Methadone is intended as a medically prescribed and administered medication to help combat opioid dependency as well as chronic pain. Unfortunately, there is a risk—as with any drug—of becoming dependent on the substance to the point of addiction. This medication can be misused and abused as well, just as other opioids are.
If you or a loved one are using methadone, it is important to be aware of the side effects and potential risks associated with long-term use. Those struggling with a methadone dependence can find the help and support they need at NuLife Behavioral Health’s outpatient treatment center. Through treatment that addresses the underlying causes of methadone addiction, clients can build the healthy coping skills they need for long-term recovery. Call NuLife Behavioral Health at 888.568.2057 today to learn more about our substance abuse treatment programs.
What Is Methadone?
Methadone is a synthetic opioid. It is FDA-approved to treat opioid use disorder (OUD). Its most common brand names are Dolophine and Methadose. The drug is designed to treat chronic pain and is also used as part of medication-assisted treatment programs for opioid dependence. A daily administration of the medication—monitored by medical professionals—has proven to reduce cravings for opioids and also assists with lessening the effects of withdrawal symptoms.
Its purpose is to assist those battling an opioid addiction with achieving and sustaining recovery from their addiction, but the flip side is that one can develop an addiction to methadone as well if not taken as prescribed—or without a prescription at all.
How Methadone Addiction Develops
One of the main uses of methadone is to reduce cravings for other opioids, but it is also an addictive substance of its own. All opioids have a risk of overdose, no matter their intended use. The risk can be especially high when you first start taking methadone. Conversely, the risk is equally as high when you stop taking it for a period of time and then start again. Mixing opioids like methadone with other drugs increases the risk of overdose even more. also increases the risk of overdose.
It’s hard to discuss the benefits and risks of administering methadone in the same conversation. On the one hand, it’s seen as a helpful tool in assisting those in recovery. But on the other hand, this medication meant to treat addiction can be highly addictive itself. Tolerance to methadone can be built up over time as an individual requires more of the drug to achieve the desired effect.
Our Methadone Treatment Program Can Help
Stopping the use of methadone is challenging. Withdrawal symptoms can be severe and require a structured and supervised treatment environment. This can include both residential and outpatient treatment options. NuLife Behavioral Health offers a variety of outpatient options, including:
- Outpatient treatment – This is the least intensive level of outpatient care. It involves regular individual and group therapy sessions.
- Intensive outpatient program (IOP) – This level of outpatient care requires several hours of weekly therapy and is an ideal complement to a strong sober support system at home.
- Partial hospitalization program (PHP) – This is the most intensive level of outpatient care we offer. Daily group and individual therapy sessions are conducted while living at home or in a sober living environment.
- Dual diagnosis – This level of treatment is for those with a co-occurring mental health disorder. It provides evidence-based therapies for both mental health and substance use issues.
Our methadone rehab programs in Massachusetts feature evidence-based therapies and medical supervision to help you or your loved one recover from methadone addiction. Every step of the way, you’ll have the support you need.