Tips For Coping With Withdrawal Cravings

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Cravings for alcohol or drugs are common among people who have been addicted, or even after a period of intense use. They are both physical and psychological in nature, and are most intense during the acute withdrawal period the day or two after you stop using the drug or alcohol.

Some of the following have helped other people in withdrawal:

  • Keep it at the forefront of your mind that cravings do not last forever. They come in waves -- first they build up, then they reach a peak, then they subside. Ride out the wave rather than giving in to the craving –- it will pass.
  • Keeping busy to distract yourself from the cravings can be helpful on focusing your attention away from the desire to take more of the drug.
  • Exercise is one of the easiest ways of reducing cravings, because it releases endorphins which make you feel better, and it changes your bodily sensations, making it easier to distract your attention away from physical cues to take more drugs or alcohol. However, start gently, particularly if you are also experiencing fatigue and/or muscle weakness, and avoid developing a substitute exercise addiction by keeping your daily exercise under two hours.

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