The first stage in treatment for crystal meth addiction is detox, which takes at least two weeks. Cravings for meth begin almost immediately and last for at least the first few days. During this time, your loved one will also experience fatigue and depression.
As detox continues past the end of the first week, the cravings continue. During this time, the patient also experiences mental symptoms including mood swings, difficulty concentrating, paranoia and, at times, hallucinations. Physical symptoms include restlessness, increased appetite, and various aches and pains. During the second and third week of detox, these symptoms start to taper off. Cravings and moodiness can continue past detox, as can brain impairments.
During detox, doctors may prescribe various medications to ease withdrawal symptoms and to lessen cravings for more crystal meth. A safe and supportive inpatient environment, such as the one we provide at A Better Today, is always recommended for detox from crystal meth.
Most meth addicts require extended inpatient rehab in a residential facility for a period of three months or more. During this time, patients receive group and individual counseling to help understand their own addictive behaviors and to learn strategies for coping with their addiction once they return to their normal lives.
After release from the inpatient facility, meth addicts should stay in aftercare treatment to maximize their chances for successful recovery. Aftercare may include further therapy, 12-step programs, and sober living homes.