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No Methadone for You

Posted on :  July 10th, 2015  |  By :  towardsrecovery

Methadone is an important factor in the success rates of people fighting opioid addiction. At Towards Recovery Clinics, we understand how vital a treatment program is for our patients. But, we also understand that not every addict will benefit from a methadone treatment program. Before we prescribe any program, we assess each patient’s needs and addictions. There are certain reasons why we would not prescribe methadone.

Methadone Only Fights Opioid Addictions

The first reason we would not prescribe methadone is because a patient has an addiction to something other than opioids. Unfortunately, would-be patients with addictions to other substances, like cocaine, come to us thinking that methadone will help them when it will not at all. There is no reason to give methadone to someone who is not addicted to opioids, like heroin; so, we do not.

Physical and Psychological Dependence are Required

Another reason we would not prescribe methadone is because the patient might have a physical dependence, but not a psychological one. Patients might take opioid pain medication, but they take it as directed. When there is no sign of abuse, there is no real need for a methadone treatment plan. These plans have strict regulations and can only be prescribed to people who have psychological disorders, like obsessions and compulsions or being unable to function without their drugs. Methadone cannot be prescribed like pain medication, because that is not the purpose of the drug. Interestingly, opioid addicts who do take methadone find that their pain problems tend to be reduced.

There is a Time Requirement

Since methadone is addicting, it is only prescribed to patients who have had their opioid addictions for over 12 months. This is a government regulation and cannot be avoided. There are other options for addicts with addicts who have had problems for less than one year, like buprenorphine, because it is not as addicting as methadone is.

Inpatient Programs Take Precedence

If an addict can fight the addiction in an inpatient treatment facility, we will recommend that over methadone treatment plans. In many cases, this recommendation is given to people who can afford to spend a significant amount of time in a treatment facility, especially since it can be rather expensive. Some people think this is controversial, because of the success rate of methadone treatment plans; but inpatient treatment programs do not cause new addictions like methadone does.

No Other Addictions Allowed

When opioid addicts have other addictions, to substances like alcohol or sedatives, methadone can be deadly. Addicts with multiple addictions should detox before they begin any methadone treatment program simply because mixing methadone with other addictive substances can cause death.

Mental Illness Needs to Be Treated

Patients with serious mental illnesses should also avoid being placed on methadone treatment programs. We do not prescribe methadone to patients with suicidal tendencies. We also do not prescribe it to patients with psychosis and hallucinatory issues. When patients are out of touch with reality, methadone treatments can only create more problems because they do not follow program instructions.

Appropriate Behavior is Necessary

It is also difficult to prescribe methadone to patients who are unable to take care of themselves. Patients who are not safe to have in a treatment center because they are violent or they sell drugs will not receive treatment. At Towards Recovery Clinics, we take care of our patients and the people in our communities. We do not want to have problems with disruptive patients, so we do not prescribe treatment programs for them. Patients will be counseled on what is appropriate behavior and if they can maintain it, they will receive treatment. However, those who cannot, will not be treated.

Physician Need to Approve

Serious physical and health problems can be worsened by methadone treatment. Before treatment plans are approved, it is important for us to find out with patients are healthy enough to withstand treatment. Lung and heart problems can become worse with methadone treatment. Fortunately, there are other treatment programs that can be used instead.

If you have any questions about methadone treatment or other optional treatments, contact Towards Recovery Clinics at 905-527-2042.

Who We Serve ?

  • Individuals using/abusing street narcotics (e.g. heroin).
  • Patients abusing prescription narcotics(i.e., Codeine, Talwin, Percocet/Percodan, Dilaudid, Morphine or Demerol, et cetera).
  • Individuals displaying any of the following behaviours: Compulsive drug use or drug seeking/craving.
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