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Apex Recovery Blog

A Timeline of Opioid Addiction Recovery

a person holds their face sadly

Opioids are a class of pain relieving drugs that can be extremely addictive. It is easier than most people think to become dependent on opioids, and the symptoms of withdrawal can be intense as well. The opiate withdrawal symptoms timeline isn’t the same for everyone, but understanding it may give you a good idea of what to expect through the rehab process.

Most Commonly Abused Opioids

Heroin is the most commonly abused opioid. Other examples include medications such as methadone, oxycodone, morphine, codeine, and hydrocodone (Vicodin).

What Is Opiate Withdrawal?

Withdrawal occurs when you stop taking a drug that your body and brain has become accustomed to. In general, opiate withdrawal involves physical and psychological discomfort, making the detox process all that more challenging.

Opiate Recovery Timeline

Withdrawal symptoms can appear six to twelve hours following a dose of a short-acting opiate, and about 30 hours after taking a long-acting drug. The symptoms typically peak after 72 hours. The type of drug affects the timeline, as not all opioids affect the body in the same way. There are three distinct stages of opioid withdrawal. These include:

  • Stage 1: Lasts from six to thirty hours and involves symptoms such as joint, bone, and muscle pain, as well as sweats, loss of appetite, racing heart, runny nose, fever, anxiety, and increased blood pressure.
  • Stage 2: Starts about 72 hours after the last dose; symptoms can peak for up to five days and are often flu-like. Diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, stomach cramps, depression, and intense drug cravings are common, and the risk of dehydration is high.
  • Stage 3: Symptoms may start to taper off after a few days, but cravings, anxiety, insomnia, depression, and restlessness may persist. During this time, addressing a person’s psychological and emotional state is critical in supporting their recovery.

The Path to Opioid Rehab and Recovery

Road to Recovery written on desert road Some people complete their opioid detox a week to 10 days after their last dose, but not everyone is so lucky. The recovery timeline can vary depending on the persistence of withdrawal symptoms; the individual’s health that may be impacted by co-occurring disorders such as depression, bipolar disorder, or PTSD; and the treatment program. The length of time someone has been using opioids and whether they use other drugs are also important factors. At Apex Recovery, we offer 7-day detox programs that involve care by an addiction physician consultant. Our rehabilitation programs are tailored to the needs of each patient. They focus on internal/addiction medicine, psychiatry, and holistic healing. In addition, we can address trauma recovery and co-occurring disorders when necessary. To learn more about our opiate rehab process and other services, contact us online to submit your information or call 877-798-4404 today.

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