Methadone and methadone detox information
Opioid methadone is a long-acting synthetic opioid drug, that works on the opioid receptors in the brain. Just like heroin, but longer.
Methadone is well known for being a substitute for heroin. GPs often prescribe methadone to those suffering from opioid addiction and dependence. Methadone addicts will typically experience heavy withdrawal symptoms when they quit using the drug. Therefore, it is important to find the best methadone withdrawal and detox treatment for yourself or a loved one.
Many people who were addicted to heroin, and then transferred to methadone know how difficult it is to withdraw from methadone.
The withdrawals from methadone are very painful and take a long time. Usually, home methadone detox ends without success. After all, methadone is a much stronger, “sticky” total opioid agonist. It takes a very long time for a body to process and get rid off this opioid.
Methadone has a half-life of 48h, which means it might take up to 48 hours to lower the quantity of methadone in your bloodstream by half. The time-frame of eliminating methadone from the system depends on the functions of the liver. This organ is also damaged by this toxic substance.
Methadone Detox Process
Detoxing from methadone usually takes much longer than from heroin, codeine, tramadol, and other short-acting opioids. Gradually, tapering on weekly basis, reducing the dose of methadone can sometimes last for months. Regardless, often it does not lead to complete liberation from it. On the contrary, the daily dose may increase again. In many cases, people with heroin habit start adding heroin to methadone. In any case, tolerance is growing again. Starting afresh, drugs free life gets postponed indefinitely.
To achieve real results, getting off methadone must be assertive and, if possible, rapid because the process requires rapid change. Therefore, the fast bridge method is used. This is a relatively rapid, painless substitution of methadone with another “softer” opioid. Under the sleepy cover of analgesia and sedation, both drugs are gradually withdrawn from the system.
Usually is enough to provide good protection against sleeplessness, depression, autonomic nervous system waves, constipation and diarrhea. Only then the methadone detox is easy and without problems, but most importantly – safe.
Depending on the dose of Methadone, methadone detox may take from 8-9 to 14 inpatient detox days. Towards the end of the methadone detox, control tests take place as well as preparation for Naltrexone implant fitting procedure (if applicable).
Another Methadone Detox Option
Another approach allows you to spend even less time at a methadone detox clinic. This also means spending less money on the detox. To achieve this, the patient (who’s been on heroin before) switches to a convenient dose of heroin or codeine prior the admission to the detox. They stay without methadone, but on a short-acting opioid for two weeks because they need it to prevent withdrawals. Afterward, they enter a 7 days heroin inpatient detox. For many of our patients, such a detox is much easier and less expensive.
Thereafter, it is highly recommended to start Naltrexone therapy to prevent relapse and reduce cravings for opiate drugs. It is best to immediately put the implant for 6 months. Thanks to Naltrexone, insomnia, irritability, anxiety pass faster.
See Patient Testimonials on Methadone Detox.