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Inhalant Withdrawal Symptoms

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Do you feel trapped in the clutches of inhalant addiction? Discover how to manage withdrawal symptoms and our innovative rehab program can lead you back to a fulfilling life.
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Inhalants are a group of volatile substances that produce psychoactive effects when inhaled. These substances are commonly found in household items such as glue, paint thinner, and aerosol sprays. Inhalants are often abused due to their accessibility, affordability, and their ability to produce quick and intense euphoria. However, inhaling these substances can lead to serious health problems and addiction.

One of the consequences of inhalant abuse is withdrawal, which occurs when a person abruptly stops using inhalants after prolonged or heavy use. Inhalant withdrawal can cause a range of uncomfortable and potentially dangerous symptoms that can make quitting difficult. In a moment, we'll discuss the various symptoms of inhalant withdrawal and the treatment options like a rehab for drug use can help those struggling with inhalant abuse.

Dangers of Inhalant Withdrawal

When it comes to monitoring their children, parents are naturally concerned about alcohol or drug use. However, it's important to also include inhalant abuse on the list of potential worries. Inhalants are more commonly used than many people realize, and their easy accessibility contributes to their popularity among children and young adults.

While inhalant abuse is dangerous in its own right, the withdrawal symptoms can be life-threatening. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), even a single instance of inhaling these substances can be fatal as the chemicals can quickly enter the lungs and bloodstream. In fact, inhalant use can cause sudden sniffing death syndrome, resulting in fatalities after just one use. Given these risks, it's crucial to seek professional help when dealing with inhalant withdrawal and abuse.

What Is Inhalant Withdrawal?

Inhalant withdrawal occurs when an individual stops using inhalants after extended or heavy use, leading to a range of physical and psychological symptoms. Withdrawal occurs because the inhalant addict has become dependent on the substance, and the sudden absence of the it triggers a response. 

Inhalants are considered central nervous system (CNS) depressants, which means that they suppress physiological functions when used. However, when a person stops using inhalants, these suppressed functions become overactive, leading to uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms such as anxiety and nausea, among others. 

Although symptoms of inhalant withdrawal are generally mild, the process can still be challenging. It's recommended that individuals seek guidance from a doctor or complete the withdrawal process at rehab or clinic that has experience with treatment for inhalants to ensure safe and effective recovery.

Inhalant Withdrawal Symptoms

Withdrawal symptoms associated with inhalant abuse can be both physical and psychological. Although, as mentioned earlier, they are often mild, individuals who have a prolonged history of inhalant abuse may experience more severe symptoms.

Here’s a list of common symptoms that can occur during inhalant withdrawal:
Nausea, vomiting
Headaches and dizziness
Hand tremors
Rapid heartbeat
Anxiety and depression
Anger outbursts
Cravings for the inhalant of choice
Runny eyes, runny nose
Decreased memory capacity
Difficulty concentrating
Excessive sweating
Mood changes
Many inhalant withdrawal symptoms should start to improve within a few days as the individual's cravings for the substance diminish. However, it's important to note that some withdrawal symptoms can lead to hallucinations or seizures. In these cases, medical attention is necessary to ensure safe and effective management of the symptoms. Seeking professional help can increase the chances of a successful recovery from inhalant abuse and has a chance of making the whole withdrawal process easier and more bearable.
withdrawal symptoms of inhalants

How Long Do Inhalant Withdrawal Symptoms Last?

Withdrawal symptoms generally occur within the first 24 to 48 hours after the last use. The duration and severity of these symptoms vary from user to user, but most people go through the worst of withdrawal in about a week. Psychological withdrawal symptoms, such as cravings and depression, can last significantly longer than any physical markers. 

Some inhalant users have reported suffering from psychological withdrawal for months after quitting. These unpleasant aftereffects of abuse are known as post-acute withdrawal symptoms, or PAWS. In the most severe cases, PAWS can last up to 18-24 months, which has been linked to the long term effects of inhalant addiction & lack of early diagnosis.

Overall, after quitting inhalant use, you may continue to experience physical and psychological withdrawal symptoms until your body's natural chemicals are balanced. However, prolonged inhalant abuse can make the detoxification process more challenging and dangerous, leading to more severe symptoms. 

