More than 10 million people in the U.S. have been reportedly taking opioid drugs such as Percocet for non-medical purposes. Percocet is a pain-relieving medication that consists of a combination of drugs that include acetaminophen and oxycodone. People who consume opioid drugs for prolonged durations often end up becoming dependent on them. Once a person’s body becomes dependent on such drugs, they find it hard to limit their intake, so Percocet can cause many side effects and withdrawal may become a complicated procedure.
Percocet withdrawal symptoms can range from physical to psychological. Symptoms tend to occur during the detoxification process – when the body is eliminating the toxic elements from the system. Detoxification process can be quite agonizing, but breaking the chains of addiction is a vital first step one must undertake to establish a healthy lifestyle.
Percocet Withdrawal Symptoms
When a person consumes opioid drugs such as Percocet for extended periods of time, their body becomes dependent on it. This happens because their system becomes desensitized to that particular drug and they need to have more of it to feel its effect. Thus when a person is undergoing the detoxification treatment, they are likely to experience withdrawal symptoms, as their body is removing all the toxic elements from their system.
Withdrawal symptoms can be of two types – psychological and physical. The intensity of these symptoms depends on the severity of the person’s addiction. Such symptoms tend to occur within 12 hours following the consumption of the last dose.
The First Stage of Percocet Withdrawal
There are two stages of opiate withdrawal. The following symptoms mark the first stage:
- Runny nose
- Teary eyes
- Body Aches
- Excessive sweating
- Excessive yawning
- Low energy
- Muscle spasms
- Hot and cold spells
- High blood pressure
- Fever and chills
- Appetite changes
The Second Stage of Percocet Withdrawal
The next stage is marked by the following symptoms:
- Abdominal cramps
- Increased heartbeat
- Dilated pupils
Psychological Withdrawal Symptoms
Patients who consume Percocet for prolonged duration often experience psychological symptoms that may include:
- Mood swings
- Inability to concentrate
- Impaired memory
- Lack of motivation
How Long Does Percocet Withdrawal Last?
As soon as the last dose of the drug has been consumed, it could take a few hours for the withdrawal symptoms to appear. The Half-life of Percocet’s oxycodone component is 2-5 hours. The initial symptoms of withdrawal may include nausea, body aches, muscle spasms, and excessive sweating that might become more intense by opiate withdrawal day 2.
Severe symptoms such as cramping and shaking do not usually occur until opiate withdrawal day 3, accompanied by nausea and muscles spasms. On day 6 to 7, the physical symptoms start to disappear, and the psychological symptoms are at their highest peak. The patient might experience severe anxiety and depression during this period. Once the drug has been eliminated from the body, the patient might feel remorse for the incidents that occurred during the period they were intoxicated. This is the time when the patient is at the highest risk of falling into a relapse. Thus their physical, as well as mental health, should be monitored when coming off Percocet.
Percocet Detox Process
Around 42,000 people have died in the year 2016 due to an opioid overdose. Since Percocet withdrawals can also be potentially life-threatening, it is recommended that opiate addicts undergo an appropriate detoxification treatment to rid the body of all the toxic elements and give it a chance to heal.
What factors will influence the detox process?
The various factors that may influence the detox process include:
- A Percocet dosage strength being administered
- Duration of usage
- A quantity of the drug being used
- Age and overall health of an individual
- History of mental disorders and disabilities
Weaning off Percocet: Treatment Methods and Options for Help
Percocet withdrawal can be quite a painful and uncomfortable journey for the suffering addict, however, to boost the quality of one’s health and life, it is essential to opt for an internal detoxification program. The most effective way to conduct a detox would be to reduce the dosage gradually instead of limiting the intake abruptly. This method limits the number of side effects experienced by the individual undergoing a Percocet detox.
Percocet Withdrawal Medications
Several medications can be used to help addicts in coping with their withdrawal symptoms from Percocet. These medicines trick the brain into believing that Percocet or oxycodone is still being administered when in reality it is not. This helps in reducing the severity of the symptoms. There are a lot of medications that interact with Percocet badly, so ask a physician first to know what drugs to use with Percocet or instead. Here is a list of the common medications that are prescribed to a patient suffering from opiate addiction:
The two most common drugs prescribed for this purpose are Clonidine and Lofexidine. These help in reducing the effects of the most common withdrawal symptoms such as aching, cramping, anxiousness and excessive sweating. Methadone is prescribed for long-term Percocet withdrawals, as it helps in significantly reducing the cravings. Buprenorphine, which is also a commonly prescribed medication, has been found to resolve the symptoms associated with Percocet withdrawal faster than other medicines available in the market. Sometimes marijuana can also be used instead of Percocet for pain treatment. Some patients might feel the need to seek Percocet withdrawal help from psychiatrists to receive the necessary counseling and treatment needed to overcome such addictions. Regular sessions will help in alleviating mood swings and depression.
Since the FDA has classified Percocet drug class as category C, pregnant women should not be given the medication. It is also not recommended to take Percocet while breastfeeding, as the drug can be quickly passed onto the infant through the breastfeeding mother’s milk. Patients experiencing an allergic reaction to Percocet should immediately stop taking the drug and consult with their doctor to get alternative pain medications.
Get Professional Treatment
Patients undergoing drug addiction treatment are at high risk of falling into a relapse. Thus it is crucial to get the social support to speed up the drug recovery process. To ensure long-term recovery, the patient must seek help from a professional rehab. Regular counseling sessions and support group therapies offered at professional rehabs help the patients in treating the root cause of their problem while keeping their psychological symptoms at bay.
Moreover, patients that opt for professional rehab treatments are highly unlikely to relapse; thus it is recommended to seek professional help from rehabilitation centers to ensure long-term recovery. It is essential to maintain a positive approach and strong willpower to succeed throughout the treatment, to boost the chances of long-term success.
If you or your loved one is suffering from opioid addiction and would like to get more details regarding the rehabilitation process, give us a call on our toll-free number (888)-459-5511 to get immediate help!