Methadone is one of the drugs that stirs up plenty of controversy and debate whenever it’s brought up. One of the primary reasons for this is the misinformation and myths about its supposed ability to give opioid addicts the rush they’re looking after. Opponents of this type of addiction treatment allege that it’s tantamount to replacing one addiction with another.
The truth is that there’s no such thing as a methadone high. There’s no flying high with methadone, but its properties do help recovering addicts by satisfying opioid cravings without leading to any of its harmful effects.
This effectively prevents symptoms of withdrawal during the recovery journey, which is often considered one of the toughest parts of this experience. In turn, people are less likely to relapse.
Let’s explore the potential and value of methadone for recovering addicts.
Methadone is a safe and cost-effective treatment for serious cases of addiction
Beyond just being significantly more cost-effective compared to sustaining an opioid addiction, methadone is also extremely safe given that a drug clinic administers each dosage to each individual.
Dosages are in line with what individuals require, including how long they’ve been taking the treatment. Based on what we know about the drug, the effectiveness of the treatment, as a whole, increases alongside the duration of treatment.
This very act of going into a drug clinic to receive methadone treatment has its own set of advantages. It helps people get out of their homes and enter certain niches of society, which makes re-entering wider society easier in the long run.
Methadone is an opioid agonist
An agonist is a compound that can trigger a biological response at a specific receptor in the brain. When it comes to opioid agonists like methadone, the brain’s opioid receptors are activated when the drug is consumed, effectively blocking drug cravings.
While this is what many critics find problematic, it’s precisely what makes methadone such an effective and integral part of medication-based recovery programs for addicts. Given its opioid-like effects on the body, it satiates the body’s craving for opioids, minus any dangerous, long-term side effects.
This is what makes opioid recovery so successful, provided it’s regulated with care and administered effectively.
It’s an alternative to harsh and rigorous abstinence-only programs
While it’s easy to think that the easiest way to beat an addiction is to go cold turkey, the truth is that addiction treatment is not as simple as this.
Addiction often has a psychological basis, in addition to physiological dependency, and, therefore, needs to be treated the same way a physical illness would be – i.e., with medicine. Abstinence-only programs are extreme and may be more likely to lead to relapse, given the physical and mental intensity of withdrawal symptoms.
As outlined in the previous sections, methadone blocks cravings by reacting against opioid receptors in the brain. People being treated for opioid addiction with methadone, therefore, have a very high chance of addressing their mental state without being completely overwhelmed by the physical effects of withdrawal.
Methadone has other benefits: Given that it’s not illegal and is inexpensive, people are less likely to commit crimes or fall into trouble because it’s more easily available – provided they’re a part of a drug program or are being actively treated for addiction.
Methadone has the power to transform lives – who are we to stand in its way?
If you are being treated for drug addiction or know someone who is, explore the option of methadone treatment with relevant caregivers and medical professionals.
By acknowledging that you want to get better, and by receiving the right kind of treatment, you can begin a successful path to recovery.