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Which Medicines Help to Relieve Withdrawal Symptoms

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When a individual suffering from drug or alcohol addiction enters into a treatment facility, the first step will most likely be detoxification. This process takes place during the withdrawal period, allowing the body to be cleansed of the chemicals and toxins related to substance abuse. For many the withdrawal period brings on uncomfortable, even excruciation symptoms. This is why many Doctors will prescribe patients specific medications to help relieve withdrawal symptoms, allowing the patient to work through the beginning stages of their recovery comfortably and focused on their goal of obtaining lifelong sobriety.

Medications Used in Withdrawal

There are many medications on the market today that will help people go through the withdrawal period more comfortably. Each addiction if different, just as the person, this is why the medication prescribed will vary depending on the severity of the disease and the type of drug used.


Studies show that approximately 9 percent of the population has misused opiates over their lifetime. Opiates can vary from prescription painkillers such as OxyContin, Morphine to street drugs such as Heroin. Withdrawal from opiates can be uncomfortable, even excruciatingly painful, this is why Doctors will prescribe medications such as Clondine, Buprenorphine and Methadone, to help relieve symptoms of withdrawal.


Alcohol withdrawal symptoms can range in severity, worsening the more severe the addiction is. Many alcoholics will feel shaky, experience aches and pain, insomnia, depression, and so on. Prescription medications such as Diazepam (Valium), lorazepam (Ativan), chlordiazepoxide (Librium), and phenobarbitals help to relieve symptoms of alcohol withdrawal, helping the patient to transition through the withdrawal period smoothly and safely. Benzodiazepines such as Librium and Valium are two medications that also have been used to assist with withdrawal from alcohol.


Stimulant withdrawal often leaves the patient depressed. This is why doctors often prescribe patients antidepressant medication to help alleviate symptoms during the detoxification period, however they are not meant for long term use. Desipramine (Norpramin) is an antidepressant often used for major withdrawal symptoms. Diazepam is also used for mild to moderate withdrawal symptoms, however it may not work well for severe withdrawal. Benzodiazepine tranquilizers are also used to treat methamphetamine and cocaine addiction.

Getting Treatment for Drug or Alcohol Addiction

If you are suffering from drug or alcohol addiction, you may want to start exploring different treatment options available to you. While it does work for some, going “cold turkey” through withdrawal is not always the best option, you may need more intensive treatment. There are many treatment options available to you, it is time to find the right one and focus on your recovery.

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