Demerol Withdrawal and Detox

Demerol is an opioid that is a lot like morphine. It can be highly addictive, even at recommended dosages. Your doctor may have prescribed the drug for you, but that does not prevent you from developing tolerance or high dependence to the substance. By the time you‘ve become dependent, your brain will be unable to function normally in the absence of the drug and it only gets worse over time, as long as you continue to use it.

There might come a time when you will be so dependent on the substance that you’ll do almost anything to get some more, whether that’s heading to accident and emergency with a fake injury, meeting with different doctorsto get a prescription from each of them, or claiming that you lost your prescription so as to get a new one.

In order to be successfully treated for your drug dependence, you need to go through the process of detoxification, which is accompanied by uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms. If you believe you’ve developed dependence on Demerol, please seek professional help, because your situation will only worsen with further delay.

What is Demerol detox?

The first major step in getting treated for substance dependence or addiction is detoxification – often shortened to ‘detox’. It is the process by which your body gets rid of the drug toxins in yoursystem. Detox should always becarried out under medical supervision. It’s best to consult a medical practitioner before commencing detox or complete the withdrawal process in a formal detox programme, because withdrawal symptoms can be very unpredictable and sometimes dangerous.

Medical detox may involve doctors weaning you off the drug, using a technique called ‘tapering’,where doses are gradually reduced over a few weeks. This method is popular,because it is safer than quitting ‘cold turkey’ and withdrawal symptoms will be reduced. Your physician may also prescribe medications to help with symptoms throughout the detox phase.

You could be prescribed drugs which ensure you don’t feel the euphoric effects that you normally would, thus making it less likely for you to relapse.

Get Confidential Help Now

Call our admissions line 24 hours a day to get help.

What is Demerol withdrawal?

You’ll have to deal with withdrawal if you suddenly stop using the drug or significantly reduce your dosage after having used it for a long period of time. Withdrawal occurs as a consequence of your system attempting to readjust to functioning without the drug. For withdrawal to occur, it means you have developed a substance dependence, which caused changes to the brain by altering its’ chemical structure.

Withdrawal symptoms may be psychological or physical and differ in severity, ranging from mild to severe. No two people ever suffer the exact same symptoms in exactly the same severity, as every individual is unique. Typically, withdrawal symptoms shouldn’t be dangerous, if you undergo a medically-supervised withdrawal, but they can be extremely uncomfortable.

By receiving treatment in a medical detox facility, you’ll be saving yourself a lot of hardship, because medical personnel will be on hand to help reduce the discomfort caused by your symptoms. You will also receive the best care possible if any complications arise and have a better chance of pulling through without relapsing.

Contributing factors to withdrawal severity

The exact nature of withdrawal and severity of symptoms will depend on a number of factors. Some of these include how long you’ve been using the drug and the frequency of your usage. Another factor that contributes to the nature of your withdrawal is the dosage you’ve been using; that is, how low or high your doses have been.

Your unique physiology has a role to play too. Even if you’ve been using the drug with the exact same frequency and dosage as someone else, there is a good chance your symptoms will be different, as you are both individuals. The nature and severity of any co-occurring physical and mental health conditions will also contribute to what you will experience during withdrawal.

How Demerol affects the brain and body

Demerol is a medication used to relieve pain. It does so by working with the central nervous system and the brain, where it interacts with the body’s natural chemicals in order to alter how you respond to pain. While the drug can produce positive symptoms, it can also produce negative effects.

If you become addicted, the way in which your brain processes information can change and that in turn affects how you think, feel, and react. Since the drug can cause you to feel healthier, you might move in ways that can worsen any injury you might have if you’re not careful. You could also find it difficult to focus, due to persistent dizziness and you may have blurred vision. Other negative effects include unexpected shifts in personality or mood swings and persistent headaches.

Besides the possible effects on the brain, you may have to deal with other symptoms such asweakness, sweating, nausea, vomiting, dry mouth, drowsiness, fatigue and constipation.

Why you should detox properly from Demerol

Detoxing from Demerol can be extremely uncomfortable. A professional detox centre is always recommended, as there you’ll have the professional medical help you need to help manage your symptoms. With medical management of your symptoms, you won’t have to go through the pain of withdrawal and will have a much better chance of going through detox without relapsing.

Detox is a crucial part of the treatment process, particularly since it is the first stage of treatment. While it might seem like a good idea to attempt detoxing from home, it is not safe at all. You’re at a higher risk of overdosing, because you might not be able to control your cravings on your own and may resort to using the drug in higher quantities than usual in order to enjoy relief from the symptoms.

It’s also crucial to detox properly because of the possibility of a dual diagnosis; that is, the presence of a mental disorder or other substance-related disorders alongside your substance dependence or addiction problem. With medical care on hand, you will be at lessrisk of developing any complications related to such issues.

