Tuesday, May 14, 2013

The Easiest Method To Detox Precription Drugs

There are many methods for detoxing from prescription drugs. Although it's possible to reduce withdrawal symptoms and speed detox using at-home remedies, only your doctor can recommend a safe method for quitting a given prescription medication.

Tapering or Cold Turkey?

When it comes to quitting prescription drugs, there are no hard-and-fast formulas. Quitting "cold turkey" allows for a shorter overall detox process, while a slow taper generally makes for less-severe withdrawal symptoms. Most health professionals recommend tapering off prescription drugs, as this allows the body to adjust to functioning without the substance. The drug in question, dose taken and other factors play a significant role in determining the most appropriate method of detoxifying.

Handling Withdrawal

Quitting many prescription drugs can bring on withdrawal symptoms. Psychiatric medications such as anti-depressants, mood stabilizers and anti-psychotics can cause discontinuation syndrome--a phenomenon that includes irritability, depression and other withdrawal symptoms. Calming herbs including valerian and passionflower can help with anxiety and irritability, while mood-brighteners such as Korean ginseng and yerba mate may alleviate the fatigue and depression that occurs when quitting psychiatric drugs. Although more research is needed, valerian root has been used traditionally to treat anxiety and insomnia and can be effective in reducing these symptoms, according to Medline Plus.

Withdrawal from opiate painkillers can cause physical symptoms that may include gastrointestinal upset, sore joints and muscles and insomnia. Ginger and peppermint are excellent remedies for nausea. Ginger is as effective as dimenhydrinate (Dramamine) at relieving some types of nausea, according to the website nih.gov. For diarrhea, Imodium (loperamide) is a lifesaver. Its opiate-like molecular structure makes it effective at stopping the intestinal spasms that cause diarrhea and cramping. Over-the-counter painkillers such as acetaminophen, ibuprofen and naproxen can help with the physical pain of withdrawal, while herbs including St. John's wort may offer relief from depression and low mood. St. John's wort is as effective as SSRI anti-depressants at relieving mild-to-moderate depression, according to the website naturalnews.com

Additional Detox Tips

Because the byproducts of some drugs can linger after withdrawal, additional steps may be taken to ensure complete removal of these substances. Some detox programs focus on overall body cleansing, while others are meant to rejuvenate specific organs such as the liver, which can be damaged by many medications.

Supplements with diuretic or laxative properties can help rid the body of drugs and toxins via urine and feces. Dandelion root, uva ursi and the B-complex vitamins all increase urine output, while aloe vera juice and psyllium seed can help promote regular bowel movements.

Activities that increase perspiration are an excellent way to detoxify. Vigorous exercise and use of a sauna help remove toxins via the body's largest organ of elimination--the skin. Both activities should be followed by gentle exfoliation, which helps remove dead cells and toxic wastes from the skin's top layers. Adequate water intake--eight 8-ounce glasses of water daily, according to mayoclinic.com--is vital to the success of any detox regimen.


Herbs and supplements can change the way certain medications affect the body. To avoid potentially fatal interactions, talk to your doctor before trying an at-home detox or withdrawal remedy.

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