Friday, April 12, 2024

How Does Methadone Help Addicts

Side Effects Of Cocaine

Alternative heroin addiction treatment

Cocaine has many side effects on its own and when combinedwith powerful opioids like Suboxone or methadone, it becomes even moredangerous. Cocaine is a central nervous system stimulant that increases thelevels of the neurotransmitter dopamine in the brain.Dopamine is a part of the brains natural reward system. When the brain releases dopamine, it makes us feel good. This is where the euphoric effects of cocainecome from. However, cocaine keeps the brain from recycling dopamine back intothe cells. This excess of dopamine can cause some ofthe serious side effects of cocaine.1

What are the physicalside effects of Cocaine?

  • Constricts blood vessels
  • Hallucinations

What are the dangersof Cocaine use?

Some of the side effects of cocaine use can lead to serioushealth problems. The body is not designed to function with such high levels of dopamine. Cocaine use can cause:

  • Heart attack
  • Stroke
  • Death

In addition to therisk of heart attack, stroke and death, cocaine users are at risk for otherhealth problems depending on how they use the drug. Intravenous cocaineusers are at increased risk of HIV and Hepatitis from sharing needles. Cocaineusers who snort the drug can lose their sense of smell have chronic runnynoses, hoarseness, nosebleeds and trouble swallowing.

Advantages Of Opioid Use Disorder Treatment With Methadone

The benefits of methadone treatment for opioid addiction include:

  • Methadone has a history of use in addiction medicine that goes back to 1947. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, research suggests that it can increase a patient’s chance of staying in treatment by 4.44 times.
  • Effective for severe symptoms: The lack of a ceiling effect in methadone makes it very effective for patients who take large amounts of potent opioids. With medical supervision, methadone treatment can relieve the associated withdrawal symptoms during recovery.
  • Safe during pregnancy and breastfeeding: Breastfeeding and pregnant patients can safely take methadone. It helps these patients manage their addiction as they go through these life changes.

Medications To Treat Opioid Use Disorder Research Reporthow Effective Are Medications To Treat Opioid Use Disorder

Abundant evidence shows that methadone, buprenorphine, and naltrexone all reduce opioid use and opioid use disorder-related symptoms, and they reduce the risk of infectious disease transmission as well as criminal behavior associated with drug use.15 These medications also increase the likelihood that a person will remain in treatment, which itself is associated with lower risk of overdose mortality, reduced risk of HIV and HCV transmission, reduced criminal justice involvement, and greater likelihood of employment.15

Recommended Reading: How Do You Know If Your Addicted To Cigarettes

How Does Methadone Treatment Work: The Basics


One of the most dangerous and challenging epidemics facing society is the abuse of and addiction to opiates. Despite numerous attempts at educating the public of these dangers, the problem continues to grow.

Fortunately, there are ways to overcome addiction. One of the most commonly used and successful methods of overcoming opiate addiction is methadone treatment. So, how does methadone treatment work?

For More Information On Methadone

Methadone Addiction Facts

If you think methadone treatment would be a good solution for your rehabilitation, contact a New Season treatment provider at 1-877-284-7074 or send an email to .

It may also be helpful to talk to other people who have positively turned their life around as a result of methadone maintenance treatment.

The Benefits of Methadone

When used properly, methadone helps individuals who struggle with heroin or prescription painkiller addiction to function normally in daily activities, abstain from taking illicit opioid drugs and manage their withdrawal symptoms and cravings.

When Taking Methadone

  • Take only the recommended dose, as prescribed by your doctor
  • Store the medication at room temperature
  • Keep medication away from light sources

Online Resources for Methadone Treatment

Recommended Reading: How Do You Know If You Have An Addictive Personality

Side Effects Of Methadone

How do methadone and buprenorphine differ?

