OxyContin withdrawal symptoms: How to find treatment, relief and help

Withdrawal from oxycodone (OxyContin) can be hell. Tips on finding help, getting treatment and managing OxyContin withdrawal symptoms here.

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No more OxyContin: NOW WHAT?

You’ve taken your last dose of OxyContin. You’ve been on it for more than a few weeks. Now what?

Well, your body and brain need to get re-adjusted to life without OxyContin. And we’re not talking about the cravings and the mental attachment that you may have to the drug. OxyContin withdrawal is a physical process. And although symptoms of withdrawal are predictable, they can be scary. Plus, OxyContin withdrawal symptoms (also called OxyContin withdrawal syndrome) can be severe and last a long time (up to 10 days).

In brief, Oxy detox sucks. But soon enough, you’ll start feeling normal again. More on OxyContin withdrawal symptoms length here. In the meantime, common symptoms people experience when withdrawing from OxyContin include:

  • abdominal cramps
  • anxiety
  • backache
  • bone pain
  • chills
  • diarrhea
  • dilated pupils
  • goose bumps
  • increased blood pressure
  • increased heart rate
  • increased respiratory rate
  • insomnia
  • involuntary leg movements (restless legs syndrome)
  • irritability
  • joint pain
  • loss of appetite
  • muscle aches
  • muscle pain
  • nausea
  • perspiration
  • restlessness
  • runny nose
  • secretion or discharge of tears
  • sweating
  • vomiting
  • weakness
  • yawning

So what can help ease these acute symptoms of withdrawal and make OxyContin detox more bearable? Well, your brain has adapted its neurotransmitters to accommodate OxyContin. Now, it’s in hyper drive. We’ve found with three ways that you can get help ask OxyContin leaves your body and your brain starts to react. Please feel free to add your tips and suggestions in the comments section below.

1. Find an OxyContin detox center

If you want to stop OxyContin for good, the first thing you should know is that you don’t have to do it alone. In fact, the most common treatment for OxyContin withdrawal syndrome involves supportive care in a medical environment. Reasons NOT to do cold turkey OxyContin withdrawal here. Medical supervision is available in the form of detoxification (detox) centers throughout the U.S. Check out the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration SAMHSA drug treatment locator on their website at findtreatment [dot] smhsa [dot] gov.

2. OxyContin withdrawal relief with medications

Firstly, doctors prescribe medications to target specific symptoms of withdrawal. The most commonly used medicine during detox for OxyContin is Clonidine, which helps treat anxiety, agitation, abdominal cramping, muscle aches and pain, sweating, and runny nose. Doctors also routinely prescribe medications for vomiting and diarrhea.

Secondly, some detox professionals aim to lessen withdrawal symptoms by slowing decreasing the amount of opiates in your body. For this reason, the manmade opioid Buprenorphine (Subutex) can be prescribed to gently scale down opiates in your system and can even help shorten the length of time spent in detox. Methadone has also been used to eliminates withdrawal symptoms from heavy opiates like OxyContin and can also help relieve drug craving during addiction treatment.

3. OxyContin withdrawal treatment alternatives

Alternative treatments can also help target specific OxyContin withdrawal symptoms. For example, Vitamin B6 and can help relieve RLS (Restless Leg Syndrome) caused by opiate abuse. Zinc and magnesium supplements may help reduce muscle spasms. A multivitamin or bananas can increase potassium in the body. And Slimfast drinks can help keep you hydrated and nourished, even if you can’t eat for lack of an appetite.

You might also ask about acupuncture or alternative touch therapies during withdrawal. Although these treatments have not been clincially tied to improved symptoms, if you believe they can help, they might! Also, make sure your friends and family know what you are going through so that you can get the support that you need during the hard time. And pace yourself, training your mind to keep going. During OxyContin withdrawal, remember that the only way to freedom is the slow way.

Acute Oxy Contin withdrawal versus extended withdrawal

We’ve been talking about managing the acute withdrawal symptoms that occur when you rapidly decrease or discontinue use of OxyContin. But keep in mind that other symptoms also occur in the long term. In fact, you can experience protracted withdrawal symptoms such as ‘chemical urge and yearning’ weeks to months after your last dose of Oxy. Keep reading about extended withdrawal symptoms here, or ask us your questions about OxyContin withdrawal below. We will be happy to answer quickly and personally to your concerns!