The severity and length of the symptoms depend on various factors, such as:
How long you have been using inhalants
How much and how often you have consumed them
Whether or not you’ve been using other drugs along with inhalants
Your physical and mental health condition
The level of stress in your life
Other substance abuse withdrawal experience and treatment attempts
Below, we’ll take a closer look at the timeline of inhalant withdrawal.

Inhalant Withdrawal Timeline

Acute inhalant intoxication

The initial stage of withdrawal is often the shortest and is characterized by an individual's persistent use of inhalants to seek pleasure despite the potential risks. This involves inhaling chemicals from containers or bags, which can lead to serious health complications and even death.

1-2 days

Typically, within 48 hours of quitting inhalant use, physical symptoms appear. These symptoms may include hand tremors, sweating, vomiting, and in severe cases, seizures. Along with physical symptoms, psychological symptoms like anxiety, insomnia, irritability, and strong cravings can set in. In some cases, hallucinations or psychosis may also manifest.

3-7 days

After the first two to five days, physical symptoms of withdrawal tend to subside. However, psychological symptoms can persist during this time, including depression, anxiety, and insomnia. In most cases, hallucinations and psychosis tend to fade quickly.

Late withdrawal stage

While acute withdrawal symptoms may begin to subside at this stage, there are still lingering effects that can last for up to a week after the last inhalant use. These may include difficulties with certain cognitive functions, depression, amnesia, and strong cravings.

The Importance of Detox

Many people, upon learning about the possible aftereffects of inhalant withdrawal, are afraid of experiencing unpleasant symptoms. As such, they are compelled to continue their abuse. However, it is important to realize that it’s not the withdrawal process that’s more dangerous - what’s truly life-threatening is the prolonged inhalant use. Generally speaking, the sooner you realize you have a substance problem and accept the fact that you need to stop, the more likely you are to successfully recover from it.

The initial step in overcoming any addiction is detoxing. In the case of inhalant addiction, detoxing allows the body to eliminate the harmful chemicals inhaled. Health professionals strongly advise individuals addicted to inhalants to seek medical assistance during detoxification instead of trying to quit on their own at home. At a rehab facility, you'll undergo a complete medical examination, which is necessary as inhalants can cause damage to different organs and systems of the body. 

Furthermore, if you stop using inhalants abruptly, it can result in severe withdrawal symptoms that could put your health and well-being at risk. That's why medical detox under the supervision of physicians is always advised - ask for help if you don’t know how to handle it alone!

Support System During Inhalant Withdrawal

People struggling with inhalant use disorder and undergoing inhalant withdrawal symptoms may find it challenging to overcome on their own. That's why seeking the help of addiction specialists can be immensely helpful in overcoming addiction. The treatment can take various forms, such as individual therapy and counseling or staying at an addiction treatment center. You can also try behavioral therapy, as it focuses on identifying the underlying issues that led to addiction and how to manage them effectively.

Ultimately, having a strong support system, including family and friends, is also crucial in an individual's road to recovery. Knowing that your loved ones support you and are there for you when you need them can help you immensely. Not only can they be helpful in your day-to-day routine - they can also support you psychologically, prompting you to maintain sobriety. 
inhalant withdrawal symptoms

You Are Not Alone

You don't have to deal with your inhalant withdrawal symptoms and go through the entire process alone! At our residential rehab facility located in Phuket, Thailand, we provide the help you need to overcome your addiction. Our team of experts will assess your unique needs and preferences, and design a customized treatment plan to ensure a productive and supportive recovery journey.

Miracles Asia offers a comprehensive treatment program that includes medical assistance to help manage inhalant withdrawal symptoms. Our individual therapy sessions aim to provide insights into the underlying causes of addiction and provide coping mechanisms to manage them. 

In addition, our group sessions provide a supportive and safe environment for people to share their experiences, emotions, and thoughts with those who are undergoing similar struggles. 

During your stay with us, you will have the opportunity to unwind and discover the stunning sights of Phuket. With its pristine beaches and lush forests, the island provides a serene environment that encourages healing and helps you achieve inner balance, which you can carry with you beyond our program.

Don’t wait! If you’re struggling with addiction and are afraid to go through the inhalant withdrawal process alone - get in touch with us & explore how a visit to Miracles Asia can change your life for the better.


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