How long does Vicodin withdrawal last?
Planning to withdraw from Vicodin (hydrocodone)?
Vicodin withdrawal occurs when you have become physically dependent on Vicodin and stop taking it abruptly. Vicodin, an opioid blend of hydrocodone and acetaminophen, is usually prescribed to help with post-operative pain management. But as an opiate, Vicodin has a high abuse potential because it produces a euphoric high (am I addicted to Vicodin?).
Vicodin withdrawal can be a painful and frustrating process. But Vicodin withdrawal symptoms treatment is pretty straight forward. Here, we talk about the process of withdrawal from Vicodin and what you can expect over the course of a few weeks. As always, we invite you to ask questions about Vicodin or hydrocodone at the end of the article.
How long until Vicodin withdrawal starts?
If you have developed a dependency or an addiction to Vicodin, once you have decided to stop taking Vicodin you will begin to feel withdrawal symptoms. You will sense these symptoms 6-8 hours after the last dose of Vicodin has worn off. When the withdrawal process starts you’ll begin to feel several symptoms that mimic the flu. This will make you very sick for a time. Along with the “flu” there are other symptoms which may accompany withdrawal. They are:
- cold flashes
- involuntary leg movement
- muscle and bone pain
Vicodin withdrawal timeline
Everyone is going to go through withdrawal differently. If you have just developed a dependency to Vicodin then detox will be less severe than someone who has been dependent on Vicodin for a long time or has become addicted to it. Generally for most however, onset of symptoms begin 6-8 hours after your last does of Vicodin has worn off. You can then expect to suffer withdrawal symptoms anywhere from weeks to moths after quitting Vicodin. Below is a more detailed timeline of what to anticipate from the withdrawal process.
24 – 72 hours Vicodin withdrawal: This begins the rocky road to detoxing from Vicodin. It will also be some of the hardest hours you may experience. Withdrawal symptoms you will go through may include: muscle spasms, chills, diarrhea, anxiety, and fear. Symptoms reach their peak during this time and stabilizing your body will be a battle.
Week 1 Vicodin withdrawal: Onset symptoms will carry over into week one as they continue to peak in intensity. Symptoms to expect are severe insomnia and mood swing which will continue to affect you. Also extreme fatigue as your body exerting a lot of energy to repairs itself.
Week 2 Vicodin withdrawal: You will begin to see a difference in your body and perhaps your mood. Your body is slowly returning to normal and withdrawal symptoms begin to even out and slowly decrease over time. Appetite should be returning to normal as well. May still have aches and pains.
Week 3-4 Vicodin withdrawal: During this time severe symptoms can return. You may experience some times where withdrawal symptoms wax and wane in severity. If you’re addicted to Vicodin these might be challenging do to drug cravings and drug seeking behaviors.
How long do Vicodin withdrawal symptoms last?
Every person’s body is unique and no two people will go through withdrawal in the same away. There are many factors that play into recovery. Many people have reported different period of withdrawal. Therefore general withdrawal symptoms of Vicodin on average start 6-8 hours after the last does has worn off. After that time of withdrawal fluctuates between several weeks and months of stopping Vicodin. Withdrawal can be long but eventually your body will return to normal and you will begin to feel a level of comfort.
Vicodin withdrawal: how long?
It is important to understand your body and its reactions to Vicodin. While there is a general process and symptoms to expect there is no accounting for the variant bodies and how they can adapt and react differently to dependence and withdrawal. There are many other health concerns that are important to be aware of as you are withdrawing from Vicodin so that you are not adversely affecting your body while it is trying to repair. It is also important to mention PAWS which is post-acute withdrawal symptoms. These are a set of persistent symptoms specific to the type of substance you are taking. For this case it is specific to opioids. These symptoms mimic the onset of withdrawal at the beginning but they then can last several weeks and months past expected detoxification time frame. Protracted withdrawal specific to opioid include; short term memory loss, anxiety, depression. In general psychological effects of drug dependence take much longer to treat and cure and some many never fully disappear.
How long Vicodin withdrawal questions
If you have any more questions regarding withdrawal from Vicodin please ask. We do our best to respond to your questions accurately and promptly.
Reference Sources: SAMHSA: Substance abuse treatment advisory
DailyMed: Vicodin HP
OASAS: Opiate and Addiction Medications
Photo credit: Pliketi Plok