Are Large Doses of Imodium Safe for Opioid Detox?

Imodium, also called Loperamide, is a drug used for the treatment of diarrhea. Imodium does not address the root cause of diarrhea, but rather only relieves the symptoms. The active ingredient, Loperamide, is an opiate receptor agonist, which is a type of opioid. Upon ingestion, Loperamide signals opioid receptors in the gastrointestinal tract to stimulate continuous working.

This action balances the digestive system to reduce bowel movement to make the stool less watery and so soothes diarrhea. Imodium is available as oral capsules, chewable tablets or rapidly dissolving tablets. In any form in which it is taken, it must be under a physician’s prescription. Otherwise, adverse side effects such as severe dizziness and irregular heartbeats may result if the drug is misused.

Are Large Doses of Imodium Safe for Opioid Detox?

What Are Opioids?

Opioids are groups of medications that serve many functions but are popularly known for inducing pain relief. They also help to slow heart rates in patients with unsteady heart rhythms and are used for sedation purposes. On the other hand, they elicit pleasurable feelings that may account for their misuse in treating depression. Drugs such as heroin, methadone, and morphine are common opioids.

When an individual abuses an opiate, addiction is usually inevitable. Therefore, to help the individual recover, treatments like detoxification are recommended. During detox, patients may experience withdrawal symptoms resultant from opioid abstinence. Diarrhea is one such common withdrawal symptom. Thus, prescribed drugs like Imodium may be administered to ease specific symptoms; in this case, diarrhea.

Imodium and Opioid Withdrawal Symptoms

The dosage of Imodium taken is dependent on the severity of the condition and the individual’s response to treatment. If the drug is being prescribed for children, the dosage is also dependent on their age and weight. Typically, adults using Imodium ought not to take more than 16 milligrams of the drug in a day under prescription. For those using the drug under self-treatment, no more than 8 milligrams should be used in a day. As a general rule of thumb, you should ingest medications following a Doctor’s prescription.

What Happens if Imodium is Given During Opioid Detox?

Although Loperamide is a form of opiate, it does not cross into the nervous system. Thus, it does not induce pleasurable feelings characteristic of opioids. Due to its help in reducing diarrhea during opioid detox, individuals may attempt to take Imodium for relieving other withdrawal symptoms. However, no clinical studies exist to support this purpose. Taking a larger than usual dose of Imodium has, therefore not been proven to alleviate any symptom other than diarrhea. Conversely, increased dosages of Imodium can cause serious health problems like slowed breathing, urinary retention, liver damage, and heart attack. The FDA also warns that taking high dosages of over 60 milligrams may lead to death.

If an individual overdoses on Imodium, whether inadvertently or consciously, such an individual should seek help. NJ Addiction Resources can signpost individuals suffering from the aftermaths of excessive Imodium use to facilities where they can receive help. By providing these connections, we support people to get their lives back. Do you need advice on how to tackle Imodium abuse challenges? We will be glad to help. Reach out to our recovery advocates today.

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