What is Methadone Maintenance Therapy?
More often than not, by the time methadone treatment is considered, a person has undergone one, maybe two or more rounds of drug treatment in the past. After so many failed attempts to get well, frustration and discouragement can quickly thwart any sense of motivation you have left.
Methadone treatment exists as the very first medication therapy approach used to treat opiate addiction, with over 50 years of research data and real-world application to show for it.
Methadone treatment also includes a behavioral component designed to help you undo the damaging effects of opiate addiction on your thinking and behaviors.
Methadone Maintenance Treatment
Long-term opiate abuse leaves the brain in a state of chemical imbalance that can last for months or even years into the recovery process. In effect, the brain’s chemical state determines a person’s mood, ability to think clearly as well as his or her overall sense of physical and emotional well-being.
According to the Mount Sinai Journal of Medicine, the drug methadone works as a medication therapy in terms of stabilizing chemical imbalances in the brain.
As a synthetically made opiate medication, methadone mimics the effects of addictive opiates without posing a high risk for abuse and addiction.
Long-term opiate addictions not only damage chemical processes in the brain, but also leave behind a warp mindset that’s geared towards drug-using behavior.
While methadone does correct for chemical imbalances, the destructive thinking and emotional patterns left behind by opiate addiction remain well intact.
The behavioral component used in methadone treatment addresses the psychological aftereffects of addiction. Behavioral treatment may take the form of:
- 12 Step support groups
- Individual psychotherapy
- Drug education
- Group therapy
- Relapse prevention
Together, through counseling and therapy that is combined with a medical approach to recovery, patients have a fully-encompassing treatment option that can help them to achieve their recovery goals.