Unpleasant, painful, and sometimes dangerous side effects can occur once substance abuse is abruptly stopped. This event is known as withdrawal. Defined by the American Psychological Association, withdrawal is a syndrome that develops after cessation of prolonged, heavy consumption of a substance, with symptoms varying by substance but generally including physiological, behavioral, and cognitive manifestations. 

Withdrawal symptoms differ based on the substance of abuse, with some manifesting mild withdrawal symptoms while others yield painful and dangerous symptoms. Regardless of the substance that has been abused, withdrawal can be very uncomfortable, which is why it is highly recommended to seek a professional detox clinic to assist in the process. Clinicians at these facilities will monitor the withdrawal process and ensure the individual feels safe and supported.

How Long Does it Take to Withdraw From Crack Cocaine?

The length for crack cocaine withdrawal depends on the length of the addiction and the quantity of the drug regularly used. Those who have abused crack for a short time, or only used very little, may have a significantly shorter withdrawal period and display relatively mild symptoms. 

In contrast, those who have struggled with crack cocaine abuse for an extended amount of time, or in large quantities, may experience an extended withdrawal stage and more dangerous symptoms. Withdrawal symptoms typically show up within the first 24 hours after use and last up to three weeks. Rarely, crack withdrawal can last for over a month. 

Crack Cocaine Withdrawal Symptoms 

Symptoms of crack cocaine withdrawal vary based on the length of addiction. For the average individual, symptoms appear within the first day after use and last approximately three weeks. If the crack addiction is severe, withdrawal symptoms can be life-threatening. 

Symptoms include: 

Profuse sweating

Sweating is common when going through withdrawal. This is the physical body’s way of ridding itself of all remaining traces of the substance. 


An individual withdrawing from this highly addictive stimulant is likely to experience increased levels of anxiety, restlessness and agitation. As the body adapts to the absence of crack cocaine, the individual will gradually become hyper-alert and often have trouble sleeping.

Extreme fatigue

An individual who has been using crack for a prolonged period of time likely did not sleep due to the stimulant quality of the drug. Once use is ceased, the individual will feel very tired. 

Increased appetite

Because cocaine is a stimulant and appetite suppressant, people high on the drug can go without eating for an extended period of time. Once use of cocaine has stopped, the individual going through withdrawal will likely feel hungry again. 


Crack cocaine abuse causes a chemical alteration within the brain. Once withdrawal begins, the individual may feel depressed as crack is no longer altering neurotransmitter activity as was once frequently occurring. 

Due to the severity of some of these symptoms and the potential for life-threatening side effects, clinical supervision within a professional detox facility is highly recommended.


Asheville Recovery Center Can Help  

It is extremely important to seek help immediately if you or a loved one is struggling with crack cocaine addiction or withdrawal. The founders of Asheville Recovery Center, as well as many of our addiction therapists, have struggled with addiction and now enjoy life in recovery. They understand the struggles of addiction and how difficult it is to overcome alone.

While we do not have a detox facility, we can refer you to a quality clinic where experts can supervise your withdrawal phase. Upon successfully completing the detox process, we will work with you to formulate a custom treatment plan designed to fit your individual needs. If you feel that you or a loved one is struggling with substance abuse, our specialists are on standby and ready to help. Call (828)518-6996 and speak with an addiction expert today so you can take the first step towards a rewarding life of sobriety.

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