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Top 7 Methadone Withdrawal Symptoms Explained in Layman Terms

What Is Methadone

You might not have heard of methadone withdrawal symptoms before but trust me, it is a very important topic.

Methadone-Withdrawal-SymptomsMethadone is a pain reliever, and like morphine, it also belongs to the opioid family of pharmaceutical agents. Also, because it is an opioid, it is also sometimes used as a narcotic.

Methadone Withdrawal Symptoms Exposed

Interestingly, the use of methadone has been advocated in the treatment of people who have been addicted to heroin and other similar narcotic agents. The basis for this pharmacological intervention is as a result of the fact that using methadone does not cause any ‘high’ that is observed with other drugs used in the treatment of drug addiction. To summarize, methadone is used primarily for relieving pain and then for detoxification in drug addicts.

What Are the Main Methadone Withdrawal Symptoms

In understanding this, the concept of withdrawal symptoms itself has to be properly defined.

Withdrawal symptoms are said to develop after an individual or subject has developed physical or mental dependence to either a chemical or physical agent like a drug, and then the exposure to such an agent stops suddenly. The same thing with this drug in question.

Methadone withdrawal symptoms develop when methadone is suddenly withdrawn from an individual who might have been using it as a medication or for any other reason stipulated by trained medical personnel. Whatever is the reason for the withdrawal, you must know that the symptoms should not be ignored but rather managed. At this juncture, the seven major symptoms of methadone withdrawal will be listed thus:

Physical withdrawal symptoms:

  • Severe itching
  • Tremors
  • Fever
  • Sweating
  • Chills

In addition to these, there are those regarded as cognitive withdrawal symptoms:

  • Panic disorders
  • Suicidal thoughts

If you notice that you or any of your closed ones are exhibiting one or more of the symptoms that have been listed out above, do not make the mistake of brushing it off with a wave of the hand. You really need to pay attention to each and everyone of these signs as failure to do so can have grave consequences, even sudden death is a possibility.

What Can You Do If You Have Methadone Withdrawal Symptoms

Now that you have an insight as to the major symptoms of methadone withdrawal, what are the measures that you are expected to take in a situation whereby you notice one or more of these symptoms? You really have to know that having any of these symptoms is not the end of life and there are measures that can help.

The exact method of treatment of these symptoms has to be selected by medical experts and it usually involves gradually reducing the dosage of methadone administered. This lessens the severity of the withdrawal symptoms over time, and in medical circles, it is referred to as tapering of the dose. In addition to the reduction of the dosage, another thing that can be done is to embark on a detoxification program.

The essence of this program is to flush out the toxins that remain in the system. There are some instances in which the detoxification of the subject has to be done under conditions of anesthesia but again, it all depends on the severity of the methadone withdrawal symptoms.

Reference links

http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/druginfo/meds/a682134.html
http://www.drugs.com/methadone.html
http://methadone.org/

methadone withdrawal- the first few days