Methadone replacement therapy is often used to treat opioid use disorders, but methadone can be addictive itself when misused. Methadone rehab treatment may be necessary.
Article at a Glance:
- Methadone can be used as an opioid treatment to help with withdrawal symptoms and maintain recovery, but it also has the potential for abuse, dependence and addiction when misused.
- At The Recovery Village, staff treat opioid use disorder without using methadone, focusing on medical detox and preparing clients for a life without opioids.
- For those struggling with methadone addiction, methadone rehab treatment can involve several levels of care, including inpatient and outpatient treatment.
Methadone is part of what’s called replacement therapy as it’s often used to help individuals with an opioid use disorder taper off an opioid substance. However, because methadone falls within the category of opioids, methadone itself can be highly addictive.
Methadone is also used by those who are in recovery for substance use disorders since it is an effective way to deal with the symptoms of withdrawal that can result from abruptly discontinuing the misuse of substances like heroin.
In addition, methadone is used as a maintenance method for remaining sober. Methadone changes the way a person’s brain and nervous system respond to pain so that they feel relief. However, methadone’s effects are slower than those of other strong painkillers like morphine, and it blocks the high that a person can get from opiate substances.
Because methadone is addictive, individuals who consume it can develop a tolerance and, as a result, require increasingly larger amounts of the substance. For this reason, many people seek treatment for addiction and dependence on methadone.
Methadone Use Disorder Facts
- Methadone is a synthetic opioid prescribed in pill form to treat chronic pain.
- The substance is used in a liquid form to treat addiction to opiate drugs like heroin.
- Methadone is easily misused, which can lead to tolerance, dependence, addiction and overdose.
Methadone Treatment for Opioid Addiction
Methadone treatment for heroin and opioid addiction recovery has become increasingly popularized since it was first introduced as a pain treatment option around half a century ago. Many people on the path to recovery use methadone to help manage the withdrawal symptoms that are associated with rehab and addiction treatment, and this is why individuals can then develop a substance use disorder with methadone.
Using methadone does not eliminate the possibility of using other opioids, and in fact, allows the continued use of these opioids while avoiding the withdrawal symptoms of detoxification. Some see using methadone as replacement or substitution therapy as continuing an addiction on a smaller scale.
Whether the person struggling with a methadone use disorder started misusing methadone recreationally or began using the substance as part of an opioid addiction treatment regime, treatment for methadone addiction requires both medical detox and comprehensive therapy.
The length of treatment can vary depending on the individual, the facility, and the strength of the addiction. The duration of inpatient treatment generally ranges anywhere from one month to several months.
Some people may receive treatment near their home, while others travel out of state for rehab. Out-of-state rehab can offer the benefits of leaving your usual environment. Traveling to a different area can help you feel like you’re on the path to a fresh start and separate you from triggers and distractions in your daily life.
Methadone Treatment at The Recovery Village
The Recovery Village focuses not just on detox or treating the symptoms of withdrawal that occur but on helping clients make realistic changes that they can maintain for the rest of their life. All treatment programs at The Recovery Village are designed to be long-lasting, comprehensive and progressive. The recovery process involves taking small steps that build on one another for the most effective recovery.
At The Recovery Village, staff treat substance use disorders without methadone. The first step of any treatment program at The Recovery Village is a safe medical detox. This can be difficult, particularly for clients who have methadone withdrawals, but it’s necessary in most instances. Medical and clinical professionals take all of the necessary and available steps to keep clients as safe and comfortable as possible during the detox process.
What To Expect
In methadone rehab, patients learn to understand their addiction, how to cope with the stressors of life that may have triggered their substance abuse, and how to prevent setbacks. Recovery is a lifelong process, so it’s essential that clients invest in a quality treatment program that will give them the tools to maintain sobriety throughout their life.
