DMT Withdrawal and Detox

Person covering their face with their hands while suffering from dmt withdrawal

DMT (N,N-Dimethyltryptamine) is a molecule found in many plants and animals. People take DMT to get hallucinogenic highs. It was originally used by cultures in South America that brewed plants containing DMT to make a psychedelic, tea-like drink — many people may be familiar with the drink ayahuasca. Now, DMT is sometimes produced in laboratories. 

Besides the drink, some people may smoke, snort or inject synthetic DMT powder.

Like other hallucinogens, DMT doesn’t cause physical dependence. People who use it don’t typically build up a tolerance to it and the drug is quickly removed from the body. Because of this effect, people don’t go through DMT withdrawal. DMT users frequently experience negative side effects from the drug. In some cases DMT appears to be able to cause long-term damage, but people don’t tend to have uncomfortable or dangerous symptoms as they detox from DMT.

DMT Tolerance and Withdrawal

DMT withdrawal symptoms have not been reported in people who use the drug. However, it’s important to remember that very little research has been done regarding the side effects of DMT. The substance’s ability to cause short- and long-term consequences isn’t well understood. Additionally, it’s possible that a person might experience some DMT withdrawal symptoms if they were using it at high doses over a long period. Symptoms may also develop if the person was mixing DMT with other drugs or has a history of mental health or mood disorders.

Hallucinogens, including DMT can, in rare cases, lead to Hallucinogen Persisting Perception Disorder (HPPD). This disorder leads to flashbacks, where a person who has used DMT in the past suddenly starts feeling its effects months or years after taking it. HPPD is rare but can happen to a person even after they take a hallucinogen just one time. People with HPPD may have visual disturbances, insomnia, anxiety and problems with memory on a daily basis. Anyone who is experiencing lasting symptoms of psychosis should especially make sure to check in with a doctor regularly. A health care provider can work with a patient to come up with ways to reduce these symptoms.

Even though DMT doesn’t generally cause withdrawal, it can still cause potentially extreme side effects.

DMT Withdrawal Timeline

DMT enters the bloodstream and is delivered to the brain very quickly after someone uses it. When a person takes synthetic DMT, the effects of the drug may wear off within 30 minutes. Ayahuasca effects may not manifest until an hour after taking it, but they can last several hours. DMT is metabolized very quickly and then disposed of through urine. Once the effects of a high wear off, DMT is likely only in the body for a brief period. During this period, people tend to not have any withdrawal symptoms. 

Detoxing from DMT

DMT detox tends to be a quick process. It may take longer for people who use DMT at high doses. If someone experiences negative side effects when they try to stop using DMT or other substances, or if they feel like they can’t stop using these drugs on their own, then medical detox may help. This detox process helps cleanse people of substances by providing a comfortable, safe environment where patients can take medication to help ease symptoms or receive medical care if difficulties arise.

There aren’t any medications that are typically used to help with hallucinogen withdrawal since the process tends to be fast and mild. However, certain negative side effects can be managed. For example, someone having problems with high blood pressure or heart arrhythmias following DMT use can be monitored to make sure nothing serious happens. While there also aren’t any approved treatments for DMT addiction, there are many behavioral therapy or counseling options that can help anyone struggling with substance misuse.

People may be more at risk for DMT addiction if they find themselves using the drug increasingly often as a way to escape their environments or avoid stressful situations. There are several signs that someone’s DMT use has crossed over into psychological addiction, including:

  • Cravings for DMT
  • Spending increasing amounts of time using DMT
  • Abandoning friends who don’t use the drug and spending more time with other people who use it
  • Neglecting school or work because of using DMT or recovering from a bad trip
  • Losing interest in other hobbies, activities or relationships
  • Experiencing legal, financial or personal difficulties related to drug use, but continuing to use DMT anyway

A person who exhibits some of these signs may be struggling with a substance use disorder. Individual or group counseling, behavioral therapies and family programs can all help people regain control over their substance use.

Finding a DMT Detox Center in Washington or Oregon

Detox centers can help people safely flush substances out of their system. This is especially true when people have been using multiple substances, each of which may have their own set of withdrawal symptoms. Detox centers can also help connect people to resources that will help them curb their drug or alcohol use in the future.

Someone who spends a lot of time around people or environments where they are likely to use may find that inpatient rehab is a good option. Patients live at a rehab center 24 hours a day during inpatient treatment programs and receive intensive medical and psychological care. These programs can help people eliminate outside distractions and temptations on their road to recovery.

Another type of DMT addiction treatment is outpatient rehab. There are different levels of outpatient treatment programs, but the thing they all have in common is that patients are allowed to leave the facility and return home for the night. Patients may also be able to attend school or work. Outpatient rehab offers more freedom, but requires patients to take on a higher level of personal accountability.

Once a person has completed inpatient or outpatient rehab, they rely on aftercare programs to help them remain sober, build a support network and apply the tools they’ve learned in rehab to daily living. Aftercare includes elements like group therapy, individual counseling and 12-step programs.

  • The Recovery Village Ridgefield Detox Center
    The Recovery Village Ridgefield Detox Center

    5114 NE 94th Ave
    Vancouver, WA 98662
    (360) 719-1480

People struggling with DMT abuse can call The Recovery Village Ridgefield to learn more about how detox and addiction treatment programs can help. Our facilities offer around-the-clock care for people undergoing medical detox as well as inpatient rehab programs and outpatient services.

Carbonaro, Theresa M.; Gatch, Michael B. “Neuropharmacology of N,N-Dimethyltryptamine.” Brain Research Bulletin, April 25, 2016. Accessed August 14, 2019.

National Institute on Drug Abuse. “Hallucinogens.” April 2019. Accessed September 20, 2019.

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