Clonidine for Opiate Withdrawal
What is clonidine?
Clonidine is a prescription medication that is used to treat everything from high blood pressure to ADHD and panic disorder. Clonidine, when it was originally prescribed, was used for the treatment of high blood pressure but it also found other ways to be useful. Clonidine can help in the treatment of neuropathic pain, insomnia, ADHD, with the symptoms of menopause, as a veterinary anesthetic drug and for opiate withdrawal. Clonidine also has several off-label uses, and has been prescribed to treat psychiatric disorders including stress, sleep disorders, and hyper-arousal caused by post-traumatic stress disorder, borderline personality disorder, and other anxiety disorders
Clonidine and withdrawal
While clonidine is most popularly used in the treatment of opiate withdrawal it can also be used to help with the withdrawal symptoms associated with nicotine withdrawal, alcohol withdrawal and other narcotics. The way clonidine works for withdrawal is it helps to alleviate the symptoms of withdrawal.
What is opiate withdrawal?
Opiate withdrawal refers to the wide range of symptoms that occur after stopping or dramatically reducing opiate drugs after long and heavy drug use. An opiate drug that would cause opiate withdrawal could be anything from heroin, morphine, codeine, Oxycontin, Dilaudid, to methadone.
Opiates such as the medications listed above cause a physical dependence and this physical dependence causes a person to rely on the medication to feel ok. When a person becomes reliant on an opiate to be ok chances are they are going to experience opiate withdrawal when they decide to stop or want to stop.
Clonidine for withdrawal
Many of the symptoms associated with opiate withdrawal are severely unpleasant.
Early symptoms of withdrawal include:
Late symptoms of withdrawal include:
Clonidine for opiate withdrawal can help to alleviate many of these. For instance clonidine for opiate withdrawal can help with irregular heartbeat and high blood pressure. Clonidine for opiate withdrawal can also help to reduce the sweating, hot and cold flashes and restlessness associated with opiate withdrawal. The sedation effects of clonidine can also help with the symptoms of opiate withdrawal that include insomnia. Clonidine for opiate withdrawal may also be helpful with little aches and pains. Clonidine for opiate withdrawal can also help with the restless leg syndrome many opiate addicts experience.
Clonidine for opiate withdrawal is most often used in a medical setting such as an opiate detox. An opiate detox is equipped to give out medication and help individuals to detox from opiates. At an opiate detox clonidine is usually available in tablets that go by their brand name (catapres, catapresan, and dixarit). The normal daily dosage of clonidine for opiate withdrawal ranges between 0.5 and 1.5 milligrams depending on the stage as well as the severity of the withdrawal symptoms.