What is methadone?
Methadone is a synthetic narcotic that quells a patient’s craving for opioids – painkillers or heroin – by preventing the withdrawal symptoms. Patients who are stabilized on methadone can function normally – whether it be attending school or holding down a job. Also, patients treated with methadone can reduce their exposure to HIV and Hepatitis.
WHAT IS BUPRENORPHINE?
Buprenorphine when appropriately prescribed is an effective and safe medication to treat opioid use disorders. Buprenorphine is prescribed to block the effects of heroin and pain killers in similar ways as methadone. Buprenorphine will be prescribed in pill form. It reduces your risk of relapse. Can be prescribed for maintenance of detoxification, both short term and long term.
Will methadone affect a teen’s life in later years?
Methadone will affect the teenager’s life in later years but in a positive way. The only reason a teenager would be prescribed methadone from the Adelson Clinic is to stop the use and cravings for destructive drugs such as heroin and pain killers. Methadone will help the teenager to function normally and lead a productive life. The Adelson Clinic’s plan is to stabilize the teenager with methadone then taper the methadone dose down to zero, if possible.
HOW DO I KNOW IF METHADONE IS RIGHT FOR ME?
Methadone provides much-needed relief to patients who are battling an addiction to opioids. This U.S Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved medication eliminates cravings for continued opioid use while relieving symptoms that often accompany withdrawal from opioids. When methadone is taken as prescribed under the guidance of trained medical professionals within a licensed treatment center, its use is extremely safe. In addition, methadone provides patients with the ability to take part in daily activities such as work, driving, and school without impairment.
CAN I BECOME ADDICTED TO METHADONE?
As methadone is a controlled substance, there is potential for addiction. When taken as prescribed, however, the risk for addiction is minimal. The Adelson Clinic closely monitors the administration of prescriptions in order to ensure each patient’s safety throughout the course of treatment.
HOW LONG WILL I NEED TO BE ON METHADONE?
While some patients will remain on methadone long-term, others will only utilize it for a short period of time. The length of time that a patient is prescribed methadone will be dependent upon his or her unique treatment needs. By working with our treatment team, patients can determine the length of time that methadone will benefit them for.
DOES METHADONE INTERACT WITH OTHER DRUGS OR MEDICATIONS?
Since methadone can negatively interact with other substances, patients should refrain from taking methadone until they speak with their treatment provider. Patients should notify their treatment team of any prescription, medications, and/or substances that they are taking prior to incorporating the use of methadone into their treatment program. The use of opioids and/or alcohol should not occur while in treatment due to the hazardous interactions that can occur when combined with methadone.
WHAT IS MEDICATION ASSISTED TREATMENT (MAT)?
Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT) is the administering and dispensing of Methadone and other federally approved medications at relatively stable dosage levels, in conjunction with appropriate social, clinical, and medical services.
WHAT ARE THE SIDE EFFECTS OF METHADONE?
Patients should stop taking methadone and contact a doctor or emergency services right away if they:
- Experience difficulty breathing or shallow breathing
- Experience hives or a rash; swelling of the face, lips, tongue, or throat
- Feel chest pain
- Experience a fast or pounding heartbeat
- Experience hallucinations or confusion
WHAT ARE THE SIDE EFFECTS OF BUPRENORPHINE?
Buprenorphine’s side effects are similar to those of opioids and can include:
- Nausea, vomiting, and constipation
- Muscle aches and cramps
- Inability to sleep
- Distress and irritability
WHAT IS THE AVERAGE INITIAL DOSE OF METHADONE?
The initial daily dose of methadone varies for each individual patient. It should generally not be more than 30-40 mg.
WHAT IS THE AVERAGE INITIAL DOSE OF BUPRENORPHINE?
The initial daily dose of methadone varies for each individual patient. It should generally not be more than 2 mg. The initial dose ranges from 2-4 MG. The average dose of Burprenorphine is 16 MG.
HOW LONG WILL IT TAKE TO STABLIZE ON MY DOSE?
During the primary/induction phase of methadone maintenance or buprenorphine treatment, your dosage will be adjusted until you feel a comfortable level of symptoms relief and no drug cravings. This is different for each individual patient.
POSSIBLE NEGATIVE SIDE EFFECTS?
If prolonged side effects occur, our medical staff is on-site daily to evaluate and advise patients. Methadone can also affect the effectiveness of medications you may currently be taking for other medical conditions; therefore, it is important to keep all of your doctors/dentists informed about medications you are taking. The combination of methadone and benzodiazepines (Xanax™, Klonopin™, Valium™, etc.) is particularly dangerous, as the body’s respiratory system can become depressed. Brain damage, breathing problems, and death can result from combining these medications.
- Substance Abuse Treatment & Mental Health Services Administration (SAMSHA)
- National Institutes of Health (NIH)
- Commission on Accreditation of Rahabilitation Facilities (CARF)
- US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)
- National Institutes of Health (NIH)
- National Domestic Violence Hotline
- National Library of Medicine
- Center for Substance Abuse Treatment (CSAT)