Methadone Usage Problem: Effects and Treatments

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At Northbound we understand the complexities of a methadone addiction. We know first-hand how powerful the struggle with addiction can be.

What Is Methadone?

A synthetic opioid often used to help ease withdrawal symptoms associated with heroin and other narcotics, methadone may be an example of a situation where the cure is—if not worse than, at least as bad as—the disease. Though used to help heroin and opiate addicts recover from their dependency, methadone itself is addictive and the detox process for methadone can take longer than the original heroin detox, with the withdrawal symptoms being just as debilitating, if not worse.

This tendency to prescribe drugs in treatment for drug addiction has had a devastating effect, making methadone abuse a real and serious problem. (Some studies have placed methadone among the top 5 dangerous drugs.) For freedom from drug addiction, one must live a drug free life, not just replace one addiction with another.

Effects of Methadone Use

A potent analgesic, methadone shares similar traits with other opioids and the path to addiction often proceeds in a similar way, with growing tolerance requiring the user to taker higher or more frequent dosages in order to achieve the same level of relief from pain or cravings. Because it is both powerful and long-lasting, abusers of methadone are at greater risk of overdose as desire to hurry along the next “high” or simple unfamiliarity with the drug’s dosage can lead to dangerous levels of methadone toxicity.

Frequent users of methadone can experience excessive sweating, respiratory distress, drowsiness, nausea, lack of appetite, weight fluctuations and/or mood swings. Withdrawal from the drug is attended by cravings, irritability, gastro-intestinal distress and a fixation on obtaining more. Those who are addicted to methadone suffer from a variety of physical and psychological ailments, from depression and paranoia to seizures and low blood pressure. Death can ensue from long-term deterioration, toxicity, fatal interactions with other drugs or overdose.

Withdrawal and Treatment

As with other narcotics, treatment for methadone addiction usually begins with a thorough detox program. At Northbound, our oneEIGHTY detox facility ensures that new patients are able to detox in a safe, comfortable environment. With withdrawal symptoms that can include suicide ideation, hallucinations, and tachycardia, it is critical that the detoxification process takes place in a facility that can offer 24 hour medical supervision.

At our methadone addiction treatment center in Orange County, we understand the deep damage that addiction can cause, and we seek to provide healing on a mental, physical, spiritual and psychological level. Every client is provided with an individualized treatment plan that takes into account his or her specific needs and challenges, and which is revisited and adapted over the course of recovery. Our family program will help loved ones understand both the addiction and how they can support the former addict in sobriety. In addition, as specialists in dual diagnosis treatment, we are able to simultaneously treat the client for both the addiction and any co-occurring disorders that would otherwise inhibit effective therapy and recovery.

If you or someone you love is suffering from an addiction to methadone, we are here to help. Contact Northbound Treatment Services today about our methadone addiction rehab program and take the first step to a new, healthy and sober life.





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