Medicated-Assisted Treatment (MAT) is the use of FDA-approved medications, like methadone and suboxone, in combination with counseling and behavioral therapies, to provide treatment of substance use disorders.
Methadone is a medication that is primarily used for the treatment of opioid use disorder. Methadone has a long half-life, which means that it has long lasting effects on your body. Methadone is a non-sedating, long lasting medication, it helps prevent withdrawal while suppressing cravings for other opioids, without creating the same "high" that is experienced from other short half-life opioids like heroin or prescription pills. This is why Methadone is so useful in treating opioid dependence!
Methadone is 100% effective when taken orally in liquid or tablet form, and should be taken daily and only as prescribed. Methadone does not impair a person's ability to work, be productive, or live a normal life. Methadone has been found effective in retaining people in treatment and in the reduction or cessation of opioid use.
When used correctly in treatment, methadone maintenance therapy has been found to be medically safe, non-sedating, and can provide a successful and stable recovery from opioid addiction. Methadone can help an opioid addicted person take back control of their life, improving their overall productiveness, health, and social life.
Suppresses craving for other narcotics
Does not alter reflexes or ability to concentrate
Can be prescribed legally by a qualified clinic
Is effective and safe when properly used
Suboxone is a brand of prescription medication that is made up of a combination of Buprenorphine and Naloxone. Suboxone is a film that is intended to be administered by placement under the tongue. Like methadone, it is used to treat adults who are dependent or addicted to opioids. It has similar characteristics to methadone in that it has a long half-life, suppresses cravings, and prevents withdrawal.
Buprenorphine however, is different from Methadone in that it is a Partial-Agonist medication. Partial-agonist medication does not activate your brain receptors the same extent as full-agonist medication. This means that Buprenorphine reaches its maximum effect at a low to moderate dose, and that any further increase will not change its effects. These properties make Buprenorphine a safer medication in regards to risk of abuse, overdose, and side effects. However sometimes it is not as effective as methadone for those who are using high doses of opioids.
There is no cookie cutter approach to which medication will work best for each patient. Our team of medical professionals will help you decide upon admission if Suboxone or Methadone is right for you.
Medication alone is not the answer. It must be paired with the complete treatment plan consisting of counseling and psychosocial support. See our Counseling Services page for more information on the services we provide at ATS