Methadone is a controversial drug in the drug addiction community. It’s one of the most widely accepted methods for treating opiate addictions. However, many people who turned to it for help are now dependent on it. Instead of being drug-free they’ve only swapped one addiction for another.
Methadone is a synthetic opiate painkiller. It’s a common opiate addiction treatment because it actually alters the way the brain works. It blocks the high people get from drugs, thus limiting to desire to use. Although it can help with opiate addiction, many call it a “replacement therapy” and methadone addiction has become increasingly common.
This is what you should know about methadone detoxes:
Methadone Withdrawal Symptoms
Since methadone was designed to treat opiate addiction, its withdrawal symptoms are not as severe as other opiate detoxes. Withdrawal doesn’t set in as quickly either since the drug stays in the body for 1-3 days. Although less severe, methadone withdrawal symptoms are similar to other opiate withdrawals. Common symptoms include:
- Watery eyes
- Runny Nose
- Fever or chills
- Tremors or shaking
- Muscle aches
- Nausea or vomiting
- Anxiety or irritability
- Racing heart
Methadone Withdrawal Timeline
Methadone detoxes take longer to set in due to how the drug is stored in the body. Symptoms start to appear approximately 24-36 hours after the last dose. Around 30 hours after the last dose, the first symptoms will appear. These are commonly flu-like symptoms such as a fever or aches.
Detox symptoms become more severe over the following days. This includes cramps, diarrhea, depression, and intense cravings. These symptoms peak about 3 days. However, a full methadone detox can take weeks if not months. How long it takes depends on the dosage and how long a person has been taking methadone. Since methadone is an opiate, it’s recommended to seek professional medical help in order to safely withdrawal.