Weed Withdrawal: Cold Sweats and other symptoms

If you are thinking about quitting weed, you may be wondering what it will be like to experience withdrawal symptoms. Understanding the drug and its effects may provide some insight into weed withdrawal.

What Is Weed?

‘Weed’, ‘pot’, and ‘marijuana’ refer to the dried leaves, flowers, and stems of the Cannabis sativa, Cannabis indica, and Cannabis ruderalis plants. As a plant with many chemical properties, cannabis affects a person’s central nervous system, producing euphoria, relaxation, increased appetite, and an altered perception of time and space.

Among the more than 60 cannabinoid compounds the plant contains, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is the primary intoxicating and psychoactive compound, while Cannabidiol (CBD) makes up 40% of the plant extract.

Many states have legalized the use of medicinal and recreational marijuana, leading many to believe it is a harmless substance. But misusing it can lead to mental health issues, immediate harm, and long-term health damage.

Regularly using marijuana can cause the brain to develop a tolerance for it, meaning that it will need more and more of the substance to produce the same effect. This easily develops into addiction, and marijuana withdrawal symptoms may come about when a person attempts to quit smoking weed.

Marijuana Abuse and Addiction

Around 36 million Americans use marijuana every month. When regularly smoking pot, a person may feel compelled to continue its abuse. This often happens in increasingly greater amounts, even though the addiction negatively impacts health and quality of life. Cannabis addiction treatment is available to help a person overcome their dependency.

Symptoms of Addiction Come in Psychological, Physical, and Behavioral Forms

Psychological Symptoms of Marijuana Addiction

Constantly using marijuana can lead to agitation and increased irritability. A distorted perception of time and space over a long period can lead to the development of paranoia.

A person may feel nervous or on edge, have difficulty concentrating, have poor judgment and decision-making ability, and go through mood swings. These include depression, anxiety, extreme defensiveness, feelings of guilt, and low self-esteem. Memory problems arise, and as a person may smoke cannabis regularly to relieve tension and stress, the exacerbation of any existing mental health problems is common.

Intense cravings for cannabis are another psychological symptom and are also part of marijuana withdrawal.

Physical Symptoms

Cannabis can cause someone to have impaired motor skills, coordination, and balance, as well as a delayed reaction time, which places the person at risk of unintended injury or harm. A person may have a dry mouth, bloodshot eyes, and an increased appetite, while tiredness, insomnia, and disrupted sleep are common. The appearance of physical withdrawal symptoms may come about if a person has not consumed cannabis for a while.

Behavioral Symptoms

Someone suffering from addiction may lie or deceive others to sustain their cannabis use while experiencing apathy too. They may avoid contact with family and friends which often causes social isolation, or may spend time only with others who smoke cannabis.

A lack of motivation, as well as a lack of interest in hobbies or activities they once enjoyed can result from prioritizing cannabis over anything else. This could include work, friends, or family life. An engagement in risky or dangerous behavior while under the influence, or using other drugs alongside marijuana, and continuing its use despite the negative consequences, are all behavioral signs of addiction to the substance.

Cannabis Withdrawal

Cannabis Withdrawal

While marijuana withdrawal symptoms may not be as severe as those for other drugs, the body will have to adjust to the absence of a regular supply of THC, and marijuana withdrawal is real. A person experiencing cannabis withdrawal syndrome will be tempted to relieve the discomfort they feel when they try to stop smoking pot by smoking more, which is why withdrawal with the help of healthcare professionals may be best.

How Severe Are Marijuana Withdrawal Symptoms?

While some marijuana users have emotional and mental changes as they stop using their drug of choice, others experience physical withdrawal symptoms. The symptoms vary depending on the person, and while they may not be life-threatening, they can range from mild to severe.

Many factors affect the physical and psychological symptoms of marijuana withdrawal. With chronic and frequent use, a person may experience more severe symptoms than someone smoking marijuana a handful of times. This is most likely because long-term use develops a physical dependence on the drug.

At the same time, combining marijuana with other drugs or alcohol can heighten withdrawal symptoms too. A person’s age and overall health play a role, as well as the strengths and the blends of weed they have been using.

