There are lots of different types of treatment for drug dependency. If you or someone that you know is considering the options, one choice you may be looking into is medication-assisted drug treatment (MAT).
However, the idea of taking a new drug to combat an addiction to another one can feel counterintuitive and potentially even unsafe.
That’s why we’ve put together this article. It tells you everything that you need to know about medication-assisted drug treatment so you can figure out whether it’s safe and if it’s the right treatment option for you or your loved one moving forward. Keep reading to learn more.
What is medication-assisted drug treatment?
Medication-assisted drug treatment is what you’d expect. It’s a type of treatment for drug abuse that uses medication alongside other treatment techniques to make the recovery process easier on patients.
With these treatment plans, medication is used to manage the withdrawals and cravings that come up when a person is transitioning from previous substance abuse to a sober lifestyle.
It’s important to note that the medication isn’t what heals the person who’s taking it. Instead, it minimizes the tough physical symptoms of the substance abuse recovery process so that it’s easier for the person to make it through the treatments that will set them up to live a healthy, sober life.
What treatments are used alongside MAT?
The vast majority of MAT-based recovery plans include 1-on-1 therapy. This is how a patient gets the support that they need to understand the root causes of their addiction and resolve those problems.
On top of that, an MAT plan may also include group-based treatments like 12-step meetings or non-12-step meetings, among other types of care. The specific treatments that a patient’s MAT plan includes will vary based on the facility that they choose to pursue treatment at.
Is medication-assisted drug treatment safe?
Medication-assisted drug treatment is absolutely safe. The medications that treatment centers use to provide this type of care include Buprenorphine, Suboxone, and Subutex, among others. Each of these has been approved by the FDA to be used for the purpose of substance abuse recovery.
The FDA wouldn’t approve medications like these for public consumption if they weren’t safe. Like all medications, certain people may experience some side effects while taking these types of substances. But the health experts at the FDA have determined that these side effects are not serious or frequent enough to make these medications unsafe.
Are these medications addictive?
You may also be worried about simply replacing one addiction for another after beginning a medication-assisted drug treatment plan. But the substances prescribed in these programs are typically much less addictive than substances that people abuse.
That’s because these substances interact with the brain in a different way than drugs and alcohol do. They’re able to satisfy the brain’s cravings and withdrawal symptoms without getting the person who takes them high or drunk.
Additionally, your usage of these medications will be carefully overseen by an experienced doctor. They will control how much you take and for how long. This makes it much easier to slowly taper off of the medication with minimal discomfort when the time to do so arrives.
Is this the right treatment option for me?
Medication-assisted treatment may or may not be the right treatment option for you. The answer to this question will depend on the substance that you’re abusing and how significant your addiction to it is.
For example, MAT is most commonly used to treat opioid addictions. That means it could be a good fit for your recovery process if you’re someone who has been struggling with an addiction to heroin or prescription pain medications.
That being said, the only way to know whether an MAT plan is right for you is to speak with a doctor who can provide you with a personalized recommendation. They’ll be able to take your unique personal factors into consideration to set you up with a care plan that gives you the best chance at reaching your long-term recovery goals.
Get personalized medication-assisted drug treatment through Still Water Wellness
Medication-assisted drug treatment could be the ideal way for you to recover from your substance abuse problem. But the only way to know for sure is to get in touch with an expert who can provide you with a personalized recommendation.
That’s why you should get in touch with the Still Water Wellness Group. Our experts are standing by to answer your questions. Reach out to us today to learn more.