Causes of Demerol withdrawal

Withdrawal is the result of your body trying to readjust to functioning normally in the absence of drugs. Your system struggles to function normally again because of the changes the drug has made in your brain. These changes occur when you have been engaged in substance abuse long enough to develop dependence or even addiction.

The direct reason why addiction occurs is not widely known, but it’s believed to be the result of a combination of different factors. One of those is genetics, where you may be more likely to develop addiction if you have a blood relative who is addicted. Another possible cause is your unique brain chemistry, especially if you were born with a malfunction in the way your brain’s reward system works. Your brain may become dependent on Demerol due to it making up for your deficiency.

Environmental factors may also come into play, for example, you may live in an environment where substance abuse is seen as a normal way to deal with emotional pain and stress. It is also possible that an undiagnosed or untreated mental illness pushes you to substance abuse as a means ofmanagingyour symptoms. Regardless of what your case is, please seek help once you realise that you or your loved one is plagued by substance dependence or addiction.

How Demerol withdrawal is diagnosed

For a medical practitioner to diagnose withdrawal, they need to ask you questions about the symptoms you are experiencing. They will also have to perform a physical examination, as well as urine and blood tests in order to check for the presence of drugs in your system.

There is a good chance you will be asked about your possible substance abuse in the past and of course, your medical history. These questions are crucial if the physician is to arrive at a proper diagnosis and design the best possible treatment plan for you.

The only way to ensure you get the best out of this stage of the recovery process is to be completely open and honest about all the facts and details. You don’t have to worry about the privacy of your information, because your details will never be shared with anyone other than those responsible for your treatment.

Common Demerol detox and withdrawal symptoms

It’s not possible to produce a definitive list of withdrawal symptoms that will be experienced by every single person,asevery individual is different. However, there are common symptoms that can be expected.

The exact nature and severity of the symptoms you experience will depend on a number of factors, such as how often you abused the drug and for how long, as well as the quantity of your doses.

Withdrawal symptoms may differ in severity, ranging from moderate to severe. They could be both psychological and physical in nature, and include behavioural symptoms such as restlessness, irritability, loss of appetite, and agitation. You are also likely to experience strong cravings when you first stop using the drug, which can put you at risk of relapsing.

Physical symptoms of Demerol withdrawal and detox

Among the physical symptoms you may experience during withdrawal are:

  • Vomiting
  • Teary eyes
  • Stomach pain
  • Seizures
  • Runny nose
  • Nausea
  • Muscle aches
  • Increased blood pressure
  • Goose bumps
  • Fever
  • Dry mouth
  • Dizziness
  • Diarrhoea
  • Constipation
  • Cold sweats
  • Chills
  • Bone pain

Psychological symptoms of Demerol withdrawal

In addition to physical symptoms, you may experience psychological symptoms, which may include any of the following:

  • Psychosis
  • Mood swings
  • Impulsive behaviour
  • Hallucinations
  • Drug cravings
  • Disorientation
  • Depression
  • Delusions
  • Anxiety

How long does it take to detox from Demerol?

The exact duration of detox will depend on a number of factors, such as the detox method being used and the amount of the drug in your system. If tapering is employed, detox will take much longer thandoing so using the ‘cold turkey’ method; that is, quitting the drug abruptly.

The shortest medical detox programmes tend to last between three to five days, so you can be free of the drug within that time. In other cases, you may remain in detox for a few weeks. Regardless of how long it takes, it is crucial that you remain in detox for as long as you need to be.

Demerol Withdrawal Timeline

While the timeline for withdrawal symptoms is not written in stone, you can expect it to take on this general format:

First 24 hours

Given that the half-life of the drug is only about two to five hours, you’re likely to feel the onset of symptoms such as irritability and anxiety about 3 to 24 hours afteryour last dose.

Second to fifth day

Within this period, you can expect your symptoms to peak. You’re likely to experience physical and psychological symptoms such as muscle aches, sweating, dry mouth, nausea and paranoia. Also, you may have to deal with intense cravings.

Sixth to thirteenth day

By this time, your symptoms should have started subsiding and any that linger will eventually fade.

Beyond two weeks

After the first two weeks, your previous symptoms should continue to dissipate, but your cravings may persist.

What is acute Demerol withdrawal?

Acute withdrawal refers to the initial stage of withdrawal when symptoms are most severe. It is during the acute withdrawal phase that symptoms peak, before starting to decline in intensity. The onset of acute withdrawal typically occurs within the first 24 hours of quitting the drug, with most symptoms peaking between the next 24 to 72 hours or so.

By the end of the first week, you should be exiting the acute withdrawal stage, when you no longer experience acute symptoms. While your symptoms will most likely still be there, they should have significantly subsided.

