What is Methadone?

An opioid medication – that is what methadone is.  It is one of those drugs that are approved to be used treating opioid dependence and addiction.  It helps in reducing the withdrawal symptoms in the addicted individuals to narcotic drugs such as heroin and morphine.  Moreover, the drug is not associated with the ‘high’ that drug addiction is too familiar with.

Methadone is a part of the detoxification and maintenance programs of drug addiction. It is also used as pain relievers. These drugs are only available in the pharmacies certified to sell them. In opioid recovery, this drug is a valuable tool because:

  • Its action has long duration
  • Its work continues even after a long time had passed since it was taken
  • When orally taken, it is effective

Despite being an effective medicine for opioid recovery, this drug is not for all patients. If patients have breathing problems, severe asthma, or paralytic ileus, they should not be allowed to ingest methadone.  Methadone can slow down breathing or even stop it especially when you are just starting using it. This can also happen when the dose has been changed.

Before taking up this medication, you need to inform your doctor first if you are taking other medications. Make sure that your doctor knows what the other medication is for. Some medicines should not be taken with methadone as it can lead to serotonin syndrome, which is a serious condition. It is imperative that you make sure that the medication will be safe for you. This drug can be of real help in treating narcotic addiction especially when taken as prescribed. However, it is still an opiate. Thus, it can be addictive.

Medical professionals are usually there to supervise the use of the drug as a medication to let the narcotic addiction wear off.  Compared to other pain killers, methadone is less expensive, which is why doctors have been adding the drug as a long-acting painkiller in their prescription. This kind of exposure can lead to methadone addiction. Moreover, this also makes the drug more accessible to many. Like other opioid drugs, methadone also works in the brain. It remains in the body longer, which allows it to block the euphoric feeling of other opioid drugs. With that, the pain that users experience from withdrawal symptoms from the other drugs are lessened.

As a long-acting drug, it can quickly buildup inside the body. It can remain in the blood stream for a long time. This why this medication must be used only as prescribed. Otherwise, it might lead to another addiction.  Without the doctor’s advice, the dose of this medication shall remain as it is.

Methadone is known as an effective pain killer. As they are given to the patients, they need to be closely monitored so as the dose can be adjusted as necessary. Giving a high dose can put the patient in danger.  However, giving them too little will be ineffective in fighting off pain. However, when the person starts to abuse the drug, they no longer have the protection. They will be left on their own to fight it and work out how much of the drug their body can tolerate. One dose of this medication is strong, which is why overdosing of this medication is easy.  As tolerance for it develops, it can easily turn to abuse. When abuse of methadone is already in place, it can take hold to addiction in no time. With that, you should be able to tell if the patient or any individual is already on the brink of abusing the drug or already addicted to it.

The Symptoms

Detecting methadone abuse can be easy. One way to do it is through looking for the symptoms and side effects that the drug can bring. Most of its symptoms are common to all opiates such as heroin, hydrocodone, Oxycontin, morphine and more.

Constipation, vomiting, drowsiness, nausea and weakness are often caused by opiates. Users of opiates usually go onto an unusual schedule for sleep and often have difficulty in sleeping. Lack of appetite, dry mouth, headache and itchiness are also symptoms we can associate with methadone addiction.   There is also a tendency that they will show an unusual pattern of mood swings. They may also gain weight, sweat and flush. People who are addicted to methadone might also complain about having difficulty with urinating, having skin rashes and issues on water retention.

Taking too much of the medication can cause a dangerous irregularity in the patient’s heartbeat and slow their breathing.  They may also faint or feel dizzy. To some, they even manifest confusions. There are also those who cannot walk, talk or think normally. This case is the same for those patients who cannot tolerate the methadone well. If this is the case, that person must be rushed to the hospital immediately. An individual suffering from methadone addiction may also having difficulty in handling machineries and driving. This might then lead to accidents or any other danger. As much as possible, they should not be allowed to handle heavy machines.

There are other clues that will tell you if an individual is abusing the drug more that as it was prescribed.  You will see one when the withdrawal symptoms kick in, and the patient will be showing an obsession of getting more methadone.  They will also manifest other symptoms such as yawning, restlessness, dilated pupils and muscle ache. They will be sweating even when the weather is good and they are doing absolutely nothing.  Their eyes may also tear.  They will also suffer from difficulty in sleeping and ultimately not being able to.

