Methadone has a unique involvement when it comes to addiction and treatment. The DEA defines it as synthetic opioid that is classified as a Schedule II drug in the U.S. This means that it has legal medical usage—usually in the form of treatment for opioids like heroin—and illegal usage—in the form of abuse and addiction.
As a result, methadone treatments in residential or inpatient treatment centers do pose some dangers. When you call 800-530-0431 for information on treatment options, you should be aware of those dangers.
Multiple Conditions Under One Roof
Many residential treatment centers will provide inpatient treatment for multiple forms of addiction. There is a risk of treatment plans crossing over and possibly interacting poorly. Even in places that specialize in specific or similar conditions, like opioid addiction, this is still the case.
Methadone is a common treatment option for opioid addictions, so the drug will be present in a center that treats those conditions. It can pose a problem if the facility also treats methadone addiction, as those patients may find ways of accessing the drug.
Similarities Can Lead To Mistakes
Even though it is a synthetic opioid, methadone still has the same effects that other opiates have. Once again, some treatment centers will focus on similar addictions like opioids. Opiate drugs, synthetic and natural, all affect the way the body responds to pain and can cause similar forms of damage to the mind and body.
As a treatment method, methadone may aggravate the damage caused from opiate addiction and may possibly hinder the healing process. A poor response to the methadone may be mistaken as a side effect from the addiction, and vise-versa.
Despite its medical uses, methadone can still be addictive and a patient using it for treatment purposes may become addicted if not monitored closely. It can also mask the signs of illegal opioid use due to the similarities and it may be difficult to identify a relapse in a patient if it is mistaken as a response to the methadone treatments.
Methadone Treatment Is Not A Solution
For opioid treatment, methadone is often not the only option and shouldn’t be the only method of treatment. Other medications that are used for opioid treatment in the same way that methadone is, like buprenorphine, naloxone, and naltrexone, form a similar function but are not interchangeable.
In some cases, they should not be mixed due to the chance for a harmful outcome (although naloxone is usually safely combined with buprenorphine). They pose similar risks and many, according to the NIDA, see their use as potential for swapping one addiction for another.
In a treatment center, the usage of methadone should also not be the only means of treatment and is most successful when paired with other treatment methods such as counseling.
If you or a loved one is struggling with addiction, please call 800-530-0431. You’ll be able to speak with one of our caring specialists about what treatment options are available for you.