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Addiction Medications

Treating Addiction With Medicines


There are many drugs which are used in addiction treatment programs to relieve withdrawal side effects and decrease the chances of relapse. Medicine can make it painless for recovering addicts to keep in sobriety. Intensive and most severe withdrawal symptoms cause many to go back to taking drugs. Prescribed medication can be given to the patient as part of both inpatient and outpatient programs. For the best chance of becoming sober and staying sober the medication dose may be altered.


Some medicines give the same feeling as the drug of abuse thus helping one cope with the withdrawal.


Detoxing And Withdrawal

The body must detox in the first stages of rehab to allow the drug to leave the body completely. This is known as the detoxification time. Depending on the drug in question, the detoxification period may be as long as several weeks or just a few days.

The hardest part of detoxification is having to deal with withdrawal symptoms. The exact nature of the drug use will determine how severe the withdrawal symptoms will be. The ones that were using opiates in high dosages for a long-term have the worst side effects.


There are many uncomfortable symptoms that may be experienced during this stage of recovery. These are some side effects:

  • Stress
  • Hopelessness
  • Vomiting
  • Seizures
  • Muscle pain
  • Sweating

There are a list of different medications that can be used during detox. The doctor might recommend a patient to take some of the following:

  • Benzodiazepines
  • For stress and irritability reduction.
  • Stress is mostly associated with withdrawal from drugs like Cocaine and Heroin
  • The recommended Benzos give a soothing feeling that helps withdrawal also from alcohol.
  • Due to the addictive nature of Benzodiazepines, doctors tend to be cautious when prescribing them.
  • Antidepressants
  • These medicines help the user to feel good and create natural happiness in their brain.
  • It is common with the people in detox to feel depressed as they have been using drugs for a much longer period to keep themselves happy.
  • Mood lifting medications like Zoloft and Prozac help in reducing these symptoms till the brain can function naturally again.
  • Clonidine
  • For relief of sweating, aching muscles, cramps and paranoia in alcohol and opiate withdrawal Clonidine is used.
  • Seizures and tremors can also be treated using Clonidine.

People who are detoxing from alcohol or Benzodiazepines for instance Valium or Xanax must never leave "cold turkey" in middle as their withdrawal sign can be fatal. Complications from other drugs can arise but are not considered life threatening. To ensure that detoxification is safe and successful, medical supervision is vital.

Speak with someone that can give you assistance in case you are suffering from an addiction.


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Addiction Medication

Withdrawal symptoms of alcohol addiction can last from several weeks to a few months depending on the frequency and duration over which alcohol is abused. This occurrence is known as prolong or post-acute withdrawal syndrome (PAWS).

Maintenance treatment can alleviate PAWS and can curb cravings or make the addict incapable to take alcohol. Patient take these tablets every day.


For liquor addiction these medicines are included:

  • Naltrexone (Vivitrol)
  • Naltrexone is a drug that blocks the brain receptors that produce the pleasurable effects of alcohol.
  • It stops the urge to take alcohol.
  • There are side effects of using Naltrexone including headaches and nausea.
  • It is also available as a single dose given once a month in the form of an injection.
  • Acamprosate (Campral)
  • Acamprosate has the ability to comfort from the effects of alcohol obsession that includes emotional and physical suffering.
  • It helps those who have gone through detox to stay sober.
  • Acamprosate works by eliminating the worse feelings of nervousness and hopelessness that results in lessening the desire to drink.
  • Disulfiram (Antabuse)
  • The first drug to be approved for treatment of alcohol addiction was Disulfiram.
  • Disulfiram causes sickness and vomiting if alcohol is consumed at the same time.
  • The intention is that the ones taking disulfiram will not drink alcohol as it will make them feel sick.

Get further information about medical care for alcohol addiction.


Heroin And Opiate Medications

Heroin, Morphine and sedative painkillers such as Oxycontin are included in Opiates. Medications recommended for treating Opiate and Heroin addiction help in reducing the urge to take the drug and accompanying withdrawal symptoms. These medications are usually taken daily in tablet form.

There withdrawal times are less than a week. Long- term withdrawal symptoms can be experienced by some people. Withdrawal symptoms can last for months or even years for some people. Extended replacement medicines can put an end to strong desires and PAWS. Medications are usually prescribed to recovering addicts for as long as is necessary.

Addiction medicines for Heroin and painkillers are:

  • Methadone
  • An Opioid, Methadone is used to help with detoxification from opiate drug dependencies.
  • Methadone links to the same receptors in the brain as Heroin and painkillers but without the high.
  • Withdrawal symptoms and the urge to use are reduced by this.
  • Because Methadone also has the capacity to cause addiction, it is usually prescribed cautiously.
  • It also prevents abuse so it is dispensed daily by clinics..
  • Additional Facts about Methadone.
  • Buprenorphine (Suboxone)
  • The addiction potential is less in Buprenorphine yet it works like a Methadone.
  • Buprenorphine users may frequently take the drug home with them in place of heading to a centre each day to get it.
  • Naltrexone
  • Naltrexone is for both opiate addiction and alcohol addiction.
  • It puts an end to cravings.
  • The same brain receptors are activated for both alcohol and Opiates.

Medical Detox And Rehabilitation

Drug addicts when they want to stop addiction sometimes will choose to detox without medical supervision. This isn't just more difficult, it is also more risky than a medical detoxing. You can become sober once again through medical detox in relaxed surroundings. Some addictions such as alcohol or benzos are more suited to medical detox.

A monitored detox is the primary stage to treat any kind of addiction.

Health complications are avoided in a medical detox program. Doctors record the patient's heart scale, body heat, breathing rate and fluid levels. The doctors keep the patient comfortable. In addition, they adapt any medicine dosages depending on the patient's requirements and durable programs for medication.

Other health problems can make detox more complex, therefore, medical detox should be sought. Blood pressure can be problematic during detox. Doctors can spot impending problems and treat them early.

In residential rehabilitation, detoxification is always part of the program. A person typically requires one to three months to go through detox. The primary week is of carefully monitored detoxification. Rehab includes behavioural therapy to give the patient a better chance to understand how they can stay sober.

Look for a rehab centre offering medically supervised detox for your friend, relative or yourself call 0800 246 1509.