If you are on methadone maintenance, you will inevitably have to field questions about the treatment. There is a stigma attached to methadone maintenance treatment that is false. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, methadone is a safe effective way to treat chronic pain and opiate addiction. Despite this information, you may have to avoid some awkward situations when it comes to your treatment.
If you are Unsure Do Not Mention your Treatment
If you are not sure how a person is going to receive the fact that you are on methadone, do not mention it. It is sometimes better that people do not know that you are taking methadone because of the stigma attached to it. Many people believe that methadone maintenance treatment is simply for drug users and do not take chronic pain into account.
Some People go to Treatment Centers Out of Town
Since methadone treatment is a daily treatment at least at first, some people choose to go to another town. There are treatment centers available across the country. It is easy to find one that is not in your local area where you might be seen.
Only Let those Close to you Know about your Treatment
People who are close to you and will understand are the only ones that absolutely have to know about your treatment. Unless directly asked by an employer, take care with disclosing the fact that you take methadone for chronic pain or treatment.
Ask your Doctor about Methadone Alternatives
If you are concerned about someone seeing you at a methadone clinic talk to your doctor about methadone alternatives. Suboxone is an alternative treatment to methadone and often does not require a daily visit to a clinic unless there are issues with it.
If you are Asked be Honest About the Treatment
If you are asked directly about the treatment, be honest and give them the facts. Most people who are not on methadone, know very little about the actual treatment protocols. This misunderstanding just causes the stigma and confusion when it comes to methadone maintenance treatments.
Consider explaining why you need treatment and what the treatment consists of. Tell them what happens at a methadone clinic and how the treatment helps you function normally.
Give them Written Information about the Fact that Methadone is not Dangerous
Most methadone clinics have written pamphlets to help patients explain their treatment. Sometimes people are more understanding when they see written information about the reasons for methadone maintenance treatments. Most of these pamphlets explain the treatment in clear concise terms that do not leave room for much doubt or speculation. Some people still think that methadone is a dangerous drug or get it confused with drugs of similar names.