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Synthetic drugs are a relatively new addition to the drugs market. Also known as Novel Psychoactive Substances (NPS) or ‘legal highs’, addiction to these substances is now more common than ever. Two of the most recognized examples of NPS are bath salts and spice. These are inexpensive, synthetic forms of drugs that grant the user a high but at great cost to their health and well-being. NPS are typically developed to mimic the effects of other well-known drugs such as cannabis, ecstasy, and cocaine, laws have struggled to keep up with an ever-evolving market.

The state of California has tried to regulate or outright outlaw certain NPS substances. For example, at this time, it is illegal to sell or distribute bath salts with the intended purpose of using them to get high throughout the state. Whereas, Spice, the synthetic cannabinoid, was made illegal nationwide in 2011 Synthetic Drug Abuse Prevention Act, though manufacturers try to evolve with the regulations to get around selling it.

Cornerstone is able to treat addictions to all NPS. We are confident in combating many of the symptoms associated with withdrawals. Detoxing alone from these drugs is incredibly difficult, due to the combination of psychological and physical symptoms that arise. If you are suffering from an addiction to one of the many NPS available, we can help. Our tailored detox treatment provides round the clock care, delivered with understanding and compassion.

How Does a Synthetic Drug Detox Work?

A detox from synthetic drugs firstly requires you to have an assessment. Drugs found in bath salts, like mephedrone, can cause intense withdrawal symptoms so understanding the depth and severity of substance abuse is critical. During this assessment, we can design your treatment plan and start you on the road to recovery. The initial stages of detox can be extremely difficult as withdrawal symptoms at this stage can be intense. During these early days, our team of addiction professionals will be with you 24/7 to support you and react accordingly to any symptoms that may need medical assistance.

How Long Does a Synthetic Drug Detox Last?

There are many factors to consider before answering this question. The length of time the drug has been used and the amount being consumed will all have an impact on the duration of your individual detox process. A standard detox usually lasts between 7-14 days, however, detoxing from synthetic drugs has been known to take a while longer.

If You’re Taking Prescription Medication

Because your detox may require medical assistance, it is important we know if you are taking any other prescription medications. This is to avoid complications that can arise when prescribed drugs are combined. These complications are also known as contraindications and can have serious health consequences. Please be honest with us at this stage, your safety is as important to us as your comfort. Your physician will be able to provide you with a list of current medications if you are unsure of the names or quantities of prescription medication that you may be taking.

If You’re Taking Other Drugs

If you are taking other drugs please discuss this further at your assessment. Most people come to us with polydrug use – a term used to describe instances where more than one substance is being used. Our ability to detox you is not affected by this, but being honest at this confidential stage means we can tailor a detox to suit your needs.

Synthetic Drug Withdrawal Symptoms

At Cornerstone, we believe in treating an individual with the highest standard of care. Fear of withdrawal symptoms are often what keeps an addict locked into an unbreakable cycle of addiction.

Physical Withdrawal Symptoms:

There are many possible physical withdrawal symptoms associated with synthetic drug use. Synthetic drugs are varied compounds with batches being notably different despite having the same ‘brand’ name. This makes identifying expected symptoms difficult, however, common symptoms include diarrhea, nausea, flu-like symptoms and hot and cold flashes.

Psychological Withdrawal Symptoms

Like many substances, synthetic drugs alter the chemistry of the brain. With this type of drug, the effects can be dramatic. Hallucinations and extreme paranoia are commonly experienced. During withdrawals from synthetic drugs you can expect to feel irritable, anxious and at times depressed. Rest assured that at Cornerstone we can deal with all these symptoms ensuring that you experience the detox process in relative comfort.

What is the Withdrawal Timeline for Synthetic Drugs? How Long Will Withdrawal Symptoms Last?

