Is Methadone An Opiate Or An Opioid?

Methadone addictionMethadone is an opioid narcotic used to treat pain of a moderate to severe level. Methadone is also one of the medications used within addiction treatment programs to help people with recovery. However, it needs to be used with caution and guidance because it is also addictive.

If you’re addicted to another opioid, such as heroin, methadone could become part of the treatment plan that aids in your recovery. If you’re concerned about taking it because of your risk of addiction, you can talk to treatment professionals about your options. Also, if you’re addicted to methadone itself, a treatment program can help.

Methadone in Addiction Treatment

Methadone is used as replacement therapy within addiction treatment programs for heroin and prescription opioid painkillers. Even though it is an opioid like the others, it can help with addiction because it works differently. Methadone has a slower onset of effects. Also, it is able to counteract the high you would normally experience from taking heroin or prescription opioids. Plus, methadone can help you manage the withdrawal symptoms caused by stopping the intake of the other types of opioids. Overall, it provides a weaker opioid to replace the stronger ones, helping you wean off opioids altogether.

When used in this way, you can be on methadone for as long as a year or more. During this time, you will be under a doctor’s supervision to monitor how your body is doing with the treatment. As well as whether the dose needs to be adjusted. Also, when your doctor decides it’s time for methadone treatment to end, you will taper off it to manage potential withdrawal symptoms.

The Risk of Methadone

Methadone is an opioid. Which is the same drug class that includes heroin and prescription opioid painkillers such as morphine and codeine. Your brain and body can get used to functioning with the drug in your system. Thus, adapting to rely on receiving the next dose. You may develop tolerance wherein you need to keep taking more to prevent the withdrawal symptoms and manage pain.

Also, you can become dependent on methadone. In particular, in response to receiving an opioid like methadone, your brain will release the chemical dopamine. Dopamine is associated with reward and pleasure. When you use methadone over and over, your brain can change. Thus, it only releases dopamine when you consume the drug. And you can experience withdrawal symptoms when you stop using it.

It’s possible that tolerance and dependence will lead you to opioid use disorder. Similarly, is an official term that encompasses opioid abuse and addiction. If you become addicted to this drug, your behaviors will change to reflect the methadone use.

For example, you might use more of the drug than you meant to. Furthermore, changing your focus to the drug use and away from activities that previously mattered to you. The main component of addiction is that you don’t stop using the drug even when it creates problems in your life. Which could include:

  • Financial troubles
  • Losing your job
  • Strained relationships
  • Health problems

Addiction Treatment

Whether you have an addiction to methadone—or to another opioid that could be managed with methadone—we will create an individualized treatment plan for you at Transformations Treatment Center. Our team of certified addiction professionals is experienced in helping people with a variety of opioid use disorders.

If needed, we might suggest that you start with a detox program through our facility Summit Detox. This first step of treatment gets the drug out of your body while providing medical monitoring to ensure your comfort and safety. We may suggest the use of medication to manage symptoms of withdrawal you experience during the process.

After that, treatment should include a rehab component to help you change the behaviors addiction has created. During this stage, you can go through individual therapy, group therapy and other treatment program components that help you understand the addiction and learn ways to overcome it. We can also provide services to help with a co-occurring substance use or mental health disorder.

Reach Out For Help

At Transformations Treatment Center, we offer different levels and tracks within our programs: partial hospitalization, outpatient programs and an intensive outpatient program. By providing different options, we are able to address your unique needs to increase your chance at success with recovery.

We also aim to help you succeed by entering you into our aftercare program. Through this program, we keep in touch with you after you leave our rehab program. This way, you won’t be alone as you go back to your regular day-to-day life. If you find it difficult to handle the stressors and temptations of life after you leave rehab, you can rely on us to continue to guide you on the path of recovery.

Do you think you or your loved one might have dependence or an addiction to methadone? Or maybe you’re wondering if methadone could help with a different opioid addiction. Our certified addiction professionals at Transformations Treatment Center can provide an assessment to create an individualized treatment path to help you or someone you know forward. Contact us today to discover your path to a new life.

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