Detoxing off Opioids: 5 Things That Could Stop You

Detoxing off Opioids: 5 Things That Could Stop You

Explore 5 things that may stop you from detoxing off opioids and what you could do about it if you want to live a life free of opioids.

Accelerated Opiate Detox

Using our Accelerated Opioid Detox treatment, the Coleman Network for Addiction Medicine has treated patients with Substance Use Disorder (SUD) detox from opioids. More than 25 years ago, Dr. Coleman created this process, and we continue to evolve it. As a result, we’ve treated over 8,500 patients with our proven outpatient procedure and have a 98% completion rate. Patients can also spend most of their detox in their own homes if they live near one of our offices.

I still am unaware of any rapid detox programs that incorporate naltrexone micro-doses over several days and allow them to successfully transition to a long-acting form of naltrexone. But, one significant difference is that our detox program is done without anesthesia. Yet, we’ve been able to help 98% of patients complete their rapid detox.

More like this: Accelerated Opioid Detox: Explained Using The Coleman Method

Medication-Assisted Treatments (MATs)

For SUD, the Medication-Assisted Treatments (MATs) include methadone, buprenorphine, and naltrexone.

The first 2 long-acting opioids medications:

  • Keep the patient from experiencing withdrawal symptoms from the physical dependence to the short-acting opioid.
  • Occupy the brain’s opioid receptor

If a person abruptly stops these medications, they can experience similar withdrawal symptoms if they stop taking another opioid or their pain medication. For example, they are otherwise unavailable, or they lose their medication.

More like this: 3 Important Differences Between Suboxone and Naltrexone Therapy for People Addicted to Opioids

Naltrexone and MAT

The third evidence-based form of MAT, naltrexone, acts as an opioid ‘blocker’ and occupies space on the brain receptor without causing physical dependence. Naltrexone eliminates physical cravings, and there is no withdrawal when patients stop taking it.

The Coleman Method

Our outpatient withdrawal management, The Coleman Method, gently bumps any existing opioids off the brain’s receptors and replaces them with naltrexone. We also accompany The Coleman Method, a time-tested combination with comfort medications.

Most patients come to the Coleman Network for Addiction Medicine to detox off pain medications such as methadone, buprenorphine, hydrocodone, tramadol, oxycodone, morphine, etc. Others take over-the-counter substances like poppy-seed tea, kratom, or street drugs such as heroin and fentanyl.

More like this: Accelerated Opioid Detox: Explained Using The Coleman Method

Fentanyl Laced Pills

Instead of getting prescriptions from their doctors, many patients who purchase pills believe they consist of hydrocodone or oxycodone. Still, almost invariably, these are pressed pills and include large amounts, if not all, fentanyl.

I was recently told by a patient who was convinced he bought his pain medication from a person who was getting them from their doctor. He was surprised to learn there wasn’t oxycodone in the medication.

His situation caused me to question how accurate these tests were, so I called a toxicologist at a urine drug testing lab. They told me that drug dealers’ expertise in selling and making pressed street pills is too good now. Often, pharmacists simply studying the medication cannot tell the difference.

Instead of being prescribed medication by their medical provider for anxiety, many patients purchase it on the street. They are also stunned that their urine drug screens (UDS) showed opioid compounds. These anxiety medications include diazepam (Valium®), alprazolam (Xanax®), or lorazepam (Ativan®).

Even those taking innocent “headache medication” have told me that they’ve discovered that it was laced with fentanyl. And cocaine is often laced with fentanyl, too.

This is such an unbelievably dangerous situation!

More like this: That Street Pill Might Be Fentanyl and One Pill Can Kill

Detoxing off Opioids: 5 Things That Could Stop You

If someone is seeking help to stop using opioids, what stops them? I have been working for several years as a medical professional at the Coleman Network for Addiction Medicine. Here are the five main reasons I hear all the time for patients.

