Medication-Assisted Treatment for Opioid Addiction

Medication-Assisted Treatment for Opioid Addiction
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Our nation is in the middle of a drug epidemic with opioid addiction leading the way. Opioid addiction doesn’t impact just the person who is struggling with the substance use disorder; the families—including parents, siblings, spouses, children, aunts, uncles, and cousins—as well as friends and co-workers also suffer from the fallout of addiction.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in 2017, there were more than 46,000 drug overdose deaths from opioids with deaths from synthetic opioids increasing by 10% from 2017 to 2018.

If you or someone you love is in the grips of an opioid addiction you know firsthand the pain, the isolation, and the constant worry it brings. No matter how far you or your loved one has progressed with opioid addiction, there is hope. Thousands of people just like you who once thought recovery was impossible now live productive, happy, and vibrant lives free from opioid addiction. You can too.

Based on research, the most effective means to recover from opioid addiction is two-fold; evidence-based therapy and medication-assisted treatment for opioid addiction.

Medication-assisted treatment (MAT) can be used for various substance use disorders (SUD) within opioid treatment programs (OTPs). OTPs offer both medication and behavioral therapy to help individuals overcome their addictions to all types of opioids including heroin, prescription opioids, and other synthetic opioids such as fentanyl.

There are different medications used for opioid addiction treatment. After assessment at an addiction treatment center, individuals become eligible for some of these drugs to treat opioid addiction. As each person is unique, so is their exact course of treatment. That is why the specific opioid addiction medication prescribed varies from one person to another. However, there are three medications currently used.

What Drugs Are Used to Treat Opioid Addiction?

As mentioned, there are three FDA-approved opioid addiction treatment medications used in conjunction with evidence-based behavioral therapy to help those working to recover from opioid addiction. Overcoming addiction, to any substance including opioids, is challenging. With the right people and the right medications, obstacles can be overcome, one step at a time.

Three FDA-Approved Medications for Opioid Addiction Treatment

  1. Buprenorphine (Suboxone)
    There are several different types of buprenorphine medications used for opioid addiction treatment. The most well-known of these is the brand name Suboxone. Suboxone is a combination of buprenorphine and naloxone. Buprenorphine is the active drug in Suboxone and works as a partial agonist opioid, meaning it mimics working like an opioid with reduced effects. In addition, it has what is called the ‘ceiling effect’. This means that even with repeated doses, the effects level off, reducing the chance of dependency. It also helps with withdrawal and cravings, helping individuals stop using other opioids. Naloxone works as an opioid blocker.
  1. Methadone
    Many have heard of methadone but often wonder how methadone works in treating opioid addiction. This drug is used to treat pain and dependence on opioids. It helps to reduce cravings and enables a person who is dependent on opioids to ease off of the opioid successfully. As with Suboxone, and all other medication-assisted treatment for opioid addiction, it is effective when used with a comprehensive behavioral treatment program.
  1. Naltrexone (Vivitrol)
    This medication is used to treat dependencies on both opioids and alcohol. It works by blocking the effects of opioid receptors as well as reducing the cravings for opioids and alcohol. Because it helps to reduce cravings, this enables many individuals to sustain long-term sobriety and can help to prevent relapse.

If you or someone you love is struggling with addiction to an opioid or another substance, there is hope and there is help. Pinnacle Treatment Centers knows overcoming addiction is challenging and vows to be there every step of the way in your recovery. If you are ready to take the first step, contact Pinnacle today and start a new life tomorrow.

Headquartered in New Jersey, Pinnacle Treatment Centers is a recognized leader in comprehensive drug and alcohol addiction treatment serving more than 29,000 patients daily in California, Indiana, Kentucky, New Jersey, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Virginia. With more than 110 community-based locations, Pinnacle provides a full continuum of quality care for adult men and women which includes medically-monitored detoxification/withdrawal management, inpatient/residential treatment, partial hospitalization/care, sober living, intensive and general outpatient programming, and medication-assisted treatment (MAT) for opioid use disorder.

Facility Spotlight:

Daviess Treatment Services
3032 Hwy 60 East
Owensboro, KY 42303

The materials provided on the Pinnacle Blog are for information and educational purposes only. No behavioral health or any other professional services are provided through the Blog and the information obtained through the Blog is not a substitute for consultation with a qualified health professional. If you are in need of medical or behavioral health treatment, please contact a qualified health professional directly, and if you are in need of emergency help, please go to your nearest emergency room or dial 911.