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How Long Does Percocet Stay In Your System?


What is the Half Life of Percocet? How Long Does it Take to Feel the Effects?  How Long Does Percocet Stay in the System for Drug Test?

What Is Percocet? 

Percocet contains a combination of oxycodone and acetaminophen. Oxycodone is an opioid pain medication [1]. An opioid is sometimes called a narcotic. Acetaminophen is a less potent pain reliever that increases the effects of oxycodone. Opioids such as Percocet activate the brain’s reward center. It is considered a psychoactive drug. So a person can develop Percocet addiction due to the euphoric side effects of this prescription medication. A person who does not receive effective care for an addiction to these pain pills can suffer many adverse side effects and consequences. One of the main reasons to be aware of “how long does percocet stay in your system” is the risk of overdose. Read this article to learn more.

Percocet, also known as “White Collar Heroin,” is a controlled substance. It is classified by the US Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) as a Schedule II substance which means it has a high potential for abuse and addiction, but it still has some accepted medical uses [2]. In large dosages, someone who abuses Percocet feels a similar euphoria or “high” as those who abuse heroin, which is why Percocet is so addicting.

How long does a perc 10 stay in your system? If it’s taken largely for long periods of time, the body and brain can grow dependent on this drug. As a result, when a person stops taking the drug, the body needs time to recover. This causes withdrawal symptoms. Withdrawal from Percocet can happen any time long-term use is stopped or cut back. It can be hard living with Percocet addiction. Coping with such an addiction can be life-consuming. Also, those who are addicted can lose themselves to constantly seeking their drug, “doctor shopping,” and living in fear.

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What is the Half-Life of Percocet?

Percocet has an average elimination half-life of 3.5 hours, meaning this is the amount of time it takes for half a dose of Percocet to leave one’s system. This means it will take an average of 19 hours to eliminate all of the Percocet from the system. However, this can take longer for chronic, heavy drug users, as opioids will be absorbed by the body’s fatty tissues if there’s more Percocet in the body than the liver can handle at once. It takes longer for the traces of Percocet in these tissues to leave the body than that which primarily stays in the bodily fluids.

How Long Does Percocet Stay In Your System?
Percocet addiction should not be taken lightly because of its serious effects.

How Long Does It Take to Feel the Effects? 

Percocet is mainly known for pain relief but also makes some people feel relaxed and sleepy. The pain-relieving effects of Percocet can typically be felt about 20 to 30 minutes after taking the drug.

Common side effects of Percocet include:

  • Blurred vision
  • Confusion or muddied thinking
  • Constipation
  • Dizziness
  • Drowsiness or sleepiness
  • Headache
  • Itching
  • Nausea
  • Upset stomach
  • Vomiting

When taken in large doses or misused, Percocet can cause the following side effects:

  • Confusion
  • Depression
  • Flushing or sweating
  • Low blood pressure
  • Mood swings
  • Problems with coordination
  • Slowed breathing
  • Trouble concentrating

Percocet Abuse and Addiction

Percocet is a powerful narcotic pain medication, usually prescribed for intense, short-term pain felt after trauma or surgery. It is also sometimes used for cases of severe chronic pain. This prescription drug is often seen as a safer way to get high because it is legal to purchase (it is available with a prescription).

How long will Percocet stay in your system and what are the adverse effects? If it’s mainly taken for long periods, the body and brain can grow dependent on it. As a result, when someone stops taking the drug, the body needs time to recover. This causes withdrawal symptoms. Withdrawal from this drug can happen any time long-term use is stopped or cut back. It can be hard living with Percocet addiction. Coping with such an addiction can be life-consuming. Also, those who are addicted can lose themselves to constantly seeking their drug, “doctor shopping,” and living in fear.

What Does Percocet Do To Your Body?

Percocet is an opioid, which means it is derived from the same source as drugs like heroin and morphine. Opioids work on receptors in the brain to intercept pain and release neurotransmitters associated with feelings of euphoria and happiness.

Opioids are one of the most potent pain relief medicines. They attach to opioid receptors in the brain, spinal cord, and gastrointestinal tract to limit the pain messages that travel to the brain. While opioids like Percocet help manage pain, they don’t cure its underlying cause. Additional treatment is necessary to eliminate pain at the cause instead of relieving the symptom.