Reference sources: Drug info on OxyContin c/o NIH
Clonidine for withdrawal
Substance Bause Protracted Withdrawal Department of Health Services State of Wisconsin
Rutgers University Community Forum topic on Oxycodone Withdrawal
The Facts on Opioids
About the author
Lee Weber is a published author, medical writer, and woman in long-term recovery from addiction. Her latest book, The Definitive Guide to Addiction Interventions is set to reach university bookstores in early 2019.


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  1. Hi, I withdrew from oxys, 80mgs, and I think I was in and out of a coma for about 4days. I layed in a bed, without moving, without going the bathroom, no food, no water. Once in awhile I would be awake enough to realize what was going on. I don’t think I was asleep, but I know time had gone by. My question is, can you go into a coma and not wake up? Is that possible?

  2. I feel validated.w when I read the list of the oxicontin withdrawals. I want to stop. I’ve had it.I’m always running out. It’s my own fault. I only take them because there there. But I always say outta site outta mind. God bless u for the validation. ?

  3. Been on oxycontin 30mg For 5yrs Because of A cervical Infusion and A lamennectomy of the whole neck.had rods a metal plate screws and 16 screws and 3 cadaver bones.Want off them.Im Down to 15 mgs A day but cant get no lower my doctors dont want to perscribe me anything.my painmanagement wont either cause they dont take my insurance nomore.so Im Withdrawling my heart is going nuts.im jittery.cant sleep.dont know what to do cause I cant crush immediate release.

  4. I had been taking 80 mg. of Oxycontin 3 times daily for over 15 years for severe back pain due to 9 cervical and lumbar spine surgeries which failed. Almost a year ago my doctor and I decided to taper my dose down slowly. I am now taking 40 mg. 3 times daily. But even though I am still in the same amount of pain, I am now suffering from annoying sweating and hot flashes night and day. I thought if I lowered the amount a little at a time, which I did, that I would not be feeling as bad as I do. I cannot take other opiates because they have always caused severe nausea. I went through all my surgeries with ibuprofen because I didn’t know I could tolerate Oxycontin. It only works for me because it is time released. There are no other alternatives. I can’t take morphine, codeine, percocet, vicodin, or any other opiate derivatives. In fact I was accidentally given morphine in the hospital after my first spine surgery and vomited for over 2 weeks, losing over 20 pounds off my 115 lb. body. My cervical fusion broke and the doctor put me back in the hospital to stop the vomiting. The only thing that worked was IV Valium and eventually I was able to go home and try to gain back the weight I had lost. My doctor told me he had never seen such a violent reaction to morphine. I told them beforehand that I couldn’t take it. My fusion had to be redone with 3 more metal plates and 10 more screws to hold it together. The lumbar surgery had the same problem and had to be redone. Anyway, I would like to know how long others have had side effects such as mine when they have tapered down on their Oxycontin. I don’t plan to get off of it totally but would like to get it as low as I can stand. I feel like I have no life. I have little energy, too much pain, no sex drive. I am well past menopause so I know the sweating and hot flashes are not related to that. I just want to feel as somewhat normal as I did before I began tapering down on this drug. Can anyone tell me if they have had a similar experience with just lowering the dosage? I know I would feel a little better if this is a regular reaction and will eventually go away.

