Fewer public health threats have been as serious as the opioid crisis. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services says that opioid overdoses contribute to over two-thirds of all drug overdose deaths nationwide. Families and individuals struggling with addiction can find it frustrating trying to fight the recurrent relapses that often come along with opioid dependence. However, medication-assisted opioid dependence treatment may provide a solution for many Americans.
MAT, or medication-assisted opioid dependence treatment, is one of the most effective interventions known to treat opioid use disorder. It involves a combination of FDA-approved medication alongside counseling and behavioral therapy. This form of opioid dependence treatment has been effective for decades, with the American Medical Association releasing a statement that reaffirms that MAT is a crucial tool in combating opioid use disorder.
Here are three key benefits attributed to medication-assisted opioid treatment.
Research shows that opioid dependence treatment programs are more effective than medication-only programs or using psychosocial therapies only as stand-alone treatments. While addiction and substance abuse may not have one single metric that you can measure with the success of a treatment program, MAT ranks among the best. By focusing on multiple aspects of the individual’s life and physiology, opioid dependence treatment utilizes a "whole-patient" approach that improves the overall outcome.
One key outcome is patient retention. A systematic review of 55 research articles found that Naltrexone or Buprenorphine treatment led to better three-, six-, and 12-month treatment retention rates for individuals with opioid use disorder.
One of the challenges of completing treatment is the risk of relapse as you transition back into your regular life at home. Opioid treatment with medication assistance makes it easier for the individual to get back to the flow of daily life. Medications such as methadone, naltrexone, and buprenorphine reduce withdrawal and craving symptoms. They also reduce the need for in-patient detoxification services that are typically obtained at a drug addiction clinic.
Methadone remains in the body for a long period, typically one to three days. You may only have to visit the methadone treatment center once daily to get your liquid dispensed dose. If you one buprenorphine treatment, you may only require twice-weekly visits to restock your prescription. With naltrexone, you can even opt for a monthly injection or six-month implant to control your withdrawal symptoms and cravings. The opioid dependence treatment allows you to receive the medical and psychological support you need while transitioning to a smoother recovery.
The HHS estimates that there are over 1.27 million Americans currently receiving medication-assisted treatment. The clinical setting of a highly rated drug addiction clinic in Tucson provides an excellent base to offer both medication and therapy services to the patients. A methadone clinic will provide the methadone doses and let the individual struggling with addiction choose between individual or group counseling.
A heroin treatment clinic may also serve as a great source for local resources that you could utilize to fight off opioid dependency. All these tools can help you enter and sustain your detoxification and recovery process through patient-centered programs.
You may require a holistic approach to the opioid addiction problem to increase the chances of success in beating the dependency. Opioid dependence treatment utilizes the best of both worlds -- medication and psychosocial therapy -- to increase its efficiency in achieving sobriety.