Differences between methadone and buprenorphine include the following:

  • Methadone is taken as drink, whereas buprenorphine is a pill that is absorbed under the tongue.
  • Methadone has a higher risk of overdose than buprenorphine.
  • Only those who have completed special training can prescribe methadone, but any physician can prescribe buprenorphine.
  • Methadone is most commonly available through specialized treatment clinics buprenorphine treatment may be easier to access than methadone.
  • It can take weeks to reach a fully effective dose with methadone, but only a few days with buprenorphine.
  • Side-effects can be more pronounced with methadone.
Can methadone interact with other drugs?

Mixing methadone or buprenorphine with other drugs that depress the central nervous system can be very dangerous. Avoid other opioids, alcohol and benzodiazepines . Taking these is especially risky when you first start opioid agonist therapy. Using other drugs while taking opioid agonist treatment can also cause your dose of methadone to wear off more quickly, meaning you could experience withdrawal.

Can you overdose on methadone?

Opioid Agonist Therapy: Information for Clients

Average Dose Of Methadone For Heroin Addiction Treatment

Methadone is given once a day at an average dose of 60120 milligrams , and the effects generally last four to eight hours.

Its a long-acting medication most commonly administered in pill and liquid forms.

The initial daily dose is usually 10 to 15 mg, which can be increased at increments of 5 to 10 mg. The daily dose given to a patient may be higher for those who have a higher tolerance to opioids.

The law states that methadone can only be given through an opioid treatment program certified by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration .

Those receiving methadone must do so under the care of a practitioner. Though, methadone still has a potential for abuse outside the parameters of medical guidance.

A person in recovery may also begin to take methadone at home after a proven period of stability and sobriety.

You May Like: What Properties In Drugs Make Them Addicting

Statistics Of Methadone Abuse

  • The number of poisoning deaths involving Methadone increased from 790 to 5,420 between 1999 and 2006 .
  • In 2008, there were 750,000 Methadone prescriptions written for pain relief.
  • Between 2000 and 2001, the number of people treated for abuse of other Opiates increased from 28,235 to 36,265.
  • Methadone is involved in one third of Opiate Painkiller-related overdose deaths.
Scroll to Find Your Insurance

Addiction Center is not affiliated with any insurance.

Use To Abuse And Addiction

Heroin Effects and Treatment: Methadone Suboxone and Vivitrol

Because many individuals receive prescriptions for strong painkillers every year, more and more people find themselves suffering from addiction to prescription pain medications. These are often an oxycodone- or hydrocodone-based medication, such as Vicodin, Percocet, or OxyContin. Lawmakers and regulators now say that prescription pain medications are over-prescribed for problems that may not be fixed by this medication, such as chronic back pain, or they are prescribed in large quantities for post-surgery pain treatment. Although the Food and Drug Administration does not recommend methadone as a prescription painkiller for these types of pain, over 4 million prescriptions were written for methadone in 2009. The rise in methadone prescriptions, specifically for use as a painkiller, is due to the fact that methadone is cheap, especially compared to hydrocodone and oxycodone. Insurance companies are sometimes more willing to cover the cost of methadone instead of brand name opioid painkillers, and that has driven many people to switch their prescriptions to methadone.

Because methadone is designed to be a long-acting drug, it can build up very quickly in the body, and that can mean that taking even one more dose than prescribed can lead to an overdose. Unless carefully monitored by a medical professional, methadone use is dangerous, and abuse or addiction can lead to very serious consequences.

Also Check: What Are The 12 Steps Of Addiction Recovery

What Does Methadone Do

Methadone is a long-acting opioid drug used to replace the shorter-acting opioids that someone may be addicted to, such as heroin, oxycodone, fentanyl or hydromorphone. Long-acting means that the drug acts more slowly in the body, for a longer period of time. The effects of methadone last for 24 to 36 hours. In contrast, a person who uses short-acting opioids to avoid withdrawal must use three to four times a day.

When taken at the correct dose, methadone prevents withdrawal symptoms and reduces drug cravings without causing the person to feel high or sleepy. This lowers the harms associated with opioid misuse and gives people who are addicted to opioids a chance to stabilize their lives. This treatment is known as methadone maintenance, which is a type of opioid agonist therapy. Methadone therapy for opioid addiction works similar to buprenorphine, another opioid agonist therapy.

