Methadone treatment provides much needed support for people trying to overcome the effects of chronic opiate addiction in their lives. This approach typically entails months or even years of ongoing treatment depending on a person’s situation. Once it comes time to discontinue methadone treatment, there are a few things to consider.
Detoxing from methadone requires ongoing monitoring and support or else the risk of relapse increases considerably. In order to ensure a successful detox, it helps to understand the detox process and the various approaches you can take when it comes time to discontinue methadone treatment.
The Methadone Detox Process
While methadone works well at helping a person overcome the types of compulsive drug-using behavior that come with addiction, the brain and body do develop a certain degree of dependence on methadone’s effects. According to the Missouri Department of Health, this dependency accounts for the withdrawal effects experienced during detox.
Unlike heroin or other highly addictive opiates, methadone produces long-acting effects. In order to do this, the drug remains in the body considerably longer than addictive opiates.
For these reasons, it can take as long as a month for all traces of methadone to leave the body. Without any type of treatment support, a person must contend with nonstop withdrawal and cravings effects, which comes with a high risk for relapse.
We can help you find treatment for detoxing from methadone. Call our toll-free helpline at 800-530-0431 to speak with one of our addictions specialists.
In general, detoxing from methadone can be done in one of three ways:
Tapering entails gradually decreasing dosage amounts down to nothing. Typically done on an outpatient basis, this approach can be a touch-and-go process considering how withdrawal and drug cravings effects tend to creep back up.
Rapid detox involves being placed under anesthesia for a number of hours while the body goes through detox withdrawal. While advertised as fast and effective, certain dangerous complications can develop along the way.
Inpatient monitoring combines the tapering method with 24-hour monitoring and support. Detoxing from methadone inside an inpatient treatment environment offers the safest approach in terms of ensuring continued abstinence upon completion of the program.
Deciding which detoxification method will work best for you will depend on your current situation in terms of how long you’ve been in methadone treatment and your ability to manage drug-using urges in your daily life.
Treatment Considerations When Detoxing from Methadone
Being able to apply the tools and skills acquired during the course of methadone treatment in your daily life relies heavily on your ability to manage drug-using urges. Since methadone plays a pivotal role in keeping withdrawal and cravings effects in check, it only makes sense to ensure your detox method doesn’t compromise your recovery efforts.
Ultimately, close monitoring and support offers the safest approach when detoxing from methadone without posing a high risk for relapse.
If you need help deciding which detox approach will work best for you, please don’t hesitate to call our toll-free helpline at 800-530-0431 to speak with one of our addiction specialists.