There are two types of methadone detox. First, methadone detox commonly refers to the treatment of opiate addiction such as for those addicted to heroin or Oxycontin. Second, methadone detox also refers to the treatment of those addicted to methadone. Unfortunately, methadone is a opiate drug and happens to be just as addicting or more addicting than heroin itself and therefore many people find themselves in both types of methadone detox over time.
Initially, a person may be addicted to heroin and begin methadone detox in order to safely eliminate the physical dependency on heroin. Over time, that same individual could end up addicted to the methadone in which case they will need methadone detox to actually stop using the methadone. This a prime example of how methadone detox can take on two different forms of treatment depending largely on the person.
Methadone Detox for Opiate Addiction
Opiate addiction such as an addiction to heroin or prescription painkillers requires a medical detox such as methadone detox. Methadone is administered to the patient to alleviate the painful withdrawal symptoms associated with abruptly stopping the use of heroin or other painkillers. Methadone detox can help to alleviate the physical dependence on the opiates and can reduce any cravings that are felt thus helping an addict to achieve sobriety. Methadone detox is considered a maintenance program for those recovering from opiate addiction.
Over time, the amount of methadone taken must be weaned in order for the addict to successfully complete opiate detox and methadone detox. If the amount of methadone is not weaned off, an addiction to methadone can occur which will require further treatment. This is one of the most common negative side effects and risks of methadone detox for opiate addiction.
Methadone Detox for Methadone Addiction
Often times people find themselves equally addicted to methadone as a result of having taken it to detox from another opiate such as heroin. The result is that the individual must now undergo another type of methadone detox in which the addiction to methadone is broken. This type of methadone detox is usually less painful and has fewer withdrawal symptoms than a heroin or other opiate detox but can still be painful and dangerous.
The best possible option, usually, for methadone detox is to detox naturally rather than attempt another medication based detox program that comes with the risk of addiction. If medications are used for methadone detox a commonly used (and new) medication that is used for methadone detox is called Suboxone. You can learn more about Suboxone Detox Here.
The withdrawal symptoms associated with a withdrawal from methadone, although less severe than morphine or heroin tend to last longer which makes it difficult to withstand. In most cases the withdrawal symptoms associated with methadone detox last a period of about 2-6 weeks but could last longer for some. Methadone detox symptoms include:
- Sneezing or sniffling
- High blood pressure
- Suicidal ideations
- Bone Aches and Pains
- Body aches and pains
- Agitation and irritability
It’s important to remember that methadone detox is only the beginning to a long term recovery effort. Any methadone detox program (whether detoxing from an opiate with methadone or detoxing from methadone) should be followed by a long term drug treatment program for the best possible chances of long term sobriety and reduced chance of relapse in the future. Methadone detox can be very effective is additional steps are taken to change addictive behaviors.