The Recovery Village has treatment centers across the country and offers several methadone treatment programs to suit every clients’ needs. The program offerings include:
- Medically-supervised detoxification
- Residential inpatient treatment
- Partial hospitalization programming
- Intensive outpatient treatment
- Outpatient treatment
- Dual diagnosis treatment
- Aftercare planning and setback prevention
Following intake and an evaluation, each client’s methadone treatment plan is customized for them and their specific needs. During evaluation, the methadone treatment center team conducts medical and psychiatric tests to determine the extent of the individual’s substance use disorder and if they have any co-occurring mental health disorders. Typically, the next step in treatment is detox. In some cases, clients may come to methadone rehab having already completed detox at a hospital or detox center. Once methadone is out of the client’s system, the medical and clinical team can begin therapy.
Every client participates in a variety of therapies, including individual counseling, group therapy, and holistic or recreational therapies. Some clients may also participate in family therapy sessions.
Following methadone rehab, regardless of what the individual’s personal therapy plan entails, each client can leave The Recovery Village with an aftercare plan in place to ensure they have a support network waiting for them at home. This aftercare plan may include doctor appointments and drug testing with their primary care physician, sessions with a counselor in their town and a schedule of support group meetings in their area.
Methadone Detox & Treatment Components
The first step a client takes at a methadone treatment center is detoxification. This occurs when the patient ceases or reduces the dosage of methadone to stop using the substance. Withdrawal symptoms may include one or more of the following:
- Increased blood pressure
- Body pain and aches
- Muscle twitching
Methadone withdrawal symptoms typically last from four to six weeks, depending on the duration and severity of methadone use disorder.
More on Treatment Programs:
A person struggling with methadone use disorder may feel as if they can deal with their addiction through outpatient therapy, but inpatient care is an essential component of an effective methadone treatment program in most cases. In the inpatient methadone treatment program, clients have access to the care and guidance of 24-hour nursing staff. The environment is highly controlled, which can be valuable to patients who need structure and ongoing medical and emotional support.
Continue reading at Inpatient Rehab at The Recovery Village.
Completing inpatient rehab first is encouraged, followed by gradually less-intensive levels of care that end in outpatient rehab. The methadone outpatient program is designed to help clients gradually move out of treatment while building the life skills they’ll need for their recovery. Clients live at home or in a sober living environment and regularly visit the facility for appointments.
Continue reading at Outpatient Rehab at The Recovery Village.
Treatment at The Recovery Village focuses on weekly, customized, one-on-one therapy sessions, paired with group therapy sessions designed to lead to physical and mental healing. Through individual therapy, clients work collaboratively with their therapist to identify problems, including co-occurring disorders.
During group therapy, there may be one or more therapists working with several people at one time. This is an opportunity to highlight shared experiences and build a support system.
At The Recovery Village, staff work to treat the whole person, not just the substance abuse. This can involve dual diagnosis treatment, which addresses any co-occurring mental health disorders and the methadone addiction at the same time. This integrated approach to treatment often leads to better outcomes for clients than treating the substance misuse alone.
Continue reading at Co-Occurring Disorders & Dual Diagnosis Treatment.
Methadone Treatment Centers Near Me
If you or a loved one is struggling with methadone misuse or addiction, don’t wait to get help. Contact us today to discuss methadone addiction treatment options that can work for your needs and how to get started on the path to recovery.
You can also explore our addiction treatment locations: The Recovery Village facilities serve communities from Florida to Washington and specialize in a range of substance use disorder recovery services.
Methadone Abuse: Signs, Symptoms, & Side Effects
Methadone Withdrawal and Detox
Australian Government Department of Health. “The principles of methadone maintenance therapy.” October 1995. Accessed September 27, 2021.
Rettig, RA. Yarmolinsky, A. “Federal Regulation of Methadone Treatment.” Institute of Medicine (US) Committee on Federal Regulation of Methadone Treatment. 1995. Accessed September 27, 2021.
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. “Methadone.” June 8, 2021. Accessed September 27, 2021.
The Recovery Village aims to improve the quality of life for people struggling with substance use or mental health disorder with fact-based content about the nature of behavioral health conditions, treatment options and their related outcomes. We publish material that is researched, cited, edited and reviewed by licensed medical professionals. The information we provide is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. It should not be used in place of the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare providers.