What Benzo Withdrawal Timeline Can You Expect?

woman holding head distressed at the beginning of the benzo withdrawal timeline

The benzo withdrawal symptoms timeline can take a year to run its course. Benzo detox and rehab programs are essential to recovery. Drug cravings are just some of the many psychological symptoms you can experience during withdrawal. Psychological symptoms make it difficult to stay sober when you haven’t received cognitive behavioral therapy. Drug addiction treatment programs use evidence-based techniques like that to help you overcome addiction.

Phases of the Benzo Withdrawal Timeline

Benzo withdrawal has three phases: early, acute and protracted. The early phase begins a few hours to a few days after not taking the drug. How fast withdrawal hits depends on whether the specific benzodiazepine you’re quitting is short-acting or long-acting. Withdrawal from short-acting benzodiazepines starts sooner than long-acting benzodiazepines because they leave your bloodstream quicker.

If your doctor prescribed benzodiazepine, symptoms treated by the drug will return quickly. For example, symptoms include anxiety and insomnia. You can expect the early stage to last a few days.

Acute withdrawal is often the worst stage and lasts around two weeks to several months. You can experience a wide range of symptoms during acute withdrawal, such as:

  • Nausea
  • Blurred vision
  • Muscle spasms and tension
  • Twitching
  • Seizures
  • Anxiety
  • Insomnia
  • Agitation
  • Suicidal thoughts

Grand mal seizures are a greater risk when you quit benzodiazepines cold turkey. For that reasons, doctors insist that patients do not quit benzos cold turkey.  For your safety, you need to wean yourself off the drug under medical detox supervision.

Protracted Benzo Withdrawal Symptoms Timeline

Around 10%-25% of people experience protracted withdrawal after the acute phase. Protracted withdrawal from benzodiazepines lasts several months to a year. Symptoms you may experience during this phase are:

  • Depression
  • Mood swings
  • Anxiety
  • Insomnia
  • Tingling in your arms and legs

The benzo withdrawal symptoms timeline can vary greatly among people who quit using this drug. Ask a doctor or a benzo addiction treatment expert for an estimate of the length and severity of your withdrawal.

How long your withdrawal lasts depends on numerous factors, such as:

  • How long you’ve been using the drug
  • The amount you’ve been taking
  • Underlying mental health issues
  • Your method of taking the drug
  • Whether or not you’re using other drugs

You shouldn’t try to taper yourself off benzodiazepines on your own because you might not adjust the dosage just right and could end up experiencing extremely uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms.

Kemah Palms has a benzo addiction rehab program to help you quit the drug as safely and effectively as possible. We provide both medical care and therapy to help you overcome benzo addiction and avoid relapse.

How Can You Ease The Benzo Withdrawal Symptoms Timeline?

Kemah Palms can reduce the intensity of the benzo withdrawal symptoms timeline through medication. For example, we may switch you to a long-acting benzo and gradually lower your dose.

For those already using a long-acting benzo, we can still swap your prescription to something less intense. In some cases, we’ll just wean you off the benzo you’ve been using. Additional medication may be provided to treat severe withdrawal symptoms.

Counseling also eases psychological withdrawal symptoms. Types of therapy we use include cognitive behavioral therapy, meditation and dialectical behavior therapy. In addition, we have physical fitness activities that help you cope with withdrawal.

Do You Need Inpatient Care for Benzodiazepine Addiction Treatment?

Most people don’t need inpatient rehab to overcome benzo addiction. If you have epilepsy or a mental health disorder, then we recommend inpatient care. You should also consider inpatient rehab if you are trying to quit another substance like alcohol. Quitting more than one substance is more challenging than quitting one. You will also have additional medical needs if you’re using another substance.

Kemah Palms offers inpatient rehab, outpatient rehab, partial hospitalization and aftercare planning. We have gender-separate programs if you prefer a program catered to your unique needs. Studies have found that gender-separate programs are often more effective in helping overcome addiction.

Overcoming benzo addiction is easier and safer when you enroll in an addiction treatment program. We recommend going through aftercare planning after a rehab program to keep yourself on the right track long-term. Contact Kemah Palms today for an effective and safe recovery from benzo addiction.