More like this: 5 Scary Things People With Substance Use Disorder Believe

1. Price of an Opioid Detox Cost vs. Using Opioids

If a person doesn’t have insurance, the cost of an opioid detox can be high. Unfortunately, their insurance does not cover an Accelerated Opioid Detox. But, some in-network insurance plans at select locations cover our outpatient detoxes using The Coleman Method, such as Blue Cross Blue Shield.

Depending on the substance someone is taking and the duration of the detox, prices can vary. Generally, our rapid detoxes last between 3 to 10 days. However, if cost is a top consideration, it may be beneficial to consider staying on opioids for the long term.

The following are prices people are currently paying for street opioids according to information from StreetRx:

  • The average street price of methadone is approximately $1.00 per milligram.
  • The average street price of oxycodone is $1.40 per milligram.
  • The average street price of Vicodin is around $1.45 per milligram.
  • The average street price of Percocet® is approximately $1.75 per milligram.
  • The street price of fentanyl tablets is around $1.95 per milligram.

More like this: Accelerated Opioid Detox: Explained Using The Coleman Method

2. Opioid Withdrawal Pain

Those who know what withdrawal entails or have not been able to get their pain medication opioids are honestly terrified to go through this again. To help treat the symptoms of opioid withdrawal, we use a minimum of 5 comfort medicines.

I inform my patients that they will experience around 20-22 hours of relative comfort and 2-3 hours of relative discomfort during a typical detox.

We often hear that this is the ‘easiest detox’ they’ve experienced. When you call one of our providers to discuss your particular situation, we’ll be happy to answer any questions about the comfort meds.


3. How Long Does It Take To Detox From Opioids?

Between 3 to 10 days is the typical time frame for an Accelerated Opioid Detox (AOD). But, the exact number of days for your detox are determined by the substances in your body, your medical history, and other factors.

How Long Does It Take To Detox From Pain Medication?

In most cases, a person may be able to do a 3-day detox that has been prescribed or take 150mg or less of Roxicet® or hydrocodone, a pharmaceutical-grade medication.

How Long Does It Take To Detox From Fentanyl or Methadone?

Generally, a Fentanyl Detox will require a minimum of 5 days if it involves the chance that it may be or if you’re unsure. A Methadone or Buprenorphine Detox may typically take 8 days.

In some cases, we might extend the detox to 10 days if a patient has other coexisting medical concerns or is on an incredibly high amount of medication.

Outpatient Detox Program

One of the things that our patients appreciate is that our rapid detox program is in an outpatient setting. It is better than having treatment with the possibility of limited access to loved ones in a hospital. We offer patients and their loved ones a brief daily treatment in our rapid detox clinic. Then, when each day is over, they can relax in the comfort of their own home or stay at a hotel or Airbnb nearby during the length of their detox.

The Coleman Method is as close as patients can be to an “at-home detox” while benefiting from our office equipment during daily outpatient visits and access to amenities.

However, we do not insert naltrexone implants or complete detoxes on the weekends. But, to minimize the amount of time that people take off from work, we see patients 365 days a year. We also do our best to schedule patients at their soonest availability.

4. Is an Opioid Detox Safe?

We are committed to making patients’ rapid detox safe and comfortable. We also urge patients to choose a reliable support person to accompany them for every treatment. We generally use sedation and comfort medications, so the responsible support person is in charge of giving instructed medicines and getting the patient to the clinic.

We eliminate the additional risk of complications in our outpatient approach by not using general anesthesia as an ultra-rapid detox in a hospital setting.

We also have 24/7 on-call patient support.

5. Fear of Stopping

You may have heard the quote, “the best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The next best time is now.” Living a life free of opioids takes a giant leap of faith.


Our staff seeing our patients enjoying getting their life back is so satisfying. We are happy to address any concerns you have to the best of our ability regarding situations we didn’t discuss here. Please schedule a callback with one of our Care Advocates below by clicking the button below or call 877-773-3869 to speak with us right away.

Joan R. Shepherd, FNP

Recovery Starts With Finding The Right Detox Option For You.

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