Medication Assisted Treatment in Recovery
Addiction recovery is a deeply personal journey, one that varies significantly from person to person. Just as every individual is unique, so too are their struggles with addiction and the paths they take toward recovery. While some may find solace in traditional therapy and support groups, others may benefit from a different approach—one that involves Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT). MAT is a nuanced and effective method, particularly for those dealing with alcohol and opioid addiction, offering tailored solutions that acknowledge the diverse nature of recovery. At Centered Recovery, we recognize that addiction recovery is a personal journey and we are here to help you understand medication assisted treatment in recovery!
The Diversity of Addiction Recovery: One Size Doesn’t Fit All
Addiction is a complex condition, influenced by genetic, environmental, and psychological factors. Consequently, recovery paths are diverse and multifaceted. Some individuals find strength in community-based support groups like Alcoholics Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous, where shared experiences foster a sense of belonging and understanding. Therapy, counseling, and holistic approaches like yoga and meditation have also been instrumental in many people’s recovery journeys.
However, traditional methods might not be sufficient for everyone. The nature of addiction varies, and what works for one person may not work for another. This is where Medication-Assisted Treatment comes into play.
Understanding Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT)
MAT is an evidence-based approach that combines therapy and counseling with prescribed medications to address substance use disorders. These medications help stabilize brain chemistry, reduce cravings, and alleviate the typically severe symptoms of withdrawal, making the recovery process more manageable.
How MAT Helps Those Struggling with Alcohol and Opioids
MAT for alcohol addiction often involves medications like disulfiram, naltrexone, and acamprosate. Disulfiram creates an aversion to alcohol by inducing unpleasant reactions when alcohol is consumed. Naltrexone blocks opioid receptors, reducing the pleasurable effects of alcohol, while acamprosate helps balance brain chemicals disrupted by alcohol abuse.
For opioid addiction, MAT commonly employs medications like methadone, buprenorphine, and naltrexone. Methadone and buprenorphine activate the same receptors as opioids, curbing cravings, and withdrawal symptoms without inducing the same high. Naltrexone blocks the effects of opioids, discouraging their use.
Options for Individuals Interested in MAT
MAT is not a one-size-fits-all solution either. Individuals considering MAT should work closely with healthcare providers to determine the most suitable medication and dosage. Here are some options:
- Methadone Clinics: Methadone, a long-acting opioid, can only be dispensed through specialized clinics. These clinics offer daily doses, ensuring patients are monitored closely.
- Buprenorphine Prescribers: Buprenorphine, a partial opioid agonist, can be prescribed by trained healthcare providers. This medication can be taken at home, promoting a sense of autonomy.
- Naltrexone: Naltrexone, available in pill or injectable form, can be prescribed by healthcare providers. Unlike methadone and buprenorphine, it is non-addictive and does not produce a high.
Embracing Diverse Paths to Recovery
Addiction recovery is a deeply personal journey, and there is no shame in seeking help that aligns with your individual needs. Medication assisted treatment in recovery has proven to be a valuable tool, offering tailored solutions that acknowledge the unique challenges of addiction. By understanding and embracing MAT, individuals can take a significant step toward lasting recovery, finding hope and healing on their own terms. To learn more about MAT options available to you in your local area, feel free to call us at 800.556.2966 for more information!
Written by Jennifer Lopes, BS Psy