All posts tagged methadone maintenance treatment

Six Ways to Have Success After Your Methadone Treatment

It may sound hard to believe, especially when in the middle of it, but methadone treatment finally does come to an end. The client can leave the facility and return home. 

It is an important milestone in the recovery process when it happens, too. The client can finally resume their life and, hopefully, build a new life as an opioid-free and productive citizen in their community. 

The client can have a successful recovery from their methadone treatment if they choose to live by these crucial guidelines:

  1. Follow your prescription: Continue taking the prescribed methadone. This will counteract the withdrawal symptoms and minimize the cravings for opioids. It is important that no more methadone is taken than the appropriate prescribed amounts. In fact, taking a higher dose than what is prescribed can cause methadone addiction and lessen the effects of the drug.  
  2. Remember medication interactions may be fatal: Make sure you have all of the directions from your physician and pharmacist regarding any dangerous interactions that may occur between your medications and methadone. That list includes antihistamines, antibiotics, tranquilizers, heart-related medications, and alcohol. The physician needs to be informed of any and all medications and supplements that methadone patients are using.    
  3. Follow through with the entire duration of the program: Even though you are no longer residing in the treatment facility, you are still under the physician’s care. Most patients who utilize the 12-month methadone program have better, more long-lasting results. *** 
  4. Take advantage of behavioral treatment opportunities: Clients have the full menu of treatment options and should utilize them to their fullest. These options may include group therapy, Narcotics Anonymous, and individual psychiatric therapy. These proven evidence-based and holistic programs are essential in healing the client while directing them to channel their addiction to positive habits.    
  5. Don’t quit it all too early: As the cravings to use opioids fade and are not a threat to the recovery, the client may begin to end methadone maintenance treatment under the supervision and guidance of his or her medical provider. This must be a slow process, however, as quitting too early may risk the patient becoming addicted, again. So, while working with the physician and the medical team, follow a schedule that slowly takes you to the end of the methadone treatment, without giving up or wrapping up early.  
  6. Recruit a circle of support: Finally, the client should have a circle of family, friends, and colleagues who will hold them accountable for positive changes and goals. Recovery does not happen alone. Loved ones who know and understand the patient’s experience should be willing to advise and encourage the patient. They become the ‘team’ that the client can depend on, in both the bright and dark days of life following treatment. 

Methadone treatment can be successful, with the client never experiencing cravings again. Millions of clients have recovered from opioid addiction and returned to a normal life. The treatment doesn’t end at the facility. With proper follow up, when it is completed, the patient has a better chance of never returning to addiction. 

If you or someone you know needs substance methadone treatment, consult one of our experienced counselors. The Concerted Care Group of Central Baltimore, MD, and Brooklyn, MD, has a compassionate methadone maintenance treatment team that includes therapists, a psychiatric nurse practitioner, a nurse practitioner, and a psychiatrist. Services include individual and family therapy for adults and adolescents. Group therapy and psychiatric services are available for adults.

Contact us at (833) CCG-LIVE to make an appointment.  

*** The 12-month study results are found at this link.

Opioid Addiction Treatment: Methadone vs. Buprenorphine

Opioid addiction is increasing as millions of American citizens are using it to alleviate pain. According to US drug overdose statistics

The death rate from drug overdoses more than tripled between 1999 and 2017, and that death rate from opioid overdoses increased almost six-fold during the same period. More people in the United States died from overdoses involving opioids in 2017 than from HIV- or AIDS-related illnesses at the peak of the AIDS epidemic.

As a result, new treatments for treating opioid addiction have been developed to help opioid addicts. Two of the most common drugs used are Methadone and Buprenorphine. There are two separate camps that believe that one is better than the other. We will examine both.

Methadone Treatment 

One of the main goals in treating opioid addiction is reducing the craving for it. Methadone is a proven and effective synthetic opioid that reduces the craving. It has a long history of effectiveness as it was developed by German physicians during World War II and later used by US physicians to treat extreme pain. (Addiction was accurately portrayed by Frank Sinatra in the film, “The Man with the Golden Arm”. It is heralded as educating the public on the dangers of heroin.) 

Methadone can be distributed as a liquid, powder, or tablet. It requires a prescription and must be monitored closely by a doctor. Methadone changes the way the brain and nervous system respond to pain. For pain, physicians typically prescribe methadone following surgery or in treatment from an injury or a chronic illness. 

Additionally, methadone treatment is helpful in eliminating addiction to other opioids. Known as “replacement therapy”, this treatment replaces the opioids in your system with somewhat milder effects. Relief comes slowly as it blocks the high that comes from drugs like oxycodone, hydrocodone, morphine, heroin, and codeine.  

Methadone treatment is most effective when supplemented with individual or group counseling. Opioid addicts are referred to drug counselors, social services, or medical personnel trained in opioid addiction counseling. Many companies offer these services under their medical benefits packages.   

Buprenorphine Treatment

Buprenorphine is an opioid medication that is also used to treat opioid addiction. It is dispensed in a physician’s office. It can also be taken at home as a prescription. 

Buprenorphine is known as “partial opioid antagonist,” meaning it may decrease physical dependence on opioids. Buprenorphine’s potential for misuse is lower than that of full opioids, and it also can reduce the craving for them. 

Buprenorphine is still an opioid, however, so its side effects can be problematic. It is known to cause euphoria and respiratory depression in some patients. In low doses, buprenorphine can produce a basic agonist effect to reduce cravings and withdrawal symptoms. It can, however, reach a “ceiling effect” when increasing doses of the drug begin to reach a plateau. At this point, buprenorphine may no longer be effective for the individual. 

 Conclusion

Both methadone and buprenorphine have been proven to be effective treatment options for opioid addiction. Methadone, however, may be the most effective for long-term treatment. 

If you or a loved one are battling opioid addiction, consult a physician immediately. They can recommend licensed drug addiction treatment centers suited to your needs. Opioid addiction cannot be treated alone. A team of medical personnel and addiction specialists are needed to help the addicted individual overcome this painful situation.

Concerted Care of Central Baltimore and Brooklyn, MD, Methadone Maintenance Treatment (MMT) utilizes methadone as one element in a comprehensive treatment program in which methadone replaces opiate drugs, including heroin and oxycodone. Call (833) 224-5483 or email info@concertedcaregroup.com for an immediate consultation.

Treating the Whole Person: Methadone Maintenance Treatment and The Step Up Program

Drug addiction recovery has been compared to a ladder leading out of a deep, dark hole. As the substance abuser climbs each rung up the ladder, they are closer to recovery. They never, ever want to fall back into the abyss as it will be even more difficult to climb out of it.

No recovering opioid addict wants to slip back into his or her destructive ways; they would rather  get off the drug now and forever. This  isn’t easy, even with the many benefits of methadone maintenance treatment. In fact, it could be a life-long battle.

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Coming to Grips with It: Methadone Maintenance Treatment

“Speaking as somebody who’s been in the drug scene, it’s not something you can go on and on doing, you know. It’s like drink or anything, you’ve got come to grips with it.”

~ John Lennon

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Doug Rashid, Board Member: Our Methadone Maintenance Treatment Strategy is Working

Doug Rashid became a board member for Concerted Care Group soon after it opened. He serves on the board as a communications consultant for the board, as he is experienced in doing publicity and public relations for businesses in the Washington, D.C. area. Doug was also a pharmaceutical salesman for several years, which gives him a knowledge of medications.

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