Why Does it Take So Long for Your Body to Detox Off of Methadone?

Why Does it Take So Long for Your Body to Detox Off of Methadone?

You began a Methadone program to help you stop taking opiates, but now you realize that you have traded one dependency for another. Quitting Methadone is not a fast process. Why does it take so long for your body to detox off of Methadone?

What is Methadone?

Methadone is effective not only as a method for detox from other opiates, but also as a pain reliever. In detox, Methadone acts as an opioid agonist and blocks other opioids from activating the receptor sites in the brain and becoming effective.

Methadone is an opioid narcotic, similar to morphine, but a little different in structure. Methadone is a chemical that builds up in your body the longer you take it. For example when you first take it, the body will absorb it quickly, becoming effective in about 30 minutes.

Methadone has a very long half-life meaning that the time it takes for blood levels to drop to 50 percent of the peak are longer than with other medications. So the first dose will peak at 12 to 18 hours, the second will be about 13 to 47 hours and the third 24 to 36 hours. This means that the longer you take Methadone, the longer it will take to get it out of your system.

Quitting Methadone Use

Long-term Methadone use will most likely lead to dependency and tolerance. Tolerance means that it will take more of the drug with each use to achieve the same results. If you stop taking Methadone suddenly you will begin to feel withdrawal symptoms which may include the following:

  • Flu like symptoms
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Constipation
  • Dry mouth
  • Insomnia
  • Hallucinations and confusion
  • Anxiety

Most doctors advise against trying to quit Methadone cold turkey because the side effects of withdrawal can be dangerous, even fatal for some people. However, if you do try to go it alone it is important that you keep your body nourished and hydrated, drinking plenty of water.

Depending on the amount of Methadone and how long you have been taking it – withdrawal could last a few miserable weeks, or longer.  The truth is that many people who start out trying to quit Methadone cold turkey end up returning to their drug use because they cannot make it through the withdrawal. Your chances for successfully quitting Methadone are a lot higher – in your favor – if you seek assistance from a professional medical detox facility.

Methadone Medical Detox

The best method for quitting Methadone is a medical detox treatment that uses IV therapy and will take about seven to ten days, sometimes a little longer. IV therapy is also the method for Methadone detox most recommended by doctors because it controls withdrawal and keeps the patient comfortable throughout the process.

Do you want to know why does it take so long for your body to detox off of Methadone? Call Gallus Detox Center today, at 855-338-6929 to learn more about Methadone detox and IV therapy and discover why we are The Better Way!

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