Smoking cannabis mixed with tobacco means that a person will also undergo nicotine withdrawal symptoms when they stop. These withdrawal symptoms share some of the signs of cannabis withdrawal, namely irritability, restlessness, and a lack of concentration.

How Long Do Marijuana Withdrawal Symptoms Last?

Marijuana withdrawal symptoms will appear within 24 hours of stopping its use. They may peak during the first week after quitting and then gradually fade away. While most symptoms of marijuana withdrawal stop around ten days after quitting, some people carry them for up to four weeks; the active elements in cannabis are stored in fat cells in the body, which take up to one month to release.

Other symptoms, such as lethargy, mood swings, or depression may last even longer if they are not treated. Chronic users of cannabis have reported night sweats, unbalanced emotions, and insomnia for several months after stopping. People who suddenly stop after regular use may be at higher risk of developing depression and suicidal thoughts.

What Are Marijuana Withdrawal Symptoms?

What Are Marijuana Withdrawal Symptoms?

Symptoms of marijuana withdrawal may start with an inability to control the urge to smoke more.

One of the most common symptoms that come up next in marijuana withdrawal is anxiety, which happens in the first few days. It can lower a person’s appetite and may come alongside feeling irritable and experiencing stomach pains. Not everyone experiences headaches when they stop smoking marijuana, but those who do may experience it very intensely, especially during the first few days.

Many people experience withdrawal symptoms in the form of vivid or disturbing dreams that start to fade after about a week. As marijuana use can dampen a person’s dreaming mechanism, abstaining from it may cause vividly colorful, highly emotional dreams or nightmares to come back with a crash. Another common symptom is insomnia, having difficulty sleeping, or waking up and returning to the same dream throughout the night. While some may have a few nights of no sleep at all, others may endure a few months of occasional sleeplessness.

The restlessness at night may be accompanied by night sweats, which is especially common if a person is detoxing from marijuana and other drugs.

Other withdrawal symptoms include:

  • irritability and anger
  • sweats and chills
  • tremors
  • dizziness
  • fever
  • nausea and vomiting
  • weakness or tiredness
  • dry mouth, throat, and dehydration
  • increased sexual arousal
  • weight gain or loss

In some cases, kidney pains, hormonal imbalances, low immunity, and chronic fatigue may occur for around two months.

Coping With Cannabis Withdrawal Symptoms

Coping With Cannabis Withdrawal Symptoms

Even though some people may be able to withstand the physical symptoms of marijuana withdrawal, they are much more likely to quit marijuana and resist relapse if they have guidance and medical assistance. Slowly tapering off and reducing marijuana use can help a person ease into a substance-free life, but as cannabis withdrawal symptoms may be difficult to deal with alone, seeking help from a medical professional for this process may be the best choice.

Regular Exercise

As a few sleepless nights is something to expect when a person gives up cannabis, trouble sleeping may become better with regular daily exercise. Swimming, walking or bicycling for 30 minutes a day can help reset the body’s sleep cycle and relieve sleep problems. It can also give a person a natural mood boost.

Other cannabis withdrawal symptoms like irritability, anger, or nervousness can also be improved through exercise, while meditation as a regular practice may help to alleviate depression and anger.

Healthy Eating

Excessive sweating can lead to a depletion of a necessary mineral in the body, called potassium. Healthy eating can replace potassium depletion, which means that fueling the body with fresh fruit containing it, such as bananas and leafy green vegetables, is good. It is best to avoid junk food because it could make a person feel irritable or sluggish.

As dehydration is another withdrawal symptom, it can help to drink plenty of water and clear fluids. Healthcare professionals suggest avoiding caffeinated beverages.

Seek Professional Help

Weed withdrawal can be very difficult when a person suddenly stops. Quitting marijuana abruptly may produce a ‘shock’ effect in the brain, whereby it thinks it does not have an essential chemical it has gotten used to. This may cause withdrawal symptoms to occur rapidly and intensely, while gradually lowering the dosage over time can make them more bearable.

