Methadone has been the most effective replacement drug used for more than 50 years to treat individuals with opiate addiction. Examples of these opiates include morphine, codeine, and heroin. When properly administered, methadone help to reduce the effects of these drugs by managing the often severe withdrawal symptoms. The treatment is effective as it helps individual tame their cravings and minimizes their chance of relapse with time. Methadone treatments can be administered in two phases: Short term or long term. For severe opiate addiction cases, patients may need to be subjected to addiction treatment over a long period of time, it could be months or even years. Methadone treatment, however, can be used for short term purposes. The duration of this treatment can take up to 2 weeks and it’s ideal for opiate addicts under detox program. It helps them to get over withdrawals symptoms, which usually ranges from mild to serious ones.
To ensure favorable results, doctors recommend comprehensive methadone treatments that incorporate social support and guidance and counseling. Research indicates that methadone treatment programs have had success rates of about 60% to 90%. Further improvements have been exhibited by patients who stay longer in the program. However, with such outstanding statistics and many success stories, there have been a lot of misconceptions and myths surrounding the effectiveness of methadone therapy. The program has been heavily criticized, but most of the critics stem from lacking a proper understanding of how the treatment works. You’ve probably heard few false stories about methadone. To help clear your fears, the following are some of the most common methadone rumors you need to know.
1. Methadone offers similar “highness” to heroin
Provided you get the right dosage, methadone doesn’t have the same euphoric feeling as you’d get from using opiates. Instead, this drug functions by controlling the opioid receptors in the brain, which has been occupied by heroin or other narcotics. This helps you to have normal brain functions minus the sensation of being high. Methadone drug is administered as a prescription drug so it’s unlikely to overdose. With its effect lasting between 24 and 36 hours, patients can get constructive and handle responsibilities normally.
2. Methadone is more dangerous just like heroin
Another misconception about opiate treatment is that the drug is as risky as other opiates. Well this remains to be a myth because just like any drug in the market, it’s bound to have side effects. For instance, you may experience difficulty breathing, hives or rash, chest pain, irregular heartbeat, hallucinations among others. But you should note that, however much the drugs have its own side effects, proper dosage is safer and effective. And again, the treatment is conducted under professional supervision, so there is nothing to worry about.
3. Methadone is harmful to your body
As mentioned earlier, methadone treatments are under strict medical supervision, hence the chances of them affecting you are very minimal. Methadone is not harmful to your organs, nor does it pose risk to your body. The same way your liver processes other medications, it’s the same way it works on methadone. So it’s perfectly safe. There is a myth also that methadone damages teeth. While that’s not true, it’s important to know that this drugs may have varying side effects on different people. For example, some people may experience dry mouths, which can cause to tooth decay due to lack of saliva. To avoid this, ensure you’re constantly on chewing mode to stimulate saliva production and if the condition persists, you should see your doctor for an expert solution.
4. Methadone Treatments are costly
Most people often fear to seek this treatment citing cost reasons. Perhaps that’s just a rumor they’ve heard which has influenced their decision not to go for methadone treatment. But in reality, you the option of either going to a private or a public methadone clinic. The public is more affordable, although you’ll have wait for long periods to receive treatment. Private clinics, on the other hand, are more convenient in their services but costs more. You could also try other methadone rehab centers that offer flexible payment plans or consult your health insurer to see if they’ll help you foot the methadone treatment cost.