Acute withdrawal is often followed by post- acute withdrawal symptoms (PAWS),during which your symptoms are protracted; that is, occurring over a long period of time. While they won’t be as intense as acute withdrawal symptoms, they can leave you with some discomfort for many weeks or months.

Coping with Demerol withdrawal

In order to cope with withdrawal, you must have a solid support system in place. The better the support you have, the more likely you are to succeed in dealing with addiction, whether that is in the form of emotional support or professional care.

The best move you can make is to go to a detox facility instead of attempting to go through withdrawal on your own. In a proper treatment facility, you’ll have the benefit of close medical supervision, which will provide relief for your symptoms and all the medical care you need, should any complications arise.

Receiving treatment in the perfect facility for you is only one part of the equation, as you also need the emotional support of your friends and family. They can end up making all the difference, especially when it comes to the speed of your recovery. It helps to have a loved one check on you every day as you go through withdrawal.

Get Confidential Help Now

Call our admissions line 24 hours a day to get help.

Possible complications

One of the most common symptoms of withdrawal is vomiting. This can be dangerous if you manage to inhale the contents of your stomach into your lungs. This is called aspiration and can be a serious complication,as it can result in the development of pneumonia or some other respiratory-related infection.

Another potentially dangerous symptom of withdrawal is diarrhoea, given that the loss of electrolytes and fluids can cause your heart to beat abnormally, which can result in a heart attack or circulatory problems.

In a professional medical setting, any possible complications can be properly managed before they become serious problems.

Medically supervised Demerol withdrawal

Withdrawal can be extremely uncomfortable and can cause you to try to manage the symptoms on your own or persist in substance abuse only to end up right back at square one. Our focus is on alleviating your unpleasant symptoms or making them more bearable. The more comfortable you are during withdrawal, the more likely you are to pull through treatment successfully.

Depending on the nature of your addiction, we may use medications to help manage your symptoms. Some of the symptoms that can benefit from the use of medication include nausea, diarrhoea, cramping, anxiety and muscle aches, amongst others. We may also use the tapering method to ensure that withdrawal is not too uncomfortable for you. Tapering means we’ll wean you off the drug gradually.

Medications to treat Demerol withdrawal

There are a number of medications that can be used to treat withdrawal, whether they are targeted at specific symptoms or help with a number of symptoms at a time. Some of the most commonly used are Subutex and Suboxone, which both include buprenorphine.

Suboxone contains another ingredient – Naloxone – which is an opioid antagonist that makes you unable to experience the euphoric effects of Demerol. Drugs like this can be a great help for reducing the likelihood of experiencing a relapse. Other drugs that may be used include naltrexone and methadone, with the latter being used more frequently.

Melatonin for Demerol withdrawal symptoms

Melatonin is a hormone that the brain releases to help maintain the body’s natural biorhythms. It is an antioxidant hormone produced by the brain’s pineal gland as you sleep. Having a deficiency of this hormone can make withdrawal more difficult.

One of the foremost reasons melatonin is used to manage withdrawal is its usefulness as a natural sleep aid. Substance dependence and addiction can cause the natural melatonin levels in your system to be reduced, causing symptoms such asbad moods, headaches and trouble sleeping. A melatonin supplement can be administered in order to offset those side effects. Other benefits of taking a melatonin supplement include helping the body heal and boosting the immune system.

Get Confidential Help Now

Call our admissions line 24 hours a day to get help.

Process from Demerol detox to rehab

Detox is the first step to treatment, but before you can be admitted into a detox programme, you must go through an intake process, when you’ll be evaluated by medical personnel. This intake process is similar to a medical exam which your physician will perform before treatment commences. The intake stage allows the physician to gain a better understanding of your situation in order to proceed with treatment in the most appropriate manner for you.

Medical detox follows immediately after intake, allowing the medical team at the treatment centre to manage your symptoms and help make withdrawal less uncomfortable for you with the help of medications. Following the detox phase, you will proceed to psychotherapy or rehab proper, which involves sessions with therapists in an individual or group setting. Once you have exhausted your stay at the rehab centre, you may leave the treatment facility.

Medical detox as part of a whole treatment plan

It is important for addiction treatment to be comprehensive, given that addiction is a chronic and relapsing disease with both psychological and physical side effects. While medical detox is crucial, it cannot be the entirety of a treatment plan. Instead, it provides a stepping stone for a more stable recovery.

Medical detox gets you started on the right footby providing the best possible environment to allow the body to perform its natural function of expunging harmful toxins. You also get the benefit of having medical personnel on hand to rectify any complications – should they occur – and to make withdrawal less of a challenge. Medical detox also makes it less likely for you to relapse.

Relapse can be a huge setback in the treatment process and by removing the chance of that happening, you’ll be increasing your chances of successfully recovering from addiction. You will also be able to cope better with further treatment.

