How to Support Your Boyfriend While He Goes Through Drug Withdrawal

Withdrawing from drugs can cause headaches, body aches and muscle cramps.
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If your boyfriend has chosen to withdraw from drugs that he is addicted to, it is highly advisable that he does so with the help of a medical professional to ensure that he is safe and supported. Drug withdrawal is often a painful and draining process, mentally, physically and emotionally. There are things you can do to help him feel more comfortable during the withdrawal process and to support your boyfriend to kick his drug addiction.

1 Be Patient

Most drug withdrawals have an acute stage and a post-acute stage. In the first stage, the physical symptoms of withdrawal are at their worst and your boyfriend may feel quite ill. When those start to subside, it can still take time for the body to get back to normal, and your boyfriend may experience such symptoms as restlessness, drug cravings and insomnia for weeks or even months. Be patient with him and keep reminding him of the progress he has already made throughout the process.

2 Ease His Pain

Soup and soft fruit are good, nourishing recovery foods.
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People withdrawing from physically addictive drugs often experience a lot of physical pain and discomfort. This can include nausea, body aches, muscle cramps, feeling extremely cold or hot, and sweating profusely. Running your boyfriend a soothing bath can help to ease the pain in his body. In the first few days, he may find it difficult to eat much if he feels too sick, but make sure he drinks enough water and eats some nourishing food as soon as he is able.

3 Listen To Him

While your boyfriend is detoxing from the drugs, he is likely to suffer from some low moods, partly due to the physical discomfort and partly because kicking an addiction is an emotionally difficult process. Listening to him share his pain, concerns and fears can help him feel cared for and comforted. Talking to you may also distract him from the pain when he is feeling particularly bad. Offer your boyfriend some encouraging words back to show him that you are there to support him.

4 Reward His Efforts

The Community-Reinforcement Approach is a model for treating addiction that is used in drug treatment centers. It suggests that an effective way of encouraging drug users to be abstinent is by rewarding them when they do well. To reward your boyfriend for completing his withdrawal, you could plan a special event, such as taking him to see his favorite sports team or going on a day trip together. While he is still detoxing, you can encourage him by reminding him of what he has to look forward to.

Beth Burgess is a health and happiness expert. Burgess works as a therapist, specializing in addiction, anxiety, stress and mental well-being. Author of "The Recovery Formula" and "The Happy Addict," she writes articles to help others achieve happy lives and healthy relationships.