That is why assistance and medical attention in a supervised facility can make detox a lot more comfortable. Not only can doctors and nurses monitor symptoms and help with discomfort as the substance leaves a person’s body, but they can also provide emotional support.

Another advantage of seeking help is access to a mental health professional, who can help determine the root cause of cannabis abuse or addiction, which is often masked by cannabis use. They can then provide treatment options for treating both cannabis abuse and mental health issues, ensuring long-term well-being and preventing relapse. A mental health professional can also be of great help when a person is dealing with multiple addictions, such as alcohol abuse and marijuana abuse at the same time.

If committing to a residential treatment program seems overwhelming, there are many short-term programs and outpatient settings in which rehabilitation from addiction can be carried out. Outpatient rehabilitation programs typically involve multiple therapy sessions each week, or meetings with a substance abuse expert. One-on-one therapy can be very useful in determining the underlying causes of drug abuse, as well as healthy ways to respond to triggers that may cause a person to use the drug again.

There are also support groups and group therapy sessions, where connecting with others who may face similar scenarios and share their insights and experiences of coping can provide great support. Seeking help can also mean surrounding yourself with family members, friends, and sober peers who can help while a person undergoes withdrawal.

Where Can I Find Help for Marijuana Withdrawal Symptoms?

If you or a loved one is seeking help for marijuana withdrawal, look no further than NP Addiction Clinic.

With years of experience in helping people recover from substance abuse and mental health disorders, our staff combines clinical excellence with compassion and understanding.

Detoxification combined with our mental health treatments ensures that your first steps into recovery address your physical, mental, and emotional needs. Throughout detoxification with us, a specialist team will provide 24/7 support. By gradually reducing your dependency, we can help your body adjust to health as painlessly as possible.

NP Addiction Clinic understands that substance use is often the sign of an underlying wound, which is why we aim to help you completely heal through our various addiction treatment therapies. Individual and group therapies may be combined with alternative options such as art, music, and recreational therapies. We also offer support group meetings as part of our rehab program.

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Samantha Kelly​

Director of National Business Development & Admissions Coordinator

I am a dedicated and passionate professional with extensive experience in business development Admissions and marketing. I have an incredible passion for showing others that there is a light at the end of this dark tunnel if someone truly wants it.
Being in recovery myself I understand the struggles of addiction and alcoholism. I Started this Career path in 2009. With multiple years of experience, I bring a multi-faceted approach and am always seeking new ways to make a difference in the lives of those I work with.

Kim L. Buckner

Facilitator

As a Substance Abuse Motivational Speaker, Pastor, Peer Advocate, and Facilitator. Kim helps clients avoid relapse by understanding their triggers. Those people, places and things that can cause craving, as well as internal triggers like feelings, thoughts, or emotions. Kim also clients with identifying and building healthy relationships now that they’re clean and sober.

Kim’s background includes extensive experience as a motivational speaker and work in faith-based organizations helping youth and adults alike. He says he is motivated by giving back to the community, understanding, and not judging who she comes into contact with. Kim’s favorite quote is by Dr. Raymond Johnson: “The respect given to others rebounds to the giver to deny the scared in the Other is to deny it in oneself.”

Caty Burns

Clinician

Caty graduated from Indiana University Bloomington in 2015 with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and minors in Counseling and History. Throughout her undergrad, she worked at the local CASA program, supporting volunteers advocating for children who had experienced abuse and neglect. Caty worked for seven years at a community mental health center (CMHC), partnering with children, adults, and families.

During those seven years, she taught life and coping skills as well as behavior management, provided case management and peer recovery services, and facilitated treatment teams that included the client, family, providers, and community members. I have also worked at an IOP providing group therapy services. She is currently working towards my Master of Social Work.

In her free time, Caty enjoys reading, especially historical fiction, spending time outdoors and having movie nights with her family. Disney World is her happy place, and she dreams of living among the elephants.

