How to Assess Methadone Recovery Needs

How to Assess Methadone Recovery NeedsMethadone is a synthetic opiate that is occasionally administered as a prescription painkiller, but is more frequently used as a treatment medication for opiate addicts. Methadone satisfies the brain’s physiological need for opiates without causing the euphoric high associated with drugs like heroin or oxycodone. In this way it prevents withdrawal symptoms in patients who wish to end their abuse of narcotics. Government regulations require the drug to be administered in specially licensed clinics. Addicts can use methadone for months or even years, but when the time comes for them to end their methadone dependency, they will need specialized help.

Two Kinds of Methadone Addiction

Methadone addiction can happen for two different reasons:

  • Individuals addicted to heroin or painkillers are given methadone in a special clinic in order to help them stop using those other drugs
  • Individuals who are not opiate dependent use methadone recreational for the mildly euphoric effect it first offers but then find themselves hooked

In either case, when a methadone addict attempts to stop using the drug, he or she is likely to experience withdrawal symptoms that can be quite painful or even dangerous. Recovering addicts that have taken advantage of professional counseling, support groups and other means of psychological recovery from opiate addiction are more likely to successfully endure methadone withdrawal without relapsing. Recreational users, however, are less likely to stay clean. If their supply of methadone is disrupted they may turn to pain pills, opium or heroin to fend off withdrawal. Strong psychological rehabilitation is necessary if recovery is to be realized.

Psychological Methadone Recovery Tools

Opiate addiction is both physical and psychological in nature. While methadone satisfies the addict’s physical need for the drug, the psychological or emotional dependence is rooted in underlying or co-occurring conditions such as depression, personality disorder, anxiety disorder or other mental illness. Methadone prevents withdrawal effectively, but the psychological power of the disease must be confronted through the following types of therapy:

  • Individual counseling of various styles (Cognitive Behavior Therapy, etc.)
  • Support group meetings that allow patients to help each other
  • Improved understanding of the nature and functioning of the disease of addiction
  • Introduction to healthy new coping techniques, including meditation, yoga, etc.
  • Family counseling designed to identify and correct codependency issues
  • Introduction to long-term recovery support

Addiction causes the formation of neural pathways in the brain that drive behaviors in ways that are much more powerful than rational thought. Psychological rehabilitation allows addicts to establish new pathways in the reward center of their brain. This process can take anywhere from a month up to longer than a year to establish and then requires long-term support to maintain.

Methadone Addiction Recovery Help

Specially trained admissions coordinators, in conjunction with doctors and other recovery staff, can help you determine the best path to methadone recovery. Our toll-free methadone recovery helpline is open 24 hours a day and offers immediate answers to all of your questions and instant referrals to the most effective programs available. Don’t stay trapped in a cycle of methadone use or abuse any longer than necessary. Call for help right now.