The idea that Percocet is a safe-to-use prescription drug can instill a false sense of security around the substance. Individuals need to work closely with a doctor when taking prescription Percocet or any prescription opioid to monitor dependence symptoms carefully. The body will begin mentally and physically craving the drug because of the physical dependence and euphoric feeling.

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Statistics on Percocet

Opioid use has been especially harmful and often leads to substance use disorder, dependence, or death. The rate of misuse of opioids and other substances like Percocet is very alarming.

These statistics on opioid use show how abuse can lead to adverse health or lifestyle effects:

  • In 2020, the total number of opioid prescriptions dispensed was 142,816,781.
  • The United States is the largest consumer of the world’s supply of oxycodone, consuming 81% of the supply.
  • Opioids were implicated in 70.6% of overdose deaths in 2019.
  • Around 80% of individuals who used heroin started by abusing prescription opioids like Percocet.

Another primary concern concerning Percocet and other opioid use is the opioid crisis. Other useful statics regarding the opioid crisis in the United States from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services include:

  • Individuals searching for treatment have access to over 14,000 substance use treatment facilities.
  • Over 760,000 individuals have died in the United States from a drug overdose since 1999.
  • The number of opioid-related hospitalizations reached a rate of 297 per 100,000 population in 2016.
  • Emergency room visits rose 30% for opioid overdose visits.
  • 1.27 million people in the United States are receiving medication-assisted treatment for opioid use.
  • The number of prescriptions for naloxone, a medication that reverses the process of an opioid overdose quickly, doubled between 2017 and 2018.

Percocet addiction typically comes about in one of two ways. The first involves those who are legitimately prescribed Percocet. This may happen after a serious injury or accident. The individual starts taking Percocet according to their prescription, but if this continues for 2-3 weeks, there is the possibility that the body can become dependent upon the drug. There is also a severe mental component to this addiction. Thus by the end of a few weeks, those who started taking Percocet legitimately may experience intense cravings to take the drug more frequently.

Percocet statistics revealed that addiction is a significant issue, even in those who begin taking the drug for legitimate purposes. Detoxing from Percocet is something that a treatment clinic or medical professional can manage in a way that allows someone to avoid many negative feelings. Increasing levels of Percocet use can be hazardous, however, especially when mixed with other drugs. You may be looking for an answer to the question “how long does one Percocet stay in your system?” However, anyone taking Percocet must also be aware of the severe abuse potential represented by the drug.

How Long Does Percocet Stay in the System for Drug Test? 

Although Percocet (oxycodone) can remain in a person’s system for up to 48 hours, one study found the detection window was shorter among people who do not use the drug regularly (about 30 hours). Although Percocet (oxycodone) can remain in a person’s system for up to 48 hours, one study found the detection window was shorter among people who do not use the drug regularly (about 30 hours).

People who use Percocet may worry about its effects on employer drug tests. Many individuals taking the drug are asking “how long does Percocets stay in your system?” They may also wonder how long it will remain in breast milk and how long it takes for withdrawal symptoms to ease as oxycodone exits the body.

What is the Half Life of Percocet?

The half-life of a medication, such as Percocet, for instance, is the time it takes for the concentration of the chemical in your body to reduce by half after you consume it. The half-life of Percocet can be used to predict when withdrawal symptoms could start. How long does percocet stay in your system and its half-life? Because the oxycodone element of Percocet is a short-acting, immediate-release drug, its half-life is calculated to be between 3.2 and 4 hours.

Factors that Influence “How Long Does Percocet Stay in System for Drug Test”

You may wonder “how long percocet stay in your system?”, but it depends on several factors, including:

  • The dosage
  • How a person takes it (orally, intravenously, or nasally)
  • The person’s metabolism
  • How many doses do they take before stopping
  • Their body size
  • Their age
  • any other medications the person is taking, as some inhibit the metabolism of Percocet and lead to increased levels in the blood

Researching “how long do percocets stay in your system?” The testing method is essential since Percocet may remain in the urine, hair, and breast milk long after its effects wear off.

Percocet Drug Test – Blood Test

Percocet can be detected in the blood for about a day. However, more advanced drug screenings can confirm the metabolites of Percocet (oxycodone), not just the drug itself. This could result in a longer detection time from the test.

Percocet Urine Test

How long does a percocet stay in your system and in urine? By far the most common form of drug screening, Percocet urine tests can confirm the drug in the urine for 48 hours following use. However, basic urine screenings (like immunoassay tests) may miss semi-synthetic opioids like Percocet. More advanced urine screenings (such as gas chromatography or mass spectrometry) are more sensitive and can report semi-synthetic opioid use more accurately.

