Withdrawal refers to the physical and emotional effects of stopping or reducing, often in a sudden or drastic manner, the use of particular substance(s) and/or behavior(s) upon which one has been excessively dependent.
Symptoms can be frequent, disorienting and painful, and may include feelings of depression, anxiety, fatigue, and nausea. The withdrawal phase, which can be rollercoaster-like, lasts anywhere from a few days to a number of weeks (each person will be affected differently), and may also manifest physically—sweating, vomiting, hallucinations, seizures, difficulty breathing, a racing heart, etc. Medical monitoring may be required to mitigate the most dangerous symptoms of withdrawal.
To learn more about addiction, please see the linked video below—“Why Are Drugs So Hard to Quit?”—produced by the National Institute of Drug Abuse (NIDA/NIH). An informational graphic, created by American Addiction Centers, is also presented below, summarizing drug withdrawal timelines.