For those who take Percocet to manage pain but have slowly increased their dose over time, the simplest way to handle cessation of the drug is to taper off use. Under a doctor’s supervision, the dose is decreased over time, and the symptoms associated with opioid detox are minimal. Many find they can continue with their regular tasks without interruption even if they experience headaches, body aches, or other issues related to stopping their Percocet use.
For people who have opioid use disorder, it is not always a simple process to taper off Percocet. Cravings for more of the drug, extreme withdrawal symptoms, and psychological distress may make the individual feel it is necessary to relapse or increase their dose. During tapering, general monitoring provided by a physician is recommended, including:
If medical monitoring during the tapering process reveals there are any functional issues on any of the above points, a more supported form of detox may be recommended.
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If there are no other factors playing a role in how the individual experiences detox, then the timeline will be as quick as the managing physician allows. This will be influenced by the dose level at the time detox begins.
According to a person’s tolerance, the physician will likely prescribe a bump down in the dosing schedule every two to four weeks. If at any time the person wants to hold at a certain dose, that will extend the timeline. If everything is going smoothly or the person is willing to deal with some discomfort associated with Percocet withdrawal symptoms, it can be a simple, if not tedious, process.
In some cases, tapering off Percocet is complicated. Psychological dependence on the drug coupled with a physiological dependence equals addiction, and addiction cannot be treated by simply tapering down the dose over time.
For many people, medications approved to assist someone through the process of Percocet detox can be a lifesaver, easing cravings and other withdrawal symptoms associated with opioid detox. Some medication options include:
An inpatient methadone detox taper can take about a week. Outpatient and high-dose methadone detox will take weeks, if not months.
Forms of rapid or ultra-rapid detox are available to treat opioid withdrawal. These forms of treatment are generally not recommended, as deaths have been associated with their use. Any use of rapid or ultra-rapid detox should be supervised around the clock by physicians.
When it comes to determining what the safest and most effective option will be for someone undergoing Percocet detox, studies have shown time and again that a personalized approach is the best possible choice. There is no one-size-fits-all standard for supporting detox because each person who undergoes the process comes into it with a unique set of circumstances, needs, and goals. For that reason, there is no way to state exactly how long it will take to go from an active physical dependence on Percocet to being free from the drug.
If your loved one is living with an active Percocet addiction and tapering off the dose under the supervision of the doctor is not working, it is time to consider substance treatment options. Speak to a substance abuse treatment professional who can help your loved one determine what type of detox will be most effective in their case.
Taking the first steps and undergoing a full evaluation with medical experts will help your loved one make an informed choice about how to build a solid treatment plan.
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