Percocet Hair Follicle Test

As with most drugs, Percocet (Oxycodone) is detectable in the hair for an extended period. That said, hair testing is typically used to detect heavy, long-term use patterns and may not be accurate for short-term testing.

percocet Saliva Drug Test

Opioid-containing drugs like Percocet can be found in saliva for up to 2 days. Some authority departments may use saliva tests due to the convenience of roadside testing.

False Positive Testing With Percocet Blood Test

Taking a urine drug screen while taking Percocet will be positive for opioids, so let the clinic know what you’re taking ahead of time. It’s also always a good idea to disclose any drugs and supplements you are taking to the drug or Percocet blood testing agency in case they can trigger a false positive.

How Long Does Percocet Stay In Your System?
No matter what, when dealing with addiction problems, the care and supervision of a medical professional are necessary.

Percocet Withdrawal

Anyone addicted to Percocet or any other opioid should consult a medical professional before attempting to quit, as withdrawal symptoms can be highly unpleasant, and cravings can be intense. Addiction treatment centers may gradually wean a client off the medication or substitute an opioid dependence treatment medication to minimize these effects.

Percocet withdrawal symptoms include:

  • Yawning
  • Watery eyes
  • Runny nose
  • Restlessness
  • Irritability
  • Anxiety and depression
  • Tremors
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Hypertension
  • Increased heart rate
  • Muscle aches

Percocet Withdrawal Timeline

How long does Percocet withdrawal last? Percocet withdrawal symptoms can begin as soon as 4 hours after you take your last dose. If you have been taking Percocet for an extended period, these symptoms may take longer to manifest. For most people, Percocet withdrawal will last at least one week. Chronic users may experience withdrawal for up to 3 or 4 weeks.

The severity of Percocet withdrawal symptoms, how quickly they begin, and how long it takes to stop the withdrawal will vary depending on several factors:

  • How long you’ve used Percocet
  • How much of the drug you were taking
  • How you consumed the drug
  • If you are abusing more than one drug at a time

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Percocet Detox 

Home detox can be dangerous because of complications that destabilize physical and psychiatric conditions quickly and severely. Abrupt discontinuation has caused seizures, convulsions, and coma. Additionally, usual Percocet addiction symptoms are exceedingly uncomfortable, and withdrawal is often ‘self-medicated’ by resuming use. Without adequate medical supervision, acute withdrawal symptoms may continue for some days and result in:

  • Malnourishment
  • Severe dehydration
  • Extended hypertensive crisis

Medical assistance is recommended for Percocet withdrawal due to physical and psychiatric health risks. The most common medical method is gradually lowering (tapering) the usual dose as medications ease withdrawal symptoms. This process can last up to 2 weeks, depending upon one’s health, the amount of Percocet used, and how long it was used.

Mixing Percocet and Alcohol

The main difference between combining Percocet and alcohol and combining alcohol with other painkillers is the possibility of severe liver damage. The FDA has warned pharmaceutical companies to limit the amount of acetaminophen mixed into opioid painkillers. 

Acetaminophen (an active ingredient of Percocet) causes more than 400 deaths per year due to its effects on the liver. All painkillers weigh heavily on the liver, and those taking Percocet are best advised to avoid alcohol entirely due to the risk of liver damage. 

The National Institute for Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) says that the liver, along with the heart, brain, and pancreas, are all organs negatively affected by alcohol.

With continued use, a person will develop a tolerance to alcohol and painkillers and form an addiction. Those with a history of alcohol abuse are more likely to develop a dependence on opioid painkillers. Combining alcohol with Percocet increases the possibility of overdose and alcohol poisoning.

Simultaneous use of alcohol and Percocet side effects include:

  • Constipation
  • Depressed respiratory system
  • Inability to focus thoughts
  • Low blood pressure
  • Liver failure
  • Heart attack
  • Colon cancer
  • Coma
  • Death 
How Long Does Percocet Stay In Your System?
Treating a Percocet addiction can be a challenge. But there are many options available. 

