Without addiction treatment, opiate addicts striving for recovery have a very poor track record, but when psychotherapy gets combined with medications like methadone or Suboxone, the odd of avoiding relapse go up substantially. Learn more about opiate replacement therapy, about the differences between methadone and Suboxone and find out if medicated opiate addiction treatment is right for you
Simply put, if you are addicted to strong opiates, nothing works better than methadone and/or Suboxone to keep you free from the abuse of opiates, free from withdrawal symptoms and drug cravings and able to focus on getting your health and happiness back on the right track.
What Is Opiate Replacement Therapy?
Opiate replacement therapy is a very effective treatment for opiate addiction. If you are addicted to opiates (like heroin or OxyContin) then you need to take these drugs multiple times a day to get high – and to avoid feeling symptoms of opiate withdrawal.
On opiate replacement therapy, you substitute a once daily dose of a medication like methadone or Suboxone (buprenorphine) for the opiates you usually take to get high. Once you’re on a daily dose of methadone or Suboxone:
- You no longer feel opiate withdrawal symptoms
- You no longer get an opiate high
- You can get back on track with your life
Once you’re appropriately dosed, you’ll feel clear headed and you’ll be freed from the daily prison of cycling between feelings if intoxication and withdrawal. You’re freed from worry about where your next hit will come from and from worry about how to get the money you need each day to maintain such an expensive habit. Once on methadone or Suboxone, you’ll be clear headed and feeling well – feeling ready to start rebuilding a life damaged interrupted by a period of opiate addiction.
Opiate replacement therapy is no magic-bullet solution to addiction, but it does enable you to focus once again on what’s important in your life, and lets you get back to work on achieving meaningful goals.
Research shows that people using opiate replacement therapy are more likely to avoid relapse to opiate abuse than people who try recovery through alternate methods, like detoxification and rehabilitation.
Methadone Quick Facts
- Methadone has been used as an addiction treatment medication for more than 50 years. It is a very potent and long lasting medication; taking just one dose daily provides a full 24 hours of relief from opiate withdrawal symptoms and drug cravings.
- Although people that abuse methadone (take higher than directed doses) may experience intoxication, taking the medication as directed will not result in any euphoria or intoxication
- Methadone is potent enough that at appropriate doses, it can provide full withdrawal symptoms relief to anyone, regardless of opiate tolerance
- Methadone has one of the lowest cost-barriers to entry of any form of addiction treatment. A daily dose of the medication will generally cost between $10 and $20
- Methadone has been extensively studied for decades and it has been proven safe and effective even when used for decades. Methadone is even safe for pregnant women
Some Disadvantages of Methadone Treatment
- Because methadone can be abused and because it has a ‘street value’ people new to a methadone treatment program will have to travel to a clinic each day to take their dose under supervision. In time, those that follow clinic rules can earn increasing take home doses – up to a month at a time.
- Methadone sometimes has side effects that some people find difficult to tolerate. Examples of side effects include constipation, heavy sweating, weight gain and others.
- Because of its long half-life, methadone can induce a lengthy period of intense withdrawal symptoms in people who decide to stop using the medication
Page last updated Nov 03, 2010