Home detox for Demerol abusers: How safe is it?

While it’s technically true that you can detox at home, we strongly advise against doing so, as there is a higher chance of relapsing. During withdrawal, you are bound to experience intense cravings and since you’ll have easier access to the drug, you can easily return to using it. While relapsing in itself is not a good thing, there’s also the risk of overdosing when you take more of the drug than you need in an attempt to stave off your cravings or manage your symptoms.

Also, you may not be able to manage some of the toughest symptoms on your own, including depression, suicidal thoughts, paranoia and seizures. There are also serious complications that may arise; for instance, you may inhale the contents of your stomach into your lungs if you vomit. Without medical supervision, you won’t be able to manage the situation in order to prevent a serious respiratory infection from developing.

Suffice to say, detoxing from home isn’t considered safe, and a better choice is to undergo detox in a facility where you’ll have access to medical care.

After a detox:Staying off Demerol

After detox, the focus shifts to staying off the drug. To help you do that, you will be placed in psychotherapy sessions, where therapists will work with you to get to the root of your problem. Staying off the drug can be really hard during the first few weeks, as your body has become dependent on it and cravings tend to linger for a while. However, the cravings will reduce and go away as time progresses.

The key to maintaining long-term sobriety is taking charge of your recovery by implementing everything you learn in therapy. You need to cut your sources of the drug and ask your relatives to enforce rules to limit your movements if necessary. It’s a no-brainer that you should destroy your stash if there’s any left. Also, be sure to maintain a healthy lifestyle byexercising and eating well.

When you have just been weaned off an addiction, the best thing to do is surround yourself with friends and family members you can trust. They can provide the psychological support that professionals may not be able to.


FAQs

How do youknow if you’resufferingfrom Demerol withdrawal?

The best way to find out about any addiction is by observing withdrawal symptoms. How do you feel when you stopusing the drug? Do you feel normal or become restless and anxious? Do you feel a craving for the drug when you stop using it? If you notice any of these symptoms, then you have most likely developed dependence or even addiction to the substance. If you have become dependent, you will subsequently experience withdrawal.

If after your last dose, you notice unpleasant symptoms within three to 24 hours, then you are suffering withdrawal. The symptoms may range from moderate to severe, though some may be mild, so don’t write off anything as being too benign to be a withdrawal symptom. Some of the symptoms you may experience include bone pains, muscle weakness, tremors, runny nose, restlessness, depression, anxiety, diarrhoea, nausea and stomach pain.

How does Demerol withdrawal affect my health?

Given the nature of the physical and psychological symptoms you will have to deal with, withdrawal can make you feel very sick, especially if your symptoms are severe. It’s always recommended that you go through withdrawal in a professional setting, where you can have access to round-the-clock medical care.

It is possible for complications to arise, which cancause you to become seriously ill. For instance, if you inhale the contents of your stomach as you vomit (which is a common withdrawal symptom), you can develop pneumonia or another serious respiratory infection if the complication is not addressed promptly.

Is Demerol withdrawal dangerous?

Withdrawal can be very dangerous if not managed properly under medical supervision. If you proceed to detox at home, there is a lot that can go wrong. You might end up relapsing because your symptoms are too severe to handle and you are unable to manage them yourself.

Withdrawal is most dangerous if you stop ‘cold turkey’; that is, if you stop using Demerolabruptly. Your body can react in ways that will put your health in danger. Also, if you can’t handle the cravings and other symptoms, you may find yourself returning to the drug in an attempt to self-medicate and it is easy to overdose in such a situation. There is also the possibility of suffering complications that you will be unable to manage yourself.

How long does Demerol withdrawal last?

While there is no length of duration that is set in stone, acute withdrawal can be expected to last about three to five days, which is when your symptoms will be most pronounced. However, symptoms will remain and gradually fade away over aperiod of about two weeks. You may experience protracted withdrawal or post-acute withdrawal symptoms for many weeks or even months after the acute withdrawal phase.

The duration of withdrawal depends on a number of factors unique to you. Some of those factors include how long you’ve been using the drug, how often you’ve been using it, and the dosage you’ve been using. Another important determinant is your unique physiology, which makes you different from anyone else. Even if you have the exact same drug usage pattern as someone else, the nature and severity of your symptoms may differ widely, due to your individual differences.

Another factor that can come into play is the nature of co-occurring physical or mental health conditions, if any. A dual diagnosis can complicate withdrawal and prolong it beyond what it might have been in the absence of the co-occurring condition.

Get Confidential Help Now

Call our admissions line 24 hours a day to get help.

Find alcohol and drug rehab clinics in your area

No matter where you live, there is a drug rehab center that can help you overcome your addiction. We'll help you find it.

Select a County