When combined with medical and supportive care, methadone and buprenorphine are equally effective treatments for opioid addiction, although one may work better than the other for some people.

Methadone maintenance is a long-term treatment. The length of treatment varies from one or two years to 20 years or more. However, if the person taking methadone and their doctor agree to end treatment, the methadone dose is tapered down gradually over many weeks or months, easing the process of withdrawal.

Living With Opioid Addiction

The first step toward recovery is recognizing that you have a problem with opioids. If you think you are addicted to them, know that there is help for you. The first step in breaking addiction is realizing that you control your own behavior.

The following steps will help you fight your addiction:

  • Commit to quitting. Take control of your behavior and commit to fighting your addictions.
  • Get help from your doctor. They can be your biggest ally, even if youre trying to quit a drug they prescribed. Your doctor may be able to prescribe medicine that will help ease your cravings for the addictive drug. Talking with your doctor or a counselor about your problems and your drug use can be helpful, too.
  • Get support. Certain organizations are dedicated to helping people who have addictions. They want you to succeed and will give you the tools and support you need to quit and move on with your life. Ask your family and friends for support, too.

Also Check: What Is The 12 Step Program For Addiction

Reasons To Avoid Cocaine + Methadone/suboxone

In addition to all theside effects and health problems caused by cocaine alone, cocaine can be moredangerous when combined with other substances like Suboxone and methadone. When cocaine is combined with opioids like Suboxone and methadone, the opposingstimulant effect of cocaine and the sedating effect of opioids combine tocreate what addicts call a speedball.

How Should This Medicine Be Used

Methadone Addiction and Treatment Options

Methadone comes as a tablet, a dispersible tablet, a solution , and a concentrated solution to take by mouth. When methadone is used to relieve pain, it may be taken every 8 to 12 hours. If you take methadone as part of a treatment program, your doctor will prescribe the dosing schedule that is best for you. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Take methadone exactly as directed.

If you are using the dispersible tablets, do not chew or swallow before mixing the tablet in a liquid. If your doctor has told you to take only part of a tablet, break the tablet carefully along the lines that have been scored into it. Place the tablet or piece of the tablet in at least 120 mL of water, orange juice, Tang®, citrus flavors of Kool-Aid®, or a citrus fruit drink to dissolve. Drink the entire mixture right away. If some tablet residue remains in the cup after you drink the mixture, add a small amount of liquid to the cup and drink it all.

Don’t Miss: What To Do When An Addict Relapses

Are There Any Alternatives To Methadone

Both methadone and buprenorphine are used to help treat opioid dependence or misuse. Your doctor will work with you to decide the best treatment for you.

Everyones pain is unique and different pain-relief medicines are used in different circumstances. If you have been prescribed methadone and have concerns or are experiencing side effects, speak with your doctor about other ways you can manage your pain.

If you have chronic pain, your doctor might suggest lifestyle changes to help you manage the discomfort. This may include physical fitness and activity pacing, social activities, relaxation techniques and overall health management.

You can find more information here about options for managing chronic pain.

What Should I Do If I Forget A Dose

If your doctor has told you to take methadone for pain, take the missed dose as soon as you remember it and then continue your regular dosing schedule. However, if it is almost time for the next dose, skip the missed dose and continue your regular dosing schedule. Do not take a double dose to make up for a missed one.

If you are taking methadone to treat opioid addiction, skip the missed dose and take the next dose the next day as scheduled. Do not take a double dose to make up for a missed one.

Recommended Reading: How To Stop Eating Sugar When You Are Addicted

Opioid Agonists And Partial Agonists

Studies show that people with opioid use disorder who follow detoxification with complete abstinence are very likely to relapse, or return to using the drug.10 While relapse is a normal step on the path to recovery, it can also be life threatening, raising the risk for a fatal overdose.11 Thus, an important way to support recovery from heroin or prescription opioid use disorder is to maintain abstinence from those drugs. Someone in recovery can also use medications that reduce the negative effects of withdrawal and cravings without producing the euphoria that the original drug of abuse caused. For example, the FDA recently approved lofexidine, a non-opioid medicine designed to reduce opioid withdrawal symptoms. Methadone and buprenorphine are other medications approved for this purpose.

