How Long to Rewire the Brain From Addiction: A Quick Guide

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By Abubaker Rafiq

It may surprise you to learn that approximately two-thirds of American adults suffer from addiction. One of the most concerning effects of addictive drugs is how they change the human brain. This can lead to mental health issues, erratic behaviour, and poor decision-making.

Dealing with your brain in recovery can be an exhausting process, but there are steps you can take to make it easier to manage. So, how long to rewire the brain from addiction? Let’s explore key information about this timeline and the factors that influence it.

How Long to Rewire the Brain from Addiction?

The answer to this question will vary depending on numerous factors. One of the most significant is the type of substance you’re addicted to.

For instance, overcoming an addiction to alcohol or painkillers is far more difficult than handling a psychological addiction to marijuana. Some people also have an easier time breaking habits than others. In general, though, it takes approximately 90 days of abstinence to rewire your brain from addiction.

After this time passes, your brain will begin creating new neural pathways. During this period, it’s not uncommon for people to experience withdrawal symptoms.

These could include anxiety, depression, and irritability. Physical withdrawal often needs medical treatment, and handling it on your own could be life-threatening.

Areas of the Brain Affected

Addiction impacts key parts of the brain, which is why it’s such a difficult condition to deal with on your own. The basal ganglia, extended amygdala, and prefrontal cortex are all affected by substance abuse. Different substances will have different outcomes, as well.

Opioids, in particular, affect the brain stem. This part of the brain is associated with functions like temperature regulation and breathing. Opioid addiction is one of the most dangerous types for this reason.

Finding Treatment

Going through a professional treatment program is the most effective way to handle addiction. They have the tools and resources to help you get the right results.

When searching for a facility, examine its reputation. This provides insight into the results you’ll get from hiring them.

Consider whether they offer inpatient or outpatient treatment. For those with serious addiction problems, inpatient care is often the ideal choice.

Ask about the methods they use to help wean people off addictive drugs. For instance, someone dealing with a heroin addiction would likely be given suboxone.

Regardless of what they give you, make sure you know how long it stays in your system. They can also help you understand your brain post-addiction so you can make the appropriate decisions.

Seek Treatment ASAP

If you need help overcoming your addiction, it’s best to seek treatment as soon as possible. This will help ensure you take the appropriate steps toward improving your health. The tips in this guide about how long to rewire the brain from addiction will keep you on the right track.

Looking for other lifestyle information that can help you make better decisions in the future? Our blog has many posts like this one you can learn from. Be sure to check them out today!