Madison Knowles

Mental Health Therapist

My name is Madison Knowles, I am a Mental health therapist at NPAC. I am a single-mother of two and I have a daughter who is globally delayed and has been diagnosed with autism. I have been in this industry since I was 16 years old, as I was fascinated with human behavior. I obtained my masters in applied behavioral analysis and started off working with people with disabilities. I then found my love for counseling when I worked with juveniles who had mental health and substance use issues. I then decided to go back for my mental health therapy license after that and working in a forensic treatment center. I went on to obtain my therapy credentials and since 2017, I have also been working on my PhD in forensic psychology in which I am currently working on my dissertation. I am inspired by change and how resilient people can be. My favorite inspirational quote is “Some will, Some won’t, So what, NEXT!!!” This quote has inspired me to try, try, and try again no matter how hard life gets, someone will give you a chance eventually. As a therapist at NPAC, I have been given the opportunity to work with diverse populations such as in substance use and mental health and I am known for my work with people on the schizophrenic spectrum as well as with other clients with other severe conditions including personality disorders.

Megan Carmona, LMHC

Lead Therapist

Our Lead Therapist, Megan, is a bilingual Licensed Mental Health Counselor who specializes in working with adults who struggle with addiction, anxiety, depression, and trauma. As Lead Therapist, she provides individual, family, and group therapy sessions to our clients.  Megan says “I am very passionate about therapy, especially about supporting my clients in exploring their strengths and identity. My goal is to provide individuals with the tools that can help them achieve independence in coping with their challenges and facilitating personal development.” In her free time, Megan enjoys watching docu-series and playing video games with her family. Her dream is to own acres of land so she can care for vulnerable animals, especially old dogs, cats, and horses. 

Kristen Bensley

Primary Clinician

As Primary Clinician, Kristen works with all aspects of our clinical team, from case management to primary therapy.  She has broad experience working in the mental health field. Prior to joining our team at the Neuro Psychiatric Addiction Clinic, Kristen was part of the team awarded the Evernorth Behavioral Health Center of Excellence Designation by Cigna. She says her motivation is to help people rediscover who they are and become excited about the future and all the possibilities life offers. Kristen’s favorite quote is: “You can’t go back and change the beginning, but you can start where you are and change the ending.”

Ronn Daigle, MSW

Therapist, Utilization Review Clinician

Ronn Daigle services as a Therapist and Utilization Review Clinician at the Neuro Psychiatric Addiction Clinic. He has been working in the field of substance use disorder treatment since 2011, with experience in all facility-based levels of care. Ronn earned, both an Associate of Arts in Psychology (2013) and Bachelor of Science in Human Services, with an Addiction Studies Concentration (2015) from Indian River State College. 

Ronn additionally earned a Master of Social Work degree in 2021 and is a current Registered Clinical Social Work Intern working toward licensure (LCSW). He describes himself as detail oriented, and solution focused.

Ronn says: “There is nothing more fulfilling than working with someone who doesn’t believe in himself or herself, and being there in the moment with them when the belief begins. We work with individuals who come to us at a point and time in their respective lives where they do not believe that change for others is possible; let alone for themselves…throughout the process they eventually come to a point where they realize that change is not only possible, but achievable.”

Erika Melecio, LMHC, MCAP, CEI

Assistant Clinical Director

Erika Melecio, LMHC, MCAP, CEI is the Assistant Clinical Director at Neuropsychiatric Addiction Clinic who specializes in the treatment of LGBTQ, addiction, as well as mental health disorders ranging from depression and anxiety, to Bipolar Disorder, trauma, personality disorders, psychotic disorders, and eating disorders. Erika utilizes a number of modalities including Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Solution Focused Therapy, Motivational Interviewing, Dialectical Behavioral Therapy, and Mindfulness amongst others. Erika has been in practice for close to a decade and has earned her license in Mental Health Counseling, as well as being a Master’s Certified Addiction Professional. Erika has worked with many individuals including couples counseling and family therapy, and is fluent in Spanish.
 