Methadone is a synthetic opioid agonist that eliminates withdrawal symptoms and relieves drug cravings by acting on opioid receptors in the brainthe same receptors that other opioids such as heroin, morphine, and opioid pain medications activate. Although it occupies and activates these opioid receptors, it does so more slowly than other opioids and, in an opioid-dependent person, treatment doses do not produce euphoria. It has been used successfully for more than 40 years to treat opioid use disorder and must be dispensed through specialized opioid treatment programs.12

Can Methadone Be Used For Treating Crystal Meth Addiction

Medication-Assisted Treatment: Methadone l The Partnership

Ask U.S. doctors your own question and get educational, text answers â it’s anonymous and free!

Ask U.S. doctors your own question and get educational, text answers â it’s anonymous and free!

HealthTap doctors are based in the U.S., board certified, and available by text or video.

Also Check: How To Support An Addict In Recovery

What Exactly Is Methadone

Taking methadone once a day can prevent withdrawal symptoms so you can go about your normal life.

Methadone is whats known as a synthetic narcotic analgesic, meaning that it is manufactured drug that is typically used to reduce pain. Its classified as a schedule II controlled substance, meaning that it does have the potential for abuse and addiction.

Usually, methadone is prescribed as either an oral solution, tablet, or injection, depending on what you are using it for. In the case of drug addiction recovery, it is usually given to patients once a day in the liquid oral form.

Why Is Methadone Used To Treat Heroin Addiction

Since the 1960s, methadone maintenance therapy, or MMT, has been one of the most successful ways to help heroin users escape the trap of addiction and lead healthy, fulfilling lives. Methadone is a man-made opioid that is used to manage moderate to severe pain. This medication can also be prescribed by qualified doctors as part of a comprehensive heroin addiction treatment program.

Methadone is distributed at outpatient facilities or inpatient rehab centers that are authorized to dispense this powerful drug. When youâre on a methadone maintenance program, you must continue to take the medication on a regular basis, usually every day, in order to control heroin cravings and avoid the unpleasant side effects of opiate withdrawal.

Read Also: Can You Get Addicted To Anything

Using Methadone In Your Recovery Plan

Methadone alone isnât enough to keep you clean or enough to help you reach a complete state of recovery. In addition to following a methadone maintenance regimen, recovering heroin addicts should take part in a program that offers the following rehabilitation services:

  • Individual and group therapy
  • Social services such as housing or employment assistance
  • Education and counseling on blood-borne diseases
  • Participation in a 12-step program like Narcotics Anonymous

To avoid the potentially life-threatening side effects of methadone, including addiction and overdose, you should never take this drug without a doctorâs supervision. Visiting a clinic or rehab center every day to obtain a dose of methadone might seem like an inconvenience, but when you compare your treatment plan to the devastating consequences of heroin addiction, youâll see that these requirements are well worth the trouble.

Heroin is one of the most addictive opiates available, and many addicts never recover from the effects of this potent drug. However, recovery is possible when you reach out to experienced addiction treatment professionals. If you or someone you love is struggling with heroin dependence, we encourage you to contact us to learn more about our comprehensive treatment programs. At Axis, we give you the support you need to build a healthy, stable future in recovery.

Resources Articles And More Information

Methadone forever? Lack of support for painkiller addicts ...

The National Institute on Drug Abuse has a lot of information on drug abuse, particularly with regard to common questions on methadone. The UKs National Health Service has an informative factsheet on methadone use that covers what to expect when taking the drug.

Additional articles on the subject include the following:

You May Like: What Is The Most Addictive Thing

- Advertisement -spot_img
Popular Articles
Related news