The Sobering Reality That Comes with Withdrawal

Experiencing withdrawal while getting sober in recoveryOne of the most commonly discussed components of withdrawal are the physical side effects – a commonly feared aspect of recovery that must be done in order to fully detox. Detoxification, if done safely and in a treatment center, can be much easier to navigate because there are a team of healthcare professionals that can help minimize some of the pain and discomfort that comes with withdrawal. What isn’t talked about as often are the moments when a person transitions from withdrawal to recovery – what is the reality like for them?

The reality is that a person withdrawing from substances will feel not only physical effects – such as shaking, headaches, fatigue and more – but also mental effects – such as irritability, depression, anxiety and others. Even once a person completely detoxes, they may still feel some stress because the mind, body and spirit are going through some major changes. Chad Sabora, a 31-year-old attorney in Chicago, told Ozy about his experience with opioid addiction. After spiraling out of control on pain pills and heroin, he detoxed:

“Between the combination of destroying myself and going back to rehab, I got a little more to the core of who I was – and that’s what it took for me to finally look in the mirror and be done with the stuff.”

While the transition from detox to recovery is a stressful one – and while there will still be cravings and other symptoms of withdrawal that linger on for a bit longer than others – there will eventually become a greater sense of clarity. These moments can become true eye-opening experiences for people because they bring them back to who they are at the heart of it all.

Christopher Kennedy Lawford, a man who once struggled with addiction, told Today a few years ago that underneath the darkness of addiction comes many beautiful gifts – gifts that shed light onto who we are as human beings, what our purpose is in this world and so much more.

Cumberland Heights is a nonprofit alcohol and drug-addiction treatment center located on the banks of the Cumberland river in Nashville, Tennessee. On a sprawling 177-acre campus, we are made up of 2 12-Step immersion campuses, 12 outpatient recovery centers and 4 sober living homes. We believe that each person has a unique story to tell – and that’s why we always put the patient first.

Why is it so meaningful to give to Cumberland Heights?

Your gift to Cumberland Heights through our annual and capital initiates gives immediate support to patients and their families. To make a longer term impact a gift to the endowment fund will provide patient assistance funding for years to come.

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