive alcohol detox and drug detox and recovery services.