  5. It’s not Oxycotin Withdrawal it’s Oxycodone Withdrawals. And neither one should be used as a withdrawal accommodation it should be Opiate Withdrawls. La-cox-in “aka” (Oxycotin) is not a drug it’s a name used when Oxycodone hydrochloride is in a time release formula. ACUPUNCTURE and other hand therapies are bullshit and will not ease your symptoms at all. Opiates are stimulants and are very active on opiode receptors. You will need to either go on opiate blockers or taper down then keep like 10 pills as a part of your withdrawal plan. Do not I repeat Do not do this without keeping some pills with you during this time you will end up in the hospital for withdrawal symptoms. Take a pill soon as you wake up and at dinner Other than that when your withdrawal symptoms get terribly bad take 2 pills to ease the pain a little. Then after 4 hours you will start withdrawing again wait until the symptoms get to the point where you feel so sick and need to go to the hospital then take another 2 pills. This will save your life lol during your withdrawals. Also a lot of the pain is in your stomach and brain because opiode receptors are in both. So for your stomach pain is from the diarrhea pain so take anti diarrhea meds then it will reverse the diarrhea and keep those stomach pains minumum. I have been threw this several times. This time I’m serious I’m quitting. But do this and you will withdrawal just fine. It will be hard but you have pills with you to help with the withdrawal pain and will make this much much much more easier and less painful. Plan 3 days of this. The most important part of this withdrawal is to have pills with you to help, anti diarrhea meds and family support u can do this. If this fails then go get help with opiode blockers such as subxodone which is a opiode blocker and you shouldn’t have withdrawal symptoms because the pills block your receptors. In other words it supplies your receptors with opiate however it’s not active it’s a analgesic so you will not get high at all and will not translate threw the spinal chord.

  6. This will be the third time that I am quitting oxy codone I have been taking 2 80’s a day now for over a year. I found tgat taking a prescribed drug called rabeprazole really helps with stomach cramps and pain as I cannot take clonadine Cuz I have low blood pressure. I took the rabeprazole the last time I quit and I am going to again I also take seroquill to sleep at night Cuz it’s hell kicking your legs all night just trying to fall asleep these u can get prescribed without a problem if u tell ur doctor what for. I also take clonazapam but i am prescribed this for panic attacks and most people can’t get these they calm the nerves and busy and mind. Along with Imodium. This may seem like a lot to take but if u have ever experienced oxy withdrawal u just want it over and I have tried to taper but it’s hard when h just want to do them and ur just prolonging the agony cold turkey is the way for me with all the above. Wish me luck again. Good luck to all!!

  7. Hi Ann. Treatment can be offered to anyone detoxing from OxyContin…especially for symptoms of nausea, vomiting, blood pressure, and/or insomnia. The situation doesn’t have to be critical to seek help. Are there any detox clinics near you?

  8. So here’s my scoop. I’m currently on 90mg of OxyContin 2 x day for chronic pain. And I usually have to take 22.5 mg oxycodone at the 8 hour mark of my morning dose. I’ve been at this level for a few months and I am tired of all the problems associated with opiate use, most importantly, my screwed up digestive system. I should mention that I am taking the medication as prescribed. But I’ve learned that it doesn’t make a bit of difference whether or not you are using legally. Getting off the crap is hard. Period. I have been given a script to do the 5 day in-hospital detox – I think with clonidine. And I’m definitely going to do it. But I’ll admit, I’m a little scared. I have a few weeks before I can go. I have to wait till my mom can help with my daughter. My questions are: 1. What can I do now to make things easier on me after I start? Would it help me if I started to taper off now? 2. I suffer from chronic pain. How much pain can I expect if I am doing a medically supervised in-hospital detox? That’s the part that scares me the most. 3. Are you usually allowed visitors on a detox floor? 4. I’m not expecting to have trouble staying away after I get off the meds. I actually hate taking them. But I had an injury to my back that took a long time to heal and my regular meds weren’t helping and the oxycodone was the only thing that did. If I ever have to use oxycodone in the future, should I expect to build a tolerance even faster than the first time around? That was my understanding. And for that reason, I’ll probably live wrapped in bubble wrap to avoid future injuries :-)! So again, my biggest concern is for the pain I can expect. How bad can I expect the pain to get? I’ve woke up in the morning in full blown withdrawal pain and it was HORRIBLE. PLEASE tell me it won’t be anything like that in the hospital. And lastly, 5. The Dr mentioned that I might not be all the way through withdrawal when I reach the 5th day and if that’s the case, I’ll be given meds to use at home. Would that be most likely clonidine and anti-anxiety meds? And is there ANY chance I could be all the way through withdrawal after 5 days, or should I just expect about another 5 days since I am on OxyContin?

    Thanks. Looking forward to some comforting words.

