How Long Does It Take To Detox From Meth?

Meth detox is a difficult and potentially dangerous process. Learn more about meth, detox, and treatment options here.

Meth Detox

When it comes to methamphetamine use, one of the main questions people have is how long detox will take. The answer to this question can vary depending on an individual’s specific situation, but there are some general guidelines that can provide an idea of what to expect.

This article will discuss the different factors that influence the duration of meth detoxification and withdrawal, and ways to manage the symptoms.

Meth Detox


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Meth Withdrawal and Detox

According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), approximately 2.6 million people reported using methamphetamine in 2020. Among these people, about 1.5 million individuals had a methamphetamine use disorder. Meth detox and withdrawal programs can be effective tools for detoxing from meth.1 

What Is Meth?

Methamphetamine is a drug that acts on the central nervous system as a stimulant. The substance is bitter-tasting, odorless, crystal-like powder that usually appears white. It was first developed in the twentieth century for use in pharmaceutical products.2 

How Addictive Is Meth?

Meth is a highly addictive and very potent stimulant with the potential to cause lasting harm to the body’s central nervous system. This powerful drug is renowned for its high rates of misuse, abuse, and addiction.

Is Detox From Meth Necessary?

Meth detox is necessary to combat withdrawal symptoms – anxiety, depression, cravings, psychosis, among others – from ceasing when meth use is stopped. Medically supervised meth withdrawal is the safest way to conduct meth detoxification.

Meth Detox Symptoms

Detoxing from meth can be an incredibly uncomfortable time. The following routine symptoms occur in most methamphetamine detox processes, but with appropriate medical care, should never result in severe injury.  


Fatigue is a common symptom of meth detox; this is especially true for those who have relied on and become accustomed meth for its stimulant properties, in order to avoid needing sleep or rest.3 

Increased Appetite

Individual appetites may increase, decrease, or even fluctuate unpredictably between the two. Unusual patterns and changes in appetite are not uncommon in meth detox.3 


Patients may begin to feel agitated, paranoid, and anxious as the levels of methamphetamine in the body decline.3 


Hallucinations, psychosis, and delusions may all be a part of a person’s experience in detoxing from methamphetamine. These are likely due to detox rapidly changing chemicals in the brain and aren’t always indicative of a longer-term problem.3 


Fever, dry mouth, headaches, and muscle spasms are all possible physical symptoms a person can experience during meth detoxification.3 

Loss of Motivation, Depression, and Suicidal Ideation

Psychological and physical symptoms of meth detox can create conditions for severe depression, loss of motivation, and suicidal thoughts to arise. Patients in detox are at a higher risk of acting on suicidal ideations, due to impaired judgment. Suicide prevention, antidepressants, and constant access to support and motivation are all reasons to take advantage of 24/7 care provided by inpatient detox services.3 

Meth Withdrawal Timeline

Meth detox time and the recovery timeline can vary based on a number of variables, including frequency of use, route of administration, quantity used, and a person’s unique individual characteristics.4   

Read on to learn about the crash and intense craving phases during meth recovery.

Crash Phase

The meth detox timeline typically starts within twenty-four hours of the last use. During the crash phase of meth addiction recovery, a person can experience symptoms including depression, drowsiness, increased appetite, agitation, irritability, and muscle aches. It is important to remember that when the body is provided access to stimulants, it automatically begins reducing its own production of similar energy-providing chemicals.
When the body’s access to stimulants is removed it will not have had time to begin compensating for their absence will the person will experience intense fatigue until the body regains its abilities to regulate energy production without external stimulants.4 

Intense Craving Phase

Individuals can develop intense cravings following the crash phase of a meth cleanse. During the intense craving phase, coming down from meth symptoms can include paranoia, hallucinations, disordered thoughts, and plans to self-harm. Meth addiction recovery programs can provide the necessary tools and resources for intense craving phase.4

Side Effects of Meth Use

During the various stages of meth use, a person can experience multiple side effects. The following sections will explore how these side effects can manifest in a variety of cases. 

