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Percocet Withdrawal | Timeline, Symptoms, Detox

Percocet is an opioid drug that combines two drugs into one: oxycodone and acetaminophen. Oxycodone is a narcotic and acetaminophen is a pain reliever. Sometimes people think acetaminophen is harmless because it’s an ingredient in over-the-counter pain relievers like Tylenol. But taking too much acetaminophen can result in severe liver damage and even death. So, when someone abuses Percocet, they experience both the dangerous effects of opioid abuse and they cause severe damage to their liver. If you’re struggling with an addiction to Percocet, learn more below about Percocet withdrawal symptoms and the importance of getting professional help. 

What Are the Percocet Withdrawal Symptoms?

Although Percocet withdrawal symptoms usually aren’t life-threatening, they can be very tough.

Symptoms of Percocet withdrawal may include:

  • Anxiety
  • Agitation
  • Runny nose
  • Teary eyes
  • Increased blood pressure
  • Fever
  • Goosebumps
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Sweating
  • Yawning
  • Chills
  • Aching muscles
  • Cramps
  • Diarrhea
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Muscle or bone pain

What Are the Stages of the Percocet Withdrawal Timeline?

Percocet withdrawal symptoms can range from mild to severe. They usually begin between six to 12 hours after last using the drug and peak within about one to three days. Withdrawal symptoms start to subside after about a week, but they can last about a month.

Early Percocet withdrawal symptoms may include:

  • Agitation
  • Anxiety
  • Muscle aches
  • Teary eyes
  • Insomnia
  • Runny nose
  • Sweating
  • Yawning

Later symptoms of Percocet withdrawal may include:

  • Stomach cramps
  • Diarrhea
  • Enlarged pupils
  • Goosebumps
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting

Emotional side effects and cravings may last longer than a month, which is known as post-acute withdrawal syndrome (PAWS).

Symptoms of PAWS due to Percocet withdrawal may include:

  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Insomnia
  • Irritability
  • Fatigue
  • Emotional blunting

Why Should I Detox?

Withdrawing from opioids like Percocet can be very difficult and uncomfortable. It’s best to find a professional addiction treatment center to help you detox rather than trying to quit Percocet “cold turkey.”

Going through a professional, medically-assisted detox program helps to ensure a successful recovery. You will be carefully monitored in a safe environment while your body eliminates the physical need for the drug by going through the difficult, and sometimes painful, detoxification process. 

Your medical team can administer detox medications such as naltrexone or buprenorphine to help relieve the cravings. They will also ensure that your body has enough vitamins, fluids, and electrolytes. During this challenging time, professional mental and emotional support will also be part of your therapy to help make the withdrawal process successful.

What Is the Next Treatment Step?

While there are different stages of Percocet addiction treatment, following a full continuum of treatment is the most comprehensive approach. This will provide you with the best chance of recovery. By following a full continuum of treatment, you begin with the highest and most intense level of care during the detox phase and then progress through less intense levels of treatment. Stages of opioid addiction treatment include:


The goal during the detox stage of Percocet withdrawal treatment is medical stabilization. Depending on the severity of your addiction, this stage will last about three to seven days. Your medical team will include doctors, nurses, and support staff. When you arrive, they will give you a complete medical assessment to determine your level of addiction and any other medical needs you may have. The medical assessment will include a medical exam and urine or blood tests to screen for drugs. After your physician reviews these results, you may also require additional testing such as: additional blood tests, including a CBC (complete blood count), chest X-ray, ECG (electrocardiogram), and testing for other diseases.

A detox plan will be created for you once the doctor has reviewed all of the test results. You will then begin the detox process under the care of your medical team. Detoxing may include a combination of detox drugs, such as methadone, buprenorphine, clonidine, and naltrexone. You will be under 24-hour supervision during this time.

Because many people also experience anxiety, depression, and other emotional and psychological challenges as they detox, your treatment plan will also include emotional support as you begin addiction therapy. 


After you complete the detox phase of treatment, you will then continue treatment in a  residential facility or in a partial-hospitalization program. Your physician will determine which path is right for you based on the severity of your addiction and whether or not you have any other addictions or co-occurring medical or psychological conditions.

During a residential treatment stay, you can focus solely on your psychological and emotional recovery. You’ll live full-time at the residential treatment center while you participate in a supportive, rigorous, and structured treatment program at least five days a week. This program will address your emotional and mental health needs to help you begin the process of returning to your life outside the treatment center. These skills will help to prepare you for long-term recovery. 


A partial-hospitalization program (PHP) is a blend of inpatient care and outpatient treatment. During this stage, you’ll live at a transitional living facility while undergoing a supportive, rigorous, and structured treatment program five days a week for six hours each day. 

You will participate in individual, group, and family therapy programs to address your emotional and mental health needs. Learning positive life skills, coping mechanisms, and techniques to help prevent relapse will be the focus during PHP. The goal of PHP is to help you be better prepared for long-term recovery and begin the process of returning to your life outside the treatment center. 

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Intensive Outpatient

Each of the stages of the full continuum of treatment helps you to slowly transition back to life outside the rehab facility while helping you build the skills and resources you need to cope and avoid relapsing. The next stage is the intensive outpatient program (IOP). This stage allows you to either move back home or possibly into a “sober home,” which is a facility that provides a more structured lifestyle for those in recovery from substance use. At this stage, your therapy sessions won’t be as frequent, but you will still attend intensive therapy sessions and continue with medication management, if needed. You will continue to be accountable for your recovery during this stage of treatment. This stage will also include periodic weekly drug testing.


After completing the treatment program, you will have the opportunity to join other treatment center graduates during weekly support groups and social events. These opportunities to meet other program alumni can help you develop new friendships. This social network can help support you and your goals for long-term success. Plus, you can simply enjoy getting to know new friends.

Start Your Journey to Recovery Today

When you’re ready to detox from Percocet, the staff at Ocean Breeze Recovery can provide the guidance and support you need to start your recovery. Our admissions specialists are available 24/7 for free and confidential help and they can answer any questions you may have. After you speak with a specialist, you will know what to expect from our evidence-based services and feel prepared to make an informed decision about your treatment plans.

Our specialists can also check with your private health insurance to see if your treatment costs will be fully covered. You don’t have to do this alone. Call us today at 844-554-9279 and let us help you get started on your journey to recovery.

Sources (2020, March 3) Percocet. Durbin, K. MD. Retrieved from

U.S. National Library of Medicine. (2018, May 5) MedlinePlus. Opiate and opioid withdrawal. Berger, F. MD Retrieved from

SAMHSA. (2020, April 30) Naltrexone. Retrieved from

Mayo Clinic. (2018, January 10) Tapering off Opioids: When and How. Mayo Clinic Staff. Retrieved from

SAMHSA. (2020, May 4) Buprenorphine. Retrieved from

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