Clonidine Withdrawal and Detox Information and How You Can Begin Recovery

If you or a loved one has been taking Clonidine, you may be concerned about addiction. You may want to stop taking this medication but be worried about withdrawal. This page will provide in-depth information about what can happen if you stop using this drug and what to expect for side effects and withdrawal symptoms. Learn how to manage these symptoms through detox and find out how you can begin the process of recovery from drug abuse or addiction.

What is Clonidine?

Clonidine is a medication that that is often used for those who have high blood pressure. It goes under a number of different names, including:
  • Clonidine ER
  • Nexiclon
  • Kapvay
  • Clophelin
  • Catapres
What is Clonidine?

In addition to treating high blood pressure, Clonidine is also prescribed to help with other conditions. It may be prescribed for anxiety and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. Some doctors recommend it for migraines and menopausal symptoms. Another popular use for this medication is to treat drug and alcohol withdrawal. This is often when addiction occurs. Those who have addictions frequently suffer from subsequent addictions to some medications. Unfortunately, additional recovery time is needed.

This medication is often used in drug treatment, especially for opioids like heroin. It may be given to help with the symptoms of withdrawal which can be so severe that the person relapses before they have completed treatment.

It is an antihypertensive classification of drugs. It blocks chemicals in the brain which helps reduce symptoms of withdrawal when a person is detoxing from an opioid. It can reduce anxiety as well as helping with sweating and hot flashes. Many doctors believe that utilizing drugs like Clonidine for drug detox will help keep the person in treatment because they can manage their withdrawal symptoms.

This drug may be given every few hours when a person is first detoxing. As the symptoms gradually subside, the dosage will be reduced until the person no longer needs it. For detoxing from alcohol, Clonidine is often prescribed along with another drug like Xanax or Valium. It may be given in pill form or with a patch. In either case, it must be monitored with close supervision of blood pressure and pulse rate.

Mixing Clonidine with Other Drugs

While Clonidine is not as addictive as other medications, it can lead to an addiction. This is especially true when it is mixed with other medications, such as opiate drugs. Many addicts will combine their drug of choice with Clonidine. Some of the most common combinations include heroin, methadone and prescription pain medications.

Another common and dangerous combination is mixing it with alcohol. The medication makes people feel more relaxed and can increase sleepiness. When mixed with alcohol, the effect is even more pronounced. It’s often used as a downer to help people sleep.

Clonidine is often taken with heroin or other opiates because it decreases the amount of the other drug needed to get high. It also makes the high last longer, which is the goal of the user. Furthermore, it isn’t a scheduled drug because the likelihood of addiction is low, but it’s often used with other addictive substances. It also increases the risk of side effects from other substances because a person requires less to achieve the desired euphoric feeling.

What is Detox?

Drug detox is the process of eliminating toxins in the body related to drug use. There are several different methods that can be used to accomplish this. Detox requires the person to stop using the drug and allows the system to begin functioning normally again. This process can take some time to complete, depending on the drug used and the amount and frequency of use.

Clonodine Detox Information

The right method for Clonidine detox will be chosen carefully, based on each patient's needs. The medical provider will do a complete assessment of the person’s medical health history and discuss options with them before deciding on a course of treatment.

Clonidine can be a dangerous drug. It's usually not recommended to stop taking it abruptly. Doing so can lead to severe withdrawal symptoms that can be difficult to manage. More often than not, people revert back to using it to relieve their withdrawal symptoms.

Tapering off Clonidine is something that should only be attempted by trained professionals. This is done in a medical setting, preferably on an inpatient basis. Even when given as a prescription, doctors will reduce the dosage gradually rather than stopping it all at once. During this time, they will monitor the patient to make sure there are no adverse effects. This becomes even more important for people with high blood pressure. They may need to begin another medication, but supervision is essential since it can react with other blood pressure medications.

Patients are carefully observed for any issues or problems that may result. Usually, tapering off Clonidine is the best way to begin the detox process. This decreases withdrawal and makes the experience much more comfortable.

Types of Detox

You have two options for detoxing. Your treatment provider will conduct an evaluation and exam to determine the best option. The type of detox chosen will also be based on what substances you’ve been mixing and their withdrawal symptoms.

Types of Clonodine Detox

Medical detox is something that can also be done on an inpatient basis. This involves giving the patient medications to help with withdrawal symptoms. It is most often used when the person is also addicted to substances like heroin or other opiates.

However, this method is problematic. Many times, patients became addicted to Clonidine because they were using it for detox purposes. Giving the patient additional medications only increases the chance of more addictions. As this can complicate their recovery, many providers will try to avoid using medicines for detoxing. Instead, they will opt for another method which may be slower but is more effective in the end.

