The decision to stop using Methadone is only the first step in a process known for being exceeding difficult, but with high rewards. Methadone withdrawal is not easy to successfully get through, but after the bumpy road is over, there are now ways to reclaim your life.

Being prepared for the entire withdrawal process is the only way to get rid of untrue or, even unnecessarily harsh, connotations. Your knowledge on the important course ahead will teach you all of the signs to know the process is almost over. Knowing the worst can assure you that what you are experiencing is not completely unusual since many of the symptoms associated with Methadone withdrawal can seem unrelated and overwhelming.

Methadone Explained

Methadone is a synthetic drug made to treat pain or harsh serious addictions. Since it is commonly used to get heroin addicts back on their feet, there are negative undertones associated with it, but the drug is a positive stepping stone for those who need it. There also comes a time that the Methadone must be weaned so the addiction does not grow.

Methadone itself can become physically addictive, but it is a less substantial addiction to wean the user away from a heavier addiction. Curing an addiction is not an overnight process, it is completely normal for this growth to take time as a user works through the steps.

Know The Timeline

Harsh withdrawal symptoms usually resolve within seven days. This one week can seem a lot longer to those suffering from all of the symptoms, especially in their peak at stage 3. The first two stages are fast acting and will occur almost immediately from your last dose, this is part of what fuels the addiction to continue using drugs.

The entire withdrawal and detoxing process can last two months. The best thing for someone going through these withdrawals is support from family or friends to help keep them on the right track.

Stage 1: The Craving

Your mind will initially still be convinced you must have the drug, and this causes a craving to develop in your body as well. Aching in your muscles reflects this. This craving is nothing new, it begins each time between uses of the addictive substance.


  • The user will not be able to get the substance off their mind
  • Insomnia
  • They may look for a way to get ahold of their drug secretly to stave off the craving

Stage 2: Sweats and Shakes

Your body will begin to use all the options it can to get you feeling ‘normal.’ Temperature is varied and a person in withdrawal will get rapid shakes, for example. The remaining foreign substances in your body are confusing your body on how to solve the issue. Natural reactions to things like temperature are your bodies way of trying to regulate itself. Your body can sense the next stage coming on and is trying to solve the issue before it gets worse.

Considering a methadone detox treatment can aid in the decrease of the symptoms. This can be achieved at various health centers and if done before you are at the peak of the illness, you can avoid much discomfort.


  • Feeling hot and cold at the same time
  • Involuntary Shaking
  • Unable to get comfortable
  • A compulsion to get more of the addictive substance
  • Heavy Sweating

Stage 3: The Flu

The peak of the withdrawal is very similar to the flu. This is the roughest part of the withdrawal process, but you can get through it just like many others before you. The symptoms range from vomiting to a feeling of complete unwellness.

This sudden illness is caused by the leftover toxins in your body that must be flushed, so vomiting be necessary for your body to clear them. Many at this stage are terrified by the harsh reaction their body is having. It is wise to keep eating well, even if you cannot hold much down. There are even homemade remedies to try that can calm some uneasiness.


  • Vomiting
  • Abdominal Pain
  • Lack of Appetite
  • Diarrhea

Stage 4: Downslope

Nausea should start receding after a short time. Like getting over any flu-like illness you will slowly begin to regain your appetite and ability to get up and go about some sort of routine. This is an important time to get your rest which will assist in recovery. The more severe symptoms can leave you feeling lifeless, but hydrate often. There may still be spikes of nausea from time to time but will become fewer and further between as you rest.


  • Running Nose
  • Aching Muscles
  • Fatigue

Stage 5: PAWS (Post-Acute Withdrawal Symptoms)

Not all experience this stage, but even after the withdrawal process is over, there may be some lingering symptoms. This is a dangerous step because it may feel as if nothing has gotten better. Many who reach this stage may feel that going back to the drug is better, but it isn’t, the hardest part is over.

These symptoms are because of the habits formed internally during addiction. Chemical imbalances are working towards evening themselves out and getting back to normal. PAWS symptoms may feel familiar to those caused by getting over any type of addiction. These symptoms usually come and go quickly, with a little work they’ll be gone for good.

Treatment centers are dedicated for giving information on Methadone withdrawal and PAWS and there is a lot of support you can find throughout the process. A good friend cannot be taken for granted during this time. A little company through the harsh time can be a game-changer, especially if they have a history going through the same agonizing process.


  • Irritability/Mood Swings
  • Depression/Anxiety
  • Trouble Concentrating
  • Sudden Fatigue
  • Chronic pain or nausea

Leave Methadone Addiction Behind

Methadone addiction is not impossible to overcome. Especially with supportive people around to help guide you through your journey to wellness. However, while support from others is helpful, the most important step is a commitment from the user. The process of overcoming an addiction takes time for everyone, but a brighter life is just over the horizon for those willing to stick with it and become knowledgeable about what their body will go through.