As the withdrawal proceeds, they will be showing more symptoms that will give them away. They may have stomach cramps, vomiting or diarrhea.  If the person is showing such symptoms and they keep on asking for money then leave the house, there is a big possibility that you are dealing with a person under methadone addiction or addiction to other opiates. Regardless, you need to do something to help that person. If that person is currently nursing a baby, you must also check on the child. They might be manifesting the same symptoms. You will need to make sure that baby immediately seeks help from professionals.

Effects and Treatments of Methadone Abuse

Like most drugs, the use of methadone should be monitored and controlled. This is not only for the reason that it is a drug but also for the harmful effects that it has. A person could not afford to see a relative or family member suffer due to the harmful effects of the drug. If you have known the leading effect of methadone, you will have a clear idea of the possible consequence if the drug is abused. It could lead to other complicated problems in not only the person’s body but also the surroundings.

The close prevention about Methadone and Addiction should closely be watched. Taking the drug in an abusive way could range some harmful consequences to a person’s health. This could eventually lead to sickness and death if often done in an abusive manner.

rehab methadone

The Effects of the drug are the following:

Short Term Effects of Methadone

  • Feelings of Euphoria
  • Sedation
  • Drowsiness
  • Relaxation

In comparison to heroin, Methadone has longer effects that can last for 24 hours while heroin on the other hand has an effect that lasts for 2-3 hours only.

If you have a methadone overdose, this can slow down your reactions that will make your body movements more exaggerated. In this case, you will find trouble in reacting to the situations that are happening around you. Thus, there is a chance that you might be involved in accidents at home or on the road. Aside from these, you might have the effect of having a mood swings. If you become low on your methadone level, your body will react that will also set your brain to be affected. Leaving you irritable and moody.

The other side effects include the following:

  • Pinpoint pupils
  • Respiratory depression
  • Nausea

If one will ask what is methadone? One would address of the great number of deaths that this drug is responsible for. In the worst scenarios, the great addiction to the drug is the result of over a thousand deaths in the past decade. Aside from the breathing problems it can cause a person, there is also the case of impaired judgment and heart complications. These will soon lead to other complications if not attended. There also cases wherein the tablet or the injected process might cause danger. Thus, there should be caution in taking the drug.

If the symptoms of methadone are not checked or monitored, there will be a chance that a person will be methadone dependent. When this happens, there will be a sure way that the harmful results of methadone will do damage to the person’s mind and body. This could end in death. The other influences could prove fatal. If a person is not cured,  he or she might suffer a great stress that could lead to the destruction of his or her life.

However, there are treatments in order to cure methadone abuse. What are treatments for methadone addiction?

The following are some of the effective treatments in order to cure the drug addiction.

The Withdrawal Treatment

Everything starts from the smallest dose until it arrives to larger doses. This kind of treatment involves in three stages and is also known as detox. The gradual intake of medication might last for a few days or months depending on the condition of the patient. In the continue intakes of the drops prescribed by the doctor, there is a chance that the patient could experience some good results in it.

Engaging in a Therapy

Well, most people who have drug related problems undergo therapy in order to make the solution to the problem. There could be other forms of therapy such as the behavioral cognitive therapy. These could do some good effects to the patient. If family and relatives of the patient are determined to help them recovery, there are effective therapy programs that the family can go to. If one has the willingness to this, then the solution is given.

Make an Appointment with the right therapist

In giving a solution to methadone overdose, seeking the help of a therapist would be the best way.  The symptoms of the drug overdose will be determined by the therapist. This will ensure that the drug abuse will be lessened. The therapist will know all the right steps and procedures that would make the recovery process a successful one. If you are dedicated in curing it there will be a chance for you to help the patient so that he or she will have a fast recovery.

Taking the right Medications

There are effective medications that the patient could take in order to recover from the effects of the drug. It would be a great way to relieve the patient with the other harmful results of having the drug. In taking the prescribed medications, the patient could also undergo to the right counselling procedures. This could be done using a solo or a group.

Going to a Rehab Center

The right facility is important in order to cure the addicted person, if you will bring the patient to Broadway Treatment Center ; there is an assurance that you will have adequate treatment for the drug. In the right facility, there will be right and effective treatment that would be given to all the addicts. Aside from this, there is love and care given to them, so you can be assured of a good result.

The solution in the drug would result in a good manner as possible. If you are determined to give your best in taking the patient to a rehab, there will be a chance that the result of the rehab will have a good result. If you will are dedicated in achieving a healthy life for the patient, these things would be effective to use. Please call 714-443-8218 today to speak with one of our live counselors about Methadone Addiction.

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