Most detox programs recommend holistic detox. This is a method that is relatively new but one that shows great promise. It is a more natural approach which is safer and yields better results for the long-term.

During holistic detox, the body is able to remove toxins naturally, on its own. The focus is on improving the patient's overall health through diet and exercise. When the patient's health is improved, the body is better equipped to eliminate toxins. Getting the right nutrition can help the system get back to its normal working order sooner while exercise releases feel-good hormones that counteract the anxiety, depression and other mental withdrawal symptoms.

The holistic method of detox is recognized by many experts as the preferred method. It offers no chance of a secondary addiction. It also has been shown to have better long-term results for continued sobriety. Many people who begin these good habits in treatment will continue them afterwards, which reduces the risk of relapse in the future.

What are Clonidine Withdrawal Symptoms Like?

What are Clonidine Withdrawal Symptoms Like?
For many people, withdrawal symptoms can become quite severe. These symptoms make stopping quite difficult. How severe they are depends on a number of different factors. These include:
  • How long the person has been taking Clonidine
  • The dosage the individual was taking
  • How recent the drug was taken
  • How often the person takes Clonidine
  • Whether or not it was taken to help with drug or alcohol withdrawal

These symptoms can be made worse if the drug was used along with other addictive substances, because those withdrawal symptoms will likely be present as well.

Clonodine Withdrawal Symptoms

Stopping the use of Clonidine always results in some type of withdrawal. Typical Clonidine withdrawal symptoms often include:

  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • A chronic headache
  • Problems with sleeping at night
  • Becoming lightheaded
  • Becoming nauseous or vomiting
  • Feeling agitated or nervous
  • A quick rise in blood pressure

Although it is rare, it is possible for Clonidine withdrawal to be fatal. Blood pressure can increase to dangerous levels. It can also lead to the rupture of blood vessels in the brain. This can result in a loss of consciousness and death.

If the person has been taking Clonidine with opiates or alcohol, they may experience many other withdrawal symptoms, which include muscle aches, profuse sweating, confusion, hallucinations and more. When these symptoms are at their worst, it can seem unbearable to the person, causing them to relapse for relief.

How Long Does It Take to Withdraw from Clonidine?

The length of time it takes to withdraw from Clonidine differs from person to person. It depends on how much the person was using and whether they were taking any other addictive drugs.

Clonidine withdrawal usually begins within 12 hours after the last dosage of the drug and can last for a significant amount of time without proper treatment. At first, symptoms will be mild. Of course, not everyone experiences all the symptoms on the above list. The timeline may vary based on what other drugs are in the system and how long the person has been an addict.

Clonidine Withdrawal Timeline

As time progresses, new withdrawal symptoms may emerge. They will increase in severity, and some may begin sometime within the first week. After that, they will begin to diminish.

This can take some time, and the person is likely to feel very uncomfortable. The entirety of the withdrawal process can last for a few weeks, or even a month or longer in some people if opiates were involved.

Can You Detox from Clonidine on Your Own at Home

Detoxing should never be attempted on your own. This is a very dangerous drug, and the results can be fatal. Because it is a drug that is used to treat high blood pressure, stopping it abruptly often leads to spikes.

For someone who already has high blood pressure, this is a serious problem. It could result in the need for immediate medical attention. Far too many people attempt to stop taking Clonidine on their own. They assume that because it is a prescribed medication that it is safe to do so. What they don't realize is that this is a powerful drug. It is much safer to stop using it in a controlled and supervised environment. That way, they can be certain that it is stopped safely.

For those who do attempt to stop using Clonidine on their own, relapses are very common. When someone relapses, it's usually because they can't manage their withdrawal symptoms. They don't feel right without the drug. However, relapses are dangerous, and they can lead to an overdose.

Studies also show that people who relapse are less likely to seek treatment again. This happens because they feel like a failure and give up on recovery. They also know what to expect, which makes them less inclined to go through the hard aspects of the process a second time. This reason is why it’s so important to make your first attempt at recovery successful by using all the tools available to you, including detox.

Detox and How It Helps with Recovery

Detoxification helps to prepare the individual for rehab. It is so important to address the physical side of the addiction first, which is what detox aims to do. By taking this step, patients are better prepared physically for drug treatment.

Clonodine Detox and Recovery

Detox helps to lessen the chances of a relapse later on. It has been shown that those who opt for detoxification services have better outcomes long-term. Also, it makes the experience of stopping Clonidine much more bearable. This is a potent drug that is very difficult to quit using. The additional help through the withdrawal phase is something patients appreciate.

Do You Need Detox Services to Recover?

