Situations Where Medication May Be a Necessary Part of Prescription Drug Detox

Published: 06/8/2016 | Author:

Drug detox is a difficult and nasty process and the first step in addiction treatment. In some cases, it may involve medications, but this is not always the case, nor is it a requirement. While it may not be entirely necessary, medication may be an option. When you call 800-483-2193(Who Answers?) to learn more about treatment options, keep in mind the instances where medication may be necessary in prescription drug detox.

Withdrawal Management

prescription drug detox

Many addicts relapse without the assistance of medication.

According to Substance Abuse and Mental Health Service Administration, opiate-based pain relievers are one of the most common categories of abused prescription drugs. These types of drugs often have similar, if not the same, withdrawal symptoms during detox as illicit opiates.

Medication designed to help manage the withdrawal symptoms, such as buprenorphine or methadone, may be an option in opioid prescription drug detox. The detoxification process can be vicious for some, and maintenance medications are designed to slow down and lessen the symptoms of withdrawal, allowing patients some ease with detox.

Detox is defined by the National Institute on Drug Abuse as the first step in addiction treatment, where the body rids itself of an abused substance. Those with prescription drug abuse problems are often wary of taking these medications during recovery, as there is a chance of abuse with maintenance medications.

All medications used during prescription drug detox or treatment should be monitored for the safety of the patient.

Contact us now to find prescription drug detox centers near you!

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Co-occurring Conditions

Dual diagnosis, where there is an additional co-occurring condition that is present, is not uncommon in cases of addiction. As many prescription drugs are usually to treat an additional condition, dual diagnosis and prescription drug detox are a normal combination.

Often, the original condition that the drug was prescribed for still needs to be treated at the same time that the addiction is being treated. One cannot be ignored for the sake of the other as this will only complicate matters further and put the patient’s health at risk.

In cases of dual diagnosis, medication may be necessary during prescription drug detox to ensure the continued care of the co-occurring condition and to prevent any issues during detox.

Health Concerns

Addiction, whether it is to an illicit drug or a prescription drug, can cause severe damage to the mind and body. This damage can potentially be worsened during detox, causing a need for medical intervention, like medication. As the body flushes the drug out of its system, it can cause a lot of additional stress on itself.

Depending on the condition of the person’s body and the severity of the damage caused by the addiction, things can get a lot worse. Certain drugs can cause a weakening of vital organs like the heart, which may not be able to withstand the stress of detox on its own. Medication can simply ensure that the damage is being treated throughout the entire recovery process, including detox.

If you or a loved one is struggling with an addiction, please call 800-483-2193(Who Answers?) for help. You will be able to speak with one of our caring specialists about what treatment options are available for you.


  1. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. (2015). Types of Commonly Misused or Abused Drugs.
  2. National Institute on Drug Abuse. (2018). Treatment Approaches for Drug Addiction.
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