Percocet Overdose

A person can overdose on Percocet if the drug is taken more often than prescribed, if tablets are crushed or chewed, or if it is combined with other drugs, such as alcohol or sleeping pills. Overdose is considered a medical emergency. Without prompt treatment, serious health effects and even death can occur. An overdose of oxycodone or acetaminophen (both present in Percocet) can cause death. Oxycodone may cause life-threatening withdrawal symptoms in a newborn if the mother has taken Percocet during pregnancy. In addition, fatal Percocet side effects can occur if a person uses Percocet with alcohol or other drugs that cause drowsiness.

Signs of a Percocet overdose include:

  • Vomiting
  • Nausea
  • Bluish nails and lips
  • Severe drowsiness
  • Unconsciousness
  • Slow heart rate
  • Extremely weak or stopped respiration
  • Dangerously low blood pressure
  • Coma/non-responsiveness
  • Seizures

If a Percocet overdose is suspected, the first step is to call 911 for emergency medical help. The dangerous repercussions of a high dose of Percocet can leave the user suffering from permanent physical or mental damage, comatose, or dead. Hesitating to call for help only increases the life-threatening risks.

Percocet Addiction Treatment

First and foremost, if you think that a loved one is abusing Percocet or the counterfeit version known as yellow Percocet, you should first research the drug and addiction associated with it so that you can better understand what your loved one needs. Next, you must plan an intervention to provide your loved ones with options to battle their addiction in a safe and supportive environment. During this intervention, offer compassion and support instead of judgment. Lastly, show your support throughout the entire treatment process.

In addition, prolonged Percocet use can have severe physical and psychological effects, so seeking treatment as soon as possible is essential. Inpatient drug rehab offers intensive care that can help you promptly get through the early stages of withdrawal. 

Medically-Assisted Detox

Medical Detox is often considered the first stage of treatment. It will help you navigate the complicated withdrawal process but doesn’t address patterns of thought and behavior contributing to drug use. Various treatment approaches and settings can help provide the ongoing support necessary to maintain long-term sobriety after you complete detox.

Cravings are very common during detox and can be challenging to overcome. This often leads to relapse. Constant medical care provided during inpatient treatment helps prevent relapse. Clinicians can provide necessary medication and medical expertise to lessen cravings and the effects of withdrawals.


Several different modalities of psychotherapy have been used in the treatment of mental health disorders along with addiction, including:

  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) – is an effective treatment that involves making changes in both the patterns of negative thoughts and the behavioral routines which are affecting the daily life of the depressed person for various forms of depression.
  • Dialectical Behavior Therapy – is a comprehensive mental health and substance abuse treatment program whose ultimate goal is to aid patients in their efforts to build a life worth living. The main goal of DBT is to help a person develop what is referred to as a “clear mind.” 
  • Person-Centered Therapy – is a strategy that allows and encourages clients to understand and resolve their concerns in a safe, supportive environment.
  • Solution Focused Therapy – is an approach interested in solutions that can be quickly implemented with a simple first step leading to further positive consequences.

Dual Diagnosis Treatment

Drug abuse and mental health disorders often co-occur. In many cases, traumatic experiences can result in a mental health disorder and substance abuse. Dual diagnosis rehabilitation treats both of these issues together. The best approach for the treatment of dual diagnosis is an integrated system. This strategy treats both the substance abuse problem and the mental disorder simultaneously. Regardless of which diagnosis (mental health or substance abuse problem) came first, long-term recovery will depend largely on the treatment for both disorders done by the same team or provider.

Medication-Assisted Treatments

Medication-Assisted Treatments (MAT) for substance use and mental health disorders are commonly used in conjunction with one another. This includes the use of medications and other medical procedures. During your rehab, the staff from your treatment facility will help you identify what caused your addiction and teach you skills that will help you change your behavior patterns and challenge the negative thoughts that led to your addiction. Sometimes, the pressures and problems in your life lead you to rely on substances to help you forget about them momentarily.

Searched for “Percocet half life and how long is percocet stay in your system?”

Now that we’ve answered the question “how long does percocet stay in your system?”, do not try to detox on your own. The detox process can be painful and difficult without medical assistance. However, getting through the detox process is crucial for continued treatment. We Level Up provide proper care with round-the-clock medical staff to assist your recovery medically. So, reclaim your life, and call us to speak with one of our treatment specialists. Our counselors know what you are going through and will answer any of your questions.

How Long Does Percocet Stay In Your System?
The most effective treatment includes medical detox, inpatient treatment, and follow-up with long-term support.

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[1] NIH –
[2] DEA –
[3] FDA –
[4] Percocet Addiction Treatment – We Level Up New Jersey