Throughout my years of practice, one of the things I enjoy helping people find is inner peace. Whether you are in the deepest parts of depression, overrun by your anxiety, controlled by your addiction, or there are certain issues in your life that are negatively impacting your ability to function, and have a happy, healthy life, maybe now is the time to talk about it. I am a big believer in empowerment, working hard in therapy, and utilizing different techniques to help you regain that inner peace that may have been lost along the way. I want to work with you as a team because with two people, absolutely everything is possible. I want to be there as a therapist, to help build you up, support you, but also help you be honest with yourself and accountable. At the end of the day, when all is said and done, my biggest goal for you is going to be simple….for you to no longer need my services. Why? Because if you no longer need my services, it means that you have regained your peace, you have regained your strength, you have regained your confidence. It means that you now have the tools to address any issues that try to derail you, and best of all, you will have the insight to overcome and thrive. So let’s begin this journey together, and get you to the place you want to be, emotionally, mentally, psychologically, and in your sobriety.

Aurelio Ayuso, MSW, LCSW, CAP, ICADC

Clinical Director

Aurelio has worked with those that suffer from the disease of addiction in adults and juveniles alike for over 10 years, beginning in the United States Navy where he proudly served for 20 years, working with those that were succumbed by addiction due to trauma and continuing his passion for helping those in need locally in Central Florida.

He specializes in both Addictions and Trauma, he has worked first as a therapist then as the clinical supervisor to both the Juvenile and Adult Drug Court programs in Brevard County. Aurelio has been instrumental in developing substance abuse treatment programs directly tailored to help those that also suffer from complex trauma due to their addiction. He has been recognized by several organizations for his forward thinking and ability to tailor treatment to individuals in the most restrictive environments.

Mr. Ayuso received his Graduate Degree in Clinical Social Work from the University of Central Florida in Orlando. He is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker as well as Certified Addictions Professional in the State of Florida, and Internationally Certified Alcohol & Drug Counselor. Aurelio specializes in the treatment of Addiction, Trauma, and Abandonment using strength based strategies deeply rooted in Solution Focused, and Mindfulness Therapies. At the Neuropsychiatric Addiction Clinic he passionately develops holistic curriculums that foster the belief that through addressing the mind, body, and spirit together, the Disease of Addiction can be addressed successfully.

Robert Lehmann, MHSA

Chief Operating Officer

Bob Lehmann is the Chief Operating Officer at the Neuro Psychiatric Addiction Clinic. He has a Master’s Degree in Human Services Administration with a concentration in Mental Health Administration and over twenty-five years of experience as a senior executive at addiction and mental health treatment facilities.

One of the reasons for his commitment to excellence in addiction treatment was his experience related to family members who suffered from the disease of addiction. Bob has been actively involved in community organizations throughout his career. Recently he was one of the founders of the Florida Addiction Treatment Coalition (FATC) and is its present Vice President. FATC was designed to bring together treatment executives in Florida to advocate on behalf of treatment facilities and the clients they serve adhering to a foundation of integrity and service excellence.

Jose R. Toledo, M.D.

Medical Director

A well-rounded and accomplished individual, Jose R. Toledo, M.D., is the Medical Director of Neuro Psychiatric Addiction Clinic.

Dr. Toledo is a neurologist with 25 years of experience and has been in private practice since 1991 on the Treasure Coast of Florida. He completed his neurology training at the State University of New York and his Fellowship training at the University of Pittsburgh in Epilepsy and Clinical Neurophysiology.

He also completed 24 months of acute inpatient psychiatry at the Western Missouri Mental Health Center, University of Missouri in Kansas City. In 2008, Dr. Toledo participated in and was certified in the continuing medical education activity entitled “Buprenorphine and Office-Based Treatment of Opioid Dependence” from The Medical University of South Carolina during which began his quest to found and head Neuropsychiatric Addiction Clinic.

Dr. Toledo is a brain specialist with particular competence in addiction medicine and out-patient detoxification treatment and integrates the fields seamlessly. He is certified to prescribe Buprenorphine (Suboxone). He incorporates his background in neurology into the addiction field. Dr. Toledo is member/fellow of The American Medical Association, The Florida Medical Association and The American Society of Addiction Medicine