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Oxycodone is an opioid pain medication used to treat moderate-to-severe pain particularly for those who have undergone surgery or are managing pain from cancer and other chronic health conditions. It is the ingredient in OxyContin and one of the ingredients in Percocet. There is the immediate-release formula, which has a half-life of three to four hours, and an extended-release formula, which has a 12-hour half-life. Oxycodone is habit-forming and dependence, both physical and psychological, can happen with regular use or abuse of it. People abuse Oxycodone for its euphoric effects and release of tension and pain. Such abuse can lead to relapse, overdose and death.

OXYCODONE WITHDRAWAL SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS

Heroin Signs

How do you know you’re in withdrawal? Well, for most people, it starts with how they feel overall shortly after they have stopped taking the drug. A person who uses it for a long time will build up a tolerance for it, which means his body and brain no longer respond to the drug the way it did upon first using it.

If repeated use stops; however, the body will respond to the absence of the drug and go into withdrawal. Signs and symptoms affect people differently and what’s considered mild to severe will vary depending on the person.

  • Cold and hot flashes
  • Diarrhea
  • Goose bumps
  • Flu-like symptoms (coughing, runny nose, and teary eyes)
  • High blood pressure
  • Increased heart rate
  • Involuntary leg movements (restless legs)
  • Joint, muscle, and bone aches/pain
  • Hoarseness and swelling of the throat
  • Insomnia
  • Nausea (diarrhea, vomiting)
  • Sweating
  • Yawning
  • Confusion
  • Depression
  • Delusions
  • Distractions (or problems concentrating)
  • Insomnia (or other sleep disorders)
  • Irritability
  • Abnormal dreams
  • Anxiety
  • Agitation
  • Depression
  • Dysphoria
  • Emotional lability
  • Hallucinations
  • Mental brain fog
  • Suicidal thoughts
  • Thought abnormalities
  • Depersonalization (defined as a state in which one's thoughts and feelings seem unreal or not to belong to oneself)
OXYCODONE WITHDRAWAL

Heroin Timeline

Learn What Stage You’re In and What Actions You Need to Take

If you’ve been using oxycodone for a considerable time and are dependent on it, and have now stopped using it, you either are in withdrawal or will be shortly. From this point on, you will have to decide what happens next as these symptoms unfold. As you weigh your options, here’s what you need to know.

Have Severe Withdrawal Symptoms? What You Need to Do Next

If you, or someone you know, are in withdrawal and are having a shortness of breath, chest pain, high blood pressure, or an irregular heartbeat, among other symptoms that are causing discomfort, call 911 or visit an emergency room or urgent care center immediately for medical attention. Do not put yourself in further danger as these symptoms may indicate a more serious situation.

Oxycodone Day 1 to Day 7, Acute Withdrawal Symptoms

It is commonly asked what happens during withdrawals from oxycodone addiction or dependence and how long withdrawals last. The answer is that it depends on several factors including:

  • The kind of oxycodone was taken. Was it an immediate-release formula, which has a half-life of three to four hours, or an extended-release formula, which has a 12-hour half-life?
  • The method used to ingest the oxycodone: Was it chewed, snorted, injected, swallowed, or smoked? If it was put directly into the bloodstream, then the effects will last for a shorter time than if the substance lasts over a period of time.
  • Age, genetics, medical history, daily use habits, and environment, among other things, will all affect how long and how difficult the process will be. But it can last for a few days to a few weeks, up to a month, maybe more. Long-term withdrawal symptoms from oxycodone addiction can last far beyond when the physical effects end.

Here’s a general outline of what a seven-day withdrawal from the substance looks like. Keep in mind that the length of process could be shorter or longer.

The first two to three days are considered among the most challenging for people in withdrawal; this short window is also when users are more susceptible to relapse. Withdrawal symptoms may begin to set in anywhere within eight and 12 hours after the last dose taken wears off. At this stage, users in withdrawal may have joint aches, abdominal cramps, muscle cramps, flu-like symptoms (a runny nose, fever, and other cold symptoms), and increased irritation and anxiety.

During this stage, users can have nausea, including vomiting and diarrhea, and appetite loss. They also may have the shakes, and cramps are still present.

Symptoms begin to ease up around this period, but now the psychological effects may be present. Anxiety and depression are common as users face their addiction and the actions they took that accompanied their addiction. These realizations can be overwhelming, along with some physical pains that may still be present. These may include strong cravings and desires to resume use of the drug, which is common in users going through withdrawal.

OXYCODONE WITHDRAWAL

Heroin Treatment

Knowing what to expect to happen as withdrawal symptoms occur can prepare the user for what to expect. The truth? There’s no one easy way to withdraw from Oxycodone use. There will be discomfort, and while most withdrawal symptoms are not life-threatening, seeing a licensed medical professional to manage them gets many through the process.

Oxycodone Detox: What Happens

Oxycodone detox is considered the safest way to manage withdrawal symptoms and remove the drug from the body’s system. IV therapy detox is a common method for people going through withdrawal. People who undergo medical detox are monitored by licensed medical professionals who administer medications to help ease symptoms while monitoring clients’ overall health and vital signs, which are body temperature, breathing rate, heart rate, and blood pressure.

In some programs, medical professionals slow down the dosage of Oxycodone by using other medications designed to counter the effects of the substance the person is using, all with the needs of the client in mind. Others may take a different approach and may discontinue use of Oxycodone altogether.

The length of detox will depend on a variety of factors, such as medical history, history of addiction, how long Oxycodone has been used, among others. In many cases, time spent in a facility for detox can last anywhere from three to seven days.