Perhaps you've been taking Clonidine for quite some time. You may not even be aware that you have an addiction. This is not surprising at all. It's actually quite common because people will take it for a medical condition for the long-term.

It's important for you to find out if you do have an addiction to Clonidine that requires treatment. You can do that by taking an addiction quiz.

Side Effects You Should Know

Because Clonidine is such a powerful drug, it has some serious side effects. Those who take it regularly, or in excess may experience any of the following:
  • Frequent headaches
  • Bouts of dizziness
  • Feeling drowsy throughout the day
  • Frequent warm or hot flashes
  • Cold symptoms
  • Feeling moody, or mood swings
  • A dry mouth
  • Sexual dysfunction
  • Depression
  • Insomnia
  • Constipation
  • Nightmares
  • Palpitations
Clonidine Side Effects You Should Know

Have you noticed any of these side effects? If you have, please know that the high is not worth it. These and other side effects are even worse when you use other substances at the same time. People frequently use opiates or alcohol to intensify the high. Alcohol can make the depression and nausea even worse.

Because people may be prescribed this medication to lower blood pressure, overdosing can lead to a blood pressure which is too low or hypotension. When this happens, they may notice drowsiness, a feeling of weakness, slow respirations, confusion and hypothermia. It can lead to a coma and even death. These side effects of Clonidine can begin in 30 minutes to two hours after taking the overdose amount. If combined with alcohol, it may happen even sooner.

Clonidine is a powerful drug, and it can interact with other prescription medications as well. You should be aware of heightened risks when you take this medication with any of the following:
  • Antidepressants
  • Sleeping pills
  • Heart medications
  • Blood pressure medications
  • Anxiety medications
  • Medications for seizures

If you take Clonidine for recreational use and are already on one of these other medications, you can have serious adverse effects.

Professional treatment is necessary to recover from a Clonidine addiction. It all begins with detox from the drug.

Co-Occurring Disorders

It’s not uncommon for addiction to go along with a mental health disorder. In fact, this situation has an official name: co-occurring disorders or dual diagnosis. Many times, a person will have a mental condition and they will use a drug to self-medicate. It doesn’t actually cure or even treat the condition; it only masks the symptoms.

For a time, the person may feel better and think the drug is working. What happens is the body becomes accustomed to having the drug in the system, and it requires a larger dose for it to continue working. When it doesn’t get more of the drug or you try to stop taking it, the symptoms can get even worse than they were before.

Drugs like Clonidine are used to treat mental health conditions, but when abused, they can complicate the problem. They can result in a co-occurring disorder as you become addicted to the drug and continue to suffer from the mental health disorder.

Clonidine is used to treat attention deficit disorder and severe anxiety. It has also been used for stress along with sleep disorders. It may be prescribed for post-traumatic stress disorder as well as borderline personality disorders. When used for ADD, it is most often given at night as a sedative. It has a calming effect for those who suffer from anxiety or other mental health conditions.

However, it must be monitored to ensure it continues to work and that it’s not being abused. The problem for many people who are being treated for these conditions is they think they’ve stopped working and make changes on their own without approval from their health care provider.

If you suffer from a co-occurring disorder and are abusing Clonidine, you need to treat both conditions. Simply going to an addiction treatment center won’t work if the mental health condition isn’t addressed. When searching for a drug rehab facility, you should choose one that offers help for a dual diagnosis.

You will need to detox from the drug while still managing your mental health condition. This is one reason why going to a detox facility is essential. Otherwise, your condition may worsen which will make it difficult to complete detoxing.

When Your Family Member is Abusing Clonidine

You may have a spouse, child, parent or sibling who is taking the drug, and you’re worried about addiction. You’ve seen behaviors that concern you, such as erratic or secretive behaviors. Perhaps they used Clonidine to stop using another addictive drug, and now you feel they have transferred that addiction to this drug.

You don’t have to feel helpless because there are several steps you can take. You can begin by talking to your loved one and asking them about their use of Clonidine. Perhaps they don’t realize how dangerous it can be, especially for an addict. As you explain what it does and how it can hurt them, you may be able to convince the person to stop taking it.

Let them know help is available and drug treatment centers will help them with the addiction to Clonidine. You can even offer to help them find the right facility and go with them.

If your loved one ignores your concerns or becomes defensive, you may need to get the help from professional services to organize an intervention. This situation becomes more necessary if the person is taking it with other drugs such as heroin. An intervention is a formal event where family and friends of the person who is addicted confront them about their drug use. It’s done in a positive way to get the person to see their need for help.

Statistics show that interventions are often successful, especially when organized and monitored by a professional. If you are in this situation and worried about your family member, you may want to consider an intervention to help you reach your loved one.