Fast Heartbeat

A rapid or irregular heartbeat is a common short-term side effect of methamphetamine misuse.5    

Labored Breathing

Increased respiration, trouble breathing, can be effects of meth use. Depending on the route of ingestion, lung damage from smoking methamphetamine can create additional breathing troubles.5   

Changes In Appetite

Decreases or increases in appetite are frequently reported in use of central nervous stimulants of all types, including methamphetamine.5    


Insomnia, repetitive motor activity, changes in brain structure, and mood disturbances are all potential long-term effects of methamphetamine abuse.6   

Meth Mouth

According to the American Dental Association (ADA), “meth mouth” involves gum disease, cavities, and severe tooth decay. Individuals using methamphetamine are more likely to have rotting, stained, blackened, and crumbling teeth. 7   

Extreme Itchiness

Extreme and uncomfortable itchiness can be a result of this particular substance use disorder. Discomfort and itchiness when combined with psychosis may result in a person having delusions that compel them to abrade their skin to the point of self-injury.5   

Memory Loss

Memory loss, deficits in thinking, and loss of motor skills are possible long-term side effects of meth use, and can be potentially irreversible, depending on severity and length of use.6   

What To Expect At Meth Detox Treatment

Detoxification, evaluation, and stabilization are vital components when treating methamphetamine use disorders. Each of these specific phases of treatment require specialized approaches in order to allow patients and clients to achieve the most effective treatments available to them. Keep reading to learn more about what to expect when seeking help for meth use disorder treatment.   


During meth detox, an evaluation will be conducted. Evaluation generally includes urinalysis, screening and diagnosis of co-occurring mental health and substance use disorders, and physical health screening to look for any concurrent physical conditions in need of treatment.8      


During stabilization, individuals work through the acute detoxification and withdrawal processes in a stable and safe environment with the help of addiction specialists. During this stage of the process, patients are in a uniquely vulnerable phase of treatment and will require intense amounts of care and support.8     

Transition Into Further Treatment

Following evaluation and stabilization, individuals are encouraged to enter substance use treatment to continue receiving substance use treatment. For many, detox transitions directly into an inpatient treatment setting, where patients continue to stay at a treatment facility with access to round-the-clock support and access to professionals.

Others may transition into part-time intensive outpatient programs, where a large portion of their day is spent at a treatment facility, while spending evenings in the comfort of their homes.8   

What Medications Help With Meth Withdrawal

Currently, there are no FDA-approved medications available to help treat methamphetamine dependence, but research is being conducted in hopes of changing this. The following sections will provide helpful information about potential meth withdrawal medications being studied.     

Mirtazapine (Remeron)

Clinically, Mirtazapine has been evaluated as a possible medication to treat meth withdrawal. Research is still ongoing in terms of the effect of this drug on treatment success.9   

Provigil (Modafinil)

Provigil, also known as Modafinil, has been shown to have positive results in treating meth withdrawal.9    

Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRIs)

Clinical trials and research have studied SSRIs for reducing meth use and preventing relapse. Research is still being conducted to determine whether this class of drugs is helpful for meth withdrawals.9  One potential benefit of using SSRIs in the treatment of meth use disorders is their ability to treat co-occurring mental health disorders simultaneously, all within one treatment. They are also widely available and have been more thoroughly researched than most other drug-types.  

Sleep Medications

Sleep medications like Modafinil are sometimes prescribed to help treat meth withdrawal.9    

Finding Treatment for Meth Addiction At Concise Recovery

Meth Detox

Concise Recovery is a leading addiction treatment provider in Los Angeles and San Fernando Valley. From detox, stabilization, to long-term treatment, Concise Recovery can be with you through it all.  

Is Meth Detox At Home Safe?

Participating in a medically supervised detox program is the safest way to attempt methamphetamine detoxification. In a medical setting, you have access to treatment options that you don’t have access to elsewhere, so that you can focus on getting better, while our team of experts focuses on keeping you and your health safe.   

Professional Meth Detox

Concise Recovery provides world-class treatment services for meth, benzodiazepine, alcohol, and heroin detoxing. We pride ourselves in being able to adapt to the needs of our clients to best serve their needs, and provide them with the most comprehensive meth detox treatment possible.   

Aftercare for Meth Addiction Recovery

Following meth detox, individuals are encouraged to transition into a residential, partial day, or outpatient program. Each person who enrolls in Concise Recovery’s services works closely with knowledgeable addiction professionals to create a client-driven treatment plan.  

Residential Care

Residential inpatient gives individuals the opportunity to prioritize healing in a highly structured environment.   


Evidence-based addiction and mental health therapies, including Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR), Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), and Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT), are all available at Concise Recovery.  

Support Groups

During treatment, individuals are encouraged to attend support meetings and establish a sober support network.