Common Oxycodone Detox Medications

During detox, one may be prescribed to take the medications to help ease the severity of the symptoms. Common medications used include:

  • Buprenorphine - This opioid medication is given at a medical facility or doctor’s office, or it can be used at home under doctor’s prescription. It acts on the receptor targets of heroin and morphine, but without the same intense high or harmful side effects, says the National Institute on Drug Abuse.
  • Clonidine - Clonidine, available as an oral immediate-release tablet, extended-release tablet, or patch, is used to lower blood pressure. This is achieved by the drug stimulating parts of the brain to lower the heart rate and blood pressure. It also reduces anxiety, agitation, muscle aches, sweating, runny nose, and cramping.
  • Suboxone - Suboxone is a combination of Buprenorphine and Naloxone, and is used to ease discomfort and reduce cravings for clients suffering from opiate withdrawal.
  • Methadone - Methadone, an opiate, is used to treat clients with chronic pain and to help rid the body of opioids. It helps reduce physical discomfort and cravings for Oxycodone. It is habit-forming and should be used with care.
  • Naltrexone - Available as a pill or an injection, Naltrexone works to block the effects of opioid medication. It used to prevent relapse in people with drug and/or alcohol dependence.

Oxycodone Detox Can Take Place Before Symptoms Get Worse

Detoxing at a medical facility can take place before symptoms begin. The duration of withdrawal will vary by the person for several reasons, so there is no one answer. The symptoms, signs, and severity of a person’s specific situation will affect their experience and the outcome.

What Happens After Oxycodone Detox?

After ridding the body of Oxycodone, it is vital that clients have a plan in place for their next step in the recovery process. After undergoing detox, it will now be important to change the environment and identify triggers and other factors that could lead back to abusing Oxycodone. Sobriety is the goal, but it is a process, so take it one day at a time.

A post-detox recovery program can offer clients guidance and a treatment care plan. These plans can include teaching clients coping skills and strategies to manage the issues that started them to use drugs.

Oxycodone Withdrawal Home Remedies: Why You Should Avoid Them

While there is advice that encourages using at-home, do-it-yourself remedies to overcome an oxycodone addiction, medical treatment administered by licensed medical professionals is widely advised as an alternative option to these methods. A medical center or facility of some kind provides a safe environment in which to detox in. Medical professionals can monitor clients undergoing the detox process around the clock to ensure they get the care they need.

OXYCODONE WITHDRAWAL FAQS

Heroin FAQ

Symptoms can start anywhere from eight to 12 hours after your last dose. Keep in mind, however, that factors such as what kind of oxycodone you took (immediate release or timed release) and how you took it (whether it was swallowed, snorted, injected, etc.) can affect how fast or slowly it wears off.

Everyone is unique in how he deals with oxy withdrawal symptoms. Some take over-the-counter medicines for the flu-like symptoms and nausea they are having as their body goes through the process while others tough it out. Others use the tapering method and other at-home, do-it-yourself remedies. One of the options considered most effective is to seek medical detox from licensed, medical professionals at a facility that is equipped to handle clients who are in drug withdrawal.

How one decides to manage withdrawal symptoms of oxycodone is personal. Some will wait it out and do nothing, at the risk of relapse, while others will try other approaches, such as at-home remedies. But the most effective way to “get over” oxy withdrawals is to seek a detox program designed to rid the body of the drug and help clients reestablish their lives. Undergoing opioid therapy with trusted nurses, doctors and other medical staff offers reassurance that you’re safe as you restore your body’s system and that your needs and concerns are addressed during the process.

If you have been taking oxycodone as recommended and have not been misusing it or abusing it in a manner that would result in physical dependence and addiction, then stopping the medication should not result in typical withdrawal symptoms. However, stopping oxycodone use after long-term use will likely end in withdrawal.

WHAT TO EXPECT FROM OXYCODONE DRUG TREATMENT

WHEN YOU GET THERE

At a drug rehab center, you can start your recovery with a healthy support group of trained clinical staff, other like-minded recovering addicts, and addiction counselors that only want you to succeed.

PROGRAMS VARY BY INDIVIDUAL

Addiction treatment programs will vary by individual and substance, depending on the severity of his addiction and whether other treatment methods need to be included, such as dual-diagnosis or holistic therapies.

MEDICATIONS USED IN OXYCODONE DETOX

Some medications that may be expected are: buprenorphine, Suboxone, and methadone. Medicines for non-pain health conditions may also be administered, such as for diabetes and high blood pressure.

QUITTING OXYCODONE “COLD TURKEY” IS RISKY

People who have used oxycodone for long periods will likely experience withdrawal symptoms should they decide to suddenly reduce their use or stop it altogether. Symptoms of oxycodone withdrawal are often an unpleasant but necessary experience to endure before one can get on the path to recovery.

The safest way to end dependence on oxycodone is get help from medical professionals at a detox or drug rehab facility. Medical supervision will keep users safe as they cope with the symptoms, which are uncomfortable but rarely life-threatening. Getting medical help with drug detox also may reduce the possibility of relapse.

OXYCODONE WITHDRAWAL

20%

of people are prescribed opioids in office-based settings, despite not being diagnosed with pain-related causes.

70%

of of high school seniors that have abused prescription opioids have gotten them for free from a family member or friend.

50%

of all U.S. opioid-related drug overdoses involve a prescription opioid like OxyContin, oxycodone, hydrocodone, and methadone.

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