  9. Hello Scarlet. I’d suggest that you speak with both a physician and a psychologist. Sometimes there is no magic pill for anxiety, and you need to treat the underlying reasons for these feelings, including past trauma.

  10. I need immediate help I have been on Zanex most of my life for anxiety and I take 1 mg about three times a day and I got put on oxy cotton 60 mg time released . Then also Percocet 15 mg 2 times a day and now I’m having symptoms of with drawal for no reason I’m taking it and having all these symptoms I was fine until they put me on time released but because they needed too go up on my Percocet because of all the pain I was in they put me on it, I don’t know what too do I’m having panic attacks non stop nothing is helping my anxiety is already really bad disabled me and now I’m dealing with this and no one told me I would have too go through a detox center too ever get off … Guess I should have read the fine print I don’t know anything but I’m in so much pain and afraid and I don’t know if there is a detox center I went too my doctor told them this and they did nothing …..

    god bless I don’t believe they should be able too put u on theses meds no matter how desperate u are they need a alternative specially for people who already experienced anxiety really bad there whole life. I want too detox I need info any help would be gratefully appreciated thanks and good luck too all in my prayers and thoughts and for those that are thinking of taken this med don’t I have felt like I’m close too death not a good feeling it’s the absolute truth

  11. I have my ups and downs with pain killers. I am over 40. (The government should just hand them out to us on our 40th birthday)

    I found that the mytrangya speciosa Works Great for Withdrawls. It is the only thing I have ever found that works like a champ. People say Tramadol..I have a script and it doesn’t do it for me.

  12. we have a detox center but it always full and not a place that feels like home…. can flexeril help with withdraws? i was told they can help me get a little sleep and better comforts….also my mother specializes in nutrition so i have access to great multi vitamins and great health shakes…i tried detox once at our local place and checked out after 2 days bc i felt a little better and then got right back on roxy 30s.. but now i have no access to them and i feel much better withdrawaing here at home with my mom and gf supporting me.. the detox place just didnt feel so home welcoming…. can my life feel normal again if i dont take subs or opiates??

  13. Hi Sean. I’m glad to hear that you’ve decided to face possible drug addiction. First, experts recommend that you go through detox in a medically supervised setting. Is there any way that you can get to a detox center? Second, detox can last for up to 10 days, including the symptoms such as insomnia and discomfort. But there are medications that doctors can prescribe to help you through withdrawal. You don’t need to do it cold turkey on your own. Do you have family or friends that can take you to get medical help during withdrawal? You’ll also need social support, which a detox center can provide….plus a treatment plan for what to do when the drugs are out of your system. Long term recovery starts in detox, but you need to know what to do after withdrawal. Do you have a list of drug counselors in your area? We can help with that if you need it.

  14. I have been taking 30 mg roxies for 9 months…. i started at one maybe 2 every other day, then i got up to 12 a day at one point…. i did them recreational and now cannot get them like i use to… so i have decided to quit, i took my last one on friday nov 25 2011…. i took a suboxone 8 mg also on friday and immediately went into sever withdraw… i had one more 8mg suboxone left and split it into 3 pieces… i took my last piece last night at 6 pm… i still am having withdraws but i wanna know will it get worse or am i going to get better….. i have been taking immodioum for my stomach and drinking health shakes and taking multi vitamins…. i still am having trouble sleeping and having discomforts… how long till i feel normal again

  15. Hi Heather, Are you getting medical help during withdrawal? Relapse is very common when stopping methadone, because the symptoms are really difficult to tolerate. It might be useful to ask help during detox from a detox center so that you can receive additional medication if you need it.

    Withdrawal occurs after heavy, chronic use but it generally takes a couple of weeks in order for opiates to become tolerated by the body again. Every case is different, so I’d suggest that you seek help from an inpatient clinic to get off methadone for good, and to get information on local resources that can help you deal with the mental and emotional issues that may have gotten you started using to begin with.

    Good luck and email us with specific details and questions if you have them.

  16. i quit methadone after 10yrs of use and have been withdrawing for 2months especially mentally. very bad. so i relapsed and having been using blues at high doses for 4 days will i go through withdraws again?

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