How Long Does it Take to Get Clean from Drugs

You may be wondering, How long does it take to get clean from drugs? if you or someone you know is addicted. Many substance abusers struggle with this question during recovery. This talk will include addiction recovery time, treatment alternatives, and the path to drug-free living.

Drug rehab is a complicated and personal process, and the time it takes to stop using drugs can vary a lot. Important factors include the type of drug, how long and how much it was used, the person’s body, and the treatment method chosen. Detox is the first step to getting sober, and it usually takes a few days to a couple of weeks for the body to get rid of the drug. But real recovery involves more than just physical detox. It also includes psychic healing, changes in behavior, and learning how to cope. This big change can take anywhere from a few months to a few years and often requires ongoing help. Every person’s schedule for recovery is different, which shows how important it is to be patient, persistent, and take a whole-person approach to get off drugs for good.

What is Drug?

A drug is a chemical that, when taken into the body, can change the way it feels or thinks. It can include both legal and illegal substances, like booze, prescription drugs, heroin, and marijuana. Drugs can change the way the brain talks to itself, which can change how people see, feel, think, and act. They can be used to treat diseases or ease symptoms, but some of them can also be misused or abused, which can lead to addiction and bad effects on your health. Understanding the effects and possible risks of different drugs is important if you want to make smart choices about using them.


Timeline: Symptoms peak at 72 hours and usually go away in 4-5 days.

Length of treatment: 30 to 90 days

Recovery is a long-term process.

Because alcohol withdrawal effects can be dangerous to your health, treatment often starts in an inpatient program. Here, you can get help from doctors and nurses at any time. Usually, a person’s alcohol withdrawal symptoms peak 72 hours after their last drink. These symptoms can include nervousness, trembling, headache, nausea, and vomiting.

But the time it takes to stop drinking isn’t very long. Most of the time, these symptoms go away after the first week. Still, you might still want to drink. Treatment will teach you how to deal with feelings and other things that make you want to drink without using alcohol. After you finish a structured treatment program that lasts 30, 60, or 90 days, ongoing counseling can help you improve these skills.

It is also important to have a good support system. Most social events have alcohol, so having friends and family who support your sobriety can make the difference between a long-term recovery and a constant battle. Put yourself around people who want to help you stay sober, not make it harder.


Depending on the type of drug, withdrawal symptoms can start within hours and reach their peak in the first few days. Symptoms usually go away after 10 days.

Length of rehab program: 10–15 days, then care with medical help for up to 12 months.

Recovery is a long-term process.

More than 2 million Americans are addicted to opioids every year, and that number keeps going up. Government statistics show that up to 80% of people with opioid use disorder (OUD) do not get care.

Opioid withdrawal can be very bad, just like alcohol withdrawal. Also, drug removal detox is usually done with the help of a doctor. Because of this, it is very important for detox to happen at a treatment center with a medical team that knows what they are doing. Some common signs of opioid withdrawal are:

  • Shivering and a fever
  • Increased heart rate and hypertension
  • Anxiety
  • muscles hurt
  • Depression
  • Symptoms like the flu
  • Nausea, diarrhea, and vomiting

These signs can start to show up a few hours after the last use and get worse over the next few days. Most people feel better after 5 to 10 days.

Because painkillers are so addicting, it can take time to get over them. But you don’t have to be alone on the road. A long-lasting recovery can be helped by a helpful treatment program and counseling after treatment.

Medically assisted treatment (MAT) is the standard of care for opioid use disorder right now, based on data. This method mixes drugs like methadone, buprenorphine (Suboxone), or naltrexone with counseling on how to change the way they act. Treatment works best when it is tailored to the person getting it, so the amount of time in treatment varies. Some people need a MAT for a few months, while others may need it for a longer time.


Timeline: Withdrawal symptoms start within hours and usually go away within days

Length of detox program: 5 days, with care afterward for several months

Recovery is a long-term process.

Stimulants like cocaine stay in your body for no more than 24 hours. Detoxing from cocaine is also short, but it can hurt a lot. Within the first 24 hours, the first signs show up. People going through drug withdrawal may:

  • General fatigue
  • Intense mood changes
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Heavily increased appetite

Psychosis can also happen during the first three to five days of coming off of drugs. Mood swings, sadness, and an increased desire to use drugs will last through the first week. The cravings are the most persistent sign. They can last for months after someone stops using. Because of this, quitting drugs like cocaine can be especially hard to do on your own.

In contrast to opioids, there are no drugs that have been cleared by the FDA to help with cocaine withdrawal. The best way to stay sober is to mix inpatient and outpatient treatment programs with aftercare services like sober living facilities. Long-term recovery needs ongoing help from therapy, 12-step programs, SMART Recovery, or other support groups.


Withdrawal symptoms are at their worst in the first week and can last up to two weeks.

Length of the detox program: 10 to 15 days

Recovery is a long-term process.

Even though more and more states are legalizing or decriminalizing marijuana, it’s easy to forget that for many people, it’s a drug that they can’t live without. Even though some people can use marijuana without it getting in the way of their daily lives, the DEA says that 30% of marijuana users have some kind of problem with how they use the drug. These people will feel like they need the drug and have withdrawal signs when they stop taking it.

Withdrawal symptoms may include:

  • Loss of hunger
  • Getting angry
  • Sleeplessness and irritability
  • More desire for marijuana

The Importance of Drug Aftercare

Aftercare is one of the most important parts of getting over a drug problem. While cleanse and the first treatment focus on the body, aftercare provides the ongoing support that is important for a long-term recovery. It uses personalized methods, like counseling, therapy sessions, and support groups, to stop relapse and give people the skills they need to deal with problems. When you go to aftercare regularly, you have a much better chance of staying sober, because it helps with the underlying causes, mental health problems, and bad habits that lead to addiction. Since recovery is an ongoing process, aftercare helps build a strong network of support and direction, giving people the tools they need to deal with life’s challenges without using drugs.


The process of giving up drugs is unique and complicated, so there is no one-size-fits-all timetable. The first step is detoxification, which generally takes a few days to a few weeks. But to stay sober for good, you have to change on a mental, emotional, and behavioral level. This can take months or even years. The road to recovery requires patience, commitment, and a whole-person method that deals with the causes of addiction. Personalized aftercare, like therapy, support groups, and ways to deal with problems, is very important for keeping up with success and avoiding relapse. As people move through this complicated process, they slowly take back control of their lives. This shows that even though the road to recovery may be hard, the chance to live a drug-free life is definitely worth the effort.

In conclusion, drug addiction recovery is personal and unique for each person. The answer to “how long does it take to get clean from drugs” varies on the substance, its length, resiliency, and support system. Remember that getting professional help, building a support network, and staying committed to recovery are essential to staying drug-free. It’s difficult, but recovery is attainable with determination and resources.

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