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What Is Post Acute Withdrawal Syndrome (PAWS)?

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Updated May 16, 2014

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Definition:

Post Acute Withdrawal Syndrome (PAWS) refers to withdrawal symptoms that continue to bother you after the acute initial detoxification of drugs has taken place. Post Acute Withdrawal Syndrome may last for weeks or months, sometimes even a few years after quitting. Post Acute Withdrawal Syndrome often includes symptoms such as confusion, sleep problems, anxiety and depression. How severe and long lasting the Post Acute Withdrawal symptoms are depends on how much stress you're under, and how much physical and psychological damage was caused by the drug and the addiction.

Post Acute Withdrawal Syndrome puts people at greater risk of relapse if the person does not receive adequate support.

Tips for managing Post Acute Withdrawal symptoms

Pronunciation: pOst akyoot with-draw-wul sin-drOme
Also Known As: post acute withdrawal syndrome symptoms, post acute withdrawal, post acute withdrawal symptoms, long term withdrawal symptoms
Common Misspellings: post acute withdrawl syndrome
Examples:
Ben's post acute withdrawal syndrome included symptoms of anxiety and sleep problems, which lasted for two years after he quit heroin.
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