Methadone is the most commonly used medication for opioid addiction treatment in the United States. It is a long lasting synthetic opioid that reduces cravings and withdrawals normally associated with these disorders while blocking the effect of other opioids to deter their abuse.
Opioid dependency is considered a medical condition resulting from direct and dramatic brain structure changes. The use of opioids increases the neurotransmitter, dopamine, in the brain which induces euphoria, but, also plays a major role in reinforcing those behaviors that are important to survival.
Once the brain adapts to these structure changes, an individual is no longer able to “simply not use”, but, has an overpowering and persistent compulsion to feed their habit much in the same way they need to eat, drink, and sleep.
This adaptation to the use of opioids also causes the person to develop a tolerance to the opioids where they need to consume more of the drugs in order to “feel well”. Depending on how long they have used opioids, how much they use, and how they use them, their need for continued use will get stronger, blocking out other important issues in their life for behaviors of use.
Methadone blocks the effects of other opiates and consequently discourages opiate use by occupying opiate receptor sites in the brain for extended periods of time up to 24 – 36 hours. Because it is metabolized slowly in the liver and delivered at much more even rates to the brain, an appropriate dose of methadone, daily, can end the recurring cycles of opioid abuse which are often repeated several times a day.
Methadone maintenance provides a safe, monitored recovery programs that helps the addict sustain physiological functions and stability enabling them to heal physically, psychologically, and emotionally from the disturbances caused by the ups and downs of intoxication and withdrawals, while promoting positive behaviors to prevent relapse.
How Methadone Maintenance Will Change Your Life
According to the SAMHSA, “Methadone maintenance treatment has the longest successful track record in patients addicted to opioids for more than a year and has been shown to control withdrawal symptoms, stabilize physiologic processes, and improve functionality.” It will help change your life by:
- Reduce opioid cravings, relieve withdrawal symptoms, and bring about biochemical balances to the brain and body.
- Reduce risk of overdose and mortality commonly associated with opioid abuse.
- Reduce the risk of acquiring or spreading diseases such as HIV, Hepatitis B and C, AIDs, and other infections thro
- Allow you to function in daily activities involving work, school, or other affairs with more focus and stability without the constant preoccupations and disruptions of opioid abuse.
- Reduce involvement in behaviors that may be criminal, immoral, or dishonorable to gain confidence and integrity promoting recovery.
- Help to improve relationships with family, friends, employers, and important others.