Are You an Addict? Begin Your Recovery with Detoxification

You may not have realized how addictive the drug was when you started taking it. It's not a drug that's often labeled as being addictive. Many people fail to take prescription medications seriously. They see them as safe, especially if those drugs have been prescribed for them. If the drug doesn’t seem to be working for their condition, a person may just assume they can increase the dosage and all will be fine.

Unfortunately, it is possible to form an addiction to this medication, especially if you have a history of addiction. If you have tried to stop taking Clonidine on your own and you couldn't, you may be an addict.

It's important for you to know that you don't need to suffer with this addiction forever. Sometimes addiction can feel like a life sentence, but there is hope.

The first step is to identify your problem as addiction. There are several signs that indicate you may be addicted to the drug.
  • You think about it even when you aren’t using it.
  • You find ways to access the drug even if you can’t get a prescription.
  • You avoid activities where you can’t use the drug.
  • You focus more on using than on other responsibilities.
  • You continue taking it even when family members encourage you to stop or express concerns about addiction.
  • You’ve gotten into legal or financial trouble to obtain the drug.
  • You are taking it with other addictive drugs.

Detox is the very first step on the road to recovery. We can help you with that here at Northpoint Washington. You may be embarrassed about being addicted to a prescription medication, but you don’t have to feel shame or regret. You can get help to get your life back on track.

When you go through detox, you'll find that the physical part of your addiction is addressed. You'll be able to manage withdrawal symptoms successfully. This will improve your chances of recovering from this addiction. It’s important to know that detoxing from this drug or any other substance is not the end. You may feel good and believe you can handle life now, but you haven’t been treated for your addiction.

Detox is a good starting point and necessary for you to get treatment. However, you must follow up with a treatment plan from a rehab center or you’ll probably relapse later on. Addiction treatment is the second step to recovery. You must learn how to deal with your addiction and cravings and find positive ways to handle issues rather than turning to drugs. If you were taking Clonidine to treat a condition, you’ll need to go through treatment to find another treatment option.

Options for Drug Treatment

You can choose from various types of treatment to deal with your Clonidine addiction. The only requirement is that the centers offer treatment for prescription medications.

You may choose outpatient rehab, which is common for prescription medication addictions. You will attend therapy a few times a week around your other responsibilities. Some programs are offered during the day while others may have sessions in the evenings or on weekends.

Inpatient rehab is another option. You will stay in a facility for up to 30 days while attending therapy. This option is best for those who have a long-term addiction or who have been using Clonidine with other drugs.

You can also go to an intensive outpatient rehab, which is more structured than regular outpatient treatment. With this option, you spend all day in therapy and go home at night. For any kind of outpatient program, it’s important that you have a strong support network to keep you on the path to recovery when you are on your own.

Many people think they don’t need drug addiction treatment for a prescription medication, but this is not always the case. Any addiction should be treated seriously because it can be life-altering or life-threatening. Abusing Clonidine or becoming addicted to it is a serious situation, one that you need to deal with.

Amytal Addiction Treatment

Getting Help for Addiction with Detox in Washington State

You can get help for your drug addiction no matter what substance you’re using. Northpoint Washington is located in Edmonds, Washington. We also have several locations we can refer you to if you live in another area. We provide drug detox and rehab services for people who are addicted to prescription medications as well as illicit drugs.

Our facility is modern and features a low patient to staff ratio so you can get the care you need to begin recovery from your addiction. We have the experience to help you by providing a treatment plan that is customized for your situation. We also offer a holistic approach by focusing on caring for the entire person. Our nutrition program will ensure your body is getting the nutrients it needs as it works hard to recover from addiction.

Northpoint Washington offers a beautiful setting where you can go outside and enjoy walks. We teach you to focus on fitness as a way of cleansing your system. We also offer a variety of therapy options, including music and art to appeal to a wide range of people and to provide a successful program for those beginning recovery.

Addiction doesn’t have to be a life sentence even though it can feel that way in the midst of your situation. No mater how long you’ve been using or the combination of drugs you might be using with Clonidine, we can help you begin a new chapter in your life.

Would you like more information about detox? Are you curious about the methods that are used to help with withdrawal? We'd like to talk with you, here at Northpoint Washington. Please contact us today to start on the path to recovery from your addiction.

Talk to a Rehab Specialist

Our admissions coordinators are here to help you get started with treatment the right way. They'll verify your health insurance, help set up travel arrangements, and make sure your transition into treatment is smooth and hassle-free.

(888) 663-7106 Contact Us

Full Infographic:

Clonodine Withdrawal and Detox