Health A-Z


Clinical Definition

Withdrawal is defined as the physical or psychological response to the sudden absence or reduction of a substance that can be addicting, such as alcohol, nicotine or drugs. Among the potential symptoms of alcohol withdrawal are depression and anxiety. A more severe form of alcohol withdrawal is known as delirium tremens or DTs.

In Our Own Words

Withdrawal from an addictive substance occurs after a person who has used the material for a prolonged period of time or has used a substance excessively stops or reduces its use. Symptoms can be different depending on which substance is being removed.

Withdrawal symptoms are seen after a person stops using excessive amounts of alcohol or opiate drugs (such as heroin, morphine, codeine and others), or ceases smoking cigarettes. A severe form of alcohol withdrawal (DTs) can result in seizures, agitation and hallucinations.

Symptoms and Side Effects

  • Shaking
  • Anxiety
  • Insomnia
  • Muscle aches
  • Nausea
View Terms Beginning with "X"
Follow us on Facebook for useful advice on how to maintain a healthy lifestyle.