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What Is Post-Acute Withdrawal Syndrome?

Withdrawal syndrome refers to the range of symptoms someone with a substance dependency has when they quit . Withdrawal symptoms can develop with both illicit and pharmaceutical drugs and can last anywhere between a couple days to a few weeks. Many withdrawal effects are caused by substances’ toxic effects on the brain and body. Individuals may have acute withdrawal symptoms in the days or weeks after a period of drug use, which could be more severe for some and change considerably depending on which substance it is. Here are some of the factors to be cautious about when it comes to post-acute withdrawal syndrome:

What Does It Entail?

PAWS symptoms are most generally observed following a withdrawal period from alcohol, benzodiazepines, and opioids. However, they have also been seen when someone stops using psychoactive substances. The exact mechanism of how PAWS functions is still being explored. Researchers think the recurring symptoms are caused by physiological changes to the mind during substance abuse and are what cause greater tolerance for the drug.

What Are The Signs?

PAWS symptoms vary in severity and may fade entirely only to resurface at a later stage. These include problems with mental performance such as thinking, decision making, or cognitive functioning, restlessness, anxiousness or fear, and despair.

Treatment For PAWS

Because PAWS symptoms can last months or years, treatment is typically provided over a long period. Acamprosate, a medication often used to aid in recovery, has been proven to be slightly beneficial in handling some PAWS symptoms. Other medications may be administered as well. To learn to handle the effects, most individuals also undergo psychotherapy in addiction treatment, group counseling, or even both. PAWS can be hard to manage, immediately post-detox and then seeking to prevent a recurrence. The inconsistent results can be distressing, but a combination of medications and counseling can help make those effects more bearable, as recommended by addiction doctors.If you’re in search of addiction treatment for yourself or your loved ones, consult MD MATT, a suboxone clinic in Baltimore. We use technologically advanced treatment to help with recovery from substance abuse. Give us a call today to learn more about our services.