Withdrawal symptoms from synthetic drugs such as Spice seem to differ in length, although we have noticed certain patterns during detox for synthetic drug users. The more severe physical symptoms peak at around 3 days. They then seem to dissipate. The psychological symptoms of depression and anxiety that accompany withdrawal can last anywhere from a couple of weeks to a couple of months.

Is a Synthetic Drug Detox Enough for Long-Term Recovery?

Detox alone is seldom enough to obtain long-term recovery. Over the years we have seen clients who thought that detox was sufficient. Invariably they return to us having relapsed and in need of further treatment. Addiction professionals are generally in agreement that addiction is a presenting symptom of an underlying cause. That cause is best discovered within a treatment facility. A recovery-focused and supportive environment, with professionals skilled at exploring the reasons for addiction, give much-needed tools for coping with a life free of drugs.

What Happens after a Synthetic Drug Detox?

When synthetic drugs have left your system, the uncomfortable feelings will begin to subside. Hope, and plans for the future, will start to return to a mind now filled with clarity. Post detox, we cannot stress enough the need to further your addiction treatment, the consequences of not doing so have proved fatal. At Cornerstone our addiction treatment does not end with detox, we provide an inpatient treatment facility that employs the country’s leading addiction professionals to further your care.

We have a wide range of therapeutic modalities that can form part of your individually tailored treatment program, whether you are in our residential treatment center, or accessing our therapeutic program through our Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP),  or our Day Treatment/Partial Hospitalization (PHP). We can offer individual therapy sessions, group therapy, CBT, DBT, mindfulness, art, and music therapy along with a plethora of other therapies. Regular days out to the beach and surrounding areas, golf and bowling all add to our well balanced therapeutic program.

12-Step fellowship meetings are also encouraged. Transportation to and from these meetings will be supplied five days a week. We believe this helps to foster a recovery community outside of Cornerstone.

We also have family and couples therapy available for those who require it. We understand the importance of family in recovery and are proud to be able to offer family therapy at no extra cost.

Synthetic Drug Detox FAQ

Can you Detox from Synthetic Drugs at Home?

Detoxing from synthetics is possible at home, but given that the withdrawals can be horrendous when untreated, the chance of success is minimal. You will no doubt have had an experience of trying to stop and staying stopped. So while it is possible, a successful detox is unlikely. Drug addiction can be unforgiving and relapse can be fatal, especially with synthetic drugs that are known to cause fatal overdoses.

Is a Synthetic Drug Detox Dangerous?

Detoxing from synthetic drugs alone can be dangerous and scary. A detox with Cornerstone is the safest way of effectively managing the symptoms that arise. Perhaps the most dangerous feature of any synthetic drug detox is the obvious risk of relapse. We take all precautions to guard against this. With your will power and bravery, and our expertise, we will take the first steps on the recovery path together.

Will I be Prescribed Detox Medication?

Unlike other drugs such as heroin, a specific detox medication is yet to be developed. The changing compounds of synthetic drugs make developing specific detox medication difficult. We can, however, administer medications that alleviate the severe symptoms associated with synthetic drug withdrawals. All prescribing is carried out by medical professionals.

Is a Residential Synthetic Drug Detox Necessary?

If all other attempts to stop have been interrupted by repeat relapse, then residential detox is necessary. Drug addiction is dangerous, especially when the substances are synthetic and you have no real idea of the strength or content. Give yourself and your family the future you deserve. Help us to help you.


Our former clients say it best...

Dr. Stone, I am so grateful to your program and also your generosity. I was a hopeless addictwho believed there was no way of getting clean. Thanks to my sister and Cornerstone staff, I recently took my 90 day chip in N.A. Thanks, my life has been changed.
~ Isaac C.

“This was the best foundation I could have asked for to be sober. My case manager was the Best!! She showed me your life can be exciting and sober.”
~ Tina H.

It is the truly caring staff that makes Cornerstone the best rehab I have been to. The best part was finally getting my depression medications right, after many others tried for 2 years.
~ Jim V.

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