According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, while most psychedelics do not cause addiction syndromes like drugs in other classes are known to cause, “people who stop repeated use of PCP experience drug cravings, headaches, and sweating as common withdrawal symptoms” and can become seriously addicted with continued abuse. This syndrome can be treated, although its care is different from that of other well-known addiction syndromes.
No Official Treatment Map
“There are no government-approved medications to treat addiction to hallucinogens,” including PCP, and there is also no official treatment map for this type of addiction. While research is ongoing in this area, it is important that anyone who is already addicted to the drug itself still seek help in a formal treatment program. This is because PCP is one of the most dangerous drugs on the market and can cause flashbacks, persistent speech problems, social withdrawal and isolation, chronic anxiety, depression, suicidal thoughts, toxic psychosis, violent behavior, and memory problems with long-term abuse (The Center for Substance Abuse Research).
Treatment Options Do Exist
There are programs that can help treat PCP addiction, which is much safer than attempting to quit the drug without any type of medical intervention. Given the withdrawal symptoms associated with dependence on the drug and the serious side effects of long-term use, anyone who has been taking PCP for more than a few months will need professional treatment.
While there aren’t any medications approved to treat the addiction syndrome itself, withdrawal symptoms such as cravings and depression can be treated with medications in some cases. It is especially important that individuals struggling with severe depression have access to antidepressants, as long as the drugs themselves won’t cause the individual further distress.
In general, though, the main treatment for PCP addiction will usually revolve around therapeutic intervention. One of the most popular programs is cognitive-behavioral therapy, which teaches patients to “identify and correct problematic behaviors by applying a range of different skills that can be used to stop drug abuse and to address a range of other problems that often co-occur with it” (NIDA). Not only does this help patients cope with cravings and triggers and minimize the chance of relapse, but it can also address psychotic symptoms and other mental health issues often associated with PCP abuse.
You Can Stop Abusing PCP
PCP addiction can be treated, and while this type of recovery may take several months or even years, it is important for those who have experienced a loss of control over their drug abuse to realize there is a way to stop and that they require help to do so. PCP is a highly addictive, extremely dangerous drug, and only through professional treatment can the uncontrolled use of it end and an individual be able to return to their normal life.
If you have more questions about PCP and its effects, call 800-895-1695. We can also help you find treatment centers in your area where you can begin to recover from your PCP abuse and addiction.